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Town asked to address Virtue Road water issues

Virtue Road resident Steve Williams addressed Farragut’s Board of Mayor and Aldermen about drainage issues on his property Thursday, Jan. 28.

Williams said he also owned a barn off Evans Road, one that was being leased to a tenant who would use the property for boarding and riding lessons.

“We’re trying to iron out some of the details … and a couple of things popped up today,” Williams said.

One problem, he said, was with a small stream or “gully” on his property, and a contractor who refused to build a fence allowing animals to access the water, citing a Town ordinance prohibiting such construction.

“He’s refusing to fence it such that the horses can be in the gully area. … He’s saying he will become liable for violation of this ordinance if he puts the fencing in such that [animals] can get down into the gully,” Williams said.

“Who is the aquatic buffer czar down here?” he asked.

“I’ll let Ruth be the aquatic buffer czar,” Town Engineer Darryl Smith said.

But with Community Develop-ment Director Ruth Hawk and Interim Town Administrator Gary Palmer absent, clarification of the issue fell to Town Attorney Tom Hale and Smith.

“I’d have to say, I’d be a little surprised if you had a farm, and a creek ran through it, and you weren’t allowed to have animals that could drink out of the creek,” Hale said.

“Who could possibly operate a farm or a ranch if their animals didn’t have access to water? That’s preposterous,” Alderman John Williams said.

“I don’t think that’s the intent of the ordinance,” Smith said.

The Board agreed.

Steve Williams had another question for the Board: one tied to drainage issues from The Farm at Willow Creek.

“The water’s running like a river now. The filter fabric and the gravel surge stone that the town of Farragut put in on the road project on Evans Road is washing out,” Williams said.

“I’ve got a geyser coming up out of the ground in the field. Water is literally shooting up out of the ground,” he added.

According to Steve Williams, he and Smith had an agreement that if Williams supplied all the materials, the Town’s Public Works crew would install a new pipe to divert water away from his property.

Williams asked that construction be done as quickly as possible, rather than whenever Public Works could get to it.

“I was willing to throw a little money out there to get it over with, and I don’t think I’m being treated correctly,” Williams said.

“Can I get some help getting it done?” he added.

Smith said Public Works had a large backlog of projects they had long been scheduled to do.

“I think we’re slaves to the Public Works schedule,” Mayor Ralph McGill said.

Williams spoke during citizen’s forum; no vote was taken.

In other business, the Board:

• Appointed Christos Christopolous to the Visual Resources Review Board

• Appointed Robert Pollock to the Personnel Committee

• Approved a driveway variance for an entrance of Campbell Lakes Drive for the planned Hampton Inn & Suites


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