Daniels to speak, perform at inaugural ‘Veteran Impact Celebration’ to benefit MTSU’s Daniels Center

Staff Reports

MURFREESBORO – Country Music Hall of Famer Charlie Daniels and Mt. Juliet resident will speak and perform at the inaugural “Veteran Impact Celebration” on Thursday from 6-9 p.m. in Murfreesboro.

The sold-out fundraiser benefiting MTSU’s Charlie and Hazel Daniels Veterans and Military Family Center will be held at the Grove at Williamson Place off Medical Center Parkway near Interstate 24.

Charlie and Hazel Daniels’ support the MTSU Daniels Veterans Center through The Journey Home Project, which he co-founded in 2014. (Submitted photo)

The event will highlight corporate and community leaders who have generously supported and invested in the Daniels Center’s Transitioning Home Office for student-veterans and military family members.

“We owe our country’s veterans for their service and should do everything we can to help them,” said Daniels. “The Daniels Center does a great job of supporting the student-veterans and helping them to transition from military to civilian life. Thank you to everyone who has supported this inaugural sold out event, every donation makes a difference.”

The private event will feature dinner, a VIP meet and greet and photo op with Daniels, as well as additional speakers, including retired U.S. Army Lt. Gen. Keith M. Huber, MTSU senior adviser for veterans and leadership initiatives, and university president Sidney A. McPhee.

“This will be an incredible night of music, recognition and appreciation,” Huber said. “We will celebrate the impact of our veterans and their precious families as they continue to serve our nation, now out of military attire, as leaders in our communities and workforce.

“We will recognize the business leaders and organizations which provide opportunities and loyal support to our military. We will appreciate the unparalleled commitment of MTSU to our veterans as well as the patriotic foundation of support, the Charlie and Hazel Daniels Veterans and Military Family Center.”

The Daniels Center is the largest and most comprehensive veterans center on any Tennessee higher education campus. It enables the campus’ 900-plus student-veteran population to have a one-stop shop to meet a variety of academic needs.

The 3,200-square-foot center is in the Keathley University Center in the heart of the MTSU campus. The center is a place for MTSU’s student veterans to study, to gather and to get help from fellow veterans, who will serve as peer advisers and sponsors. The Transitioning Home Office assists student veterans – or any student – in making the transition from college student to getting their career underway.

“MTSU’s Daniels Center has provided a welcoming space for myself and my family as I transition into the university community,” said Jacqueline Evans, of Florence, South Carolina, a veteran of the U.S. Marines and a senior leisure, sports and tourism studies major.

The Veteran Impact Celebration is sponsored by the Journey Home Project, the Nashville Predators, Hiller, Dollar General, Mission Barbecue, the Grove at Williamson Place, the Steel Barrel Brewing Co. and Stones River Total Beverages.

Planning for the 2019 Veteran Impact Celebration is currently underway. The event will take place each year on the Thursday preceding the Fourth of July.

From his Dove Award-winning gospel albums to his genre-defining Southern Rock anthems and his CMA Award-winning country hits, few artists have left a more indelible mark on America’s musical landscape than Daniels. An outspoken patriot, beloved mentor and still a road warrior at 81, Daniels has parlayed his passion for music into a multi-platinum career and a platform to support the military, underprivileged children, and others in need.

The Charlie Daniels Band has long populated radio with memorable hits and his signature song, “The Devil Went Down to Georgia.” During the course of his career, Daniels has received numerous accolades, including his induction into the Country Music Hall of Fame, the Musicians Hall of Fame and becoming a member of the Grand Ole Opry.

Daniels helps to shine the spotlight on the many causes that are close to his heart. He’s a staunch supporter of the military and lends his time and talent to numerous charitable organizations, including the Journey Home Project, that he founded in 2014 with his manager, David Corlew, to help veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces.

For more information, visit thejourneyhomeproject.org or charliedaniels.com.

Winfree named top statesman

Submitted to Mt. Juliet News

Jennifer Franklin Winfree, a former Watertown teacher and current District 17 Republican Executive Committee committeewoman, was selected recently as statesman of the year for the Sixth Congressional District at the Tennessee Republican Party Statesmen’s Dinner. Winfree, a Wilson County native, currently lives in DeKalb County. Winfree (left) is pictured with Congresswoman Diane Black.

Field of Flags planned to fly at Ag Center

A Field of Flags to benefit local veteran organizations is planned for June 29-July 1 at the James E. Ward Agricultural Center at 945 Baddour Pkwy. in Lebanon.

Wilson County Mayor Randall Hutto and Lebanon Mayor Bernie Ash were at the Wilson County Courthouse last Wednesday to show support for the event and the American Legion Post 15, which will play host to the event, along with other veteran organizations.

A field of 500 U.S. flags will stand and wave at the Ag Center from the opening ceremony June 29 at 1 p.m. until the closing ceremony July 1.

All proceeds from the sponsorship sales of flags will be distributed to the four veteran organizations in Lebanon, the American Legion Post 15, the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 5015, the Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 1004 and its counterpart, the Associates of Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 1004.

The organizations have fundraisers throughout the year to enable them to provide assistance to needy veterans and their families. In addition to help veterans receive benefits and medical care, the assistance can range from help for handicapped veterans get ramps for their homes, providing food, assistance with utility bills and even providing large boxes of food at Thanksgiving.

The four organizations are currently pre-selling flag sponsorships to individuals, businesses and corporations. There are different levels of sponsorships available, and each level will include a certain number of flags. The top four levels of sponsorship will be recognized on a tri-fold brochure, along with a short description of the veterans organizations and other media at the flag site.

Flag sponsorships will be available at the event, as well. People can have a flag dedicated to a loved one, past or present, attached to their flags.

Anyone who has questions or wants to purchase a sponsorship may contact Harold Weist at grnmarine@tds.net or Pete Norman at Uncle Pete’s Truck Stop.

By Jacob Smith

jsmith@lebanondemocrat.com

Surefire Fireworks gears up for Fourth of July

Explosions, smoke and the smell of gunpowder will soon fill the air for this year’s Fourth of July celebrations throughout Wilson County.

To prepare for the annual event, tents are already popping up across Wilson County, and officially opened for business last Wednesday until July 5 for residents to fill all their most explosive desires.

Where do all those tents come from, though, and where do the tent operators get their supply? The answer, for some of them at least, is a 40-year-old Wilson County staple, Surefire Fireworks Wholesale and Retail.

Jacob Smith • Mt. Juliet News
Surefire Fireworks gears up for the busiest season of the year as fireworks season approaches, and tents across Wilson County opened last Wednesday.

The company sits up on a hill at 1946 Murfreesboro Road in Lebanon. According to employee Brendan Martel, the organization is able to sell fireworks year-round because the building is outside the city limits, but obviously, its biggest season is around July 4.

“Really, we start getting busy when the tents start to open in town,” said Martel. “People are seeing the visual in town of, ‘Oh, that’s right fireworks,’ and then some people remember we’re here, and they’ll come to us too, because we’re air conditioned.”

Martel said the local tents are really just an extension of the store itself to offer residents in Wilson County a more convenient way to get fireworks for the big holiday. The company also sells wholesale to privately owned firework businesses, but none locally.

“It’s a little bit of both up here; we do the retail and the wholesale,” said Martel. “We’ve just started doing [wholesale] the past couple of years, and we get people from all over the state who will purchase through us at wholesale prices.”

“There’s not any here in Lebanon, because we try to make people aware when they’re buying from us that we don’t want to compete against them. It’s a business relationship, so most of our people are from outside Wilson County.”

The big fireworks finale on sale this year is a 1,000-gram grand finale from Black Cat. A 500-gram show is actually the largest fireworks show allowed to be sold to non-professionals, but the 1,000-gram finale features two 500-gram displays designed to go off at the same time.

“You have to shoot them at the same time to get the full effect, back and forth, in them,” said Martel. “That’s the biggest thing we’ve got this year, and it’s brand new. We just picked Black Cat up again this year. They have some awesome grand finale stuff.”

The 1,000-gram finale can be picked up for July 4 at Surefire Fireworks Wholesale and Retail or at any of the fireworks tents that are supplied by the business across Wilson County.

By Jacob Smith

jsmith@lebanondemocrat.com

Community Calendar and The People’s Agenda

Community Calendar

POLICY: Items for the Community Calendar may be submitted via email at editor@lebanondemocrat.com, in person at The Democrat’s office at 402 N. Cumberland St., by mail at The Lebanon Democrat, 402 N. Cumberland St., Lebanon, TN 37087 or via fax at 615-444-0899. Items must be received by 4 p.m. for the next day’s edition. The calendar is a free listing of nonprofit events, community club and government meetings. The Democrat reserves the right to reject or edit material. Notices run on an as space is available basis and cannot be taken over the phone. Include a name and phone number in case of questions.

June 27

Storytime at the Library

10 a.m.

Mrs. Nancy will read to young children on Wednesday, June 27 at 10 a.m. at the Lebanon-Wilson County Public Library. This program is recommended for children ages 5 and under. The library is located at 108 S. Hatton Ave. in Lebanon. Call 615-444-0632 for more information.

Flower Decorating at the Library

10 a.m.

The Watertown-Wilson County Public Library will welcome a hands-on flower decorating workshop Wednesday, June 27 at 10 a.m. The event is part of the library’s summer reading program. The library is located at 206 Public Square in Watertown. Call 615-237-9700 for more information.

God and Country Rally

7 p.m.

The God and Country Rally will be Wednesday, June 27 at 7 p.m. at the Wilson County Veterans Plaza on East Main Street in Lebanon. It’s sponsored by Music City Baptist Church at 7104 Lebanon Road in Mt. Juliet. There will be patriotic music, a stirring message and a time to honor past and present members of the military. For more information, call 615-491-2073.

June 28

Tennessee Wildlife Resource Agency at the Library

10 a.m.

The Lebanon-Wilson County Public Library will welcome the Tennessee Wildlife Resource Agency on Thursday, June 28 at 10 a.m. only as part of the summer reading program. This program is designed for children of all ages. The library is located at 108 S. Hatton Ave. in Lebanon. Call 615-444-0632 for more information.

Mr. Rich Super Science at the Library

10 a.m.

The Mt. Juliet-Wilson County Public Library will welcome Mr. Rich Super Science on Thursday, June 28 at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. The event is part of the library’s summer reading program and will take place in the children’s area at the library, 2765 N. Mt. Juliet Rd. in Mt. Juliet. Contact amy.mj@wilsoncolibrary.org or jerekay.mj@wilsoncolibrary.org or call the library at 615-758-7051.

Watertown Chamber of Commerce Business After Hours

5:30 p.m.

Vance Law Office will be featured as a business of the month Thursday, June 28 from 5:30-7 p.m. at the office at 224 W. Main St. during the Watertown Chamber of Commerce business after hours. Refreshments will be served.

Gen. Robert H. Hatton Camp No. 723 Sons of Confederate Veterans meeting

7 p.m.

The Gen. Robert H. Hatton Camp No. 723 Sons of Confederate Veterans will meet Thursday, June 28 at 7 p.m. at the Cato Industrial Building at 212 S. Maple St. in Lebanon. Brenda Jackson-Abernathy with Belmont University will present the program on “Adelicia Acklen and the Great Cotton Rescue of 1864.” Jackson-Abernathy is professor of history and department chair at Belmont University. She is a well-known and published author, and much of her research focuses on 19th century American women, particularly in the eras of the Civil War and expansion into the American West.

Tennessee Sixth Congressional District Tea Party meeting

7 p.m.

The Tennessee Sixth Congressional District Tea Party will meet Thursday, June 28 at 7 p.m. in the School House at the James E. Ward Agricultural Center in Lebanon.  Bobbie Patray, state president of the Tennessee Eagle Forum, will be the guest speaker and will speak on present topics of the General Assembly. Patray is a pro-family and conservative values advocate and a political activist for 40 years.  Refreshments will be served. For more information, call chairman Rob Joines at 615-305-5455.

Audience of One presents “Seussical Junior”

7 p.m.

Audience of One productions will present “Seussical Junior” on Thursday, June 28 and Friday, June 29 at 7 p.m. and Saturday, June 30 at 1 p.m. and 7 p.m. at the Capitol Theatre in Lebanon. Tickets are $20 for adults and $13 for children 3-11 years old and seniors 60 and older. To buy tickets or for more information, visit capitoltheatretn.com.

Celebrate Recovery

7 p.m.

Celebrate Recovery, a Christ-centered 12-step recovery support group for overcoming hurts, hang-ups and habits, meets each Thursday from 7-9:30 p.m. at Fairview Church at 1660 Leeville Pike in Lebanon. For more information, call ministry leader Tony Jones at 615-972-6151.

June 29

615 Rocks at the Library

10 a.m.

The Watertown-Wilson County Public Library will welcome rock decorators, 615 Rocks for a rock painting workshop on Friday, June 29 at 10 a.m. The event is part of the library’s summer reading program. The library is located at 206 Public Square in Watertown. Call 615-237-9700 for more information.

Audience of One presents “Seussical Junior”

7 p.m.

Audience of One productions will present “Seussical Junior” on Friday, June 29 at 7 p.m. and Saturday, June 30 at 1 p.m. and 7 p.m. at the Capitol Theatre in Lebanon. Tickets are $20 for adults and $13 for children 3-11 years old and seniors 60 and older. To buy tickets or for more information, visit capitoltheatretn.com.

June 30

Honor Ride for Veterans

8 a.m.

The sixth annual Honor Ride for Veterans will be Saturday, June 30 with registration at 8 a.m. and kickstands up at 10:30 a.m. at Fiddlers Grove at the James E. Ward Agricultural Center at 945 E. Baddour Pkwy. in Lebanon. It will feature entertainment, food vendors, and all motorcycles and riders will be welcome. The cost is $25 per rider and $10 per passenger and will include a T-shirt. For more information, call 615-444-2460.

Play Day Kids Expo

11 a.m.

The Play Day Kids Expo will be Saturday, June 30 from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. at Charlie Daniels Park in Mt. Juliet. It will be a fun day for all ages.

Audience of One presents “Seussical Junior”

1 p.m.

Audience of One productions will present “Seussical Junior” on Saturday, June 30 at 1 p.m. and 7 p.m. at the Capitol Theatre in Lebanon. Tickets are $20 for adults and $13 for children 3-11 years old and seniors 60 and older. To buy tickets or for more information, visit capitoltheatretn.com.

Gladeville Political Rally

2 p.m.

The Gladeville Political Rally will be Saturday, June 30 at 2 p.m. at the Gladeville Community Center. Homemade ice cream and cakes will be served while voters listen to the candidates. For more information, call Mabel Beazley at 615-243-2664 or Debbie Ray 615-604-5736.

The People’s Agenda

POLICY: Items for the Government Calendar may be submitted via email at editor@lebanondemocrat.com, in person at The Democrat’s office at 402 N. Cumberland St., by mail at The Lebanon Democrat, 402 N. Cumberland St., Lebanon, TN 37087 or via fax at 615-444-0899. Items must be received by 4 p.m. for the next day’s edition. The calendar is a free listing of government meetings and government-related events. The Democrat reserves the right to reject or edit material. Notices run on an as space is available basis and cannot be taken over the phone. Include a name and phone number in case of questions.

July 2

Wilson County Budget Committee meeting

5 p.m.

The Wilson County Budget Committee will meet Monday, July 2 at 5 p.m. in conference room 1 at the Wilson County Courthouse.

Lebanon Planning Commission meeting

5 p.m.

The Lebanon Planning Commission will meet Monday, July 2 at 5 p.m. in the Town Meeting Hall at 200 N. Castle Heights Ave.

July 3

Wilson County Budget Committee meeting

5 p.m.

The Wilson County Budget Committee will meet Tuesday, July 3 at 5 p.m. in conference room 1 at the Wilson County Courthouse.

Wilson County Cable TV Committee meeting

5:30 p.m.

The Wilson County Cable TV Committee will meet Tuesday, July 3 at 5:30 p.m. in conference room 1 at the Wilson County Courthouse.

July 5

Joint Economic and Community Development Board Executive Committee meeting

7:45 a.m.

The Joint Economic and Community Development Board Executive Committee will meet Thursday, July 5 at 7:45 a.m. at the JECDB office at 200 Aviation Way, Suite 202, in Lebanon.

– Staff Reports

Divers fish stolen vehicle out of water

Wilson County sheriff’s deputies and Wilson County Emergency Management Agency divers pulled a vehicle out of the water last Wednesday that was previously reported stolen in Nashville.

Wilson County sheriff’s deputies and Wilson County Emergency Management Agency divers recovered a vehicle last Wednesday previously reported stolen in Nashville. (Mark Bellew • All Hands Fire Photos)

According to Wilson County sheriff’s Lt. Scott Moore, the caller reported they were swimming near the boat ramp and saw what appeared to be a car tire, but couldn’t see anything else because of the dark water.

WEMA divers confirmed a vehicle was underwater and, after deputies ran the VIN number, they determined it was previously reported stolen in Nashville.

By Jacob Smith

jsmith@lebanondemocrat.com

Fair to feature new carnival ride provider

Staff Reports

Wilson County Fair officials announced Reithoffer Shows will be the carnival ride provider for the upcoming fair in August. 

Reithoffer is the oldest traveling carnival company and only five-generational family owned and operated show. It has operated since 1896, and the Wilson County Fair will be its first visit in Tennessee. The midway will be larger with an expanded kiddie land area and more rides. 

Submitted to Mt. Juliet News
The Euro Slide will be one of several new rides featured at the upcoming Wilson County Fair.

Reithoffer Shows is regarded as one of the top carnivals to have spectacular rides, fair officials said. There will more than 50 rides, including two roller coasters and the Euro Slide that will arrive from Italy this year and is 65 feet tall with seven lanes.  It is the largest portable slide in the U.S. and will only be featured this year at four fairs in Lebanon; Albuquerque, New Mexico; Perry, Georgia; and Dothan, Alabama.

Reithoffer Shows will feature 23 kiddie rides, 18 major rides and 14 spectacular rides with nine classified as super spectacular rides. There will be more shade in the kiddie land area, and Reithoffer Shows plans to bring 100 new park benches for more seating.

Visit the Wilson County Fair website at wilsoncountyfair.net for more information and discounts that will be offered all nine days of the fair from Aug. 17-25.

Mega tickets will be available for $25 for admission to the fair, and ride armbands will be good any of the nine days of the fair. The tickets will be offered for a limited time and will not be available during the fair.

The Euro Slide is a separate ticketed ride for $5 and may be purchased on the website or during the fair. Armbands won’t allow rides on the slide.

Wilson County Fair to honor dairy farmers with its theme, ‘mAGic Memories’

Staff Reports

The 2018 Wilson County Fair will honor dairy farms and families as it celebrates “Year of Milk” as the agriculture commodity and making more mAGic memories.

A life of early mornings, long days of hard work and braving the elements day in and day out 365 days a year may not sound appealing to everyone, but for Wilson County’s dairy farmers, this is the lifestyle they have happily chosen.

Looking out over the farm, raising children and grandchildren to experience morning and afternoon milking, bottle feeding baby calves, harvesting crops, baling hay – the many chores involved with stewardship of the land and cattle bring families closer together.

“Watching three little boys grow up and have the whole farm experience – playing in the creek, showing calves, seeing the natural life and death experience and growing up to be good people” are the mAGic Memories for Roy Major, patriarch of Major Dairy Farm, where he and wife, Diane, raised sons Josh, Seth and Jared.  Grandchildren Carter and Addison experience the same mAGic. Major Dairy Farm was established in 1979.

“It’s a good way of life,” said Larry Eastes with Eastes Dairy Farm. “A dairy farm is a good place to raise a family, to get to be with them every day and see them grow.”

Eastes’ farm will reach century farm status in 2019 – with 100 years of continuous dairy operation. Established by his grandparents, Ernest and Allie Driver, the farm was then operated by his parents, John D. and Ernestine Eastes, before Larry Estes took the reins. His son, Kirk, helps daily on the farm, while daughter, Lora Eastes Stutts, is a fifth-grade teacher in Watertown. Both live on the farm with their own families, and Larry Estes’ grandchildren are growing up steeped in farm life just as their parents were.

Brothers Jeffrey, Justin and Jason Turner grew up milking cows, and Jeffrey and Justin Turner decided to open their own dairy on the family farm, milking their first Holsteins on Dec. 9, 2015. Their parents, Tommy and Jackie Turner, got out of the dairy business in the early 2000s, but Jeffrey Turner has fond memories of going to the barn with his dad to milk, or when he was too small to help, waiting for his dad to come in from milking so the family could sit down together for the evening meal.  It’s all about family. And even though Jason Turner isn’t a partner in the new dairy, he helps out, too.

Holsteins are the predominant dairy breed in Wilson County, and the Turners have 100-percent Holsteins; the Eastes family have about 80 percent Holstein plus Jersey and a few Brown Swiss; and Major Dairy Farm has 95 percent registered Holstein, plus a few Brown Swiss, Ayrshire and Jerseys – from acquiring additional breeds for the youngsters to show through 4-H.  Eastes milks about 80 cows a day, the Turners about 100 cows, and the Majors average 200-220 cows. That translates to tons of milk in a year, 8 million to 8.5 million pounds of milk annually, combined.

 

While dairy farming is a beloved way of life, it’s one that is more challenging than ever before. Volatile markets and only one buyer for the area leave the hard-working families at the mercy of whatever price they are given. Margins are slim to negative. Giant corporate dairy farms that load out full tankers of milk daily are tough for the family farms to compete against. Prohibitively high land costs make expansion nearly impossible. But the dairy farmers are accustomed to adversity and do their best to survive and thrive.

Roy Major said he hopes to see market corrections bring some stability in the future so his farm can continue to provide the dairy farming opportunity for his grandchildren. The Eastes family already has diversified by building up their herd of beef cattle. Larry Eastes’ dream is to at least keep operating the dairy through the 100-year anniversary in 2019, but without market changes, they may transition completely to beef. As the youngest dairy farm in Wilson County, the Turner Dairy Farm would like to expand and is exploring options to eliminate the market volatility they face.

Through it all, they pull together as strong families rooted to the land and cattle they care so deeply for, making more mAGic memories as the days pass.

Lynn announces re-election bid to state House of Representatives

Staff Reports

State Rep. Susan Lynn recently announced her re-election plans for the House District 57 seat in the August primary. 

“As representative, I have worked hard every day to help our district,” Lynn said. “I am a conservative Republican, so that is how I vote, but party has never mattered to me when it comes to helping the people who live in our district. Responding to your emails, phone calls and needs is more than a duty, it is my mission and one of the greatest privileges of my life. Today, I announce that I am seeking re-election to the state House in order to continue my mission of public service.”

Susan Lynn

Lynn said she is proud to uphold Jeffersonian principles such as limited government, states’ rights, free enterprise and Constitutional freedoms. She touted her endorsements, including Tennessee Right to Life, the National Federation of Independent Business, the Tennessee Professional Firefighters and the Tennessee Realtors Legislative Fund. 

“I remain faithfully pro-Second Amendment, and I am consistently “A” rated,” Lynn said.

“Two years ago, I promised to use the budget surplus to cut taxes and improve our roads, and that is just what we did. The IMPROVE Act cut the food tax, factory taxes, eliminated the Hall income tax and cut property taxes for disabled veterans and low-income seniors; it also provided TDOT funding so that today, we have $108 million in road projects occurring in Wilson County, including State Route 109, State Route 141, Interstate 40 and many others.”

Lynn said she is a public servant rather than a politician.

“I focus on results, not rhetoric,” she said. “I am very proud of my record as a proven conservative representative.” 

Lynn said in total since elected in 2012, she voted for $740 million in tax cuts while dramatically increasing education funding. She said Tennessee has remained the number one state for job growth for six years running. 

“Our economic reforms have grown our economy, and our state government reforms generated a huge budget surplus of unspent tax dollars,” Lynn said. “By focusing on these two areas of reform, we have been able to provide Tennesseans with tax cuts and improve roads and education.” 

Lynn said she is proud of the dollars used to increase education funding by $1.3 billion; fully funding the BEP, teacher pay and insurance, school health and safety and career and technical education. She also said she voted to eliminate Common Core and quickly address the TNReady issues.

“Because of our excellent teachers, the hard work of our students and the additional financial support from the legislature, Wilson County Schools are among the top in the state,” Lynn said. “Today, Tennessee has the fastest-improving test scores and graduation rates in the nation.” 

Additionally, she said the governor and legislature allocated $30 million to school safety during the past session.

Lynn also touted the responsible use of the $2 billion surplus, which restored funds taken from TDOT long ago, replenished the rainy-day fund, kicked off the road projects in the IMPROVE Act and addressed a backlog of badly needed capital maintenance and improvement projects for state properties.

An initiative she spearheaded this session was the Congressional Prayer Caucus’ “National Motto Bill.” With its passage, the national motto – “In God We Trust” – will be displayed in schools across Tennessee. 

Wilson County has not only benefitted from increased road funding, but it has also received $13 million in economic and community development aid; $2.5 million for parks; $900,000 in multimodal access grants; and $390,000 in litter grants. “Infrastructure improvements provided by these funds bring us jobs and a better life,” Lynn said. “As a result, this year and over the last few, 21 new major employers have located in Wilson County, generating a $450 million in total investment.

“I ask for the honor of your vote in order to serve you again in the Tennessee General Assembly. I have truly done my best every day to be the most effective, attentive and responsive legislator, and that will never change.”

Lynn is chairman of the House Consumer and Human Resources Subcommittee, member of the House Finance Ways and Means Committee and the House Ethics Committee. She was elected by her peers to the Fiscal Review Committee and appointed by Gov. Bill Haslam to the state Workforce Development Board and to the board of directors of Launch Tennessee. 

She and her husband, Michael, have been married for 34 years. They live on Green Harbor Road. They are members of First Baptist Church in Mt. Juliet. They have two adult children, Master Sgt. Michael Lynn Jr. and Grace Douchette, and six grandchildren. Lynn has a bachelor’s degree in economics and works as a financial analyst.

For more information about Lynn and her campaign, visit susanlynn.us.

Mt. Juliet planners give OK for new high school

Plans still have to be approved by city commissioners, county before the project gets green light

 

The Mt. Juliet Planning Commission voted to send a positive recommendation to the Mt. Juliet City Commission regarding a proposed new high school on Lebanon Road in Mt. Juliet at its meeting Thursday night.

The commission previously deferred discussion on the development at the request of the developer.

The proposed Green Hill High School – the name listed on the commission’s agenda – on Lebanon Road near where it intersects with North Greenhill Road, takes up about 1.84 acres.

The development was presented to the commission in four parts, the plan of services, the annexation of the property, the land use plan amendment and the site plan.
The first three sections of the proposition received a unanimous recommendation from the commission, but planners were split on the site plan. It ended up with a positive recommendation on a 5-4 vote.

Last year, the Wilson County Commission approved $1.5 million for Wilson County Schools to conduct design services for a potential new high school in Mt. Juliet, which was the center of skepticism from some commissioners.

The design authorization does not signify the county commission’s commitment to spend $110 million for a new high school, which is the estimated cost.

Wilson County Director of Schools Donna Wright and Deputy Director of Schools Mickey Hall explained to commissioners and to Wilson County if a new school was not built, the only high school in Wilson County that would not exceed its maximum occupancy would be Watertown High School.

The proposed Green Hill High School will go before the Mt. Juliet City Commission with a positive recommendation at a future meeting.

According to Wilson County Schools spokesperson Jennifer Johnson, Green Hill High School is currently a placeholder name for the school and is not necessarily the official name of the new high school if it’s ultimately approved.

 

By Jacob Smith

jsmith@lebanondemocrat.com

Mt. Juliet firefighters put out home fire

Staff Reports

Firefighters from the City of Mount Juliet and Wilson County EMA responded to this house fire on Hillview Drive. (Mark Bellew • All Hands Fire Photos)

Mt. Juliet firefighters put out a heavily involved home fire Friday night on Hillview Drive.

According to deputy fire Chief Chris Allen, Squad 103 arrived at 605 Hillview Drive about five minutes after the call was received at 8:05 p.m., and it and other units were able to control the fire within 15 minutes after arrival.

Allen said Squad 103 arrived and found heavy fire at two windows and the roofline at the southeast corner of the home.

A father and two children were home when the fire started and were alerted by smoke detectors. All left the home without injury.

In all, the Fire Department of Mt. Juliet sent two engine companies, two ladder trucks two chief officers and 19 paid and volunteer personnel. Wilson Emergency Management Agency sent one engine company and one medic unit with four personnel and provided fire attack and medical monitoring. Mt. Juliet police provided traffic and crowd control, and Wilson County Rehab 23 volunteers provided aid to the firefighters.

The cause of the fire remained under investigation.

July 4 fireworks plan unveiled

Mt. Juliet police lay out security, traffic plans for annual celebration

Staff Reports

Mt. Juliet’s fireworks celebration for the Fourth of July is planned for 9 p.m. at the Paddocks of Mt. Juliet shopping center.
To make sure the event is safe and enjoyable for everyone, Mt. Juliet police officers and firefighters will be on site.

The fireworks will launch from the field between Academy Sports and Culver’s restaurant and will be visible along all parking lots connected to Mt. Juliet Road between Weston Drive and Providence Parkway. The best viewing area will be in the Paddocks of Mt. Juliet shopping center and the surrounding area.

Mt. Juliet’s public safety teams expect large attendance and increased traffic. Safety is always a top priority, and many police officers will be present during the event for patrols and traffic control, according to Mt. Juliet police Capt. Tyler Chandler.

With any large event, attendees should always be vigilant for suspicious activity. If anything suspicious is spotted, attendees are encouraged to say something and call police. To contact the police department’s non-emergency line, attendees can simply dial 311. In addition, the Fire Department of Mt. Juliet will have extra firefighters on hand near the firework launch site.

According to Chandler, the fireworks show should end around 9:35 p.m., and a large amount of traffic will begin to exit out of parking lots along Mt. Juliet Road near the Interstate 40 intersection. A traffic plan was established, and advanced traffic signals will adapt to the increased traffic.

Pleasant Grove Road will be closed at Old Pleasant Grove Road to westbound traffic only. Residents and visitors will be allowed access so they can get to neighborhoods along Pleasant Grove Road. Traffic will not be allowed to use Central Pike from Pleasant Grove Road.

“Please remember during this event, our roadways will see a major increase in traffic, so delays should be expected,” said Chandler. “Personal fireworks, alcoholic beverages, barbecue grills and parking on roadway medians are prohibited.”

County OKs several budget amendments

Commissioners transfer money to other funds to cover repairs, other items

The Wilson County Commission approved several budget amendments at its monthly meeting last Monday night.

County commissioner and Wilson County Budget Committee chair Mike Justice brought the nine proposed budget amendments to the commission after the budget committee recommended approval for each of them. Each was passed unanimously.

• The first budget amendment was a resolution to amend the 2017-2018 fiscal year budget for the Ag Center. The request was to transfer $34,000 from the fund balance to the other equipment section of the budget.

• The second budget request was to transfer $5,000 from the fund balance to the other contracted services portion of the budget.

•  The third request was a transfer of $9,000 from the general fund to county buildings to buy heating and air conditioning equipment.

• The fourth request was a request to transfer $10,413 from the clerk and master data fee reserve into the clerk and master fund for office equipment.

• The fifth request was to make line item transfers into the general debt service fund. The total money transferred for debt was $364,991.19.

• The sixth request was to appropriate $65,000 of funds meant for recreation to appropriate Wilson County organizations. The commission voted to give funds to the Wilson County Civic League, Tuckers Crossroads Recreation and Community Club, Mt. Juliet Youth Sports, Cumberland University baseball, Greenvale Community Center, Lebanon Youth Baseball, Norene Community Center, Leeville FCE Community Club, Lebanon Lions Babe Ruth League, Mt. Juliet League, Inc., Statesville FCE Community Club, Gladeville Community Center, West Wilson Basketball Association, Statesville Grange, Wilson County Special Olympics, Lebanon Girls Softball Association and County Buildings and Maintenance.

• The general purpose school fund budget and central cafeteria fund budget amendments for the upcoming fiscal year were approved.

• The commission adopted a resolution that established the 2017-2018 property tax rates will remain the rates for the county until a new 2018-2019 appropriation resolution is adopted.

County Commissioner Sara Patton read a proclamation that honored a group of Watertown High School students who qualified for a national Future Business Leaders of America competition.

Hannah Josey, Amanda Stanley, Kent Jones, Landry Williams, Sydney Murrell, Lenora Upchurch, Kassidy Parisher and Neel Reeves all placed first in the state competition in their respective categories to qualify for the national competition.

Ella Williams and Nathan Holcomb are the FBLA sponsors at Watertown High School, and Williams’ husband, Jay, also agreed to help chaperone the students when they go on the trip to nationals. 

By Jacob Smith

jsmith@lebanondemocrat.com

Mt. Juliet librarian honored at Tennessee Tech’s teacher appreciation awards

Submitted to The Democrat
Tennessee Tech’s College of Education associate dean Julie Baker presents Mt. Juliet High School librarian Brooke Holloway (left) with a high school educator award.

COOKEVILLE – Tennessee Tech University’s College of Education recently held receptions to recognize outstanding Tennessee educators working in partnership with the college and its candidates in practicum and residency programs.

The events also highlighted future educators at the graduate and undergraduate level.

Wilson County’s Brooke Holloway, librarian at Mt. Juliet High School, was honored as the librarian award winner.

“Our students have access to and benefit from the experiences and examples set by the dedicated educators working across Tennessee,” said Lisa Zagumny, College of Education dean. “Only through such partnerships can the college prepare future educators and impact the state’s P-12 students.”

Nominations for current educators were accepted from College of Education students, faculty and staff.

Guest speaker for the event was Lillian Hartgrove, chair of the state Board of Education and vice president of workforce development and education for the Cookeville-Putnam County Chamber of Commerce.

The awards reception and teacher appreciation week were supported by the college’s appreciation partners, regional businesses that offered door prizes and discounts for educators.

For more information, visit tntech.edu/education.

Staff Reports

Community Calendar and The People’s Agenda

Community Calendar

POLICY: Items for the Community Calendar may be submitted via email at editor@lebanondemocrat.com, in person at The Democrat’s office at 402 N. Cumberland St., by mail at The Lebanon Democrat, 402 N. Cumberland St., Lebanon, TN 37087 or via fax at 615-444-0899. Items must be received by 4 p.m. for the next day’s edition. The calendar is a free listing of nonprofit events, community club and government meetings. The Democrat reserves the right to reject or edit material. Notices run on an as space is available basis and cannot be taken over the phone. Include a name and phone number in case of questions.

June 20

Hiring Event

9 a.m.

A hiring event will be Wednesday, June 20 from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. at the American Job Center at 415 Tennessee Blvd. in Lebanon. Register online at jobs4tn.gov, bring a resume and two forms of identification. For more information, contact katrina.moss@tn.gov or call 615-494-4278.

Kidz Kamp at Fiddlers Grove

10 a.m.

Fiddlers Grove will offer its fourth-annual Kidz Kamp for children Wednesday, June 20 and Thursday, June 21 from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. at the James E. Ward Agricultural Center in Lebanon. The cost is $35 per child, and lunch and snacks will be served both days. Children must be registered before a class to ensure the instructor has enough supplies to teach the class. Class sizes are limited so that each child may receive undivided attention. On the first day, campers will learn about Wilson County and Tennessee history, stories about famous people from Tennessee and the hardships forefathers endured. There will be fun and games, competition and awards for achievements. On the second day, campers will choose two of the favorite crafts they want to learn how to do and will work on each one during the day. At the end of the second day, they will be able to show off their handiwork. Parents may call 615-547-6111 to register a child by phone. For more information, follow Fiddlers Grove on Facebook.

Post Office Tour at the Library

10 a.m.

The Watertown-Wilson County Public Library will welcome Pat Ward with the post office Wednesday, June 20 at 10 a.m. The event is part of the library’s summer reading program. The library is located at 206 Public Square in Watertown. Call 615-237-9700 for more information.

Mt. Juliet Chamber Connection Luncheon

11:15 a.m.

The Mt. Juliet Chamber of Commerce will hold its chamber connection luncheon Wednesday, June 20 from 11:15 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. at Rutland Place. The guest speaker will be Pete Griffin, president of Musicians on Call, which brings live and recorded music to the bedsides of patients in health care facilities. Registration is required at mjchamber.com.

Neon and Neon Remix Mobile Cafes Celebration

Noon

A celebration of the Lebanon Special School District’s Neon and Neon Remix mobile cafes and classrooms and STEM educator library donation from Amazon Fulfillment Center will be Wednesday, June 20 from noon until 2:30 p.m. at Don Fox Community Park in Lebanon. The event will feature free food and fun for the family.

June 21

Mt. Juliet Chamber Business Boost

7:45 a.m.

The Mt. Juliet Chamber of Commerce will present its Business Boost on Thursday, June 21 from 7:45-10 a.m. at the chamber office. The guest speaker will be Lee Warren from Belmont University, who will discuss “negotiations in the workplace. Two continuing education units will be available. Online registration is required at mjchamber.com. The event will be free to members and $25 for non-members. Seating will be limited.

Musical Entertainer Jacob Johnson at the Library

10 a.m.

The Lebanon-Wilson County Public Library will welcome Jacob Johnson and his musical act on Thursday, June 21 at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. as part of the summer reading program. This program is designed for children of all ages. The library is located at 108 S. Hatton Ave. in Lebanon. Call 615-444-0632 for more information.

Magician Bruce Amato at the Library

10 a.m.

The Mt. Juliet-Wilson County Public Library will welcome magician Bruce Amato on Thursday, June 21 at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. The event is part of the library’s summer reading program and will take place in the children’s area at the library, 2765 N. Mt. Juliet Rd. in Mt. Juliet. Contact amy.mj@wilsoncolibrary.org or jerekay.mj@wilsoncolibrary.org or call the library at 615-758-7051.

Kidz Kamp at Fiddlers Grove

10 a.m.

Fiddlers Grove will offer its fourth-annual Kidz Kamp for children Thursday, June 21 from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. at the James E. Ward Agricultural Center in Lebanon. The cost is $35 per child, and lunch and snacks will be served both days. Children must be registered before a class to ensure the instructor has enough supplies to teach the class. Class sizes are limited so that each child may receive undivided attention. On the first day, campers will learn about Wilson County and Tennessee history, stories about famous people from Tennessee and the hardships forefathers endured. There will be fun and games, competition and awards for achievements. On the second day, campers will choose two of the favorite crafts they want to learn how to do and will work on each one during the day. At the end of the second day, they will be able to show off their handiwork. Parents may call 615-547-6111 to register a child by phone. For more information, follow Fiddlers Grove on Facebook.

Free Legal Help

4 p.m.

Attorney’s from the Legal Aid Society of Middle Tennessee and the Cumberlands will offer free legal help Friday, June 22 from 4-6 p.m. at the Lebanon-Wilson County Chamber of Commerce office at 149 Public Square in Lebanon. For more information, call 615-244-6610.

Women in the Lead Paint Party

6 p.m.

A Women in the Lead paint party will be Thursday, June 21 from 6-8 p.m. at Imagine That Art Studio at 404 N. Castle Heights Ave. in Lebanon. Participants may choose to pain a serving bowl or canvas, and adult beverages, including wine, will be served. The cost is $35 per person. RSVP to tonya@lebanonwilsonchamber.com.

Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 5015 meeting

6 p.m.

The Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 5015 in Lebanon will meet Thursday, June 21 at 6 p.m. and on the third Thursday of each month in the Veterans Building at the James E. Ward Agricultural Center. Any veteran who has been awarded a campaign medal or combat medal for any hostility is eligible for membership, verified by the veterans’ DD 214 Form. Presently, Post 5015 is having success in rebuilding its post and becoming active in district and local events. It is not a Lebanon post, but a countywide post. To learn more, contact Post Commander John Marshall at jtmarshall2@icloud.com; Senior Vice Commander Ken Kackley at hkenkjr@aol.com or Junior Vice Commander Harold W. Weist at grnmarine@tds.net.

Celebrate Recovery

7 p.m.

Celebrate Recovery, a Christ-centered 12-step recovery support group for overcoming hurts, hang-ups and habits, meets each Thursday from 7-9:30 p.m. at Fairview Church at 1660 Leeville Pike in Lebanon. For more information, call ministry leader Tony Jones at 615-972-6151.

Fiddlers Grove Model Train Club

7 p.m.

The Fiddlers Grove Model Train Club will meet Thursday, June 21 and each third Thursday of the month at 7 p.m. in the Fiddlers Grove Train Museum at the James E. Ward Agricultural Center in Lebanon. This is an all-scale model railroad club. During the meeting, everyone will share their knowledge and introduce the hobby to folks new to the interest. The Train Museum has an extensive O-gauge layout and a small HO-scale layout with plans to expand the HO track. The club is open to anyone interested in model train railroads. For more information, contact Ron Selliers at trainslayer53@gmail.com.

June 22

Wilson Bank & Trust Tour at the Library

10 a.m.

The Watertown-Wilson County Public Library will welcome Wilson Bank & Trust Friday, June 22 at 10 a.m. The event is part of the library’s summer reading program. The library is located at 206 Public Square in Watertown. Call 615-237-9700 for more information.

Free Clothes Giveaway

2 p.m.

A free clothing giveaway will be Friday, June 22 from 2-6 p.m. and Saturday, June 23 from 7 a.m. until noon at Market Street Church of Christ at 502 E. Market St. in Lebanon. For more information, call Felecia Wharton at 615-444-8637.

The People’s Agenda

POLICY: Items for the Government Calendar may be submitted via email at editor@lebanondemocrat.com, in person at The Democrat’s office at 402 N. Cumberland St., by mail at The Lebanon Democrat, 402 N. Cumberland St., Lebanon, TN 37087 or via fax at 615-444-0899. Items must be received by 4 p.m. for the next day’s edition. The calendar is a free listing of government meetings and government-related events. The Democrat reserves the right to reject or edit material. Notices run on an as space is available basis and cannot be taken over the phone. Include a name and phone number in case of questions.

June 20

Lebanon Comprehensive Plan Task Force Committee meeting

9 a.m.

The Lebanon Comprehensive Plan Task Force Committee will meet Wednesday, June 20 at 9 a.m. in the Town Meeting Hall at 200 N. Castle Heights Ave.

Lebanon Urban Residential Design Committee meeting

3 p.m.

The Lebanon Urban Residential Design Committee will meet Wednesday, June 20 at 3 p.m. in the Town Meeting Hall at 200 N. Castle Heights Ave.

Lebanon Housing Authority Board of Commissioners meeting

4 p.m.

The Lebanon Housing Authority Board of Commissioners will meet Thursday, June 20 at 4 p.m. at the Upton Heights administrative office.

June 25

Lebanon Special School District Board of Education meeting

8 a.m.

The Lebanon Special School District Board of Education will meet Monday, June 25 at 8 a.m. at the central office at 397 N. Castle Heights Ave.

Mt. Juliet City Commission meeting

6:30 p.m.

The Mt. Juliet City Commission will meet Monday, June 25 at 6:30 p.m. at City Hall at 2425 N. Mt. Juliet Road. A public hearing will be at 6:15 p.m.

June 26

Lebanon Planning Commission meeting

5 p.m.

The Lebanon Planning Commission will meet Tuesday, June 26 at 5 p.m. in the Town Meeting Hall at 200 N. Castle Heights Ave.

– Staff Reports

Roadwork heats up during summer

Several ongoing Tennessee Department of Transportation road projects continue throughout Wilson County that could cause delays for motorists.

Temporary lane closures will continue daily from 6 a.m. until 6 p.m. on Trousdale Ferry Pike from Sugar Flat Road to the Smith County line to allow for paving work. One lane will remain open.

Temporary lane closures will continue daily from 6 a.m. until 6 p.m. on Hartsville Pike from south of Spring Creek to north of Lovers Lane to allow for widening work. One lane will remain open.

Periodic flagging operations to direct traffic along State Route 109 to allow clearing, truck crossings and utility work while the road is widened will continue daily from 9:30 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. from north of U.S. 70 to south of the Cumberland River Bridge.

Rolling roadblocks on Interstate 40 eastbound between mile markers 231-235 will be found daily from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m., excluding weekends, for blasting work.

Rolling roadblocks on State Route 109 between Callis Road and I-40 will be found daily from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. for rock blasting and excavation. Additionally, traffic will be reduced to one lane in both directions at the intersection of State Rout 109 and Callis Road for turn lane construction. Flaggers will be used.

Through Saturday from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m., there will be a lane and shoulder closure on Lebanon Road southbound to begin work on a turn lane for the River Oaks subdivision. One lane will remain open, and traffic control will be used.

Motorists are encouraged to use caution and obey reduced speed limits in all TDOT work zones, regardless of lane closure activity.  The contractors provided roadwork information the Department of Transportation. Most work will be weather dependent and subject to change due to inclement weather. 

Staff Reports

Bush announces campaign for re-election as District 8 commissioner

Frank Bush

Frank Bush announced his candidacy for a fourth term as Wilson County commissioner for District 8.

The district broadly covers the territory from Old Hickory Lake on the north; Saundersville Ferry Road, Vanderbilt Road and North Green Hill Road on the east; Springmont Boulevard, Brookside Drive and Lakeshore Drive on the west; and Willoughby Station Boulevard on the south.

Bush has served the area since September 2006 when he ran to improve emergency services in the county. He maintains he has been the strongest conservative voice on the commission for fiscal responsibility and efficient, transparent ethical operations.

“Our largest expenditure in the county is for education, and I have been active in ensuring that there are sufficient funds to provide quality teaching,” Bush said. “In 2008 when the school district faced a $1 million shortfall in its budget, I discovered $1.3 million of excess funds in the sanitation fund, recommending that we transfer it to the education budget. This resulted in saving the jobs of teachers and coaches. 

“When teachers were unfairly terminated without any explanation my wife, Carol, made a presentation to the school board recommending significant change in these policies. Wasteful spending by the school district on school construction is a persistent issue. Accordingly, I have always recommended less money on brick and mortar and more funds for teacher salaries.

“I have always fought to fund essential services like fire and emergency response and will continue to make sure that our senior citizens are served rapidly and efficiently by ambulance and rescue services. I have supported improved public services, resulting in additional fire stations and school resource officers in every school to improve the safety of our students. Our ISO ratings have improved and reduced the property insurance premiums for every citizen.

“I believe in integrity and transparency in government, which contributed to my appointment as the first chairman of the Wilson County Ethics Committee and the first chair of the Wilson County Audit Committee. I have fought against the conflicts of interest that erode trust in government; this persistence leading to the state government response of tighter restrictions on conflicts. 

“I have always been independent throughout my 10-year tenure as commissioner.  This permits objectivity in decisions affecting our community. My opponent is an employee of the county.

“I advocate balanced budgets and will fight to improve the budgeting and financial planning functions of the county. Against my counsel and corresponding vote, the commission voted to increase the property tax on every home two years ago. This was unnecessary and put unused funds into the county bank account at the expense of our senior citizens who are on a fixed income.

“In the final analysis, I believe elected officials must be objective and without conflicts of interest, must be fiscally conservative and spend citizens’ money more carefully than even their own and be fair to all their constituents.

“I understand business and cost control, the benefit of 10 years as a banker and 20 years as a chief financial officer for multiple international software companies. As a successful leader, I created my own travel service company and built it for 10 years, ultimately selling it to a publicly traded company.”

Bush has earned multiple awards and licenses during his public and private career, including the 2014 Freedom Award for conservative local leadership. As a financial professional, he earned the Series 7 and Series 66 securities licenses and has advised many families on financial planning.

Bush attended Yale University, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology and Stanford Graduate School of Business, where he earned a master’s degree in business administration in finance. As a young man, he was active in Boy Scouts and earned the highest honor of Eagle Scout.

“Carol and I have lived in District 8 for 18 years. I believe in the high calling of public service and voting. I look forward to continue serving the citizens of Wilson County for the next four years,” Bush said.

Bush is challenged by Kevin Costley for the District 8 commissioner’s seat in the Aug. 2 Wilson County General Election. Early voting will be July 13-28.

Staff Reports

Campaign fund complaint against Beavers dismissed

Mayoral candidate cleared of wrongdoing after questions arose about money transfers

Mae Beavers

The Tennessee Bureau of Ethics and Campaign Finance dismissed a complaint filed in April regarding Wilson County mayoral candidate Mae Beavers’ campaign fund transfers.

The complaint questioned Beavers’ financial disclosures, which showed a movement of funds between several accounts associated with the former gubernatorial and current Wilson County mayoral candidate.

Drew Rawlins, Tennessee Bureau of Ethics and Campaign Finance executive director, said the board reviewed the movement of funds and determined June 13 “the contributions that were made to Mrs. Beavers’ mayoral campaign that were not allowable had been returned to the PACs.”

“There was a $1,000 discrepancy that was found after we began to review, but it was since returned, as well,” Rawlins said.

Beavers, R-Mt. Juliet, withdrew from this year’s gubernatorial race earlier this year after she resigned from the state Senate in August to focus on her campaign for governor. She announced her intentions to run for the Wilson County mayor’s seat in March and will face incumbent Wilson County Mayor Randall Hutto in the Aug. 2 election.

Financial disclosures filed with the state showed she donated $122,000 from her gubernatorial campaign to the Patriot PAC on March 30. The donation came one day after the creation of the PAC, which is chaired by Beavers’ husband, Jerry, and John Brown.

Beavers’ donation was also the only donation the PAC received.

Two of the three expenditures reported by the Patriot PAC were related to Beavers, including a $7,800 donation to “Mae Beavers for Mayor.”

Rawlins said the campaign fund transfers did take place, but the money was returned to the original PACs within a day or two before the complaint was received.   

“I don’t want to speak for the board, but I believe the board made that determination based on the fact that an error had been made,” Rawlins said. “We send letters to candidates when we discover an error has been made all the time to get it corrected. I think the board’s vote to dismiss it was based on the fact it had been corrected.”

According to the Tennessee Registry of Election Finance rules, there are several factors the office takes into consideration when determining if a conduit was used to circumvent campaign contribution laws, including the number of sources and donors, the length of time the PAC was active, the timing of the relationship between contributions received, the expenditures made and more.

State law allows state candidates to transfer any excess campaign funds to any future state or local campaign that the candidate establishes, which means Beavers could use campaign funds received during her gubernatorial campaign after the August primary and Wilson County General Election. She would not be allowed to use the funds prior.

By Jared Felkins

jfelkins@lebanondemocrat.com

City OKs Station North plans

Commissioners also honor Rehab 23 for keeping responders safe

The Mt. Juliet City Commission voted on second reading to approve the Station North preliminary master development plan by a vote of 3-2 at its June 11 meeting.

The proposed plan includes 192 apartment units, 28 townhomes, a 3,000-square-foot two-story commercial building and three parking areas. The site is on Mt. Juliet Road between the railroad tracks and Industrial Drive.

District 4 Commissioner Brian Abston continued to argue against the plan. In the first meeting, he had an issue with the development referred to as “transit oriented.”

“The first thing I want to do is get rid of the myth about this being a transit-oriented development,” said Abston. “This thing is by the railroad tracks, but as far as being a transit-oriented facility, it’s just not there.”

District 3 Commissioner Art Giles joined Abston in the argument against the development.

“Obviously, I’m still against this project,” said Giles. “Anyone that I’ve talked to, I was at one HOA meeting. There were about five in the pact who were open to it. Everyone else was openly opposed to this.”

District 1 Commissioner Ray Justice argued for the development as positive growth for the city.

“I spent the biggest portion of my time on this city commission fighting growth,” said Justice. “I’d stand up and scream to high heavens trying to stop it from coming to my district. Somewhere along the way, I finally figured out that not all growth is bad growth, and we’re never going to stop people from coming to our city.”

The ordinance passed with Giles and Abston voting against it.

Also at Monday’s meeting, City Manager Kenny Martin honored the members of Rehab 23 and issued a proclamation that declared June 11, 2018 as “Rehab 23 Day.”

“Every event that we go to, be it police, be it fire, after hours, weekends, whatever, these folks are the ones who are providing important resources like water, food, sometimes loving words,” said Martin. “It’s one thing to care when you’re getting paid for something, but when you show up because you care, that’s tremendous, and I don’t think you can say thank you enough.”

Rehab 23 is a volunteer organization that provides first responders with relief from hot or cold temperatures, rest and recover, cooling or warming, re-hydration, calorie and electrolyte replacement, as well as medical monitoring.

Rehab 23 provides a vehicle for medical monitoring, which allows ambulances on-site to remain uncontaminated.

“When a firefighter or a first responder steps into that ambulance, it’s contaminated,” said Rehab vice president 23 Linn Yeager. “When it’s contaminated, you have to go back and go through the process to clean it, and that is not something that is quick. This allows them to use their ambulances and still get help when they need it.”

Rehab 23 is a volunteer organization, and Yeager said it’s always looking for more volunteers to respond to emergency scenes, particularly in the central and eastern portions of the county. The organization uses attorney Jennifer Porth and the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation to vet potential volunteers.

For more information about Rehab 23, visit rehab23.org.

The commission also discussed several other issues at its meeting, including:

• an ordinance to annex Baird Farm Roadway into Mt. Juliet. The ordinance passed 3-2.

• an ordinance to limit the temporary commercial real estate sign within the city to a 90-day period, with an allowance for an additional 90-day period to be approved at the discretion of the zoning administrator. It passed unanimously.

• an ordinance to create an annual fire inspection fee program and fee schedule for Mt. Juliet. Mt. Juliet fire Chief Jamie Luffman proposed some of his crews do inspections on businesses in the county to make sure they are up to fire codes. The ordinance was deferred, pending further research on costs.

• an ordinance to end the city’s tuition reimbursement program for city government employees. It passed 4-1 with Justice voting against it.

• an ordinance to adopt the city budget, property tax rate and sewer rates. It passed unanimously.

• a resolution to annex a portion of South Rutland Road and the associated right-of-way that lies near Baird Farms into the city. The resolution passed unanimously.

• a resolution to appoint Dana Swinea as finance director after John Rossmaier retires. It passed unanimously.

• a resolution to declare a city hall vehicle, a 2012 Ford Fiesta, which has experienced maintenance issues, as surplus and sell the vehicle. It passed unanimously.

The Mt. Juliet City Commission will meet June 25 at 6:30 p.m. at City Hall.

By Jacob Smith

jsmith@lebanondemocrat.com

Teen out of hospital after deadly bites

Mt. Juliet High School football player bit by tick, brown-recluse spider

 

Mason Greenwood

A Mt. Juliet teen is out of the hospital and back on the football field after a rare run-in with some deadly pests sidelined him earlier this week. 

Mason Greenwood, 17, a senior on the Mt. Juliet High School football team, had to go to Monroe Caroll Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt after he was bitten by a tick and a brown-recluse spider.

“The brown recluse can actually have a painless bite, so I don’t know when that happened,” said Greenwood. “The tick bite could have happened up to 21 days ago, so, really bad timing with both of them happening at the same time.”

Greenwood said he had a headache one day after practice, followed by a fever and chills. He went to a doctor after the symptoms persisted for a few days, and the doctor found a brown recluse bite.

“I got antibiotics for the brown-recluse bite, and I got worse and ended up in the ER,” said Greenwood.

The reason the antibiotics didn’t work is because the symptoms weren’t caused by the brown-recluse bite, but a tick bite Greenwood didn’t even know he’d gotten.

While Greenwood was in the hospital, the Mt. Juliet High School football team sent out a tweet asking for prayers for their teammate.

“No matter what color uniform you wear, or what kind of field you play on, we need your prayers for one of ours,” said the tweet. “Mason Greenwood, an upcoming senior for us, is at Vandy Children’s Hospital, and he’s struggling right now. It’s a combo of a brown recluse bite and tick-borne illness. Please pray for him and family.”

The tweet received more than 1,000 likes, 371 retweets and 62 replies wishing Greenwood prayers for a speedy recovery. Greenwood left the hospital Wednesday, and even showed up to football practice Thursday.

“He showed up in a very limited role, but the fact that he was on campus was great,” said Mt. Juliet football coach Trey Perry. “It just reminds you, not only of the connection that sports brings you to others, but also the power of prayer.”

Greenwood said the road to recovery has just begun, and it’s already been a difficult one. When he arrived at the hospital, doctors found his kidneys weren’t functioning correctly, and he had pretty severe inflammation in his heart.

“I was dangerously close to a heart attack at one point,” said Greenwood. “So, that was pretty scary.”

On June 22, Greenwood will go back in for an MRI, where he will start to get a feel for how long the recovery will take.

“If there’s scarring on my heart, this sounds crazy but, I’m going to be out for six months,” said Greenwood. “That’s worst case scenario, though. It could be two months, it could be three months, one month; I don’t know yet.”

Greenwood, of course, hopes the recovery is as short as possible.

“My hope is a month at the longest,” said Greenwood. “I really want to get back to playing. I can’t imagine not playing football.”

By Jacob Smith

jsmith@lebanondemocrat.com