The Blount County Commission met for its regular monthly business meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 9. The Blount Countian previously reported on presentations given during the meeting detailing the progress of the Deans Ferry Road bridge replacement project as well as identifying property adjacent to Palisades Park as a potential site for a county veterans park.
Another project discussed at the meeting adds another attraction to Blount County’s tourism offerings as the commission officially established its leased property at Swann Covered Bridge as a county park and established rules to govern its public use.
The commission has leased approximately five acres on the Locust Fork of the Warrior River upstream from Swann Covered Bridge near Cleveland. The intent was to establish a county park that would provide public access to the river giving both residents and nonresidents an opportunity to enjoy one of the county’s most beautiful natural resources.
Both the Blount County Sheriff’s Office and Cleveland Police Department will help make sure the park is taken care of as well as ensure the area remains safe. They will also help enforce the rules as set by the commission: parking allowed in designated area only; no parking allowed along the public road; no alcoholic beverages allowed in the park; no open fires allowed; no overnight camping allowed; no all-terrain vehicles allowed; and no littering.
In other business, the commission:
• passed Resolution 2021-02-01 naming Community Consultants Inc. as federal grant administrator through December 2023. The group will also administer any grants received through ADECA, CARES Act, and for the agriculture, education, and economic development project.
• approved District 4 budget amendment: sale of fixed assets $612.10; sale of sand to Sheriff’s Department.
• named county administrator as alternate board member for Middle America Area Agency on Aging.
• approved rollover and budget amendment of Palisades Park FY 2020 Christmas light balance in line item 269 $13,916.69 and FY 2021 Christmas light donation $24,211.23.
• reappointed Debra Hicks and Deanna Washburn to six-year terms to Pine Bluff Water Authority.
• authorized bid for a used road reclaimer.
• approved RRR transfers and budget amendments for first quarter of FY 2021.
• authorized chariman to seek CAWACO grant for improvements at Swann Bridge and Palisades Park.
• approved Resolution 2021-02-02 to establish property lease at Swann Bridge as a county park and establish rules to govern use.
The commission heard reports from county engineer and:
• approved ALDOT resolution authorizing the chairman to approve Project No. STPAA-0075(540), which is for the surface treatment of Ala 75 to Jefferson County line to the south end of the Blackburn Fork relief bridge.
• approved ALDOT resolution authorizing the chairman to approve Project No. 0132(502), which is for the surface treatment and striping on Ala 132 from Ala 75 to the Etowah County line.
• awarded County Road 7 road project-FEMA to C.B.&A.
Before adjourning, Chairman Chris Green announced that the bid opening for the EMA video wall would be at 9 a.m. Monday, Feb. 22.
The next commission work session will be at 9 a.m. Thursday, March 4, followed by the commission business meeting at 9 a.m. Tuesday, March. 9. Allen Armstrong, Chad Trammel, Nick Washburn, and Green were in attendance for both the work session and business meeting. Dean Calvert was absent from both.