Seeking A Vision For The Tubman Site - And Response

Saturday, October 5, 2013
I recall clearly the efforts put out by then Mayor Littlefield and Betsy McCright of CHA to invite an interested developer out of Atlanta (Purpose Built, an arm of the Warren Buffett fortune) to come to Chattanooga a second time to present their proposed plan to construct first-class housing and pertinent supporting community structures at the Tubman site.  At the last public hearing the occupants of Tubman would have no part of it.  Yes, I suppose misery loves company.  They missed the best opportunity they likely will ever have for superior housing and more with support from the mayor and CHA.
 

I hope Mayor Berke will reconsider all options for this site.  In my opinion it should be dedicated to industrial and/or commercial development, with essentially a railroad yard in its back door which would be an asset not only to the city but also to the general area.  

Has the city satisfied the $500,000 debt that arose out of the mismanagement of grant money and sale for profit of the Ridgedale community center properties to McCallie School?  Could not an area be committed to a future park at an industrial development at this site to help meet the requirement that the city purchase a site valued at $500,000 to be designated as a park? 

All of us need to broaden our scope to see the full picture of the site and envision the possibilities that could be most advantageous to the taxpayers and to the health of our city.  The aerial view of the site published in the newspaper helped me to change my mind about Tubman.  That still leaves me wondering about those who are, have been, and seemingly forever shall be petitioning the city and its taxpayers to provide free or affordable housing in perpetuity and keep it up for as long as they live there.  I feel their pain, but I feel Ms. McCright's more.  This is a national problem.

Charlotte Parton

* * *

The Chattanooga Housing Authority is a general train wreck of an agency riddled with conflicts of interest. 

 

Purpose Built was nothing more than an attempt to add a private corporate layer between the poor and government-funded housing subsidies.  Purpose Built of Atlanta would redirect public funding allocated for the poor for housing and give a private corporation control.  Purpose Built’s track record in Atlanta is good cause not to allow this model of public housing in Chattanooga.  It is a license to defer public resources from the poor to a corporation.  Of course,  Mayor Ron Littlefield and Betsy McCright, VP McCright and Associates love the idea.  Their motives are best understood by reading the website of McCright and Associates.

 

The local Chattanooga Housing Authority has a history of pervasive mismanagement and conflicts of interest, and required federal intervention from HUD.  In reading their website, it appears that the CEO of our local Chattanooga Housing Authority is very busy running a private corporation in the HUD industry.  Perhaps, a focus on the housing needs rather than private business opportunities would benefit the taxpayer and housing needs of the poor.

 

April Eidson


Justification For A Utility Rate Hike

In justification of a proposed utility rate hike the CEO of Cleveland Utilities cited a March issue of a regional magazine that declares Cleveland Utilities rates are 18.7 percent below the national average. This is not a new tactic but a worn out one that gets played over and over again and not only with a utility hike but with property taxes.  According to data from 2008-2012 ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The 15-Year-Old Marine

There are 58,267 names on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall that today sits majestically in the Constitution Gardens of our nation's capital. It has never been lost on me that 33,103 of those who are named were only 18 years old when they died. But what caught my eye during my morning reading is that one of the names carved in the black granite “Dan Bullock“ was only 15 years old ... (click for more)

Cabela's To Open Fort Oglethorpe Store May 13

Cabela’s announced Monday plans to celebrate the official grand opening of its new Fort Oglethorpe store on Wednesday, May 13, with a unique ribbon-cutting ceremony followed by a weekend-long celebration featuring giveaways, family activities and more.  The ribbon-cutting ceremony, hosted by Cabela's executives and special guests, will begin at 9:45 a.m. and conclude with ... (click for more)

City Detective Who Was Arrested Twice In 4 Months Is Fired After Internal Affairs Investigation

A city detective who was arrested twice in four months has been fired by Police Chief Fred Fletcher. David Catchings had been charged with DUI last September and then with domestic assault at the end of the year. Police said, "After a complete review of both investigations – which included recommendations from Internal Affairs, the Administrative Review Committee and Officer ... (click for more)

Trojans Crush Bradley, 12-2, To Go 7-0 In 5-AAA

Soddy-Daisy is still in the clean air. Shortstop Justin Cooke and designated hitter Grant Cordell combined for four hits, eight RBIs and three runs scored Monday night as Soddy-Daisy turned a tight game into a rout with a seven-run sixth inning and clobbered visiting Bradley Central, 12-2, in a District 5-AAA baseball game at Tom Higgins Field. The win pushes the Trojans ... (click for more)

Central Scores Early, Hangs On To Beat Red Bank, 7-6

Central baseball coach Glen Carter could finally breathe a sigh of relief. His Purple Pounders had bolted to a 7-0 lead in the first three innings of Monday's 6-AA skirmish with the Red Bank Lions and things were looking pretty good for those guys in purple. But it all came down to Red Bank's final at-bat.  The Lions sent eight hitters to the plate and scored ... (click for more)