Councilwoman Robinson Chides Grohn Over Benson/Defoor Comments

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

City Councilwoman Sally Robinson on Tuesday night chided District 4 City Council candidate Larry Grohn for his comments during a zoning case about incumbent Jack Benson and developer Ken Defoor.

Ms. Robinson said, "I find your statement inappropriate in this forum - the way you are calling into question one of East Brainerd's most respected developers and a councilman who has served that district for 12 years." . 

Mr. Grohn did not mention during his comments that he was running for the post.

Ms. Robinson asked him if he was.

Mr. Grohn told the council that Mr. Defoor has been the main contributor to Councilman Benson's campaigns. He asked that Mr. Benson not vote on the zoning issue and that he disclose all contributions "from the Defoor brothers and their family members."

Councilman Benson said, "A lot of good people have contributed to my campaigns, and I'm grateful for it."

Mr. Defoor said, "Under the Constitution, I have the right to support anyone I deem is qualified."

The council voted unanimously to support a zoning change to the Waterside development that is along I-75, Shallowford Road and Gunbarrel Road.

Mr. Defoor said the change adds more commercial zoning along the interstate.

He said there is still a plan to put residential along Gunbarrel Road, though exact plans are not worked out.

The developer said, "This project was supposed to take 7-8 years. It looks like it will be 5-8 years more. I will be 75 years old when it is finished, but I intend to finish it."

Tom Lawson raised the issue of flooding along Preston Circle, saying it has worsened since Waterside was started. He said his home has been flooded twice and he recently had water up to the patio.

Mr. Defoor said he was "very sorry" about the flooding, but he said, "My development has not contributed to the flooding, and I can prove that."

He said the new commercial zoning will drain toward the freeway.


Attic Of House Near Graysville Road Catches Fire

The attic of a house near Graysville Road caught fire on Friday evening. At 6 p.m. the Chattanooga Fire Department responded to a residential structure fire at 8709 Oak View Dr.. Fire crews arrived at 6 :07 p.m. T he homeowner stated that everyone was out of the house and that there was a fire in the attic. The homeowner said that they had smelled something burning ... (click for more)

Corker’s Bipartisan Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act Becomes Law

Senator Bob Corker, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, issued the following statement after the president signed the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act of 2015 into law. The bill, which passed the Senate 98 to 1 and the House of Representatives 400 to 25, requires congressional review of any final nuclear agreement with Iran before the president can waive sanctions ... (click for more)

Don't Make A Mockery Of Memorial Day - And Response

We're told Memorial Day is the day to honor those who made the ultimate sacrifice in order that we, as Americans and others around the world, might live free, unshackled (invisible or otherwise) and without oppression. But how is that so when so many in America continue to be denied those freedoms? Others whose family and friends made the ultimate sacrifice? Their surviving families ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: A Great Orthopedic Success

Mark Freeman, the chief of orthopedic surgery at Erlanger Hospital, shared a dazzling look at our area’s Level One Trauma Center Friday morning. Yet, as he described the dramatic changes that have occurred in just the past 12 months, the promise of what will happen within the next year was even more appealing. Believe this, our flagship hospital is getting well in a hurry. “If ... (click for more)

Baylor Beats GPS 6-4 For D-II Softball Title

MURFREESBORO – Oh, what a difference a year makes. The GPS Bruisers came through the losers bracket a year ago and beat Baylor twice after losing the first five times they played, but those two were the biggest as it gave the team in blue a state D-II softball championship. The situation was similar a year later, but the results a bit different as the Lady Red Raiders beat ... (click for more)

Dickson County Ousts Ooltewah, 6-5, In Epic 12-Inning Thriller

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – For Ooltewah, more heartbreak followed heartbreak. After a tough loss to Wilson Central on Thursday, the Lady Owls fought furiously with Dickson County in an epic 12-inning marathon Friday before the Lady Cougars’ Keely Buchanan laced a game-winning single up the middle to end  the game and Ooltewah's masterful season. Dickson County, which lost ... (click for more)