ear (2006-23)

Photo with no caption

Merry Christmas

Metro to Metro

Funds Fly Elsewhere

Narrowing Choices

Parks Dodge Bullet

Two Layoffs at One Vision Plaza

Bug in Our Ear

Merry Christmas

The new TVA board has asked the staff to look at a possible 12 percent reduction in TVA employment. The utility owes billions in debt and has raised rates twice in the last year, with another rate hike considered likely in the fall. With rising energy costs, significant cost reductions for the agency come down to eliminating jobs throughout the valley.

TVA’s new fiscal year begins Oct. 1.

We are also puzzled by another study being conducted. It involves how various components of TVA could be structured as free-standing entities. Now why would…uh-oh.

Metro to Metro

The move to Knoxville would be to head up local operations and would be a promotion. Knoxville’s Susan Brown , who has headed local operations, was given the additional responsibility for all southeastern operations for the company some time back.

Funds Fly Elsewhere

Knox County has long complained about not getting a fair share of state education funds under the BEP formula. Heavy lobbying by Knox County during the just-concluded legislative session did get an additional $400,000 in funds, plus some money for “at risk” students, bringing the total to about $1 million, according to local legislators.

Meanwhile, Memphis schools got an additional $7 million: about $2 million more in education funding and an outright appropriation for $5 million. Memphis has more failing schools that any other system in Tennessee.

Meanwhile, the Veterans administration has authorized nursing homes around the state, but they require a local match. Knox County ponied up $6 million in local funds to match federal funds for the veterans’ nursing home in Knoxville.

But for the nursing home being built in Clarksville, the just-passed state budget includes $4.5 million from a state bond issue to cover the local match for that veterans’ nursing home. The state funds for the local match were inserted into the budget by Clarksville’s representative, House Majority Leader Kim McMillan .

Narrowing Choices

Dewey Roberts, 1st district Democratic chair, said the 1st district Democratic Executive Committee has pledged to support whoever was picked by the community caucus. Jim Gray , Knox County Democratic Party Chair, said he hoped the community meeting would narrow the field and achieve consensus, but the countywide executive committee has adopted a non-binding resolution that urges the selection of the write-in candidates who finished first in the actual primary. Helen Diane Lewis was the leading write-in candidate from the 1st District. Gray says the primary vote will “most likely take precedence.”

Last week we quoted Roberts as saying the executive committee had agreed to support the community nominee. Roberts says he was referring to the 1st District Democratic Executive Committee, not the county version. We regret the error.

Parks Dodge Bullet

House leaders forbade amendments to the bill, to prevent dozens of amendments sought by members that wanted to strengthen the eminent domain bill in the wake of the Supreme Court Kelo decision that allowed taking property and selling it to another private party. But the bill was amended in the Senate to take out the prohibition against using eminent domain for recreational purposes. The House adopted the Senate version of the bill and the language was retained.

Two Layoffs at One Vision Plaza

But there was a shakeup last week that has some employees brushing up their resumes. Two of the center’s best-known staffers, the young women who worked behind the counter, who ran the espresso machines, rang up gift-shop purchases, served box lunches at the Blue Plate Specials, and answered random questions from walk-in tourists, were laid off last week. They’ll be replaced by part-timers—reportedly because part-timers don’t expect benefits, and there’s some savings involved. The hours of the center’s operation reportedly won’t be affected.

© 2006 MetroPulse. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Comments » 0

Be the first to post a comment!

Share your thoughts

Comments are the sole responsibility of the person posting them. You agree not to post comments that are off topic, defamatory, obscene, abusive, threatening or an invasion of privacy. Violators may be banned. Click here for our full user agreement.

Comments can be shared on Facebook and Yahoo!. Add both options by connecting your profiles.