City Council welcomes Eagle Scouts to their meeting
By Karen Hall
Before making their historic unanimous vote in favor of the Vision Plan, Lewisburg's City Council welcomed four local Eagle Scouts from Troop 173, along with their Scoutmaster and Assistant Scoutmaster.
Councilman Steve Thomas told the group he earned the Eagle Scout distinction in Columbia in 1966 and said, "It's still something I'm proud of."
One by one the young men stepped up to the podium and told their name and age, described their Eagle project, and said how long they had spent on it. All had help from friends, family and other scouts, and were quick to thank them.
"I would love to thank them again," said Daniel Liles, 17, who built four picnic tables for the town of Chapel Hill.
Gabriel Head, 15, has been an Eagle Scout since he was 13, and is now a Senior Patrol Leader. His Eagle project consisted of work on the Sunshine Kids playground.
"I'm excited you invited us to come and share," Head said.
"Thank you all for having me," said Jonathan Sandifer, 16, who worked on the little park behind the Town Hall in Cornersville, clearing brush and cleaning around the old jail and town spring, making trails, and building a bench for park visitors to rest on.
Tyler Marcrum planted and fenced off 3,000 trees at the University of Tennessee's Dairy Research and Education Center on New Lake Road as part of a conservation and soil erosion project. Marcrum became an Eagle Scout at age 14 and since then has gone on to earn bronze and gold palms by completing more merit badges. The next palm is the silver one, and Marcrum said he is in competition with Head to see which one will earn it first.
"I look forward to working in the community," Marcrum said.
Mayor Jim Bingham and Director of Economic Development Greg Lowe urged the scoutmasters to send prospective Eagle scouts their way, since the City of Lewisburg has plenty of projects suitable for them to work on.
"We have a bunch of things going on that are positive, and good for Lewisburg," said Bingham. "We have a good relationship with the county government and the other cities. We're focused on making Lewisburg a better place to live."
In other action at the City Council's 30-minute meeting, councilmen unanimously voted in favor of:
* Providing the Teladoc service for city employees and their families. This will allow them 24/7 telephone access to board certified doctors in Tennessee, who will listen to symptoms, give advice, and can even write prescriptions (though not for addictive drugs). This should provide a savings because city employees may be able to resolve their medical concerns without visiting an urgent care facility or the emergency room.
"One emergency room visit can pay for a month of this," exclaimed Thomas when Teladoc was discussed at the city's work session earlier this month.
* Entering into a contract with InterAct for records management at the Lewisburg Police Department.
"Our department is decades behind in records management," Police Chief Chuck Forbis told councilmen at the work session. "We're still keeping paper copies, and it would be extremely difficult to find something from 10 years ago -- and we do get those requests."
The Drug Fund can cover the purchase and first year of the software, but after that, Forbis said, the cost of maintaining the software will have to be a line item in the city budget.
* The city will apply to Tennessee Housing Development Authority for a $500,000 grant which, if awarded, can be spent on bringing older homes up to code with improved plumbing, wiring, windows, and doors.
"It's a wonderful program," said Bingham. "We have an opportunity to provide something for people in need. I wish we'd done it before."
Dunn explained that the city selected Raymond & Associates Consulting to prepare the application. If the city wins the grant, he said, Raymond & Associates will administer it at no cost to the city.
* The city will also apply for a grant from the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation which will, hopefully, pay 50 percent of the cost of replacing the liner of the pool at the Rec Center. The 10-year liner in the pool is now 11 years old and "past its prime," said Recreation Director Jimmy Stitt, but a new one costs $100,000.
Councilmen discussed whether grant money should be spent at Jones Park, or on the Rec Center pool, but finally decided the pool liner was a necessity, and without it, the pool could not open in 2015.
"We won't be leaving Jones Park completely out," said Dunn. "We're going to do some things at Jones with our own forces, and the money is already appropriated. We'll be looking for other funding sources, too."