In response to the City Council's upcoming decision on Chattanooga Village, I have a few points to make. I grew up in Hixson. I rode my bicycle from my home and watched Northgate Mall get built in the 1970s. My wife and I enjoy shopping at the stores along Highway 153, and we enjoy having options at the various restaurants along this corridor.
To me, though, here is the crux of the matter for the City Council with respect to the Chattanooga Village rezoning request: It meets the Regional Planning Agency's standards for commercial development and has been approved by the planning commission and the RPA!
As a concerned citizen, I have reviewed detailed plans for this project. I went to the last City Council meeting regarding this project. I'm in favor of the rezoning. Aside from my personal wishes, though, this project will create jobs (estimated at 2,000) and will provide significant tax revenue for the city and county (estimated at over $2 million/year in property taxes alone).
This project has come of age, much like Northgate Mall did in the 70s. I urge all City Council members to vote in favor of the proposed rezoning for this exciting project!
Another shooting, another death - doesn't anyone in law enforcement think, just maybe, some of these acts of violence could have been avoided if more neighbors or parents were made aware of the past actions of these young killers?
Some of these 15-17-year-old kids have longer rap sheets than people in jail.
I think everyone should have the right to know the names and faces of these criminals. It just seems a little late seeing the names and photographs of these kids after they rob and kill some other innocent child.
Laws are made to be changed. After three or four serious crimes are committed by these "children," their names and pictures should be made public. Enough is enough.
WALT VINEYARD, Charleston, Tenn.
The president told us that controlling spending is not his priority and that he will not negotiate with Republicans to keep spending under control. What I do not understand is that our two U.S. senators, Corker and Alexander, both said they wanted to agree on raising our taxes and giving the federal government more of our money so they could get that issue off the table. Then they said they could turn to controlling spending and, of course, Obama would talk with them.
Anyone with common sense would know that the president had no reason to negotiate and that he does not believe that government should work with less money.
Now he has more of our money to continue to waste, and instead of saying we must live within a budget, he says a debt ceiling is a joke and wants to spend whatever he wants. I bet our great senators will cave and let him spend whatever just so they don't have to deal with the problem.
The press says that Corker is a wise man who will work it out. I say he doesn't care how big government becomes, just like Obama. He just wants to spend it differently than the president.
BRUCE CALDWELL, Signal Mountain
Jack Benson, a member of the Chattanooga City Council, has been my friend since I taught for him at Eastside Junior High. Mr. Benson is a believer in being fair when making any decision. He votes for what is best for the majority of citizens, not some special interest.
Jack Benson has been part of a team that has developed Chattanooga into one of the best places in the South to live and raise a family.
Mr. Benson has always believed in public service, whether protecting the rights of teachers, running Big Brothers, or serving his neighborhood as their councilman. His values are conservative and based on what is best for the majority. Please re-elect Jack Benson.
A couple of letters in Jan. 13 paper caught my attention. Both writers were concerned about our current level of federal spending. Now, I may have missed it, but I don't recognize these writers as someone who has complained about past federal spending - say 2000-2008. Were they vocal when Bush turned surpluses into annual deficits, going from $5 trillion of debt in 2000 to $11.5 trillion of debt in 2008? Did they get upset and loud when after the two sets of tax cuts for wealthy folks, dick Cheney said "deficits don't matter"? Did they protest two wars and a Medicare part "D" plan? Being put on a credit card for someone else to pay? I doubt it.
So, is this true concern over federal spending, or just who's spending it? If you didn't speak out then, your whining now has no validity.
ALLAN BAGGETT, Trion, Ga.
We thank the Red Bank Police Department. When we were in need of help, three of Red Bank's finest arrived at our home. They were professional, thorough and courteous.
Upon arriving at our house after church Sunday, my husband and I found our front door ajar. We called 911/Red Bank Police. They were there within a very reasonable amount of time. We stayed in the car as directed by the 911 dispatcher. Two officers entered the house, searching every room, closet, under the beds and any nook and cranny. One officer stayed with us outside. All was well.
Thank you again, Red Bank Police Department, for making Red Bank a safer place to live.
JEAN and CHARLIE HOWELL, Red Bank
Several weeks ago, disclosure was made that funds had been misappropriated at the Tivoli under the direction of Missy Crutchfield. Since then, we have not heard anything more about the situation. In the disclosure and the subsequent information, it was determined that Ms Crutchfield lied about her knowledge of the situation and tried to "pass the buck" to the audit department. Emails were discovered that showed Ms Crutchfield not only knew about the situation, but stated she would do something about it the following day.
What I do not understand is, if it were ordinary citizens who had this same or similar situation, they would have been fired immediately and possibly face criminal charges. Yet, Mayor Littlefield has chosen to do nothing, which is extremely disgraceful to the mayor's office.
Another article said two new stations and more bikes were added to existing stations for our bicycle system plus an additional station on the UTC campus. I feel this is a great waste of taxpayer money when the city has much greater needs. This is another example of the lack of leadership at City Hall.
Lastly, the City Council is a prime example of how much this city needs term limits for the council. The council has become a liability instead of watching out for the city taxpayers' funds and promoting strong sensible values.
I also attended the East Ridge City Council meeting. Here's what really happened. The city stickers discussed at a previous meeting were brought up again at this meeting. Councilman Denny Manning made the motion for the city stickers, and Vice Mayor Jim Bethune immediately seconded it.
Then all the ballyhoo started with Tim Gobble as to why they shouldn't have stickers, with Councilman Larry Sewell adding his antagonistic remarks pointing his finger at Denny.
Instead of standing up to the continual rhetoric by Gobble, Bethune rescinded his second to Denny's motion, causing Denny to withdraw his motion; Denny Manning was most upset. I hope and pray that this giving-in to conversation from Gobble and ignoring the citizens' concerns does not continue in the future. Not standing up for what you know is right has been the nemesis of the City Council and has caused some problems regarding future plans for our city.
I was hoping for a change with the new council, just as Denny Manning stated in his previous comments, but it looks like we may have some of the same problems. We shall see!
JACK FULKS, East Ridge
Recently I took my car in for a checkup and servicing. As I approached the cashier to sign the work sheet and pay my bill, a nice young man was in front of me to pay his bill. I heard the cashier tell him that he had signed my work sheet instead of his. Imagine my surprise to hear him say that he would pay my bill too.
I protested that he didn't have to do that, but he insisted. I was so surprised that I neglected to ask his name. I found out later that it was (former) Tennessee Titan Tony Brown.
I am not sure if he or his family live in Chattanooga but, if so, I wanted him to know how much I appreciated his kindness and generosity. Thank you again, Mr. Brown.
MS. JERRY CARTER