Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN

Area News

April 1, 2013

Plateau Insurance continues expanding, economic development loan approved

CROSSVILLE — A Crossville business is growing and in order to add an additional 20 office spaces for additional employees, Plateau Insurance has requested to borrow funds from the city's Urban Development Action Grant (UDAG) revolving loan fund to help pay for renovations.

Those economic development funds originally came from money received through a HUD grant back in 1984 and has been used for several industry and economic development programs since then. The money is loaned out and paid back to be used over and over again.

Plateau Insurance, also known as the Plateau Group, has been operating in Crossville since 1981, starting out with 10 employees and just serving the state of Tennessee. The company served just Tennessee for its first 25 years, but changes in regulations allowed them to expand to additional states.

The company moved to the building on North Main St. in 1986. With the acquisition of two other firms in 2011 and 2012, they have now outgrown their current building and have plans to convert space now used for storage to 20 additional office spaces as they continue to grow. The acquisitions of those two firms have made Plateau one of the largest credit insurance firms in the country.

Plateau's Executive Vice President Tom Williams reviewed the firm's history for the city council and shared that they now have 102 employees, with 39 added in the last 5 years, and they serve 49 states and several South Pacific area territories such as American Samoa. But the company also continues to work with local banks and firms including Highland Federal Savings and Loan, Dave Kirk, Cumberland County Bank and others.

Williams described Plateau as a wholesaler of insurance products including credit life, disability, property insurance, auto physical damage, vehicle service contracts and several ancillary products. Williams shared statistics showing that many of their employees have higher education, including 2- and 4-year college degrees, as well as attorneys, CPAs, programmers and actuaries. He added that one of his concerns has been the loss of local students who went to college and didn't return to the area because jobs in their area were not available.

“We're proud at Plateau,” explained Williams, “that we can create the kind of jobs that can bring our kids back here to work in a profession that they've been training in.”

He added that last year their payroll was about $4.5 million.

Williams also expressed pride in the fact that the company was rated “A-” with A. M. Best and that they are one of the only credit life firms rated that high. Williams added that the rating is necessary to work with many of the larger and regional lending institutions. In addition to meeting the requirements of the rating firm and working in so many areas, each with their own requirements of surplus and capital requirements, the firm has had to reinvest money back, leaving little to expand office space.

The company is requesting to borrow $200,000 from the city's revolving fund at 1 percent interest and that, combined with $125,000 of the company's funds, cover the total $325,000 expansion project.

Councilman Danny Wyatt made a motion to approve the loan, seconded by Councilman Jesse Kerley. Council members George Marlow and Pete Souza said they would like to see the loan at a 1.5 percent interest. According to finance director Fred Houston the money is currently earning much less at .14 percent.

Williams added that the company would pledge assets for the loan and would agree to allowing the city to call the loan in 2015 if the city had another prospect that could use the money.

Crossville Mayor J.H. Graham III said he felt that the city would be investing in the future by making the loan and Danny Wyatt added that the 20 new jobs would have a $500,000 to $650,000 impact on the local economy.

The motion was approved by the council unanimously.

1
Text Only
Area News
  • trail 1.jpg Working on the trail

    Volunteers were out Saturday morning constructing a trail at Meadow Park Lake. This was phase one of trail building, explained John Conrad, Crossville Trails organizer, with volunteers clipping twigs and branches and raking a path. Bruce Whitehead, George Schlenker, Lee Skinner and Pat Schudiske rake a path about three feet wide. Later, larger obstacles, such as fallen trees, will be removed, and topsoil removed on the trail to aid in trail maintenance. The trail will be about 1.5 miles in length.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Panel waives ticket charge for boosters

    The building and grounds committee approved a request to waive a portion of the ticket fees for a school sports booster group planning a truck and tractor pull at the Cumberland County Community Complex, but the committee cautioned the group it would take action by the full Cumberland County Commission to relieve them of the obligation to return 10 percent of the gate charge to the county.

    April 23, 2014

  • Jury seated in Batty slaying case

    A jury plus alternates has been seated and began hearing evidence in the trial of John Russell Giles of Hampshire Lane, Fairfield Glade, charged in connection with the Nov. 7 death of Kimberly Ann Batty, 58, of Dovenshire Dr., also Fairfield Glade.

    April 23, 2014

  • New site sought for convenience center

    An expansion at Colinx and the improvement of a city street will require Cumberland County to move a convenience center. The city of Crossville has proposed a site in the same general area, but commissioners on the county's building and grounds committee were concerned about the cost to make the site suitable for a convenience center and the proximity of the Little Obed River.

    April 23, 2014

  • Hwy. 70 crash.jpg CCHS student dies in car crash

    Crossville Police have identified the victim of a two-vehicle collision that occurred Tuesday morning on Hwy. 70 W at the intersection of Dillon St. as a sophomore at Cumberland County High School.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • IMG_0783.JPG Visitors center now open to the public

    A ten-year effort to establish a gateway to the Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area, as well as to point tourists and visitors to the many other area parks, historical sites and points of interest, concluded Thursday as the community gathered with officials from the city of Crossville, Cumberland County, the Crossville-Cumberland County Chamber of Commerce and the National Park Service to dedicate the Crossville-Cumberland County: Gateway to the Big South Fork Visitors Center on River Otter Dr.

    April 22, 2014 2 Photos

  • Shots fired during standoff over domestic situation

    Chickens were killed, threats of bodily harm made and at least three shots fired in the presence of a Cumberland County sheriff's deputy during a domestic dispute between an uncle and nephew.

    April 22, 2014

  • Jury selection set in Batty slaying

    Jury selections were scheduled to begin today in the trial of John Russell Giles of Hampshire Lane, Fairfield Glade, charged in connection with the Nov. 7 death of Kimberly Ann Batty, 58, of Dovenshire Dr., also Fairfield Glade.

    April 22, 2014

  • Thoughts for this holy time of Easter

    The first performance of George Friderick Handel's masterpiece, "Messiah," was given in Dublin, Ireland, on April 13, 1742, where it was well received. When it was performed in England there were criticisms of the music, performers and location of the performance. It was held that the subject matter was too exalted to perform in an opera house, but rather it should be performed in church. Wouldn't it be interesting if we knew how many times this magnificent music has been performed in the past 272 years?

    April 22, 2014

  • Joe Goodwin.JPG Warden Joe Goodwin remains a true original

    The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency celebrates its 65th anniversary this year, and Crossville's Joe Goodwin is part of that living history.

    April 21, 2014 1 Photo

Marketplace Marquee
Parade
Must Read
Section Teases
Seasonal Content
AP Video
Raw: Kangaroo Rescued From Swimming Pool Raw: 3 American Doctors Killed in Afghanistan Raw: Obama Arrives at State Dinner in Tokyo Raw: Obama Plays Soccer With Japanese Robot Raw: Obama Visits Meiji Shrine in Tokyo Stars Talk Guns N' Roses at Golden Gods New Pictures of Ship That Sank in 1888 Oregon Gay Marriage Ban Goes to Court SKorea Ferry Toll Hits 156, Search Gets Tougher Video Shows Possible Syrian Gas Attack Admirers Flock to Dole During Kansas Homecoming FBI Joining Probe of Suburban NY 'Swatting' Call U.S. Paratroopers in Poland, Amid Ukraine Crisis US Reviews Clemency for Certain Inmates Michigan Man Sees Thanks to 'bionic Eye'
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Weather Radar
2014 Readers' Choice