Hawkins rebuffs Tengasco request

Jeff Bobo • Mar 27, 2007 at 1:48 AM

ROGERSVILLE - The Hawkins County Commission won't consider approval for Tengasco Pipeline Inc. to bore under county roads for a new gas line until the company pays due taxes reported at more than $67,000.

Tengasco already has a natural gas pipeline running through Hawkins County from the Hancock County line along Route 66-N south to Highway 11-W, and then east along 11-W into Kingsport.

The Knoxville-based company is now requesting permission to bore under three county roads to allow extension of a pipeline from 11-W to methane extraction wells at the BFI landfill on Carters Valley Road.

According to a letter sent from Tengasco Vice President Bob Carter to Hawkins County Highway Superintendent Lowell Bean, the pipeline extension would require bores beneath Carters Valley Road near the landfill, at the intersection of Fudges Chapel Road and Bradley Creek Road, and again under Fudges Chapel Road near the Country Lane intersection.

Tengasco has agreed to assume responsibility for any potential damage to the roads.

Approval of the county road bores was presented to the Hawkins County Commission Monday as an "out-of-order resolution" because it had not been submitted to the county mayor's office before the deadline for the March regular monthly meeting.

That meant the commission would be required to vote unanimously to suspend its own rule for consideration of late agenda items before considering the request. The voice vote to suspend the rule was met with substantial opposition, however.

During discussion of suspending the rules, it was noted that Trustee Patricia Courtney was unable to attend the meeting, but Commissioner Hanes Cooper told the commission he'd checked with Courtney's office Monday and learned that the past due balance was $67,801.

Initially Commissioner Virgil Mallett made a motion not to consider the Tengasco resolution until the taxes are paid. But when the motion to suspend the rules failed, that prevented Mallett's motion from being made and ended any possibility of considering the request.

In other business Monday the County Commission:

•Approved a resolution allowing $499,000 of the bond funding acquired for construction of the new Hawkins County Jail and Justice Center to be used for the purchase of new school buses. Failure to use the funds for the delayed jail project by Nov. 8 would cause the county to owe the Internal Revenue Service any profit it made from interest gained by those funds.

•Approved a resolution congratulating the Clinch High School basketball team for achieving its best winning record ever of 17-11 and reaching its first ever regional tournament. Team members Adam Bledsoe, Toby Norris, Matthew Lamb, Nick Short, Derrick Seal, Dustin Murrell, Cody Lamb, Jordon Lamb, Ethan Murrell and Chris Lyons were in attendance to witness approval of the resolution.

•Approved a resolution congratulating the Science Bowl teams from Cherokee High School and Volunteer High School for their success last month in the first Northeast Tennessee Science Bowl held in Kingsport and the Tennessee Science Bowl held in Blount County. A VHS team finished first in Kingsport and fourth in Blount County, while a CHS team finished second at Kingsport and 20th at Blount County.

•Approved an out-or-order resolution to change the name of Amyx Road off of Clinch Valley Road to June Lane. Only Commission Fred Montgomery voted against the change. Montgomery said he feels it will set a bad precedent to allow road changes, and the commission will now be asked to change road names every month.

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