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Farragut promotes ‘unsustainable’ lifestyle

I appreciate your informative article in the Feb. 26 edition of Farragutpress. I moved from Atlanta, Ga., to Farragut in May 2008. I was amazed at all the big windows and open foyers and open living rooms in the housing here. TVA, obviously, has permitted an unsustainable lifestyle here. I thought our utility bills would be double what they were last summer because of the many very hot days.

Because of Farragut requirements, we are unable to enclose our rear deck because it extends eleven inches beyond the setback requirements of Farragut. If we enclosed the deck it would shield three large windows from the heat of the day.

Now I read your article and find that Sam and Andy’s is having an issue with their “airlock.” I cannot believe that there is an issue here in view of the energy savings and comfort to the patrons of this restaurant.

Is it going to take the U.S. Congress and the president to pass legislation for building codes and covenants to make “energy conservation” a common sense issue rather than holding fast to rules passed in a carefree time of abundant and cheap energy?

Think of how much imported energy can be saved and how much our national trade deficit can be reduced if we adjust our priorities to saving our nation and not worrying about adhering to rules made in the past that no longer provide any important purpose. Allowing the airlock would save Sam and Andy’s’ expense immediately and reduce the utility bills for far into the future. Do we want to take a chance on losing a business and the tax revenues and employment it provides for our Town over an issue like this?

I will make a note of the people you identify in your column and vote accordingly when they stand for reelection regardless of their political affiliation. We all must come together and address climate change and conservation of energy.

John Gillis


Vote for Elliott

I would like to encourage everyone in the Farragut community to vote on April 7 and, more specifically, to cast your vote for Jeff Elliott for Alderman, Ward II.

Mr. Elliott has been a Farragut resident for 20 years, is an active member of his homeowners association board, and has been involved in competitive youth sports for many years.

His focus is on Farragut as a community, but he understands the need for business growth for our town to be viable and healthy. He initiated the concept that led to the “Buy in Farragut” promotion and would like to expand this to further promote existing businesses as well as helping to fill existing vacant commercial space.

Mr. Elliott is also looking at ways to recruit new business that Farragut residents will realisticly support.

I believe Jeff Elliott will work hard for Farragut residents and will be a great addition to our BOMA.

Please vote on April for Jeff Elliott for Farragut Alderman, Ward II.

Dee Litrakis


McGill speaks out

Farragut needs to change, and that’s why I am running for mayor this year.

When I led the movement to incorporate Farragut 30 years ago, we had a vision of what our government would be like, and frankly, we’ve strayed from that vision. It’s time for a change in leadership in the Town, and, if elected, I will work to bring about the changes that are needed in Farragut.

It’s time that we have term limits on our elected offices. Nothing is wrong with new ideas and new faces. When it’s always the same people in office for years and years, the fresh ideas are missing, and the Town just becomes stale. We saw the need for this in the Knox County government, and we’ve seen how the U.S. Congress has become totally gridlocked, being full of people who are, for all practical purposes, elected for life. We don’t want that for Farragut, do we? If I am elected, we will immediately begin to look into the possibility of term limits for Farragut government.

It’s also time to move our elections to coincide with County or State elections. We are having elections at an odd time and in off-years, and we are not getting voters to turn out for elections. April is not a good time for elections, and the turnout in our elections proves that. We’ve had as few as about 200 voters in an election out of eligible voters that total about 10,000 in the Town. We even had an election in the middle of spring break one year. We should want people to participate in our elections, so we should make it convenient for them to vote by combining ours with other elections. Plus, we would save $20,000 to $30,000 each election if we voted, for example, at the same time of the county elections. That’s money that could go to the schools, to the parks, or to new initiatives.

I also think we need to use referenda on the biggest issues in the Town. For example, I would like to see Farragut build a community center that would possibly include meeting rooms, gym, small theater and swimming pool. But, we should not pursue such an undertaking without the approval of the voters in a referendum. A Community Center would require substantial funds, but there are innovative ways to reduce the burden on the Town without any new taxes by using, for example, a public/private partnership. I’ve seen what they did in Sevierville, and there’s no reason we can’t do the same. Ultimately, though, it’s the people who should decide such an issue, not the Board of Mayor and Alderman.

It’s time that we change the way we interact with the business community. Farragut has a reputation for being anti-business, and whether the perception is deserved or undeserved, it’s a problem, and it is hurting us. Face it — we need our businesses, and they need us. Guess where most of the Town’s revenue comes from? It comes from our share of sales tax that is collected in the Town. It’s time for Farragut to be proactive with the business community.

We should be asking, “how can we help?” We should be helping to recruit businesses to fill our empty storefronts. Germantown and Brentwood both have much stricter requirements than does Farragut, and they are both thriving. We can do the same, but not if our attitude is not the same. This is something we must fix.

I am hearing a lot of comments from citizens who feel that the Town is heavy-handed at times. Again, even if that feeling is not well-placed, it’s still the way they feel, it’s still a problem, and we’ve got to fix it. We all recognize that we must enforce ordinances, but we must be fair, and we must be consistent. If elected, I will propose that we set aside time to hear from citizens who feel they have received unequal treatment from the Town, and we’ll try to fix it.

In this election it’s very unlikely that i will be able to spend as much in campaign funds as my opponent. Frankly, I just can’t afford to spend thousands of dollars of personal funds on an election, and it is very difficult to raise money through donations, especially now. So, you will probably not see any full-page ads for my campaign. But, the election should be about ideas, not ads, and I will win the competition of ideas, and if that is what matters, then I can win the election. But, not without you.

I guarantee that my service as Mayor will not be about me. It will be about you!

Ralph McGill


Reader appalled

by comments

I was appalled at the personal, vicious, and anonymous attack on Noah and Allison Myers in last week’s presstalk.

I have known this family for many years as they worked tirelessly along with Noah’s brother, Knick, at Ace Hardware.

There are no higher quality developments in our community than Vista or Renaissance Farragut.

I have purchased property from Myers Brothers as the first occupant of Renaissance Farragut and have never found anyone with a higher degree of character and integrity.

The fact that someone can make personal attacks of this nature without identifying themselves publicly is the biggest scandal of all.

Michael D. Reynolds



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