If you're feeling disillusioned with party-line politics, sometimes it's refreshing to look at the politicians right here at home, the people who talk to the folks they represent every day, the politicians who don't see themselves as answerable to a party, but to the people who voted them into office.
Whether you agree with him on all decisions or not, Union County Mayor Mike Williams is one of those hometown politicians. Born and raised in Union County, he went on to serve in the state legislature for 18 years and is in his second term as mayor.
Congratulations, to Union County on your newest grant from The Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation. Thank you, Mayor Williams for allowing me to celebrate with you today. The Clean Tennessee Energy Grant will help your community reduce costs, increase savings, waste less energy and promote clean air. These grants continue to make Tennessee a great place to live, work, and raise a family.
Last Friday, October 20, 2017, Union Countians dressed in pink to show support and raise awareness for breast cancer. Melanie Dykes, organizer of Union County's Pink Out, got involved when the Susan G Komen organization approached her in 2014 looking to distribute information about breast cancer. Melanie says, “According to statistics, Union County is one of four counties across the state that has a high rate of late stage breast cancer diagnoses.” Melanie has been working with a grant to educate and encourage women to get mammograms.
When the bell rang at Oak Grove School Sept. 30, a hush fell over the assembled crowd, not students this time but a community of volunteers, sponsors and well-wishers celebrating the grand opening of the renovated building.
“We’re going to ring the bell and take up books,” said Preservation Union County board member Betty Bullen. “Who remembers hearing that in a school like this?”
Even though the threat of rain could have put a damper on the Thunder in the Park celebration at Wilson Park, located in Union County, TN, it was a great success. The smiling faces of our vendors, the smiles and the joy expressed on the faces of local folks and visitors from other counties as they viewed the antique cars, listened to the live band, mingled through the crowd and visited with friends and neighbors is what made it such a great success.
Are you ready for fun, festivities and fireworks?
Saturday, Sept. 2, Wilson Park will once again host Union County's signature Thunder in the Park festival, a free event that will light up the night with a professional fireworks show. The gates open at 5 p.m.
This is Thunder in the Park's second year. The brainchild of former Union County Chamber of Commerce president Leslie Corum, it was a partnership between the Chamber and Union County government. This year, Union County government is taking the lead to bring the thunder once again.
The county received a grant (RAHHABE GRANT: Rural Access to Health and Healthy Active Build Environments) from the Department of Health of Tennessee. MPA Director Charles Turner presented the grant opportunity to County Mayor Williams. The county applied and we received the grant. The walking trail was in need of repair so the county contracted the County Hwy Department and B & C Paving to do the job. The paving was completed on August 3. We hope this will inspire more people to come out to the park to enjoy family time together.
A partnership between Union County government and the Union County Chamber of Commerce has reaped rewards this summer. In April, Union County Mayor Mike Williams' office and the Chamber applied for an asset enhancement grant from the Tennessee Department of Economic Development, a grant program aimed at helping counties identified as "distressed" by high unemployment rates, low per capita incomes and other factors.
Union County property owners will see their taxes drop in the 2017-2018 fiscal year, even though Union County Commission approved a budget June 12, with expenditures topping last year’s budget by more than $1.7 million. Union County Mayor Mike Williams said the tax decrease is probably attributable to the recent property reappraisal. The property tax rate will drop from $2.17 to $2.1399 for every $100 of taxable property.