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Commission Gives Habitat for Humanity a Break
by Ashley Murphy

Monday, December 20, 2010

Only two items were on the Bradley County Commission's agenda for today and one of those was taken off for further consideration. A resolution supporting development of a comprehensive plan and the applications for grant funding was deferred to the finance committee to gather more information and come back with a recommendation.

A resolution approving property tax exemptions for Bradley County Habitat for Humanity was passed unanimously. This resolution will allow for newly obtained property by the Habitat for Humanity to be used for residential home purposes to go 18 months without property tax payments. During the 18 months, a residential home will be built on the lot. Once the timeframe is up and the home is turned over to its new residents, the lot will be placed back onto the tax roll.

Mayor D. Gary Davis announced that all paperwork for has been signed and the project is underway. will be building a distribution center off of Lauderdale Memorial Highway down from the Charleston exit ramps from I-75.

Commissioner Howard Thompson made a clarification. During the joint city/county meeting that was held last Wednesday to discuss the fire protection issue, Thompson made a comment about the city firefighters not wanting volunteers on trucks in a case where the city and county could both be answering calls to the fringe area. Several city council members questioned Thompson and denied that any such comment had ever been made by a council member or city employee.

Thompson, today, passed out an e-mail he had received which confirmed his comment from last week. Cleveland City Fire Chief Chuck Atchley had sent a list of "modifications" to City Attorney John Kimball for consideration and number 4 on the list reads: "All responding firefighting personnel on the apparatus shall be full-time paid personnel..."

That statement alone, according to Thompson, boots out the volunteer firefighters, because the city doesn't want them there. Thompson passed out a copy of the e-mail to each commissioner and said he would also be sure to get a copy of it sent to the City Council, as well.

The next County Commission meeting will be held on Monday, December 27th at 7 p.m. in the Courthouse. The Courthouse will be closed that day, but it has been arranged to hold the regular scheduled meeting.