The Rev. Bernie Miller, who is running against incumbent County Commissioner Greg Beck in the District 5 Democratic primary this year, has gained the endorsement of former U.S. Rep. Marilyn Lloyd, D-Chattanooga, his campaign reported.

"Dr. Miller is a longtime friend that I respect very much. He will make an excellent commissioner and has my complete support," Ms. Lloyd is quoted as saying in a release from the Miller campaign.

Mr. Beck officially will kick off his re-election campaign Monday at the Bessie Smith Cultural Center, a news release from his campaign states.

The event, which is open to the public, lasts from 5 to 7 p.m.

homeless blueprint update

John Dorris, chairman of Chattanooga's Homeless Blueprint Oversight Committee, came before the county commission Wednesday to discuss "a rising tide of homelessness in suburban areas."

"The problem is countrywide," he said. "It's also right around here, and it's real."

Mr. Dorris asked the commission for input on how to help with the county's homelessness.

Commission Chairman Curtis Adams asked Mr. Dorris to leave a copy of the blueprint with each commissioner. He also asked if the homeless problem is growing in Hamilton County.

Mr. Dorris said he believes it is with an increase in home foreclosures.

In 2007, Chattanooga updated the 2004 Blueprint to End Chronic Homelessness in the Chattanooga Region in 10 Years. That revision included the formation of the oversight committee.

card brings savings

Hamilton County's prescription discount card that the county government provides through the National Association of Counties has been used nearly 185,000 times in the past three years and has saved consumers more than $5 million, according to Mike Dunne, spokesman for County Mayor Claude Ramsey.

"Our partner, the National Association of Counties, reports the program is ranked third among approximately 1,288 participating counties," a news release on the program states.

The cards have been available since February 2007 and are free for Hamilton County residents.

keeping 'em in line in hixson

During the Public Works Committee meeting Tuesday, city officials told council members about how they had to raise a road next to Hixson High School because they could not go onto land owned by the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency.

Public Works officials told the council that the area was a hunting preserve.

"It's a hunting preserve next to the high school?" Councilwoman Sally Robinson asked. "How does that work out?"

"It keeps the kids in line over there," said Councilwoman Pam Ladd, who represents the area. "That's how we do it in Hixson."

Compiled by staff writers Matt Wilson and Cliff Hightower.