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BMA looks to restructure Town, approve massage center at morning meeting

At this morning’s Jonesborough Board of Mayor and Aldermen meeting, officials will consider making several changes to the organizational and employment structures of the Town.
Operations Manager Craig Ford has worked for months on a “Work Task Analysis,” which makes several recommendations. These recommendations either do not require additional dollars or are important to the smooth operation of the Town, according to Ford.
Any changes in employee pay would be worked into the budget process for this year, effective July 1. Some changes in compensation plans would have to be implemented over one or more years and will be examined at a later meeting.
One recommendation is to separate the police and fire departments. Each would have its own chief and separate financial operations beginning July 1.
Another recommendation is to separate the Public Works Department into the Department of Streets, Garage Department, and Department of Solid Waste.
The Town would also approve the elimination of the marketing and advertising manager’s job, and give Melissa Cloyd, who currently holds the position, one month’s severance pay. Amber Crumley, current director of tourism, would become the Visitors Center manager, and town leaders would hire a new director of tourism and marketing.
In storytelling news, the Town has been working on a possible in-school program with Community Performance, the group brought in to create a performance based on stories collected from Jonesborough residents. The International Storytelling Center program would also involve the Mary B. Martin Program for the Arts.
Cost for the program is estimated to be $89,000, which includes a resident director from CPI, travel and lodging for artists and $15,500 for equipment. ISC will contribute $30,000, and the suggestion is to use no more than $60,000 from the Mary B. Martin funds.
The idea is to have Washington County students collect stories from their families and community, and then involve the arts in a school program that culminates with a major performance by youth at the end of a school year.
A proposal from CPI and the ISC would start the program in May in Jonesborough Elementary and Middle schools, kicking into high gear in September and ending with a performance in May 2011.
The program would include guest artists and ongoing activities.
The BMA will consider allowing a massage center to come in next to the Medicine Shoppe, and in doing so, will also take a look at its 20-year-old massage parlor ordinance and possibly update it.
According to Town documents, the BMA passed an ordinance in 1987 regulating massage parlors in Jonesborough, largely to “prevent people conducting illicit sex practices under the name of a legitimate massage business.”
Since then, the state has created a licensure board and set up a certification process and practice standards, which includes inspections.
Under the dated ordinance, anyone applying for a massage parlor permit must submit an employment history, a Tennessee Bureau of Investigation report, a medical report and a permit fee among other records.
Kevin Gravell, the applicant, has submitted all these required documents.
The Town is recommending the BMA approve the permit and return the TBI and medical reports, and deem them “unreasonable” under the ordinance.
The Town will take up the second and final reading of the movement to annex the Ashley Meadows Subdivision, property adjacent to Hwy. 81 North and Anderson Drive, but not including Anderson Drive.
In sewer news, the Town has finally come to an agreement/easement with Ingles to construct the gravity sewer line that will allow the Town to eliminate the Paybe Road Pump station. The Town will provide two sewer taps, and will connect Ingles to the new line. The store will also be allowed to connect to the taps if they expand in the future without paying a connection fee. The agreement states the Town will begin building within 30 days of obtaining the easement.
The Town has received four of the seven easement agreements needed to allow the Town to complete the drainage project on McCoy Circle, according to a report from Operations Manager Craig Ford. The intent is to begin the project on April 19 if all remaining signatures are received by then.
The courthouse bathroom project is moving forward, according to the report, and streetlights have been installed in the parking lot.