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Rosseel seeks alderman seat re-election

Alderman Tom Rosseel has announced his intention to run again for Alderman Ward I against challenger Bob Markli.

“I believe, based on my service to the community, I have the necessary experience and leadership to effectively serve as an independent voice to address issues facing our Town and help Farragut move forward,” Rosseel said.

Rosseel’s first priority is to support homeowners on zoning and traffic safety issues.

“Helping homeowners protect their property rights and resolve their problems should be my top priority,” Rosseel said.

The second prong of his platform is to “demand good government,” including establishing term limits, reviewing the organizational structure of the Town and initiating open fiscal planning.

“The public has a right to expect fair, open and honest government, and we should be able to defend our decisions,” Rosseel said.

“Public officials should see public office as an honor, not a right or an entitlement. I believe two consecutive terms would be the types of term limits I would like to see,” he added.

Rosseel also plans for continued improvements in Town infrastructure without a property tax.

“I think we need to spend only what we have conservatively budgeted,” Rosseel said, but added that a poor economy should not mean drastically lessened services.

“Tight budgets don’t mean that you stop everything, just that you have to be a little bit more careful with how you spend.

“But if you don’t make infrastructure improvements, you’re making a mistake. Even in bad times, you have to make improvements,” he added.

Rosseel’s fourth prong involves increased traffic safety in Farragut, including traffic calming, improving neighborhood traffic patterns, installing necessary traffic signals and other road improvements.

“Traffic calming methods in subdivisions are important for the safety of walkers and children waiting for bus stops. I think it’s important,” Rosseel said.

He also said it is important to plan for growth in Farragut.

“I believe we need to implement the Leisure Services Master Plan as funding permits,” Rosseel said, including expanding parkland and greenways and generating plans for a community center.

According to Rosseel, Farra-gut should work with Knox County to alleviate overcrowding in schools and should partner with the County and City of Knoxville to review the urban growth plan, which identifies municipal boundaries.

“This was last done in 1998 with the City of Knoxville and Knox County.

“It doesn’t mean that you are annexing these areas,” Rosseel was quick to point out.

“What you do is, you give the property owners, the subdivisions, the opportunity, if they want to, to become part of Farragut,” he said.

Neither the property owners nor the Town would be obligated to change Town limits, but it would be possible. This might help smooth Farragut’s jagged boundaries, particularly north of Interstate-75/40, Rosseel said.

“There are people in the area that don’t really live in Farragut but feel part of the Farragut community … and I think that’s something we need to consider,” he said.

Rosseel, a proponent of recycling, would like to see a public-private partnership for a recycling center in Farragut.

Finally, Rosseel hopes to “strengthen and support” local businesses. He would support a “Farragut Economic Develop-ment Board,” a collection of local business owners and developers who provide feedback to the Town on ordinances and codes and encourage responsible and lasting development in the Town.

Rosseel has been a Farragut resident since 1983 and has worked at Oak Ridge National Laboratory for 28 years. He served as a member of Farragut Municipal Planning Commission from 1998 to 2004, when he was elected to his first term as alderman. He and his wife, Carol, have a son, David, who is a senior at Farragut High School this year.

“I think over the last four years, I’ve tried to listen and respond to concerns of the citizens and try to sensibly plan for the future of the Town,” Rosseel said.


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