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Some Overton Commissioners Disappointed With Land Purchase Situation

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Some Overton Commissioners Disappointed With Land Purchase Situation

Disappointment. That is how two Overton County Commissioners described this week’s county land purchase that did not happen.

Commissioner Robbie Melton said she was surprised to learn that a 210-acre property would not go to the full commission.

“I’d like to see us reconsider the possibility of this being an industrial park and address the concerns of the people that live in that area, so everybody could be happy about this situation,” Melton said.

Commissioner Philip Talley represents the district where the Rickman Road property sits. He said if the matter made it to the full commission, he would have voted yes.

“I would like to sit down and talk about it,” Talley said. “We’ve been talking about purchasing land and bringing businesses in for a while. The majority of people were happy for this to come in, and I was looking for the county in this to make more money.”

The land purchase died in committee after the item did not receive a second motion. Those on the board sited residential feedback at the meeting as the reason why. Melton said she understands the reasoning, but the county needs the jobs.

“The people that were concerned about it were good friends of mine, and I share their concerns,” Melton said. “I take that into consideration, but I have to look at the entire county and what is best for everyone. I understand their reluctance. I’ve had the same thing happen to my family where an industrial park was put close to my parent’s farm, and I know how I felt about that, but I do have to balance that with what’s good for the county.”

Overton County Executive Ben Danner has said that two companies bringing 400 jobs planned to move to the site. Talley said the names of the businesses were not shared to commissioners. Talley said having that information moving forward would help with decision making.


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