Murphy Hits "As Is" Sale Offer For Harriet Tubman Property; Site Considered For New Industry

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

City Councilman Peter Murphy told officials of the Chattanooga Housing Authority that offering the Harriet Tubman development property on Hawthorne Street for sale "as is" could "create a disaster."

Councilman Murphy told CHA Executive Director Elizabeth McCright that he had been advising the agency for months to proceed carefully with disposing of the property, which is being phased out as a public housing site.

He said, "You literally have pointed a loaded gun at the heart of Chattanooga."

McCright confirmed that the property is for sale "as is," but she said the CHA board will insure that the property is only sold to responsible owners and "it must be something that will work."

Jim Sattler, CHA board member and leader at the Chamber of Commerce and the Enterprise Center, said the large site, with 440 units, is being eyed as a "brownfield" site for new industry.

He said, "We definitely want new industry, and that site is definitely on the radar."

Mr. Sattler said some environmental remediation would be necessary to prepare the site.

Councilman Murphy said he felt better about the situation after receiving the assurances from the CHA officials.

Councilman Andrae McGary said the issue should not have been brought up during a discussion about whether Mr. Sattler and several others should be reappointed to the CHA board.

"I fail to understand the thrust of Councilman Murphy's concerns," he said.

Councilman Jack Benson praised Ms. McCright and the current seven board members, saying they had brought CHA back from the brink of bankruptcy.

Former educator Edna Varner is being nominated to finish the term of Consuelo O'Neal, who died earlier this year.

Also up for reappointment are Molly Cooper and Jim Steffes.

Others on the board are Betty Robinson and Wilbert Robinson.

Ms. Robinson is a CHA resident. Ms. McCright said HUD in 1998 specified that a public housing resident be part of such boards.

 


Bicyclist Hit By BMW In North Chattanooga Files $250,000 Lawsuit

A bicyclist who was hit by a BMW BX3 in North Chattanooga has filed a $250,000 lawsuit. Joel Hunt sued Julian B. Bell III and Riley Bell, driver of the BMW. In the incident last Aug. 23, the suit says Riley Bell "approached the intersection at Frazier Avenue and Tremont Street. Riley Bell proceeded through the intersection hitting Mr. Hunt's bicycle knocking Mr. Hunt off his ... (click for more)

Former Tennessee State Museum Employee Uses Scheme To Take Thousands

A new investigative report from the Tennessee Comptroller of the Treasury reveals that a former administrative services assistant with the Tennessee State Museum took $61,892.04 in taxpayer money. The Comptroller’s Office worked with the chief investigator from the Office of the Tennessee Attorney General to complete its investigation. In February, investigators began to ... (click for more)

Black Creek TIF Decision-Who Guards The Hen House?

Citizens of Chattanooga were invited to give public comment before their own Industrial Development Board Aug. 15. They arrived to find foxes guarding their hen house.  Many thought the meeting was their opportunity to seek redress in the ill-conceived Black Creek Tax Increment Financing plan. However, they learned it was a sham orchestrated by both the past and present ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Chief Delmore: ‘You Blew It!”

Far more than 50,000 people, most police officers and law enforcement authorities, have gone to a website, “LawOfficer.com” to read a scathing letter that first appeared on Sunday. Veteran lawman Ed Delmore, who became the Police Chief in Gulf Shores, Ala., after a brilliant career as the “Top Cop” in St. Louis (which he still loves), has written what was entitled, “An Open Letter ... (click for more)

McCallie's JaVaughn Craig Still Improving At Quarterback

(This is the 14th in a series of preseason stories on new high school football coaches, or veteran coaches at a different school, and top players in the Chattanooga area) JaVaughn Craig was the starting quarterback for McCallie all season a year ago, but it wasn’t originally planned like that. Craig was a wide receiver when he resumed his football career ... (click for more)

Hixson Beats Silverdale For Second Volleyball Win

There's something about that second set that gives the Hixson Lady Wildcats trouble. Hixson lost the second set in Monday's volleyball opener against Sale Creek.  They did the same thing against the Silverdale Seahawks on Tuesday, but just like Monday's match, the Lady Wildcats came out on top, 3-1. Hixson won the first set with ease, 25-11.  Silverdale evened the  ... (click for more)