Lookout Mountain, Tn., Has 4 Burglaries In August; All Unsolved

Wednesday, September 11, 2013 - by Gail Perry

Lookout Mountain, Tn., Commissioner of Fire and Police Ernie Minges said the town had four burglaries in August and all are unsolved.

He said police are still working on the burglaries that have been taking place in both the towns of Lookout Mountain, Tn., and Lookout Mountain, Ga. 

Reiterating the message that Mayor Carol Mutter recently sent in a letter to residents, Commissioner Minges urged everyone to get on a police watch list during the times they will be out of town. He praised the police department for its diligent work during this rash of break-ins.

For August, there were 95 police calls and 4,635 miles patrolled. There were 33 calls to the police department about suspicious vehicles or suspicious persons and 16 calls to 911. Checks were made on 15 burglar alarms which were all false. Police made 51 traffic stops during the month and there were no auto accidents. Responses were made to seven fire alarms which were all false, six assist citizen calls and 11 medical calls.

A number of traffic stops during the month took place and resulted in Commissioner Minges urging all residents to observe the speed limit and stop signs. He asked for walkers and drivers to be mindful of each other. He also asked for mountain stickers to be removed from any car that is sold, in order to help police identify residents. Mayor Mutter told of several requests that had been made for allowing stickers on cars of people that work on the mountain regularly. Both she and Chief Randy Bowden said that the town could easily lose control if that was done and agreed that it should not be allowed.

Joe Hailey, commissioner of parks and playgrounds, reported that CTI Engineering is still working on the plans for the tennis court replacements and repairs, and that the firm should finish this week. The scope of the project has changed from the original plans. Now three courts will be replaced and new lights will be installed for all four. Once completed, the engineering plans must be approved by the state of Tennessee. The project should be put out for bid before the end of the year, he said, and should be ready to implement when the weather allows next spring.

The public works department, said Commissioner Walker Jones, is keeping up with brush pickup. Plans for completing the walking path along Scenic Highway should be finished soon, and Corey Evans, public works director, will be getting bids on the sidewalk and various other paving projects that are needed on town roadways.

In his financial report, Town Consultant Dwight Montague first thanked County Commissioner Joe Graham for providing $12,000 to the town for completing the walkway which will join the one from Lookout Mountain, Ga. Because of this gift, “We will beat Georgia to the state line,” he said. This last portion of the path will be an actual concrete sidewalk, extending from the four-way stop at “Caldwell Corner,” along Lula Lake Road for about a block.

Mr. Montague reported good news about the city’s insurance costs. For municipalities that have been insured through the Tennessee Municipal League for seven years, each will be rewarded with some money being given back. Also, because of the city’s good record of worker’s compensation claims, the town’s premiums will go down next year.  Other positive financial news is that TML has approved a 50/50 matching grant for $1,500. It will be used to buy safety equipment for the public works department such as traffic cones and signs.  

Restricted funds that are left from landscaping Natural Bridge Park will be used next month to pay for water usage in the park. Because of the irrigation system installed for the newly planted trees, plants and flowers, the town has high water bills, with last month’s alone being close to $500, said Mr. Montague.

Commissioners also voted to authorize the mayor to sign six additional easement requests from WWTA for property the town owns.

Mayor Mutter began her report by mourning the loss of Dana Wilbourn who had been the reporter who covered Lookout Mountain, Tn. for Chattanoogan.com. He was remembered as being pleasant and thorough.

The mayor also showed the commissioners a watercolor of Navarre Pavilion that has been donated to the city. The structure was designed by Ann Aiken who did the architectural rendering. Mary Navarre Moore donated the money to build the pavilion and has had the painting in her private collection until now. The Garden Club of Lookout Mountain has also given the town posters with photographs of the parks the club was instrumental in developing. The last one that opened in April 2011 was Temple Park on West Brow Road.

Principal of Lookout Mountain Elementary School Ruth White came to the commission meeting to talk about all the activity surrounding the school this year. “We’re having a fabulous year” she said. The 'Boosterthon' fundraiser was a success, raising a $7 average for every mile that each student ran in the 'fun run.' "

A “white elephant” sale will take place at the skating rink on Saturday, and kick-off of the Hamilton County coupon book  sale will be Sept. 17 with the first PTA meeting that night. The school will keep $7 for every coupon book sold. The fall Carnival will be held Sept. 24 with a rain date of Sept. 26. Mayor Carol Mutter was invited to cut the ribbon.

Some of the money raised by the Boosterthon will be used to benefit “Feed My Starving Community.” Ms. White said that Sept. 27 at Boyd-Buchanan School, volunteers from Lookout Elementary will join others to pack boxes with food.

Thanks was given to Commissioner Graham for funds he has offered the school for updating technology. Ms. White also expressed gratitude for the town commissioners and the Lookout Mountain community for their support of the school.

The next meeting of the Lookout Mountain, Tn. Commission will be at 5 p.m. on Oct. 8. 

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