Cleveland City Council Considers Creating Underprivileged Children's Home

Monday, April 14, 2014 - by Hollie Webb

Cleveland resident Stacy Hayes presented a plan to the Cleveland City Council to create a children's home for underprivileged children under 10. He said the property he wants to use, the old McKenzie home, is around 800 feet outside of city limits, meaning it would not have access to city sewer lines.

To make the building useable for approximately 100 people at any given time, his estimates show that 10,000 feet of septic line would have to be installed without access to the city lines.

He asked the council to create an ordinance that would make an exception for tax exempt organizations to use city utilities. 

Mr. Hayes said, "What we want to do is to acquire that property and to make it into an underprivileged children's home. It would be a place where they could have a safe place to live, to stay, to have meals...God has laid it on our heart to make that place."

He also said he would be more than willing to front the cost of connecting the building to city lines, saying, "We are willing to pay for it because the fact is, you can't put a price on a child's welfare...The money is there, we can get it done, but the initial thing is to get on the city's sewer." 

He said, "We want to do something good for these kids and that's the perfect place to do it. That house is going to sit up there and rot if we don't do something with it."

However, several city councilmen had problems creating an ordinance before Mr. Hayes was further along in the process. Currently, his organization, officially called Haven Hill Children's Home, is not yet cleared to be declared a 501(c)3 by state government. The property has also not yet been purchased. 

Councilman Bill Estes said, "We can't zone things on promises. Would it be wise to make this kind of decision when the owner of the property isn't requesting it?"

Councilman Dale Hughes said, " I think you have a noble idea, but I think the bank might need to be the one to make the request." 

Councilman David Mays suggested that Mr. Hayes go ahead and get an auction on that property.

During both the working session and the voting session, a rezoning issue regarding a residential zone off of 56th Street was discussed. Residents of a nearby subdivision, Avenwood, were concerned that the area would be rezoned to allow rental units. 

Residents were worried about the kind of environment this would create. They also expressed concerns about creating more traffic.

One resident, Andrea Lockerby, said, "I'm just going to speak as a mom. I've lived in this neighborhood for seven years...There are lots and lots of children's activities through there, children riding their bikes." She also said trash around the road was already becoming a problem. 

However, the developer of the subdivision also spoke at the meeting. He assured the residents the property he wanted to build would not be marketed as rentals. Instead, he said he was trying to build two-bedroom homes marketed toward retired "empty-nesters."

Right before the issue of rezoning went to a vote, the developer told the City Council he would rather wait, saying he would like to meet with residents first. He also agreed to send the matter back to the Planning Committee for a second look. 

It was also announced that on May 1, tickets will be sold for an event called Downtown Dine Around. Tickets will be $20 and the event will feature each downtown restaurant. People will be able to walk around and try food from those restaurants while also listening to outdoor jazz music.

During the work session, Melissa England from the Boys and Girls Club presented a report from their Positive Action Program, saying it had been very successful. 

Cleveland resident Bryan Turner was also presented to the council because of his promotion to Property Maintenance Official.

An ordinance to create a special zoning district for East Inman Street was also passed.


Fort Oglethorpe Arrest Report For April 22-28

Here is the Fort Oglethorpe arrest report for April 22-28: Mark Brannan Sangalang, 28, of 114 Van Cleve Street #6, Fort Oglethorpe was arrested April 22 on charges of entering auto and fugitive from justice. Travis Knight Johnson, 24, of 114 Van Cleve Street #10, Fort Oglethorpe was arrested April 22 on a charge of criminal attempt. Brandin Allen Russell, 28, of 106 ... (click for more)

Latest Hamilton County Jail Booking Report

Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: AIRKS, JESSICA  711 WOODVALE AVE CHATTANOOGA, 37411  Age at Arrest: 28 years old Arresting Agency: Hamilton County Booked for Previous Charges or Other Reason(s) --- ANDERSON, SHEA AMBER  4103 DAYTON BLVD APTC37 CHATTANOOGA, 37415  Age at Arrest: 24 years old Arresting Agency: Chattanooga ... (click for more)

Jill Levine Is An Educational Rock Star

No one has covered the Hamilton County Department of Education drama better than Roy Exum.  Thank you, Roy, but I take issue with your unnamed sources.  Professional jealousy and sour grape darts should not be anonymous.   HCDE is so dysfunctional, and there is good cause to place this public organization under a microscope, dissect it into pieces and discard all ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Settle It With A Vote

The Merriam-Webster Dictionary, which I consider a pretty good authority on what words really mean, defines “freedom” in this way:  “The quality or state of being free: such as, (a) the absence of necessity, coercion, or constraint in choice or action; (b) liberation from slavery or restraint or from the power of another; (c) independence -- the quality or state of being exempt ... (click for more)

Shrum, Gautier Win Communities In Schools 5K

Ryan Shrum and Jan Gautier may still be recovering from the Boston Marathon 12 days ago, but that didn’t keep them from winning overall titles in the 18 th Annual Communities In Schools 5K in Ringgold Saturday morning. The race, a circular 3.1-mile route that was somewhat flat, but included a few challenging climbs, was sponsored by First Volunteer Bank with proceeds benefitting ... (click for more)

McMasters Makes Tough Call To Play Volleyball At Lee

Grace Baptist Academy two-sport standout Claire McMasters envisioned playing basketball and volleyball at a small college after her career ended with the Lady Golden Eagles. So, she “looked at” Covenant College and Maryville College as two schools where she thought that would be possible to extend her two-sport status. McMasters’ recruiting shifted quickly once Lee University ... (click for more)