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After allegations that council member Pete Souza was bypassing the City Manager to acquire information, the council approved a motion that all council members must adhere to the council-manager form of government as outlined in the City Charter. The Charter states that council members must not directly involve employees in gathering information and must address inquiries to the City Manager. The motion passed 4-0. Furthermore, council member Jesse Kerley moved that Souza shall pay for any further information requests regarding the airport or Crossville Aero, unless the entire council requests the same information. That motion was approved 4-0.
In special session, the Crossville City Council approved a motion to revoke any expressed or implied authority of Pete Souza regarding his airport business plan. The plan, submitted to Council in September, pointed out alleged irregularities in contracts with Crossville Aero, the contractor running the airport, and proposed improved security and auditing of the finances. The plan became controversial among the council with some calling Souza’s actions a “witch hunt”. Souza, who was absent from the meeting due to medical reasons, responded with written comments read by the City Manager, saying the plan was submitted for council to use in part or in whole and that his authority had ended there. Nonetheless, council voted 3-1 to revoke, or in essence reject, any further action on the airport business plan and remove any authority that Souza may have. Mayor Mayberry was the sole no vote, saying that he did not feel Souza had any authority that needed revocation.
During a special call of the Crossville City Council, council members voted to reject a counter offer of $92,000 from J. Hicks Excavating. The council previously said they would accept $108,000 to resolve the suit that stems from construction of the Duer Soccer Complex. Council says they will proceed to court for the full amount if their offer is rejected.
Clean-up efforts are wrapping up in Cumberland County, nine months after February’s ice storm wreaked havoc on the Plateau. EMA deputy director Jill Ritzman says it tore up $7 million worth of debris. The Road Department completed cleaning up around county roads a couple of weeks ago. The state is still working on their portion. With Winter just around the corner, officials say the danger isn't completely over yet. There are still numerous loose limbs hanging on trees that could come down with the slightest breeze, snow, or another dreaded ice storm.
Christmas is not far away; and any thought of Christmas brings the City of Crossville Annual Christmas Parade into the conversation. The Christmas Parade will be held this year on Saturday, Dec. 12th, getting underway at 4:30 p.m. The parade route will follow the same route as last year, beginning on Stanley Street, connecting with Main Street and heading north. The Grand Marshal for the 2015 parade will be Jim Crabtree, producing director of the Cumberland County Playhouse. The winning theme chosen from entries in the annual “Parade Theme” contest is “12 Days of Christmas,” submitted by Faith Abston. “We would like to thank everyone who participated and provided entries for the parade theme,” said Billy Loggins, City Marketing Director. The 2015 Christmas Parade Grand Prize for the winning entry is $500. There will also be $100 winners in each category. Entries for the parade will be accepted until Dec. 7. Categories are: Small Business, Large Business, School, Horses/Animals, Religious, Non-Profit and Vintage Auto (25 years old and older). All entries must adhere to the theme and must be 75% decorated. Any entry (with the exception of vintage autos) not 75% decorated at the time of the parade lineup will be unable to participate. Parade rules, regulations, entry forms and guidelines are available at the Palace Theatre, 72 South Main Street; or you may contact the Palace Theater at (931) 484-6133.
Additional Parade details:
This year, there are several other events of interest that will take place before the start of the parade. The always-popular Breakfast Rotary Club Annual Chili Cook-Off will be held at the Crossville Depot. This year the Chili Cook-Off marks its 30th event. Contact Scott Maddox at 484-5767 for additional info.
The 3rd Annual TAD (Teens Against Drugs) Center Reindeer Run will start things off for Parade Day. For more information, contact the TAD Center at 456-2859.
Another exciting event taking place before the Parade is The “Downton Abbey” Last-Season Premiere; this will take place at the Palace Theatre. You are invited to join WCTE-TV and the City of Crossville for an afternoon of tea and cookies, followed by a Premiere Screening Party, then a “sneak peek” of the intrigue and drama of the Downton Abbey screening of the first hour of the new 2016 season! Dressing in period costume is optional but encouraged (WWI, 1920s era). Tickets are free but you must have one to attend. For ticket info, contact the Palace Theatre at 484-6133.
Cumberland Medical Center / Covenant Health will partner with Flowers Bakery once again to hand out free hot chocolate and snack cakes from the courthouse lawn before and during the Christmas Parade.
Cumberland Fellowship Church will be handing out complementary coffee, and hot chocolate to parade participants at Martin Elem., and at Cumberland County High School. The Christmas Parade uses these campus areas to stage the different parade categories.
The Christmas Parade will once again be videoed courtesy of Vol First / Ben Lomand. Parade announcer for this year is Thom Hassler, with Cumberland Medical Center / Covenant Health. Parade DVD’s will be made available to the public.