Knoxville Issues » Sideways Glance by Rikki Hall

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  • Hutchison Well-Suited to Continue Ragsdale’s Embarrassing Legacy Published 3/31/2010 at 10:54 a.m. 0 comments

    The last time Knox County elected a new mayor, it wasn’t really an election. Political power players threw so much money at Mike Ragsdale so early that anyone else thinking of running just gave up. What we got was a ...

  • New East County Sector Plan Offers Opportunity for Smart Development Published 3/3/2010 at 11:53 a.m. 0 comments

    Last month the Metropolitan Planning Commission approved a new East County sector plan, and the document will come before Knox County Commission this month.

  • TVA Plan for Higher Dams Floods Mind with Existential Queries Published 1/6/2010 at 9:59 a.m. 0 comments

    Being civilized costs money, and ongoing costs ratchet up with each new structure. Roads, dams, and cities need maintenance and repair. TVA is spending about $6 million to raise the height of four dams. Those dams were designed to withstand ...

  • Tennessee’s Political Parties Have Too Much Unchecked Power Published 12/9/2009 at 9:39 a.m. 0 comments

    Ward Cammack may have been the best candidate in the race for governor, an experienced businessman with a coherent and balanced perspective. He dropped out last week in the face of dismal poll numbers. Clearly he was not a good ...

  • Development Corp. Should Move Beyond Business Parks Published 11/11/2009 at 9:52 a.m. 0 comments

    The Development Corporation has a few hundred acres of land in eastern Knox County burning an $11 million hole in its pocket. TDC bought the land on speculation, thinking they could ram zoning and sector-plan changes through County Commission and ...

  • Controversy over Knox Co. Charter Continues Published 10/14/2009 at 10:24 a.m. 0 comments

    County Commission devoted considerable energy to adopting district boundaries for next year’s election, but a lawsuit filed two weeks ago could make it all for naught. Meanwhile, efforts to recall Law Director Bill Lockett and school board member Bill Phillips ...

  • Think Locally Published 9/16/2009 at 5:15 p.m. 0 comments

    Everyone complains about politicians, but no one does anything about them. The Knoxville city elections going on right now are the perfect opportunity to do something. It is a non-partisan election for the least powerful seats around, so the politicians ...

  • Lay of the Land Published 8/19/2009 at 5:28 p.m. 0 comments

    Attendance at a sustainable development task force meeting was sparse. The Small Assembly Room was an order of magnitude too large for an exchange between MPC presenters Mark Donaldson and Trey Benefield and stalwart environmental defenders like Jamie Rowe and ...

  • Revolution by Tantrum Published 7/22/2009 at 4:42 p.m. 0 comments

    County Commissioner Greg “Lumpy” Lambert’s outburst at a recent meeting was disturbing in several ways. At a task force presentation on proposed ridge and slope zoning, Lambert predicted a shooting in the City County Building. He also said “we’ll deserve ...

  • Fixing What Ain’t Broke Published 6/24/2009 at 2:00 p.m. 0 comments

    Nowhere in the Constitution of Tennessee or the United States are political parties mentioned, yet the two major parties wield considerable power. The Tennessee Constitution provides that every citizen over 18, duly registered, be allowed to participate in all federal, ...

  • Honey, I Shrunk County Commission Published 5/27/2009 at 5:09 p.m. 0 comments

    To accommodate Charter changes voters approved last fall, the county must be divided into nine equal populations. Presently the fifth district is 50 percent larger and has three commissioners, but the next commission will have only one representative per district. ...

  • Keep Tennessee's Upper Courts Free of Politics Published 4/29/2009 at 11:14 a.m. 1 comment

    Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey last week accused the Chief Justice of the Tennessee Supreme Court of unethical conduct; at a Kiwanis Club meeting in Memphis, Justice Janice Holder had spoken in favor of renewing current judicial-selection methods.

  • Making America Sick Published 4/1/2009 at 3:13 p.m. 0 comments

    Whining from the insured about how long they will have to wait to see a doctor if everyone gets insured rings with dark irony in the ears of the uninsured, who may die waiting for medicine or a procedure. Fortunately, ...

  • A Road to Build Published 3/4/2009 at 3:08 p.m. 0 comments

    The state is once again thinking about a new road between Knoxville and Seymour to relieve congestion on Chapman Highway. People die each year on that road, and as long as that is true, transportation planners will keep returning to ...

  • Mind Full of Voids Published 2/18/2009 at 1:30 p.m. 2 comments

    If you hear a sound in the night, are you content to chalk it up as unknown? You hope to hear it again, and you speculate on where it came from and what it was. Our minds do not like ...