Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN

Area News

May 8, 2012

City to consider county's offer on BSF Visitor's Center

CROSSVILLE — The Big South Fork visitors center will once again be a topic of discussion during the Crossville City Council's regular May meeting that gets under way tonight at 6 p.m.

The council will meet as the audit committee beginning at 5:30 p.m. in the city hall conference room followed by the regular meeting at 6 p.m. in council chambers. Both meetings are open to the public.

A lively discussion on the proposed visitor center was a part of last month's meeting and the council put the ball back in the Cumberland County Commission's lap approving a motion that while the council would fund the $120,000 match required for the grant to construct the building, the city wanted to split the operating costs of the facility on a 50/50 basis once the center opened on a year to year basis.

It was estimated that the operation would require $100,000 a year for personnel, utilities and maintenance with both the city and the county to each fund $50,000 of the cost. The county commission, in whose name the grant was received, discussed the matter at a special-called meeting last last month and instead of agreeing to the city's offer sent a counter offer that their cost would be capped at $30,000 a year for the next 20 years. Under the grant agreement, accepting the construction funding means the county must agree to operate the visitor's center for the next 20 years.

The county also plans to reconvene their called meeting tonight at 7 p.m. after hearing what the city council has to say.

A discussion of lake levels will be led by mayor pro-tem Danny Wyatt. This will include both Holiday Lake and Meadow Park lake.

The council will consider a final resolution authorizing the issuance of bonds by the Brentwood firm of Kidwell and Company. Principal Larry Kidwell will be at the meeting to answer any questions the council may have on the matter. The council agreed in principal to the issuance of long term bonds for financing several capital projects including water and sewer projects and the renovation of the old bank building on Main Street into the new city hall.

Several appointments are also on tonight's agenda including the Crossville Housing Authority Board, the Public Building Authority, the Planning Commission and the Stormwater Board of Appeals.

Several items are under the consent agenda including the first readings of a budget for 2012-2013 and a tax rate listed as "in title only." The tax rate will be adjusted by state law based on the recent reappraisals but that rate had not been released at the time the agenda was prepared. With property values in the county expected to drop there would be an automatic increase in the tax rates so the revenue to both city and county governments would stay the same.

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