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presstalk 671-TALK


Editor’s Note: Due to the proximity of our April 2 issue of farragutpress to the close of convenience voting, we will not publish political comment after this March 26 issue. Other, non-election, issues involving government representatives will be handled on a case-by-case basis.

• I had to laugh when I heard [Bob] Markli claim Alderman Tom Rosseel negotiated to buy the Seal property in private and he could have gotten a better deal. Rosseel got the Seals to come to the table, something no one else in the Town had been able to do. The Town administrator and attorney negotiated the contract, not Rosseel. He successfully fought to get Board approval of the first major purchase of land in the last 13 years. And because it’s adjacent to the park, it will save the Town $200,000 in infrastructure costs. To my knowledge, Markli never participated in the public debate. Is that his idea of leadership? … Rosseel [has] tried to make Farragut a better place to live. That’s real leadership.

• I also believe in stopping the installation of the traffic calming islands on Grigsby Chapel Road. I leave for work at six in the morning. When it’s dark and rainy, it’s very difficult to see that area, and it’s very [much] a traffic hazard.

• I found it interesting that Lovell Heights Church of God put an advertisement in the paper for a handgun workshop to learn how to use them and carry them. I would like to ask the people at that church what happened to the Ten Commandments and to remember what guns are used for in our society.

• I wanted to comment on your article regarding wine sales at grocery stores [March 19 issue]. I think it’s a wonderful idea; America is based on a free-market society and the fact that current wine and liquor stores have to face competition now is a wonderful idea. If they can’t survive, they need to move on. But to speak out as [some] did, and crying that they’re going to have competition, is sad. There are comments that grocery stores are more likely to sell to minors. Well, grocery stores currently sell beer, and it’s much more likely that anyone under 21 is going to want beer anyway, so there’s not an increased chance that wine is going to increase the number of minors drinking.

• I just read the letters to the editor in the farragutpress paper this morning about the islands out here on Grigsby Chapel creating more of a problem than they’re going to serve. And I may tell you my wife’s first benefit of the stupidity out there: pulling out of Chapel Point, there’s not enough room to stack in what used to be the turn lane to get over into the lane going to Campbell Station. So somebody sideswiped her, took the mirror off her car, as they were proceeding to Campbell Station. I don’t know whose great idea it was to put barriers in the turn lane, but it sure makes no sense at all.

• Two days this week, First Utility District decided to replace the fireplug that is in part of my yard. Well, I have no problem with them replacing a fireplug, because, after all, we do want a working fire hydrant near our homes and in our subdivision. It would have been nice if First Utility District had had the courtesy to put a little flyer in our mailboxes to let us know this was going to be occurring, because off and on for two days, our water pressure was gone, we had no water, and … of course, when you come home from work and you flip your water on, and it sputs and spouts, and trying to get ready for work one day, turn the water on and there was none. Also I’d like to know when they’re planning on coming back and cleaning up the mess they made, and put grass seed and so forth down? And I was wondering, when this has happened to other neighborhoods and other people, how long has it taken for them to come back to you, or if they even did?

• I was calling about the traffic aid or nuisance on Grigsby Chapel [Road] with the islands, and I would just like to say it’s a nuisance. The first day they began constructing on it, I was coming home about midnight, and I about ran straight into it. And after the barrels are taken away, I’m sure it’s going to be even more of a sight obstruction. And I think you’re going to see some wrecks there … I’m just saying, it’s a nuisance.

• … I have an oral surgery practice in the town of Farragut and saw in last week’s [farragutpress] my name was listed as a business under a political advertisement by Mayor [Eddy] Ford. Those ads oftentimes showing lists of people’s names and businesses have the implication that those listed are supporters of the candidate. And I was never asked to have my name placed there, and I do not endorse Mayor [Eddy] Ford, and really resent that being done in such a fashion. It listed the names of businesses in the Town, which is true, but to have that appearance of all those businesses supporting Mayor Ford, I resent that, and I assume any other businesses as well. I would like that made known to the public, and would respectfully ask that Mayor Ford discontinue that practice in his political ads.

• I am calling to request the town of Farragut does not decide to widen or “improve” Virtue Road. Farragut has an awful lot of wide streets, safe roads, but Virtue Road is not one of them. And widening it will not make it any safer in my opinion, but will only encourage speeding. The relatively straight part of Virtue Road near Kingston Pike has still managed to take the lives of several young drivers, probably due to speeding. And cutting trees that stand 10 feet off the road does not solve this problem. What is needed is a periodic enforcement of the speed limit by the Sheriff’s Department. Virtue Road reminds me of the roads up in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park: it’s beautiful. There’s the forest, the creek, the old mill site, wild turkeys, raccoon, deer. Unfortunately, yesterday, a deer was killed on Virtue Road, probably by a driver exceeding the speed limit. I would suggest that if we all slow down on Virtue Road and enjoy the scenery and the wildlife, it would only add one, and at the most two, minutes to the drive from one end of Virtue Road to the other.

• I was listening to TV news while reading the presstalk writer [who] implied the President [Barack Obama] should be impeached for saying that he didn’t spend his time watching the gyrations of the stock market [presstalk, March 12 issue]. The writer blamed the president for the previous week’s decline he said would negatively affect retirees while the president spends time making rules that would negatively impact business. The TV showed the president … addressing a large group of CEOs from major businesses. The president said, “If you blame me for the market decline last week, then surely you will give me credit for the market’s rapid rise this week.” The comment drew laughter from the audience. It just points out that investing in equity is long-term and investors should assess their risk tolerance, adjust their allocations as they approach or reach retirement. Historically, all bear markets eventually rise and all bull markets eventually decline.

• Just what is going on with Mayor Eddy Ford these days? Every time you turn around, his name is in the middle of another controversy. Now he is attempting to bully yet another of our Town’s hard-working staff. Is there no end to his intimidation and negativity? It’s time for a change. It’s time for a positive voice, who will get the Board of Mayor and Aldermen back to where it should be: charting the course for our Town and not running the ship …

• Via e-mail: I have heard that KUB is planning to quit the residential service of connecting gas appliances and repairing electrical appliances. This has been such a reliable service to me, and probably many more in this area. I have always used them and they have always been trustworthy. This is rare today with the consumer and I hate to lose a service I have so much confidence with. If this is true, I hope they reconsider.

• Via e-mail: Why does the word politics automatically sound like one of the four letter words that most of us don’t want to hear? Thursday night I watched the Farragut Board of Mayor and Aldermen on television. This show is better than most of the programs on television today. The BOMA was discussing the Redflex camera session and the Mayor [Eddy Ford] had decided that cameras were necessary for all four approaches to the intersections. The Redflex rep explained they had been in business since 1986 and no community had cameras on all approaches. He discussed the data and the decrease in violations if cameras were installed. The Town had approved 14 cameras to start and they will be installed at different locations. Mayor Ford decided the correct approach was three intersections with four cameras and one with two cameras. He asked the Redflex rep if that would be acceptable and he indicated it would not be to Redflex because they bear the expense of purchasing and installing the cameras. The mayor made a motion for his approach discussed earlier and BOMA talked about it for awhile. He then seconded his own motion and it was approved. More discussion ensued and Alderman [Dot] La Marche said she would be in favor of two cameras at intersections and asked the Redflex rep if that would work for his company. He indicated not only would they do that, they would run the data 90 days after installation and return that information to the BOMA. If warranted, based on data, and not emotion, they would install four cameras at the intersections, up to the maximum number contracted by the Town. The mayor wouldn’t listen to the discussion and told Redflex to come back in two weeks and accept his (BOMA’s) decision or the Town would start over. The mayor assured the audience he wanted to make Farragut much safer. Seems to me what has happened is it will be at least another six-to-nine months before a contract is approved to install cameras from another company. Wonder how safe that will make Farragut for the next several months? We don’t need to have any more fatal accidents just to appease the mayor’s decision-making process that appears to be that he is omnipotent and data isn’t acceptable unless it agrees with his position.

• Via e-mail: I wish to express my gratitude to Alderman [Tom] Rosseel, who in 2005 initiated the effort to add street lights to our major roads like Kingston Pike, Watt, Virtue and Grigsby Chapel roads, and to the Board for approving the plan. I believe these lights have made nighttime travel in Farragut safer for everyone, but especially teens and seniors. If these lights save just one life over the next 10 years, they will have been worth far more than the annual operating cost of about $15,000.

• Via e-mail: Mayor [Eddy] Ford’s Web site says: “Mayor Ford IS Farragut.” A bit narcissistic don’t you think? One person did not build this town. But this is what you get when one person holds the same position for too long. Term limits are a good thing and circumvent the type of one-vision leadership the TOF is experiencing. In most countries this would be considered tyranny. Our government and armed forces battle it everyday. Why should we put up with it in Farragut? It’s time for freedom. It’s time to bring back democracy to Farragut. It’s time for new leadership. Thank you Mayor Ford for 16 years of service, but 20 years under rule of one person is way too long. This position should not be a dynasty. Folks, let’s vote for change and give the staff and citizens a fresh vision for the future.

• Via e-mail: I have been friends with Carol and Tom Rosseel for almost 20 years and I highly support Tom as Alderman. He is extremely honest, hardworking and dedicated to the town of Farragut. It [is] surprising [to] me when I hear negative comments regarding him and I have to wonder what they are based on. If you know Tom Rosseel personally, you know that he is the right man for the job.

 

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