The Hickory Withe Community Association met on February 6th at the Hickory Withe Presbyterian Church. The meeting was called to order at 6:30 by President Becky Sue Evans. Jim Mitchell offered the opening prayer, and the pledge to the flag was led by Phil Mitchell. There were 42 in attendance including Fayette County Mayor “Skip” Taylor and County Commissioner Jim Norton.
Discussion was held about the “Spaghetti Dinner and Silent Auction”. Becky Sue passed around signup sheets to volunteer for assistance during the dinner: decorations, serving, clean up. The members present were encouraged to reach out to folks in the community to supply silent auction items. Invitations were distributed for members to invite friends and to place in appropriate venues.
Our speaker for the evening was Fayette County Mayor “Skip” Taylor. Mayor Taylor began by indicating that the first few months of the years are relegated to gathering budget ideas and requests to put on paper. He also announced the very welcome news that Hickory Withe will be receiving a new Pumper Truck for the fire department. The mayor pointed out that Hickory Withe has access, through county resources, to 24-hour ambulance service (staffed for higher daytime demand) available to transport emergent cases to emergency rooms for care. (emphasis on EMERGENT). Information is being gathered to consider a “Stand Alone” emergency room in Fayette County. Mayor Taylor’s “sweet spot” is at Highway 196 and Highway 64! Baptist Hospital is building a “Stand Alone” emergency room in Arlington at the intersection of I-40 and 205 (Northeast corner).
Mayor Taylor discussed several “Hot Button” issues:
- City and County Taxes. Several, if not all, of the larger Fayette County cities may raise taxes this year. Close to home, Oakland is one…considering up to a one-half percent raise. Oakland has had significant population growth since the last census, as have some of the other cities in the county. With growth, comes a greater demand on city services…as well as county services. Due to the directives associated with the relationship between county and city taxes, if a city (or cities) raise taxes and the county doesn’t, the county will not receive a share of those tax proceeds; in order to share a portion of those proceeds, Fayette County would have to raise taxes also. With the same growth impacts as the cities, and with the “share” provisions of current guidelines, it becomes prudent…if not compelling…for the county to consider making appropriate increases to county taxes. The cities are considering those tax raises this year. Depending on that outcome, the county will have time to propose potential raises in time for the start of the next fiscal year. Perhaps predictably, the discussion of taxes stimulated much interest, many questions, and an abundance of informative comments.
- Adequate Facilities Tax – This is a “one time” tax ($1/square foot) levied on new home construction. Our tax rate is the lowest in the state of Tennessee.
- Litter. A corrections officer is being trained to take prisoners out on litter pick up details. Civic groups are encouraged to “Adopt a Road” in the effort to curb the litter problem.
- Voter Registration. Everyone is encouraged to register to vote in the upcoming election. Go to www.fayettetn.us for information.
- CWD (Chronic Wasting Disease) – The local deer population has been suffering with CWD and Fayette County has been designated the location to bury the infected carcasses. State legislators are working to get financing to build an incinerator to appropriately dispose of the animals.
The next General Meeting and Pot Luck Supper will be held on March 5th.
Liz Klepko, Secretary
Note from the President
As we plan the Spaghetti Dinner and Auction, scheduled for February 29, 2020, the question arises of why we need to do a fund-raiser when there is money in the bank. Let me tell you two reasons, as I see it.
First, Hickory Withe Community Association is like a beautiful house that has been the work of many years. If we imagine this house as something we care for and are proud of, then the CD that we continue to keep in the bank is like the roof that keeps us safe from the coming storms. We don’t want to start burning the furniture, and definitely don’t want to start tearing off shingles and burning them, just because we are feeling too old or too tired to go out and chop wood, or because we already done chopped wood. If we want to see the next generation continue to enjoy the wonderful community of Hickory Withe, then we really just have to keep chopping wood.
Second, when my fellow board members and I volunteered to serve, we made an unspoken agreement with this association that we would protect and guard its assets. I have done some research about this and here are a couple of things I’d like to point out (from BoardSource.org):
1. Board members provide the critical intellectual capital and strategic resources to power nonprofit success and strengthen communities.
2. One of the primary responsibilities of the board is to ensure that the organization has adequate financial resources to carry out its mission. Nonprofits — like businesses, families, and individuals — need to save for a rainy day.
We are planning our fundraisers for 2020 in the hope that we can continue to save for a rainy day, while maintaining our support of the community and donations to local groups such as the Carl Perkins Center for Abused Children and our local First Responders. We have recently expanded our community programs to include the Joe Moore Scholarship to Fayette Leadership Academy. We can’t expand, or even maintain, our programs on a long-term basis without fundraisers.
I’m about to ask y’all to fill the various needs that we have for the Spaghetti Dinner and Silent Auction and to request that each of you provide something really nice for the auction. I’m going to lead out in this effort by donating a quilt I just finished, and I hope that y’all will find a meaningful way to participate in this fundraiser.
Finally, let me remind y’all that raising funds shows our enthusiasm about this organization and its programs. However, most people do not give unless someone asks them to give. We ask the community to support us because our programs are worthwhile, and our association itself is a great benefit and strength to the community.
Information Resource: BoardSource 750 9th Street NW, Suite 650 Washington, DC 20001-4793
Laura Winfrey-Director of Fayette County Library
Fayette County Mayor, Skip Taylor discusses tax structure for county
Spaghetti Dinner/Silent Auction
Expected performance by Irish Dancers
Photos from December Meeting
Photos from September Meeting
Photos from June Meeting
Photos from May Meeting
Photos from April Meeting
For more information, please click here.
For important information concerning the emergency helicopter service available to Fayette County Residents click Here.