Another Round of Weather

This winter certainly is gonna wind up in my book as the most active winter in the 12 years I’ve lived here. It’s definitley been busy.  Are the schools prepared, is the state prepared, most importantly, are you prepared?

According to the National Weather Service in Nashville, we are in for at least two more rounds of snow this week! Here is a Hazardous Weather Statement from this morning.

…TWO SNOWFALLS ARE EXPECTED IN MIDDLE TENNESSEE THIS WEEK…
…THE MID WEEK SNOW STORM COULD BE A BIG ONE…

A STRONG COLD FRONT WILL SURGE INTO THE MID STATE ON MONDAY…
BRINGING A TURN TO SHARPLY COLDER WEATHER.

AS COLDER AIR POURS INTO NORTHWESTERN MIDDLE TENNESSEE MONDAY
AFTERNOON…SNOW IS EXPECTED TO DEVELOP AND CONTINUE INTO THE
EVENING. THE SNOW WILL THEN SPREAD EASTWARD ACROSS OTHER PARTS OF
OUR AREA MONDAY NIGHT…BEFORE TAPERING TO FLURRIES ALONG THE
CUMBERLAND PLATEAU TUESDAY. MOST OF THE MID STATE IS EXPECTED TO
RECEIVE BETWEEN ONE HALF AND ONE INCH OF SNOW BY SUNRISE
TUESDAY…WITH LOW TEMPERATURES TUESDAY MORNING FORECAST TO BE IN
THE MIDDLE 20S. SOME ROADS MAY BECOME SLICK AND HAZARDOUS.

A COLD CANADIAN AIR MASS WILL SETTLE IN ACROSS THE REGION TUESDAY
AND WEDNESDAY…AS A LOW PRESSURE AREA DEVELOPS OVER TEXAS…AND
HEADS INTO THE LOWER MISSISSIPPI VALLEY ON WEDNESDAY AFTERNOON.
SNOW IS FORECAST TO DEVELOP OVER THE MID STATE BY SUNSET
WEDNESDAY…AND INCREASE IN INTENSITY WEDNESDAY NIGHT. THE WAY
THINGS LOOK NOW…THE MID STATE HAS THE POSSIBILITY OF RECEIVING
SEVERAL INCHES OF SNOW BY SUNRISE THURSDAY. THE SNOW IS FORECAST
TO DIMINISH FROM THE WEST ON THURSDAY…BUT ADDITIONAL LIGHT AMOUNTS
ARE STILL POSSIBLE. HAZARDOUS DRIVING CONDITIONS WILL LIKELY OCCUR
WEDNESDAY NIGHT INTO THURSDAY.

ANYONE PLANNING TRAVEL IN THE MID STATE THIS WEEK SHOULD STAY
TUNED TO A RELIABLE SOURCE OF WEATHER INFORMATION…AND LISTEN FOR
ANY FORECAST UPDATES…OR WINTER WEATHER STATEMENTS…THAT MIGHT
BE ISSUED.

How’s that for ole Jack Frost huh? He aint finished with us yet.  At least Rutherford County planned ahead and implemented 11 inclement weather days in there calendar.  So far They’ve missed 6 days this year and have 5 more remaining.

Better get out and enjoy todays weather. I hear the high today is gonna be about 50 degrees!

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O Christmas Tree…

O Christmas tree
Thy leaves are so un-changing…

That is until you start shedding them all over the living room, then you just have to go.

So what to do with that old Christmas tree once it’s outstayed it’s welcome? Here in La Vergne, you can take it to the parking lot next to the Public Works Building, 148 International Blvd. (off Waldron Road) between Dec. 26 and Jan. 21. Or, if you live so close to Smyrna that they can spit on your house from their lovely new water tower, you can take it to the drop-off location at Lee Victory Park. The designated area there will be by the football field. But make sure you remove all the trimmings first. Tinsel doth not good mulch make.

And while we’re on the topic of recycling, I’d like to point out some other sites that may come in handy when you’re clearing away the refuse of Christmas past:

  • Rechargeable batteries are accepted at both Home Depot and Lowes.
  • Home Depot also accepts compact fluorescent light bulbs. Don’t toss those in the trash, y’all, they’re full of mercury!
  • If you have old electronics with cords that you want to be rid of, you can drop them at 1140 Haley Road in Murfreesboro on Tuesdays & Saturdays between 10: 00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. If they still work, you can also give them away on freecycle.com, or to an organization like Goodwill Industries.
  • La Vergne City Hall has a mixed paper recycling bin. You can drop off phone books, junk mail, paper bags, office paper, newspapers, etc. here. But please do not throw in anything with food on it, anything your pet parakeet may have pooped on, or the plastic-windowed envelopes your junk mail comes in. And don’t forget to to pull the cheesy law firm magnet off the front of your phone book before you toss it in.
  • Plastics labeled #1 – #7 can be dropped off either of the Kroger locations in Smyrna, but NOT plastic bags, bubble wrap, or anything that’s had motor oil. antifreeze, or pesticides in it. I’ll say it again- NO, NO, NO plastic bags or bubble wrap!
  • Plastic grocery bags, the thin type, are recyclable at the little bins in front of Kroger and Publix. Publix also has a bin for styrofoam egg cartons.
  • And lastly, packing materials- many pack and ship type stores will take clean packing peanuts and bubble wrap. And I know some UPS stores will take big chunks of styrofoam and run it through a shredder of sorts to create packing material that they can then use to pack their customers’ items. Just be sure to call ahead as UPS stores are individually owned and operated.

And now it’s getting late, my brain cells are extremely taxed from all this writing, so feel free to chime in on anything I’ve missed!

LHS Teacher Files Complaint

LaVergne High School teachers have now filed a complaint against the Rutherford County Schools Director Harry Gill Jr.   REA representative Pam Jones had recently filed multiple complaints on behalf of the educators at LHS in regards to Principal Dirk Ash.  The complaints had been investigated by the staff attorney Angel McCloud whose findings stated they were unfounded.   Jones now fights for the right for procedures in the complaint process be fair, unbiased and properly investigated, according to the DNJ.

“The REA believes what is of greatest importance in any complaint is the ability for the complainant to have sufficient steps to attain a proper investigation and ultimately a truthful and unbiased decision. The REA believes that good teachers do not need protecting by the adoption of an unfair complaint procedure. … Due to Mr. Gill’s eradication of the (school board) hearing step, the REA complainant (Jones) has no recourse. The REA believes that the current complaint procedure has been so severely altered by the Director that no complainant can have the reasonable expectation of fair, honest and unbiased treatment. “

This will remain an interesting chapter in the tenure of Mr. Gill because being informed of current policies is vital to teachers and staff, along with parents and students.

Want Allure? Think LaV

Perhaps its the low tax rate.  Maybe it’s our generous water policy.  But personally I think it’s the friendly villagers we should be thanking for our high ranking when it comes to being attractive to business.  Don’t believe me?  Look at this article in the DNJ called Think tank ranks LaVergne high for business,

In the Economic Vitality category, Smyrna was ranked seventh, Murfreesboro was ranked eighth and La Vergne was ranked ninth place.

In the Business Tax Burden category, La Vergne was ranked seventh, Smyrna was ranked 15th and Murfreesboro was ranked 29th.

In the Community Allure category, La Vergne was ranked 12th, Murfreesboro was ranked 29th and Smyrna was ranked 49th.

Right now it looks like Smyrna and Murfreesboro are ahead of us in the Economic Vitality category but we’ve left them in the dust in the categories of Business Tax Burden and Community Allure.   WTG LaVergne!

Let’s sidetrack for just a bit.  I have long said to whoever will listen that there is NO reason LaVergne can’t be one of the BEST places to live in Middle Tennessee.  We have a lake right next door, we are but a stone’s throw from Nashville/Davidson County, great access to transportation thoroughfares, great tax rates, affordable housing, etc.  AND for the most part, we are an extremely friendly group of residents.

It is hugely vindicating for LaVergne to see this report by the Tennessee Center for Policy Research – a group that is non-political, independent, not-for-profit – and to be ranked so favorably.

What we have to determine as a community (together with our new leadership) is how to translate and utilize the ranking of 6th friendliest Tennessee city to broaden our opportunities.  I would like to see LaVergne work more closely with the Rutherford County Chamber of Commerce.  I would like to make sure our local industries know that where they enjoy the benefits of our low tax rates and strong work-force, they should expect to give equal support back to the community in which they are located.  (Don’t get me started on how one local industry has “adopted” a low-income school in another town.  They essentially enjoy the economic perks of operating their business here, but their community pay back goes elsewhere.)

It’s time the city really concentrates on the *real* things that will attract business and then all-hands-on-deck.  Use county resources, state resources, and federal resources.  Use our residents who have amazing backgrounds in management, business, public relations, advocacy, and community outreach.  You might be shocked if you knew the finely honed talents our citizens possess.  With them, we can accomplish grand ideas.  Other towns have done it.  We can too.

So yay LaVergne!

Tennessee Ranks 41 in Child Well-Being

For over 20 years The Annie E. Casey Foundation has collected data on the overall well being of children.  The 2010 Kids Count Data Book was released July 27, 2010.  New data has been recently added… how well do you think Tennessee rates?

There have been overall improvements for Tennessee, we now rank 41 out of 50 for 2010.  Although I should be thrilled with the improvements, I don’t quite understand how the “Volunteer State” ranks so low.

If you’ve ever complained about a child having “bad parents,” you may want to do a comparison of the Service Delivery Systems of high ranking states.  It’s all about you get what you pay for; below minimum standards equate to low state rankings.  For instance the data reported the expenditure in the United States per pupil average is $10,557.  Tennessee’s average expenditure is $7,756.  Only Utah reported below Tennessee at $6,228 spent per pupil, while the highest expenditure per pupil reported was Wyoming at $16,386.

Care to learn more of the statistical information in Rutherford County, the data is provided by The Tennessee Commission on Children and Youth.  Or you can look at all the numbers at Kids Count.

Need Something to do on Saturday?

Get in line if you want to join the “Autumn is my favorite time of the year club”… We finally have relief from the hot summer weather, the mosquitoes have gone into hibernation (we hope), and the smell of leaves is wonderful.  Fall is definitely a good time to get out and get some fresh air!  If you’re from LaVergne, we also have plenty of activities for you this weekend!

On Saturday

9:00 a.m. Community Clean-Up
Location is the old road bed along Hurricane Creek Boat Ramp off of Stones River Road. Registration starts at 9:00 a.m. and the clean-up is at 9:30am.  A hot dog lunch will be provided.  Remember to dress down!  Wear appropriate clothing to clean trash. Bags and gloves will be provided.

2:00 – 4:00 p.m.   Trail of Treats
Dress up in your favorite Halloween costume and come to Veterans Memorial Park.  50 local businesses, vendors, churches, etc. will be there to hand out candy to children.  WE WILL BE THERE, TOO!  My thanks to the readers of thisislavergne.com who have provided candy and/or helped pay for candy.  I need to make some signs now!

3:00 – 5:00 p.m.  Free Bean Dinner
A bean dinner will be served at Jerry Butler’s Realty office, located next to SunTrust Bank on 5068 Murf. Road. Beans, soups and cornbread will be served, but attendees are encouraged to bring an unwrapped toy or donation for Lt. Cindy Murphy’s toy drive for the children.  LPD usually services around 150 families at Christmas.

If you’re from Smyrna or love bowling, here’s something for you from the Smyrna Bowling Center,

Grand re-opening of “This End” is now set for Oct 30th from 11am till 6pm and everyone that comes in that day will recieve one free game and shoes. I am also planning to have many things set up outside in the parking lot for everyone to do and enjoy. I have the Smyrna fire dept smokehouse, the Nation guard rock climbing wall, art booth by Ron Knight, id kits from D.A.R.E., Chris’ gifts and much more coming to this event. Please mark your calendars now to stop. Bring the young ones and they will get bowl in costume their one free game!

And if you’re from Murfreesboro, here’s something for you…

7:00 a.m. – ??  Yard Sale
2281 Oak Hill Drive, Murfreesboro, Tn.
Northfield to Left on Lascassas Hwy, 1/4 mile to left into Village of Garrison Cove (Aberdeen Dr.) first driveway on the left.

On Sunday

TRICK OR TREAT for LaVergne! Time is usually when it turns dark until 8:00’ish p.m.  Remember, only go to houses with porch lights on.  Parents, check the candy before kids eat it!

And other stuff

Finally, the city is trying to get an idea about how many will attend the swearing-in ceremony of the mayor and aldermen on November 18th.  The room holds 150 people, so they are trying to get an idea if the space will be big enough.  Click here to let the city know yea or nay.

Also, I will be heading back to the Rutherford County Election Commission tomorrow to pick up the latest required campaign finance disclosures.  I hope to have them scanned and posted by this time tomorrow, if possible.  Am very hopeful that some will be more forthcoming than they were the last round.  And that’s all I’m saying about that…

How Many Snow Days??

How many snow days can our students miss in Rutherford County before make-up days are added at the end of the year?  Or do they take away Spring Break?  (The horrors!).

No school again tomorrow…  sigh.