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Overton Commissioner Says Residents Played Role In Committee

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Overton Commissioner Says Residents Played Role In Committee

Concerns from residents the reason why the Overton County Industrial Development and Planning Committee Chair did not pursue a land purchase.

Chair Geraldine Walker said she entered the meeting in favor of a 210-acre land deal. Walker said after hearing from residents, she changed her mind.

“I want to see growth in this county,” Walker said. “I would love to see better paying jobs for the people in this county, but I feel like as their commissioner I represent them and I am their voice. So, I have to let that outweigh my personal feelings.”

Walker serves as commissioner for the 4th district where the Rickman Highway site is located. Walker said the lack of information about the company concerned her constituents as did other issues such as traffic, crowded schools and infrastructure.

“I hope the people of the fourth district feel like that I don’t want to hold the county back in growth, but at the same time, I want to represent them and what is best for the fourth district and the county as a whole,” Walker said.

The full county commission was set to vote on buying the Rickman Highway site Monday night. However, the item did not receive the required second motion to go to a committee vote to move forward.

“The ones present there at the meeting live in that area where the land is,” Walker said. “Their concern was the reason why it didn’t get a second.”

According to County Executive Ben Danner, two companies submitted a letter of intent to purchase and develop tracts of the land.

Walker said it is to her understanding that a later meeting will be scheduled for more public comment on the purchase.

If the land purchase did pass the industrial committee, the county’s budget committee would vote on the item. If approved, then it would have went to the full commission.


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