JACKSBORO, TN (WLAF) – The Campbell County Commission covered a number of topics in an unusually short (90 minute) workshop on Monday night, spending about a third of that time questioning and getting a report from TDOT representatives about the ongoing highway project to upgrade Highway 63 east from LaFollette to the Claiborne County line. Watch the workshop HERE on demand from WLAF.

The first phase of the project , running from LaFollette to Frontier Grocery, has sparked numerous concerns from the public about confusing lane changes, detours and traffic diversions to Back Valley Road, according to several commissioners. Scott Kitts was particularly outspoken about receiving calls, asking the TDOT manager when the project is expected to be complete to the county line.

“The first phase is projected to be completed by late fall,” the TDOT spokesman replied. When Kitts asked “When will you have it completed to the county line,” the TDOT reply was “September, 2025. The work from Frontier Grocery to the Claiborne County line is scheduled to be complete in September, 2025.” On that somber note, Chairman Johnny Bruce accepted a motion to adjourn the workshop.

Earlier, the commission discussed a number of items that will be brought up at next week’s regular meeting, including a motion to spend $780,000 on a 100 acre piece of property located in the Twin Hills area to be used for recreational purposes. Recreation Committee chairman Dewayne Baird explained that the property, owned by the Charlie Campbell family, is under the Greenbelt, meaning the county will only lose $257/year in property taxes if it becomes public property.

The Recreation Committee met on March 3 and voted to approve the purchase and bring it to a vote before the full commission. Baird explained that the purchase “would not be a hit to our tax dollars” as it could be paid for from an account originally appropriated for industrial land purchases that has been sitting untouched for 6-7 years.

In addition to a motion to approve the purchase, Baird will also offer a motion next week to use all funds from the county’s share of the opioid settlement that are not stipulated by the agreement to treatment facilities to go toward recreational development, possibly helping pay for developing the 100 acre property. (WLAF NEWS PUBLISHED – 03/16/2022-6AM)

7 Replies to “Commission set to purchase $780,000 piece of land, grills TDOT”

  1. Not sure what the future plans for recreation would be, but the commission may want to put the horses back in front of the cart. Losing youth yearly, which means we have a two headed problem. School funding and bringing industry to keep graduates here. Buying dirt today (highest property costs ever) might be one of the worst ideas ever. Give more to schools and attract some actual industry with jobs. Also, find me an efficient county government ran program. A recreation area, if even completed, ran by our county govt would be another inefficient county ran program.

    1. Absolutely Correct Sir!
      Jellico should be housing the Amazon facility that went to East Knoxville! I would like to know how many calls per week go out from our Mayor’s offices to industry leaders and business owners! I totally support your comment. My thoughts exactly….burn through the 780,000 knowing the BOE WILL BE REQUIRING MORE MONEY ….BUT OF COURSE THEIR REPLY WILL BE THOSE FUNDS CAN ONLY BE USED FOR RECREATIONAL….BULL CRAP

  2. Many of our young men and women are leaving our county to work it’s not right we need industry I’m very happy to see lots of other people think the same way

  3. Why commercialize our beautiful mountains and lake enough of that.we need jobs in Campbell co. Tourism and retirement community as planned by our representatives has led Campbell countians into poverty, LaFollette is listed on line as the second poorest city in the whole state,look it up.

  4. Absolutely Correct!!!! Please call your Commissioners for your district’s between now and Monday and ask them to vote no. I can’t take it any longer! I am heading to Election Commission right now for my petition to run in the 1st District.
    Don’t Delay CALL TODAY!

  5. It would be nice to have more information on what the recreational development would be. Are any of the funds that the county has possession of going to any current recovery or treatment resources located within the county? Not against recreational developments (especially for kids) but the description in the article is vague.

  6. Ridiculous! Shouldn’t the opioids settlement go to Springs of Life and Bridges to Recovery Homes that help men & women who are addicted to drugs, get off of them and become productive members of society! I won’t vote anyone who thinks we need another recreation facility! And I will share this with everyone I know that votes!

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