World War II Vet Still Embroiled In Property Dispute With Neighbor At Collegedale

Monday, November 18, 2013 - by Gail Perry

A World War II veteran came to the Collegedale Commission meeting Monday night for the second time appealing for help with a neighbor who he says has steadily encroached upon his property.

Vernon Herod said he originally gave Tammy Crabtree Davis permission to come closer to his property line than is specified by city codes. This was done as a favor and for her convenience, to allow for a driveway turn-around with the understanding that would be the only exception to the code, which specifies a 10-foot setback from property lines, he said. When it was poured, the drive came closer to his property than had been agreed upon. Next came a storage shed and then a garage, all extending onto Mr. Herod’s land, it was stated. In the last two weeks, a privacy fence has been added to the list of structures on the area in dispute.

Building Inspector Andrew Morkert said he did not know if the fence had been built yet or by whom because he has heard so many different stories. Talking to the commissioners Monday night, Ms. Davis said she just wants this to be over, and that is why she put up the privacy fence. Yet members of the VFW headed by Steve Hullander were planning to build the fence once the property line was established to both parties' satisfaction.

The contentious situation has escalated in the past two weeks with Mr. Hullander saying he witnessed Ms. Davis tearing down both a fence post and a sign, which resulted in a call to and visit from the Collegedale Police that termed those actions as vandalism. She claimed that when she was preparing for the surveyor and fence company, Mr. Hullander was taking pictures and taunting her. She told the commission that she feels harassed and said, “I’ve lost my job because I’ve been stressed out.”

As a background for those who are not familiar with the issue, Commissioner Larry Hanson told the audience that problems started when the shed was built without obtaining a permit from Collegedale. After it was constructed, Ms. Davis requested and was granted a variance from the Board of Zoning Appeals. The same process was repeated after she had a carport built overlapping the property line, again built without applying for a permit. In both cases, the planning commission had recommended against giving a variance.  The city has taken measures so that will not happen again by doing away with the Board of Zoning Appeals and returning the responsibility of granting variances to the planning commission.

Commissioner Debbie Baker said that actions recommended at the Nov. 4 commission meeting seemed fair. It was suggested for both parties to agree upon and hire an independent surveyor. Ms. Davis was also urged to take an offer made by Mr. Herod to buy the land in question for $5,000.

Instead, Ms. Davis made the decision to hire Dave Matthews Surveying to mark the property line. When Mayor John Turner went to see the disputed land he watched two surveyors put the orange markings on the line. It differs slightly from Mr. Herod’s two surveys that had been done when he bought the house in 1954, but he said, “It’s clear as the nose on your face” that the discrepancy is 18-20 inches in favor of Mr. Herod. “The carport she put up in front of the shed is clearly on Mr. Herod’s property,” he said, adding, “I think Mr. Herod’s being bullied.”

City Attorney Sam Elliott advised the commissioners and involved parties that this dispute is a civil matter that must be resolved in a court of law where a judge can make the decision. He said that the city commission is not a fact-finding body.

In regular business, City Manager Ted Rogers said that financial news should be uneventful. His report to the commissioners for the month showed nothing out of the ordinary. He said that with one-third of the fiscal year completed, revenues are coming in as anticipated and expenditures are all in line. The city maintains adequate cash reserves and investments are doing well. 

Severe Storms Possible On Monday

The Chattanooga area could see severe storms on Monday. Here is the Hazardous Weather Warning from the National Weather Service: Severe Thunderstorms Possible late Monday and Monday Evening... ...Rain Changing to Snow Showers across the Higher Elevations Tuesday Night through Wednesday Night... Another storm system will move across the Southern Appalachian Region on Monday ... (click for more)

Latest Hamilton County Jail Booking Report

Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: AUTRY, JERMEKA RENEE  5141 WOODLIN VIEW CIR CHATTANOOGA, 37410  Age at Arrest: 24 years old Arresting Agency: East Ridge Booked for Previous Charges or Other Reason(s) --- BATY, JASON BRENT  1071 RAVEN CLIFF RD GRAYSVILLE, 37338  Age at Arrest: 41 years old Arresting Agency: Chattanooga ... (click for more)

Why Are Pictures Of Our President And Vice President Not Hanging At Our Federal Courthouse?

I would like to know why the pictures of our President and Vice President have not been hung in our Federal Courthouse. They have been approved by the White House. Every time I call they tell me they are on order. Tommy Fryar (click for more)

Roy Exum: Battling The Beggars

The revelation that Chattanooga Police Chief David Roddy wants to crack down on the city’s panhandlers is every bit as refreshing as the beautiful jonquils now bursting forth across our city. In a recent poll on, over 80 percent of those who live here indicated they are scared to go downtown and that is inexcusable. This is no way for anyone to live. But I can ... (click for more)

Ooltewah Wins Wildcat Classic Again

Early season prep baseball tournaments are meant for a few things; primarily competition, repetition, and learning a few things about your team over the course of a few games.   The Ooltewah Owl baseball nine apparently has learned it likes collecting championship trophies in them as well.   For the second year in a row, the Owls won the longstanding ... (click for more)

Lady Vols Fall To Oregon State, 66-59, In 2nd Round Of NCAA's

KNOXVILLE-- Senior center Mercedes Russell logged her 46th career double-double with 21 points and 14 rebounds to lead Tennessee, but it wasn't enough as the No. 12/13 Lady Vols (25-8) fell to No. 13/12 Oregon State (25-7) in the second round of the NCAA Women's Basketball Tournament. Freshman Anastasia Hayes also had a double-digit outing for the No. 3 seed Lady Vols, posting ... (click for more)