published Sunday, June 24th, 2012

Business Briefcase: Foreclosure worries Marion County Mayor John Graham

Marion County Mayor John Graham has filed an affidavit in support of a lawsuit to block a threatened foreclosure of more than 8,000 acres of Jasper Mountain.

Graham said the foreclosure action by Chattanooga Agricultural Credit Association against one of John "Thunder" Thornton's development firms, Tango November LLC, could hurt the county. Graham said a foreclosure would undermine efforts to bring a hydroponics business to the part of the mountain and hurt property values in the county.

"As mayor of Marion County, I support the efforts of Tango November to exclude tracts for which there are existing contracts from foreclosure because the foreclosure will decrease tax revenues for the county," Graham said in an affidavit filed last week in Marion County Chancery Court.

Thornton is trying to block a scheduled July 3 foreclosure sale of most of Jasper Mountain owned by his Tango November. The four-and-a-half year-old loan is in default, but Thornton says he will repay the note. He said new development in the area should help boost property values and sales on the mountain.

A proposed hydroponics firm is looking at building greenhouses and organic vegetable gardens on a northern portion of the land Thornton owns.

Thornton is developing 560 acres of Jasper Mountain into Jasper Highlands, but that property is not affected by the foreclosure action.

State offers aid for ABC-TV show

The state of Tennessee will pay up to $7.5 million to the producers of the new "Nashville" television show set to air this fall on ABC-TV .

The Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development announced the grant last week to help attract such programs to the Volunteer State.

"We are taking a new approach to one of Tennessee's strongest and most unique businesses, the entertainment industry," Tennessee Economic Development Commissioner Bill Hagerty said in a news release. "Gov. Bill Haslam has made a concerted effort to fold the film and music sectors into our department and make them a part of the state's regular economic goals and initiatives.

Filming for the "Nashville" TV show, which gets started in July, is expected to employ 350 Tennesseans.

Firm markets Backwoods Life

Spin Concepts Marketing LLC, a Ringgold, Ga.-based marketing and web development firm, has been chosen to manage the Backwoods Life brand for the Sportsman Channel and Wild TV networks in the United States and Canada. The show appears on multiple satellite and cable systems, including Dish Network and DirecTV, with an estimated total potential viewing audience of over 31 million.

Backwoods Life is a weekly outdoors hunting show based near Valdosta, Ga., that airs 13 episodes beginning in late summer and continuing through fall and winter.

Daren Headrick, a Ringgold, Ga., native, is president and founder of Spin Concepts.

Headrick served in both corporate marketing leadership and client-side agency roles prior to starting Spin Concepts in 2003.

Backwoods Life is poised to start its eighth season on national TV airing next Sunday, July 1 at 6 p.m. on the Sportsman Channel in the United States.

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