Monteagle Council Approves Map, Zoning Ordinance

by Leslie Lytle, Messenger Staff Writer

At the Jan. 18 special called meeting, the Monteagle City Council approved on first reading adopting an official zoning map and adopting a new set of zoning ordinances to provide for planning. The council also approved on second reading an ordinance changing the number of planning commission members. At a workshop prior to the meeting, the council took up convenience center issues, new hires, and replacing a council member who resigned.

Mayor Marilyn Campbell Rodman explained the 2016 zoning map would be used as the reference point since “that’s when MTAS did the compilation on the ordinance book and made that the official timeline for the town.” The ordinance calling for adoption of the 2016 map excludes a parcel whose zoning is being challenged by RBT Enterprises, with the zoning to be decided by the courts. Rodman said the council had received a verbal decision on the disputed parcel. The council will meet with the city attorney to discuss the decision.

Alderman Nate Wilson said the council had identified another parcel rezoned since 2016 which did not correspond with the new map.

“The landowners have been notified,” Rodman said. “We’ll deal with that on the 25th.” On Jan. 25, the council will meet prior to the regular meeting to approve on second reading the new map and ordinances.

The 2021 Zoning Ordinances differ only slight from the ordinances approved in 2018 and determined to be of questionable validity due to inadequate meeting notification. [See Messenger, Jan. 25, 2021]. Changes include notification practices for zoning changes and husbandry on agricultural property, Rodman said.

Ordinance 03-21 approved on second reading provides for increasing the number of planning commission members to seven, and calls for staggered terms.

In the workshop, the council discussed Police Chief Jack Hill’s recommendation to hire a part-time officer to replace an officer called to service in Washington, D.C. for an undetermined time period. The council also discussed hiring Heather Smartt to replace 911 supervisor Wanda McDaniel who will retire Jan. 29 after 22 years of service. Smartt, a current 911 department employee, holds the necessary certification and was the only applicant for the position.

Rodman announced alderwoman Jessica Blalock resigned. Blalock cited “changes in her life and family things” according to Rodman. Appointing a replacement to serve until the next election falls to the council. Rodman proposed appointing Alvin Powell who previously served six and a half years as an alderman.

Alderwoman Dorraine Parmley brought to the council’s attention a complaint by a resident stopped from dumping insulation and pipe at the convenience center. Rodman said commercial dumping was never allowed. Many businesses had their own dumpsters. Rodman pointed out the city rented a dumpster for the Community Center’s use. Wilson said the Marion County landfill allowed commercial dumping for a small fee, with Grundy County businesses receiving the same rate as Marion County businesses.

Turning to another convenience center issue, Rodman said the cardboard compactor owner had removed the compactor after being asked to provide a contract and insurance documentation. Franklin County will provide a container for recyclable cardboard.

Utility manager John Condra brought to the council’s attention that the Sprint antennae service wires were obstructing the ladder on a water tower. Rodman said Sprint contracted for use of the tower and would be required to address the problem. Condra also called attention to deterioration of the wet well.

The council will meet to discuss baseball sign ups.