Engineers To Look
At Timing Patterns
And Any Needed
BY SARAH GREGORY
The Greeneville Board of Mayor and Aldermen gave the proverbial green light to a traffic study for Main Street during the board's regular meeting Tuesday afternoon.
In a separate action, the board approved an ammunition purchase for the Greeneville Police Department.
The board voted unanimously to allow Public Works Director Brad Peters to go ahead with a proposal from Cannon & Cannon, Inc., of Knoxville, a private consulting firm of engineers and field surveyors.
The proposal, Peters said, calls for a comprehensive study of five traffic controls on Main Street.
Timing patterns, turning-movement patterns, fixes, and any recommended equipment changes will be included in the study, Peters said.
Existing traffic lights in the downtown area of Main Street, Peters said, were "intended to be interconnected" and "communicate with each other," but over a period of years, they have not continued to perform as originally planned.
Peters said the need for the traffic study is most evident at night, when few drivers are in the downtown area yet motorists find themselves waiting at red lights for extended periods of time -- even when there is no cross-traffic.
Results of the consulting firm's study will detail what needs to be done to improve traffic flow for the benefit of the traveling public, Peters said.
However, the action Tuesday does not necessarily mean that the recommended changes will be adopted -- only that the study will be undertaken.
During discussion, the board acknowledged that other traffic controls in the downtown area may need to be studied as well, such as traffic control at the intersection of West Summer and North Irish streets.
The board voted unanimously to allow Greeneville Police Chief Terry Cannon to purchase ammunition for the police department.
The Town of Greeneville did not purchase ammunition last year, Town Recorder Carol Susong said.
Aldermen voted to award a $14,463 bid to Gulf State Distributors through a state contract. Funds for the purchase are included in the Police Department's budget.
"We've been having trouble getting our ammunition," Cannon told the aldermen.
"Our last order we placed -- it took nine months" to receive the supply, he said.
Another order, which did not require approval by the board because it totaled less than $5,000, is to be placed for "duty" ammunition, Cannon said.
"Will it take you as long to get ammunition as it does to get cars?" Alderman Darrell Bryan asked.
"It takes longer to get ammunition than it did to get cars, really," Cannon responded.
"You had that same problem last time, didn't you," asked Alderman Buddy Hawk, to which Cannon replied, "Yes."
"It's difficult to get ammunition now," Alderman Sarah E.T. Webster observed.
"Really, it is because everybody's afraid our president is going to take our guns away from us and our ammo. They're out there buying it like crazy. We're having trouble getting it," Cannon told the board.
Webster then asked Cannon if there is a certain level of ammunition the department is required to have on hand.
Cannon told the board that there is not a mandated level, but that the Greeneville Police Department does try to maintain a certain level.
"We try not to let our ammunition get too low in any one area," Cannon said, noting that the department uses cheaper ammunition for practice purposes.
The department also tries to maintain a certain level of stockpile for the SWAT team in the event of a stand-off or other critical incident.
"There's no mandate. We just tell them to watch it and not get too low," he said.
Aldermen gave approval to Peters for the Department of Public Works to participate in the "Safety Partners" grant program, as it has for a number of years.
Peters said the 50/50 matching grants, which can be awarded up to $2,500, would be used for the purchase of plastic barriers to protect workers from traffic.
The plastic barrels are filled with water and placed as a buffer to protect crews working on sidewalks, curbs, or gutters, Peters said.
"Generally, we're just exposed to traffic" during such repairs, he told the board.
The barriers could also be used by the police department, the fire department, and other town departments, Peters said.
Peters estimated the Town's cost for the barriers, in addition to grant funding, would be $3,743, which is included in the budget.
The board gave second and final approval to an ordinance that allows the Town to effectively abandon easements to three unpaved alleys that connect Tusculum Boulevard to Oak Grove Avenue.
The land is not owned by Greeneville and has not been maintained by the Public Works Department.
Brief discussion prior to the vote included a question-and-answer session with affected property-owners who wanted to clarify that their properties could not become "landlocked."
One of the alleys is the only access to a more-than-a-century-old home, one property owner observed.
Discussion centered primarily around deed restrictions, formation of a homeowners association, or other legal action the property-owners could pursue to ensure that the land is utilized in a manner they deem satisfactory.
Just prior to adjourning, the aldermen voted unanimously without discussion to appoint Jeff Taylor to the Greeneville-Greene County Library Board.