By David Knox
The Metropolitan Lynchburg Moore County met Monday, April 20, at the Lynchburg Legion Building.
It was the first meeting under social distancing conditions and members of the council and the public could log in to listen online or by phone. Only 10 people were to be allowed in the building and they were to stay six feet apart.
The Moore County News joined via GoToMeeting for this report.
The council appointed Patrick Maynard as a councilman from District 4 to replace Shawn Adams, who resigned. He was elected by acclamation and sworn in during the meeting. The three seats in that district are up for election in August. Four have qualified for the positions: incumbent Arvis Bobo, Maynard, Peggy S. Blackburn and Bradley Dye.
In other business, Will Shavers was appointed as a new member on the Metro Utility Board.
Mayor Bonnie Lewis reported regarding grant money from the governor’s office. Gov. Bill Lee originally budgeted $50 million for each county and $50 million for each city. He then adjusted the figure to $100 million for each, and Metropolitan Lynchburg Moore County stood to receive $200 million. But the state legislature wasn’t happy with Nashville Davison County getting that much money, so it was changed to cut money from all metro governments – including Moore County and Trousdale County. That resulted in Moore County’s share being around $550,000. Lewis and State Rep. Iris Rudder and State Sen. Shane Reeves got involved and Lewis now believes Moore County will get some $721,000. It cannot be fixed until the legislature is back in session in June, she said.
“No matter what it takes, they’re going to get it fixed,” Lewis said. “They’re trying to take our money and we’re not going to let them.”
The money – a one-time grant — is to be used for improvements and repairs, not new projects and not to reduce existing debt.
Lewis closed her remarks noting that Tennessee council meetings had never before met in a virtual manner. All councilors were in attendance either in person or online. “We made history today.”