Cleveland Council Pays Tribute To Teacher Featured On Live’s Top Teacher Search

Wednesday, May 28, 2014 - by Gail Perry
Mayor Tom Rowland honors teacher Athena Davis
Mayor Tom Rowland honors teacher Athena Davis
- photo by Gail Perry

The Cleveland city council meeting opened Tuesday with a video showing Athena Davis being honored on ABC network’s Live with Kelly and Michael Show. Ms. Davis who teaches English and Holocaust Literature at Cleveland High School, was chosen as a Teacher of the Week by the program which makes her one of 12 semi-finalists for the 2014 edition of Live’s Top Teacher Search.

Students interviewed in the film spoke of her dedication, commitment and inspiration. With the tribute she was given a trip to Israel and an invitation to participate in a three-week intensive seminar there.

Mayor Tom Rowland presented a plaque to Ms. Davis proclaiming her an ambassador for the city of Cleveland.

Tennessee Senator Jim Tracy gave the council an update on the new intersections LIC North and South.

He said that infrastructure is important in bringing jobs to the area and that TDOT has committed to building the new intersections. However, because of a lack of money no time line has been established.

In regular business, the council approved six ordinances on second reading. Approval was given to adopt several Interstate Gateway Corridor overlay zoning districts for the areas around exits 20, 25 and 27. The purpose is to guide future development of land around these exits and to protect and enhance the existing character of the locations. This will define what types of businesses will not be permitted.

 A second zoning ordinance that was passed will allow uses that are now permitted within a Heavy Industrial district to be used conditionally within a Light Industry Zoning District.

The city’s 2015 budget was given final approval with no property tax increase. The rate will remain at $1.7655 per $100 of assessed value.

Street cut fees were raised from $200 to $265 to cover the actual cost of installing a patch to the roadway.

Based on a review by the Cleveland Utilities and the city staff, sewers that extend outside of the city limits will now need to be given approval by the city council.

The city recognizes that it cannot cover the needs of all residents and so approved making contributions to various non-profit organizations that help Cleveland citizens with special needs.

An agreement has been made with the Cleveland Utilities Board’s water and electric systems for making tax equivalent payments to the city. The water company will pay Cleveland $212,221 and the electric company will pay $1,994,997 for the year 2015.

 resolution was made to be in compliance with regulations regarding the use of federal funds given to the city schools. The uses for these funds will be approved by the Tennessee Department of Education for No Child Left Behind projects.

The council gave the required approval for the Bradley County’s 911 Center budget.

A 2013 tax refund was approved for Alice Lynn Burns, a Cleveland citizen, for $79 because the assessment on her home was reduced with the removal of a swimming pool.

The council gave Mayor Rowland authorization to sign a revised contract with TDOT for miscellaneous improvements on 17th Street from Keith Street to Ocoee St. and for 20th Street from Harle Avenue to Neeley Circle.

The mayor was also given permission to sign an agreement with Bradley County for use of the 2014 Byrne Justice Assistance Grant that will be used for computer upgrades.

Passpointe Engineering will be given a contract to design the Ocoee Crossing Greenway Connector for the amount of $53,905.

The public works department of Cleveland has a paving contract with Talley Construction. That company is asking for an extension of its bid for paving in the coming year at the same rate.

Construction of the Mosby Park Pool is now 60-65 percent complete. Officials are hoping that it will be ready to open June 14. The council approved an additional $4,000 to the cost of the project which brought the total to $530,000.

Several lawn mowers were declared surplus property and permission was given to sell the equipment on

Several residents who live around Chippewah Avenue SE have requested that additional street lights be put in the area. The Cleveland Utilities recommended against adding more lights since the ones already there meet the city’s guidelines. Councilman George Poe said he had received phone calls from people living in the area requesting them. He said it is a high crime area where people fear for their lives and cited an incident involving knives and guns where police were summoned Saturday night. He then made a motion to add two street lights but recommended consulting with police officers familiar with area and to have Cleveland Utilities be involved in the placement. The motion passed unanimously.

Public Works Director Tommy Myers requested approval for five drainage projects that are in line to be done this summer. A project at Dalton Pike needs to be completed before a grant to build a sidewalk is used. In an effort to move water off of 1st Street water will need to be diverted underground.

Several plans were presented placing the pipes in different locations, and each plan had a different cost. The council asked for additional information before giving approval. Other drainage projects will be done at Ocoee Street at 22nd Street, Ozark, and Catherine circle at Adkisson Drive.

The application for a grant for CDBG Disaster funds up to $250,000 will be made by the mayor. This grant will be awarded to local governments that were affected by flooding a few years ago. It would be used to create additional power lines which would be a supplementary source of power in case of another extreme weather event.

Changes to improve safety at the intersection at Ocoee and 8th Street were discussed. There have been 20 accidents there in the past five years. Several options were presented to the council by Public Works Director Tommy Myers. The least expensive would be to separate left turn lanes on Ocoee with concrete curbs. The neighborhood association favors a mini round-about. Mr. Myers told the council that intersection handles an average of 19,000 cars each day which is about twice the number recommended for a mini round-about. He said he would take the problem to the engineering firm of Cannon and Cannon for a recommendation.  

Mayor Rowland reminded the council that an auction for property at 405 Airport Rd., NW will take place June 5 at 11 a.m. The 62.5 acres was formerly known as Hardwick Field.


Fire Destroys Home On Sea Haven Drive

Firefighters from Dallas Bay Volunteer Fire Department arrived on the scene of  6329 Sea Haven Drive to find a fire through the roof and a partial collapse of the home. No one was home at the time of the fire. The family was driving home from the Washington, D.C. after visiting family over the holidays. A dog did expire in the fire. Neighbors had been taken care of the ... (click for more)

Walker County Arrest Report For Nov. 23-29

Here is the Walker County arrest report for Nov. 23-29: RICHARDSON         CHARLES      ALLEN           WM     20        Officer MILLER         PROBATION VIOLATION (F) ... (click for more)

Misconceptions About Ban The Box

Mr. Exum,  I want to invite you as a guest speaker at the NAACP General Membership meeting.  I believe we can accomplish our goals and clear up any misconceptions about Ban The Box and the role of the NAACP in a much more meaningful manner face to face.   In that vein I would like to invite you to have coffee with me at Panera Bread.  I will not make a ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: My Great Thanksgiving

In order for you to best understand this, last Thursday was the first Thanksgiving I have ever spent alone.  Don’t misunderstand, I had a fistful of kind invitations but I am the only remaining member of my immediate family around here and I guess I started dwelling on that a little too much as the holiday neared. Making out my “thankful” list helped, and I ate enough with ... (click for more)

Foster and Auriemma - Hall of Fame Coaches – Meet at McKenzie Arena Tonight

  A young basketball coach with lots of drive and knowledge but little money was in desperate need of a dependable car to get from home to work and back. A good friend gave his reliable $100 car to the coach and went out and replaced it with another $100 car. That same friend – also an up-and-coming coach – had also helped his brother a few years earlier by taking a ... (click for more)

No.1 UConn Women and Breanna Stewart Face Mocs Monday

“By late Monday night, UConn’s Breanna Stewart will be on a very short list of the greatest female players to ever play at McKenzie Arena.”   -- UTC women’s basketball coach Jim Foster   America’s most talented female player - Breanna Stewart - on the best women’s college basketball team in the land -   UConn – is in town for a one night showing, ... (click for more)