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From the mayor: Continuing to build a stronger Jonesborough

I’ve been honored to serve as Mayor of Jonesborough this past year and I’m determined to make our 2020 another successful year. The Herald & Tribune’s 2020 Progress edition is an opportunity to look back at our numerous accomplishments in 2019 especially our town’s improved financial results but with the current national health and economic crisis upon us I think it’s best to begin with my vision for 2020. 

We began 2020 with the determination to continue building a stronger Jonesborough, financially and operationally, but now find our town adapting to sudden health and economic challenges. We must ask ourselves how will this global and national crisis impact our country, our county and Jonesborough this year and develop plans that best protect and serve the community. I’m confident our nation, state and town will rise to this challenge and finish 2020 accelerating into 2021. 

Our Jonesborough community is showing great resilience and compassion during this crisis by heeding health advisories while also coming together to help and support neighbors and local businesses. Our town government led by the Board of Mayor & Aldermen and staff is offering a compassionate hand to our residents with food needs, emergency transportation and directions to medical information or assistance during the COVID-19 crisis by implementing a helpline at 423-753-4781. I feel confident we are making the best decisions to win against this health crisis while protecting our town’s future. 

The challenges in 2020 are tough but we can conquer them with a strong resolve and the addition of more resources. Our greatest resource is people and the town staff we have in Jonesborough. It’s times like now we must truly recognize the value in superior public safety teams, the irreplaceable crews in our water, wastewater facilities and the dedication of our entire town workforce. Bob Browning is one of those valuable resources. In February he announced a desire to retire as town administrator but thankfully expressed the desire to work a reduced schedule while finishing a few special projects important to Jonesborough. 

Our board immediately began a search to find a new town administrator that would continue the tradition of excellence in that office. We desired someone with experience, a visionary but equally important was the ability to build relationships and bond with our town. After each member of our board met individually with Glenn Rosenoff, it was clear he was the person best suited to make our strong town staff even stronger. We expect Glenn to finish his commitment to the Town of Erwin and start his Jonesborough journey in May as our new town administrator. Let’s give him a friendly welcome. 

In last year’s H&T Progress edition, I wrote my vision for 2019 was our town strengthening its financial balance sheet and improving outdated facilities. Undoubtedly, we successfully accomplished vision No.1 by ending our budget year with strong increasing revenues and a reduction in liabilities. We look to repeat that success this year! We also completed our move into our new maintenance facility that replaced our antiquated buildings.  I also wrote we needed to improve our worn park facilities, which led to our town’s greatest accomplishment. We secured agreements with our county government and school board to build a new community facility that will enhance our town’s parks while also providing a greater learning environment, or school that will positively impact Jonesborough’s future years to come. 

I’m proud to work for you and with a board of leaders consisting of Vice Mayor Adam Dickson, Alderman Terry Countermine, Virginia Causey and Stephen Callahan. Together with staff and volunteers we will lead our town through these difficult times and still accomplish many successes in 2020. 

Jonesborough Mayor Chuck Vest