Johnson City News

May 20, 2019

Park and Rec's 75th anniversary party to kick off Legion Street Pool season

The Legion Street Pool, 111 Legion St., will offer free swimming at a special party from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. this Saturday (May 25) to celebrate Johnson City Parks and Recreation’s 75th anniversary. The first 200 people will receive free hotdogs and drinks. Attendees also will enjoy games, music and prizes.  

The pool will open for the season on Memorial Day, Monday, May 27. Johnson City’s only public outdoor pool is open to all ages and includes a 50-meter outdoor pool with a diving well, one diving board and a small slide.

The pool will be open from 10 a.m-6 p.m. Monday-Saturday and 1-6 p.m. on Sunday. The pool will be open on weekends only Aug. 4-Sept. 2.

Admission is $3 for individuals 13 and older, $2 for individuals 12 and under, and free to those under the age of three. Children 12 and under must be accompanied by a caretaker age 16 or older.

Several special events scheduled at the pool this season include:

Mountain Games: Saturday, June 8, 8 a.m.-1 p.m.

Kayaking, mountain biking, disc golf and more. 

July 4 Celebration: Thursday, July 4, 10 a.m.-6 p.m.

Games at the pool.

Lifeguard Recognition Day: Friday, Sept. 6, 5-7 p.m.

Dog Swim: Saturday, Sept. 7, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.

For more information, call 423-434-5754.

CONTACT:    Rachel Evans, aquatics supervisor
                             Parks and Recreation
                             423.434.5754

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May 10, 2019

Johnson City Public Art unveils new project

The Johnson City Public Art Committee will unveil “Johnson City: 150 Years,” a multi-panel mural created by nine local schools and the Johnson City Parks and Recreation art group, at 10 a.m. on Saturday, May 18 on the 200-foot wall behind Johnson City Transit, 137 W. Market St.

The 5-by-10 foot panels will be installed as part of the City’s yearlong Sesquicentennial celebration. Participants were encouraged to include images that expressed what they find exciting about Johnson City. The mural captures the early history of Johnson City to the most recent.

The community along with participating teachers, students, and art group members are invited to attend this special event. Mayor Jenny Brock, Sesquicentennial Commissioner Donna Noland and Johnson City Public Art Chairwoman Nancy Fischman will briefly speak to kick-off the unveiling.

The Johnson City Public Art Committee was responsible for the project’s design concept and coordination. A subcommittee oversaw the project. Mary Nees served as creative director. Michelle Treece assisted with coordination, and Andy Russell provided technical support. Johnson City Public Works also assisted with coordination and will install the 10 panels.

The following schools and art group made this project possible: Ashley Academy led by Maryam Awan, Cherokee Elementary led by Beth Bartchy-Smith, Johnson City Parks and Recreation art group led by Mary Lee Baker, Liberty Bell Middle School led by Brooke Velsor, Mountain View Elementary led by Joanna Barnett, Providence Academy led by Kim Milburn, Saint Mary’s School led by Felicia Faniola-Gregory, Science Hill High School led by Mike Austin, Topper Academy led by Lyn Govette, and Towne Acres led by Louann Sharp.

To learn more about the Johnson City Public Art Committee, visit https://jcpublicart.com/. For more information about the yearlong sesquicentennial celebration, visit www.jctn150.com or follow @jctn150 (Johnson City 150 — Sesquicentennial Celebration) on Facebook.

 

CONTACT:    Cheyenne Kumbhare
                             423.975.2706
                             ckumbhare@johnsoncitytn.org

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May 09, 2019

Sesquicentennial Commission to host "Then and Now" concert

The Sesquicentennial Commission will host “Then and Now: A Musical Portrait of the 1860s and Present Day” at 7 p.m. Friday, May 10 at Central Baptist Church, 300 N. Roan St.

Featuring various instruments and musical genres, the concert will also include recorded sounds of trains from this region. Musical compositions have been selected from the late 1860s as well as present day to create a “then and now” experience for audience members, allowing them to experience the changes in music that have taken place since Johnson City’s founding.

The featured performers, faculty members from East Tennessee State University, include Dr. Matthew Geiger (snare drum), Dr. Heather Killmeyer (oboe with electronics), Dr. Brett Long (cornet and trumpet), Dr. Esther Park (piano), and Dr. Justin Waller (trombone). 

Other events this month include:

  • May 17 at 7:30 p.m. at Gray United Methodist Church, 2108 Oak St.: The Appalachian Men’s Ensemble (AMEn), an all-male vocal ensemble, will present a concert titled “On the Move.” The concert theme was chosen to correspond with the 150th anniversary of the founding of Johnson City in 1869. To commemorate this milestone, AMEn will perform a wide variety of songs relating to trains in honor of the historical connection of the Tri-Cities region to the railroad. Concert selections will come from a wide variety of genres, including jazz, gospel, bluegrass, and folk. The choir will also premiere a new arrangement of “Get On Board!” by Lou Dyar, written specifically to commemorate Johnson City’s 2019 sesquicentennial. 
  • May 18 at 10 a.m. behind Johnson City Transit, 137 W. Market St.: The Johnson City Public Arts Committee will unveil “Johnson City: 150 Years,” a mural completed by 10 local schools and art groups. Made of multiple panels, the mural depicts images that express what the participants find exciting about Johnson City.
  • May 27 at 9 a.m. at the Doughboy Statue, Memorial Park Community Center amphitheater, 510 Bert St.: The Kings Mountain Post 24 will conduct a dedication to honor all who served in the defense of or nation since 1974.
  • May 19 at 3 p.m. at First Presbyterian Church, 105 South Boone St.: The Appalachian Men’s Ensemble (AMEn), an all-male vocal ensemble, will present a concert titled “On the Move.” The concert theme was chosen to correspond with the 150th anniversary of the founding of Johnson City in 1869. To commemorate this milestone, AMEn will perform a wide variety of songs relating to trains in honor of the historical connection of the Tri-Cities region to the railroad. Concert selections will come from a wide variety of genres, including jazz, gospel, bluegrass, and folk. The choir will also premiere a new arrangement of “Get On Board!” by Lou Dyar, written specifically to commemorate Johnson City’s 2019 sesquicentennial. 

For more information about the yearlong sesquicentennial celebration, visit www.jctn150.com or follow @jctn150 (Johnson City 150 — Sesquicentennial Celebration) on Facebook.

CONTACT:    Ann Marie French
                             423.434.6021
                             afrench@johnsoncitytn.org

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May 09, 2019

City earns TDEC water system approval score of 99

Johnson City’s water system again has earned a Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC) sanitary survey score of 99. Water systems must earn a 95 or higher to be considered approved. Johnson City’s previous score of 99 came in 2017.

 This process occurs approximately every 18-24 months and involves a multi-day onsite inspection by TDEC personnel. Areas of focus and grading include: system management and operation; operator compliance; sources of water; treatment of water; monitoring and data verification; finished water storage; and distribution and cross-connection control.

 Since the last survey, the City has reinvested in water line replacements throughout the service area and other major projects including:

  • Tannery Knob reservoir replacement - $4 million
  • Austin Springs  area water transmission line - $1.75 million
  • Bunker Hill reservoir replacement - $400,000
  • Ford Creek area water service expansion - $700,000

 “The City Commission’s committed investment is critical to keeping the system operating and allowing us to deliver services without interruption,” said Tom Witherspoon, director of Water and Sewer Services.

Johnson City operates a water system in portions of four counties through a 966-mile pipe network from two water sources. The system, which includes two treatment plants and 106 water facilities, has received consecutive approvals for more than 40 years.

 “Safe, clean drinking water is a priority. There are far more pieces and parts to operating a water system than most people realize,” Witherspoon said. “Our staff does a tremendous job ensuring that every detail of our system is in compliance with regulatory standards, and we are pleased to have the hard work of our employees recognized by TDEC.”

 

CONTACT:    Tom Witherspoon, director
                             Water and Sewer Services
                             423.434.6062

 

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May 09, 2019

Senior Services hosts "50 Years of Spaceflight, from the Moon to . . . Mars?"

Senior Services at Memorial Park Community Center, 510 Bert St., invites those 18 and older to celebrate the 50-year anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing from 10:30-11:30 a.m. on Thursday, May 23.

Dr. Gary Henson, with ETSU’s Department of Physics, Astronomy and Geology, will return to MPCC to lead a free, fun, informative and interactive class on spaceflight throughout the years.

Register in person at MPCC or by calling 423-434-6237.

CONTACT:    John Harrell, senior services program coordinator
                             Parks and Recreation
                             423.434.6229

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May 08, 2019

Johnson City Parks and Recreation to celebrate 75th Anniversary

If yesteryear’s recreational trailblazers could see what the Johnson City Parks and Recreation Department has accomplished, they likely would be shocked.

Parks and Recreation celebrates its remarkable 75 years of serving citizens this month, marking the occasion with a public celebration noon-2 p.m. on Saturday, May 18 at the 67,000-square-foot, multigenerational Memorial Park Community Center. Candyland Carnival will offer old-fashioned games, rock climbing, face painting, candy station, 75th birthday cupcakes, a magician and balloon artist, entertainment and inflatables.

The Parks and Recreation Board was established on May 18, 1944, when city leaders approved an ordinance to organize recreation activities and programs being held on makeshift playing fields and in warehouses.

Today, that purpose and commitment to the community remains rock solid and continues to blossom. The department now provides a growing number of widely recognized and award-winning facilities and programs, and the journey is constantly in motion.

“It is truly amazing to see how our park system and program offerings have grown over the past 75 years,” Parks and Recreation Director James Ellis said. “This growth has occurred due to the countless number of volunteers, civic groups and the tremendous support from city management and our elected officials. Whether it be active or passive recreation, it is extremely important to our citizens and park patrons.

“Our department strives to stay abreast of current trends and provide quality services on a daily basis. What began as a small recreation program in 1944 has now grown into a diverse recreation, golf and senior program with offerings for toddlers up to and including our senior population. We look forward to continuing to provide these services and more in the future.”

City funds, as well as individual, business and civic club donations, launched the Parks and Recreation Department with a $12,600 budget – a far cry from the department’s 2018 budget of nearly $6 million.

Under the heading, “You Can Help,” that first budget report listed wants and needs, such as constructing a neighborhood recreation building for banquets, basketball and volleyball. One of the first amenities offered: a small concession stand cobbled together from an empty piano box.

Howard Johnson, named the first recreation director in 1944, took the helm at a time when the city had two public parks, a football stadium and a public pool. The area around the former Memorial Stadium known as the Keystone Fields was the department’s first base of operations.                                                                     

Youth programs were typically staged at school facilities, and skating and boxing had gained a foothold at Burley Tobacco and other warehouses along Legion and Main streets.

Though the fields may not have been groomed, and the exact rules not well known, tag football became a favorite for Johnson City youngsters. A league that played mainly on Saturdays included teams from West Side, Stratton, Keystone, Columbus Powell, North Side, Henry Johnson and South Side schools.

When West Side made it to the top of the heap, they were nicknamed the “West End Kids.” Their prowess earned them what likely was the first departmental garment: a maroon T-shirt with large white letters across the front that read, “Johnson City Parks.”  

At an exhibition baseball game at Cardinal Park, more than $970 was raised to start construction of the original youth center. The Langston Civic Recreation Club also stepped up after inviting Johnson to explain the park and recreation board’s goals. Students at the former Langston High School painted shuffleboard numbers on their gym floor for use in fundraisers. The club also staged boxing matches and gathered pledges for outdoor activities at George Washington Carver Park.   

The Surjoi Pool, operated by the private sector, was a community cooling off spot on land donated by Louis H. Gump. He later donated the pool and land to the city for use as a community pool and recreation area. Further development at the site led to the creation of Carver Recreation Center.

An encounter at a 1947 city league basketball game turned out to be the genesis of the city’s Recreation Club and Legion Recreation Center. Tennessee Silk Mill’s team was playing a team from the Gloria Rayon Plant when J.J. Jilton, the mill’s superintendent, turned to Johnson and said, “This is a great game. It’s too bad it has to be played in the cracker box.” Johnson replied, “Are you willing to help build a better place?”

The Parks and Recreation department continues to support the community through regular expansion of park facilities and amenities, recreational programming, entertainment, athletics, senior services and a variety of outdoor offerings. In 2018, Winged Deer Park was named the state’s “Complex of the Year” by the USA Softball of Tennessee.

Johnson City Parks and Recreation now operates 24 parks, one multigenerational community center and four recreation centers, four indoor basketball courts, one mountain bike park, 23 lighted tennis courts, one dog park, six swimming pools, 17 play structures, one boardwalk and lakefront special-use area with two boat ramps.

The tally also includes two amphitheaters, six sand volleyball courts, 30 picnic shelters, about 20 miles of hiking/walking trails, one football stadium, one baseball stadium, one skateboard park, one historical cabin, one tree arboretum, five multi-use athletic fields, 10 youth baseball fields, 10 softball fields,12 soccer fields, one 18-hole golf course, one 18-hole disc golf course, one splash park, 10 pickleball courts and other special use facilities on more than 1,200 acres. 

The City has also purchased the 36-acre Wilson Property adjacent to Winged Deer Park to expand the number of athletic fields and is poised to assume ownership of the Tannery Knobs Bike Park in the near future.

 

Notable moments in Johnson City Parks and Recreation history

1950 – Legion Recreation Center and what is now TVA Credit Union Ballpark constructed. At the time, the ballpark was home to a Cincinnati Reds farm team.

1958 – Lion Park established with a lighted youth baseball field, concessions and restroom. Carver Recreation Center built.

1959 – Legion Street Pool opened.

1961 – The first senior citizens group established as a subcommittee of the Parks and Recreation Board. A municipal referendum Dec. 12 passed allowing the city to issue bonds to construct a combined golf course (Pine Oaks Golf Course) and recreation area. 

1972 – Using federal funds, land for Optimist, Neighborhood and Metro-Kiwanis parks purchased.

1974 -- Indoor pool at Freedom Hall constructed.

1976 – The Robert Young Cabin, one of the city’s oldest standing dwellings, moved from federal property near Brush Creek to Optimist Park.

1977 – First youth soccer league formed.

1982 – Paul Christman Park, the city’s only “tot lot park,” a small playground for children, opened. Friendship Gardens at Metro-Kiwanis Park dedicated in August. The gardens are a tribute to our sister city Guaranda, Ecuador, as well as two additional cities, Ronneby, Sweden and Rybinsk, Russia.

1991 – Winged Deer Park, a 200-acre regional park, opened in north Johnson City.

1995 – The boardwalk at Winged Deer Park dedicated.

1998 – Willow Springs Park opened. Robert Young Cabin relocated to Winged Deer Park.

2000 – Jaycee Park renamed Carnegie Park.

2002 – Civitan Park dedicated on April 19.

2005 – The new 18,000-square-foot Carver Recreation Center dedicated on Nov. 20.

2010 – Memorial Stadium demolished.

2012 – Memorial Park Community Center, a 67,000-square-foot center opens.

2015 – Legion Recreation Center demolished.

2017 – The all-inclusive playground and splash pad at Rotary Park opened on April 4.

2018 – Jacob’s Nature Park at Sinking Creek certified as a Wildlife Habitat by the National Wildlife Federation.

2019 – Time capsule to be buried at Powell Square Park on May 16. Capsule will be unearthed to celebrate the 100th birthday in 2044.

 

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May 06, 2019

City hires staff attorney

The City of Johnson City recently welcomed Sunny Sandos to the position of staff attorney.

Sandos most recently served as the Executive Director of Planned Giving at East Tennessee State University, where she was responsible for planned gift arrangements through the drafting of proposals for trusts, gift annuities, wills, life insurance policies and life estates. Sandos also owns Sandos Law, PLLC, which serves the entire state of Tennessee through a web-based practice focused on estate planning. Her experience also includes seven years in private practice, with an emphasis on civil litigation and municipal law.

Sandos is a faculty member of the National Business Institute in estate planning and previously served as an adjunct professor at ETSU. In 2018, she was recognized as a Fellow in Charitable Estate Planning (FCEP). The designation acknowledges her commitment to a nationally recognized standard of ethics.

Sandos now serves as legal counsel for the City and is responsible for the interpretation of laws, rulings and regulations in regard to municipal government.

“Having previously served on the Johnson City Planning Commission as well as the Historic Zoning Commission, Sunny is extremely knowledgeable about City affairs and has a strong desire to serve,” said City Manager Pete Peterson. “We are fortunate to have an attorney with that background in addition to her professional experience.”

Sandos, who grew up in Greeneville, holds a bachelor’s in Mass Communications from East Tennessee State University, graduating Summa Cum Laude. During her time at ETSU, she spent a session in Nashville as a legislative intern with the 104th Tennessee General Assembly.  The summer following graduation, she served as a congressional intern to former Tennessee Representative William “Bill” Jenkins.

While earning her doctorate of jurisprudence from the Walter F. George School of Law at Mercer University in Macon, Ga., she received the award for Outstanding Achievement in Legal Writing, was a member of the Negotiation Team and served as the school’s representative to the American Bar Association. She also founded the Sports and Entertainment Law Society during her time as a student.

“I am excited to be able to combine my professional interests with my personal desire to serve the community,” said Sandos. “I look forward to being a part of the many positive efforts taking place in the City.”

Sandos currently serves as chairperson of the Munsey Memorial United Methodist Church Planned Giving and Endowment Council. She also serves as treasurer for the Washington County Bar Association. Sandos is a member of 100+ Tri-Cities Women Who Care and the Washington County Women’s Leadership Society. She resides in Johnson City with her husband and their three children.

 

CONTACT:    Beth Greene, executive assistant
                             Administration
                             423.434.6002

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May 06, 2019

It's all in a Name: Encouraging Citizen Input

It’s all in a Name: Encouraging Citizen Input

The effort to name our region continues to move forward, and the next step is to ask our citizens. It is important we hear from those who live and work in our region. They have relevant stories to add and insight to offer, which will assist North Star, the consulting firm, in developing a name recommendation that works for the region. While one opinion is simply that - an opinion - a collection of opinions can be powerful.

Please take a moment to complete the survey here. It will take about 15 minutes, and only one completed survey is allowed per IP address. The link will be available until Wednesday, May 22.

For more information on the regional naming initiative, please visit www.nameourregion.com.

Alicia Phelps
Executive Director
Northeast TN Tourism Association (NETTA)
423-262-0238
alicia@northeasttennessee.org

Heather Cook
Director of Marketing and Public Relations
City of Kingsport
4
23-502-0541
heathercook@kingsporttn.gov

Keisha Shoun
Director of Communications and Marketing
City of Johnson City
423-557-5177
kshoun@johnsoncitytn.org

Terri Talbert
Director of Community Relations
City of Bristol
423-989-5500 Ext 2055
Tsmith-talbert@bristoltn.org

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Previously released – April 26, 2019

It’s all in a Name: An Effort to Unite Our Region

What do you think of, when you think of home? Our mountains, our history, all our people with unique stories—all of that’s home.

It’s hard to put a name to, but that’s why we’re here. We want to create a name for our region that evokes all that pride and common experience—that sense of home—not just for the people that live here, but for people who might want to visit, start a business in or move to our region. We want a name that honors what we have and invites others to come share and help grow it.

That’s why our partners in Northeast Tennessee and Southwest Virginia have recently begun a research-driven, community-wide naming initiative to help us stand out as we look to the past for guidance and grow toward the future. And we want everyone’s input, because it’s our region. This process works best when our communities, religious groups, organizations and businesses all unite to share their thoughts, feelings and ideas about our identity.

The best identities are grounded in reality but aspirational in vision. They are uncovered and brought to life through a process that brings people together, and they serve the interests of diverse groups in the community that have varying agendas. By working together, we can ensure that the name we choose will be a true representation of our region, our pride in the past and our hope for what’s to come—of our home.

To bring outside objectivity to this initiative, regional partners are working with Nashville-based North Star Destination Strategies. North Star has helped develop community names and brands for more than 200 communities in 45 states nationwide, including Downtown New Orleans and Johnson City, Tennessee.

To begin, qualitative and quantitative research will paint a thorough picture of where the region is today. This research is underway and includes an assessment of the environment; perceptions of visitors, neighboring communities, residents and stakeholders; and a review of current communications and the competition. 

The next step will be our community survey. Anyone can join our process by participating in this survey, which will be released in the next few weeks. Citizen and stakeholder input is critical to the success of the research effort.

The statistically significant body of qualitative and quantitative data we’ll get from this research and opinion gathering will ensure our new name recommendation is informed by the reality of all perceptions—from residents, consumers and stakeholders alike. The more research we do, the more valid the final recommendation will be.

Giving our home a name takes time and effort, and it should—because it’s home, and it’s important. Our hope is that this process will be another strong point for continued partnership and growth in our region that benefits residents, visitors, businesses, and beyond.

For more information and to stay up to date on the region’s naming initiative, please visit www.nameourregion.com.

 

May 02, 2019

MPCC to celebrate JC Parks' 75th anniversary with Candyland Carnival

Memorial Park Community Center, 510 Bert St., will celebrate Johnson City Parks and Recreation’s 75th anniversary with a free spring carnival for all ages. Activities will include old-fashioned games, face painting, a candy station, birthday cupcakes, a magician, a balloon artist, entertainment and inflatables. Concessions will be sold.

The event will be held noon-2 p.m. Saturday, May 18. No preregistration is required. 

For more information, please call 423-434-5749.

CONTACT:    Kelly Finney, supervisor
                             Memorial Park Community Center
                             423.434.5758

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May 02, 2019

City of Johnson City wins 2018-2019 High-Performance Government Award

Cartegraph, a leader in high-performance government software and services, has awarded the City of Johnson City its 2018-2019 High-Performance Government Award. The prestigious honor recognizes local government organizations that leverage modern operations management technology to solve problems, work smarter and improve their communities.

The City of Johnson City was among 10 municipalities to earn the national award based on their accomplishments using Cartegraph software in several core areas, including infrastructure management and improvement, operational efficiency, citizen engagement and data-driven decision-making.

“In our first year with this product, City employees have embraced this technology to rethink the way we operate, allowing us to better serve our citizens,” said Lisa Sagona, director of Information Technology for the City of Johnson City. “Having Cartegraph acknowledge these efforts is immensely satisfying.”

In its adoption of Cartegraph, the City integrated unrelated applications into a single solution to manage the workflow of multiple departments. The departments of Public Works and Water and Sewer Services have 240 employees using Cartegraph. These users complete an average of 1,000 tasks each week. Two other departments, Facilities Management and Parks and Recreation, are expected to begin using the software this year.

“The credit really goes to the employees on the frontline,” said Link Elmore, geospatial manager in the Information Technology department. “Individually and collectively our employees had to make modifications to the way we do business. To have Cartegraph recognize their success in doing so confirms that the City is moving in the right direction.”

This software allows the City of Johnson City to build an asset inventory and track related work history. As more data is generated employees will be able to make data driven decisions to deploy maintenance resources more efficiently.

 

CONTACT:    Link Elmore, geospatial manager
                              Information Technology
                             423.434.5783

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April 26, 2019

It's all in a Name: An Effort to Unite Our Region

What do you think of, when you think of home? Our mountains, our history, all our people with unique stories—all of that’s home.

It’s hard to put a name to, but that’s why we’re here. We want to create a name for our region that evokes all that pride and common experience—that sense of home—not just for the people that live here, but for people who might want to visit, start a business in or move to our region. We want a name that honors what we have and invites others to come share and help grow it.

That’s why our partners in Northeast Tennessee and Southwest Virginia have recently begun a research-driven, community-wide naming initiative to help us stand out as we look to the past for guidance and grow toward the future. And we want everyone’s input, because it’s our region. This process works best when our communities, religious groups, organizations and businesses all unite to share their thoughts, feelings and ideas about our identity.

The best identities are grounded in reality but aspirational in vision. They are uncovered and brought to life through a process that brings people together, and they serve the interests of diverse groups in the community that have varying agendas. By working together, we can ensure that the name we choose will be a true representation of our region, our pride in the past and our hope for what’s to come—of our home.

To bring outside objectivity to this initiative, regional partners are working with Nashville-based North Star Destination Strategies. North Star has helped develop community names and brands for more than 200 communities in 45 states nationwide, including Downtown New Orleans and Johnson City, Tennessee.

 To begin, qualitative and quantitative research will paint a thorough picture of where the region is today. This research is underway and includes an assessment of the environment; perceptions of visitors, neighboring communities, residents and stakeholders; and a review of current communications and the competition.

The next step will be our community survey. Anyone can join our process by participating in this survey, which will be released in the next few weeks. Citizen and stakeholder input is critical to the success of the research effort.

The statistically significant body of qualitative and quantitative data we’ll get from this research and opinion gathering will ensure our new name recommendation is informed by the reality of all perceptions—from residents, consumers and stakeholders alike. The more research we do, the more valid the final recommendation will be.

Giving our home a name takes time and effort, and it should—because it’s home, and it’s important. Our hope is that this process will be another strong point for continued partnership and growth in our region that benefits residents, visitors, businesses, and beyond.

For more information and to stay up to date on the region’s naming initiative, please visit www.nameourregion.com.

Heather Cook
Director of Marketing and Public Relations
City of Kingsport
423-502-0541
heathercook@kingsporttn.gov

Keisha Shoun
Director of Communications and Marketing
City of Johnson City
423-557-5177
kshoun@johnsoncitytn.org

Terri Talbert
Director of Community Relations
City of Bristol
423-989-5500 Ext 2055
Tsmith-talbert@bristoltn.org

Alicia Phelps
Executive Director
Northeast TN Tourism Association (NETTA)
423-262-0238
alicia@northeasttennessee.org

April 25, 2019

Volunteers needed for JC Regional Planning Commission

The Johnson City Board of Commissioners will consider two appointments to the Johnson City Regional Planning Commission. One appointment will be to a full term, which will run from July 2019 until July 2022. The second appointment will fulfill the remainder of a current term set to expire in June 2021.

The Planning Commission meets the second Tuesday of each month at 6 p.m. and is responsible for administering the City’s Subdivision Regulations and for advising the City Commission on matters of long-range development policy, zoning and annexation.

Any citizen who is interested in serving as a member of the Regional Planning Commission may submit an application online at www.johnsoncitytn.org/boards or by calling 423-434-6009 for an application to be mailed or faxed. For additional information regarding the Regional Planning Commission, please contact Nicole Lawrence at 423-434-6071. Applications will be accepted through Friday, May 24.

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April 25, 2019

BOC budget work sessions set

The Johnson City Board of Commissioners will hold the following budget work sessions:

  • 2 p.m. on Thursday, May 2
  • 2 p.m. on Thursday, May 9
  • 2 p.m. on Thursday, May 16
  • 6 p.m. on Monday, May 20
  • 2 p.m. on Thursday, May 23

 All work sessions will be held in the Administrative Conference Room of the Municipal and Safety Building, 601 E. Main St. 

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April 24, 2019

Peoples Street and Greenline Road construction to begin next week

Traffic congestion at the intersection of Peoples Street and Greenline Road soon will be alleviated with the addition of a traffic signal and increased turn lanes.

The City of Johnson City’s Public Works department will begin the three-month reconstruction project Monday, April 22. Crews will be working weekdays 7 a.m.-3 p.m. In addition to the intersection, the segment of Peoples Street between Chuck E. Cheese’s and Best Buy will also require reconstruction.

The project will convert the crossing from a four-way stop to a lighted intersection. It will increase the number of right-turn lanes from Greenline Road to Peoples Street as well as increase the number of left-turn lanes from Peoples Street to Greenline Road.

“Peoples Street is already a high traffic area and we’ve studied ways to improve flow for a while now,” said Public Works Director Phil Pindzola. “With additional development on the horizon at the former Kmart property, it’s important to prepare for even more volume.”

Traffic controls will be in place to accommodate lane closures throughout the period of construction but drivers should expect delays in the area and use alternative routes if possible. Access to Home Depot, Best Buy and stores in Johnson City Crossing will be best accessed through Knob Creek Road.

After work hours, excavation areas will be covered with plates and opened to traffic. Drivers are asked to use extreme caution in the area.

Peoples-Greenline

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April 22, 2019

JCPD seeking community participation in Torch Run Thursday

The Johnson City Police Department is inviting the community to join them in the Law Enforcement Torch Run® for the Special Olympics at 8:45 a.m. Thursday, April 25.

Known as “Guardians of the Flame,” law enforcement members and Special Olympics athletes carry the “Flame of Hope” to the East Tennessee State University Mini-Dome to mark the beginning of the summer games for Tennessee’s Area 3, which encompasses the counties of Washington, Carter, Unicoi, and Johnson. Every law enforcement agency within Area 3 has been invited to attend.

“The mission of the Torch Run is to raise awareness and funds for the Special Olympics,” said Officer Brittany Eberhardt. “Donations will be used to help send local athletes to participate in the Summer Games. Our department really enjoys participating in this event, and we would like to see members of the community join us this year.”

Participants should report to the back parking lot of the Johnson City Police Department, 601 E. Main St., at 8:45 a.m. As a group, participants will jog the 2.2 miles to the Mini-Dome. A shuttle will be available to take participants back to the police station at the end of the event.

T-shirt orders are still being accepted. Made by BoomTown, the tees are a tri-blend material and available for $18 in small, medium, large and extra-large. The shirts are also available in sizes 2X and 3X for $20. Proceeds go toward Special Olympics.

For additional information about the event or to order a T-shirt, please contact Eberhardt at beberhardt@johnsoncitytn.org.

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April 22, 2019

City Commission sets strategic planning workshop

The Johnson City Board of Commissioners will hold a strategic planning workshop at 6 p.m. Wednesday (April 24) in the Administrative Conference Room of the Municipal and Safety Building, 601 E. Main St. 

 

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April 19, 2019

Sesquicentennial Commission to host Henry Johnson's Birthday Bash

The Sesquicentennial Commission is celebrating our founding father’s birthday with an 1800s-themed birthday party at King Commons, 112 N. Commerce St., 3-5 p.m. Saturday, April 27.

Henry Johnson was an entrepreneur and is credited with the founding of Johnson City. In addition to being a long-serving postmaster, he operated a store, hotel and the first railroad depot in the City. In 1870, Johnson was elected as the City’s first mayor.

“This event is full of activities for people of all ages that are reminiscent of the time period when Johnson City was founded,” said Sesquicentennial Commissioner Dianna Cantler. “Those in attendance will enjoy live music as well as learn dances and play games popular during the 1800s.”

Ed Snodderly, owner of The Down Home, is one of several musicians performing during the event. Robin Beals, owner of Dance Productions Royale, will offer dance lessons to attendees. A variety of games, including Johnson’s favorite pastime of checkers, will also be available. In addition to the games, children can participate in arts and crafts activities. The City of Johnson City will provide attendees an opportunity to make a video message for inclusion in the 2019 time capsule. Birthday cake and root beer floats will be served.

A downtown scavenger hunt, beginning at 11 a.m. Friday, April 26 will culminate at the Henry Johnson Birthday Bash. Two versions of the scavenger hunt — 12 and under or 13 and older — will be available. Depending on age, participants will be asked to find 10 or 20 downtown locations based on clues developed by eighth-grade students in Liberty Bell’s Beta Club. Clue cards can be picked up at Johnson City Brewing, Atlantic Ale House, Trek Bike Shop and Owls Nest. The cards will have a space to answer the clues but extra points will be awarded to participants who snap at least five pictures and post them on social media with the hashtag #HJBirthdayBash. All answer cards must be submitted at the Henry Johnson Birthday Bash by 3 p.m. on Saturday. Multiple prizes will be awarded.

Free parking will be available in the Northeast State Community College parking garage. The entrance to the parking garage is located on Buffalo Street.

For more information about the yearlong sesquicentennial celebration, visit www.jctn150.com or follow @jctn150 (Johnson City 150 — Sesquicentennial Celebration) on Facebook.

 

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April 19, 2019

Peoples Street and Greenline Road construction to begin next week

Traffic congestion at the intersection of Peoples Street and Greenline Road soon will be alleviated with the addition of a traffic signal and increased turn lanes.

The City of Johnson City’s Public Works department will begin the three-month reconstruction project Monday, April 22. Crews will be working weekdays 7 a.m.-3 p.m. In addition to the intersection, the segment of Peoples Street between Chuck E. Cheese’s and Best Buy will also require reconstruction.

The project will convert the crossing from a four-way stop to a lighted intersection. It will increase the number of right-turn lanes from Greenline Road to Peoples Street as well as increase the number of left-turn lanes from Peoples Street to Greenline Road.

“Peoples Street is already a high traffic area and we’ve studied ways to improve flow for a while now,” said Public Works Director Phil Pindzola. “With additional development on the horizon at the former Kmart property, it’s important to prepare for even more volume.”

Traffic controls will be in place to accommodate lane closures throughout the period of construction but drivers should expect delays in the area and use alternative routes if possible. Access to Home Depot, Best Buy and stores in Johnson City Crossing will be best accessed through Knob Creek Road.

After work hours, excavation areas will be covered with plates and opened to traffic. Drivers are asked to use extreme caution in the area.

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April 11, 2019

Great American Cleanup scheduled for April 20

Citizens are encouraged to dispose of unwanted household items from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday, April 20 during the Great American Cleanup. Drop-off locations will be at the corner of Legion Street and State of Franklin Road and Freedom Hall at Parking Lot I (near the vocational school).

Acceptable items include household items not normally collected by City crews as well as recyclable materials such as metals, e-waste, cardboard, aluminum, and paper.

Prohibited items include air conditioners, hazardous waste, paint, and tires. Loads larger than pickup truck size are not allowed.

Please call Solid Waste Services at 423-975-2792 with any questions.

CONTACT:    Kathy Harsh, manager
                             Public Works – Solid Waste Services
                            423.975.2792

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April 11, 2019

Concord Street to close next week for sewer line replacement

Two blocks of Concord Street will be closed from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. the week of April 15 for a sewer line replacement.

The closure will affect 1714-1716 Concord St. The northern section of Concord will be accessible from Merrywood Drive. The southern section will be accessible from Cherokee Road. No through traffic will be allowed on Concord Street during work hours. After work hours, excavation areas will be covered with plates and opened to traffic.

CONTACT:    Jonathan Lane, civil engineer
                             Water and Sewer Services
                             423.975.9269

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April 09, 2019

City Commission sets strategic planning session

The Johnson City Board of Commissioners will hold a strategic planning session at 10 a.m. Thursday (April 11) in the Administrative Conference Room of the Municipal and Safety Building, 601 E. Main St. 

 CONTACT:    Beth Greene, executive assistant
                              Administration
                              423.434.6002

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April 08, 2019

Registration opens for JC Parks Summer Art Camps 

Memorial Park Community Center, 510 Bert St., has opened registration for four popular art camps. The following camps for 4- and 5-year-olds will educate, entertain and nurture creativity:

Cupcakes and Pretty Pancakes: June 12, 13, 14. 9 a.m.-noon. Cost: $50. Join the fashion-food world and create tasty cupcakes and pancakes. Decorate chocolate cupcakes with ice cream cones, icing, sprinkles and fun toppings. Make pancake sculptures topped with warm syrup. Enjoy arts and crafts and fun games.

Beach Boys Camp: June 19, 20, 21. 9 a.m.-noon. Cost $50. Venture under the deep blue sea and throw your towel on the gritty, moist sand. Create dodging 3D sea creatures, racing rainbow fish, high-five an octopus and prickle a spiny sea urchin using a wide selection of arts and crafts supplies. Snacks will be provided.

Playdate and Messy Mate: June 26, 27, 28. 9 a.m.-noon. Cost: $60. Play stations will be loaded with dress-up items, games, make-a-snack items, videos, reading materials, relaxing ideas and painting fun. Snacks will be provided.   

Lemonade Camp: July 17, 18, 19. Cost: $40. Campers will design and build a lemonade stand with flair and appeal, make signs, choose their recipes and use their imaginations to come up with creative ways to draw customers. Proceeds from lemonade sales will be donated to the Jump Start Seed Swap and Pollination Day program, which educates the public about soil, seeds and plants we use in everyday life. Snacks will be provided.

Register in person at MPCC, online at myjcparks.org or by calling 423-434-5749.

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April 04, 2019

Applications being accepted for Board of Dwelling Standards and Review

The Johnson City Board of Commissioners will be considering one, three-year appointment to the Board of Dwelling Standards and Review. This board, which meets the fourth Thursday of each month at 7 p.m. (except November and December), determines action regarding substandard housing and/or commercial structures within the city limits. The board responds to complaints submitted by citizens, the Code Enforcement staff, and/or a board member.

Any citizen who is interested in serving as a member of the Board of Dwelling Standards and Review may submit an application online at www.johnsoncitytn.org/boards or by calling 423-434-6009 for an application to be mailed or faxed. For additional information regarding the Board of Dwelling Standards and Review, please contact the Code Enforcement Division at 423-434-6048. Applications will be accepted through April 26.

 CONTACT:    Sheri Keenan, administrative coordinator
                              Administration 
                              423.434.6009

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April 01, 2019

Senior Services to offer health and wellness classes

Senior Services at Memorial Park Community Center, 510 Bert St., will provide the following free health services in April:  

  • Osteoporosis – Together We Can Beat It: Thursday, April 11, 11 a.m.-noon. Osteoporosis is now a treatable disease, and the risk of fracture can be reduced by half within a few years of treatment. ETSU Osteoporosis Center Director Ronald Hamdy, MD, FRCP and FACP, will provide the latest information about Osteoporosis in this informative talk. All ages.
  • Are Your Allergies In Full Bloom? Thursday, April 11, 11 a.m.-12:45 p.m. The Allergy, Asthma & Sinus Center will provide a free skin test designed to detect six of the most common allergens. A nurse practitioner will be on hand for brief consultations and to provide helpful information on allergy testing and treatment. All ages.
  • Understanding Parkinson’s: Friday, April 12, noon-1 p.m. Parkinson’s disease affects movement as well as many other systems within the body, and symptoms can vary from person to person. Neurologist Dr. Robb Whaley will give an overview of Parkinson’s, from diagnosis, treatment options and new promising scientific discoveries. All ages.
  • Regenerative Health: Tuesday, April 16, 1-2 p.m. Regenerative health medicine involves the use of naturally occurring cells within the body to heal itself. Dr. Tim Dunne, DC, will discuss this comprehensive, alternative treatment that may help those who suffer from chronic knee pain, shoulder pain, arthritis, lower back pain, sciatica and neuropathy. All ages. 
  • Diabetes Self-Management: Tuesdays, April 16-May 21, 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. This six-session series will help you better understand diabetes and provide daily tips for improving your numbers and preventing complications. From meal ideas to medications, this series is for anyone with diabetes, as well as the recently diagnosed. All ages.
  • Growing Older with Purpose and Joy: Wednesday, April 17, 10:30-11:30 a.m. Join Beverly Owens, LCSW, as she focuses on living fully, loving joyfully, continually learning and leaving a legacy. Ages 50 and older.

Please register for all programs, and/or seek further information by calling 423-434-6237.

CONTACT:    Deb Fogle, senior services manager
                             Parks and Recreation
                             423.434.6231

March 28, 2019

Tree giveaway, Arbor Day observance scheduled for April 6

Citizens are invited to a tree giveaway on Saturday, April 6 at Metro-Kiwanis Park, 817 Guaranda Drive. The event will begin at 9 a.m., when 1,900 tree seedlings will be handed out on a first-come, first-served basis while supplies last. Varieties offered will include Dogwood, Redbud, Trident Maple, Sweet Bay Magnolia, White Fringe Tree, Saucer Magnolia, Red Maple, Serviceberry and Scarlet Oak. Please note, a limited number of seedlings will be offered to each person attending.

This Arbor Day marks the 19th consecutive year that Johnson City has been named a Tree City USA by the National Arbor Day Foundation. Since 2010, the City’s Public Works department has celebrated Arbor Day by distributing 25,700 to local residents for planting. Maintaining the Tree City USA designation requires the City to have an Arbor Day observance, a tree ordinance, a tree board, and to meet the minimum funding requirements for tree maintenance and planting.

“By participation in the Tree City USA program, Johnson City is able to highlight its commitment to the urban forest for the benefit of citizens and visitors alike,” said Patrick Walding, city forester for the City of Johnson City. “The annual recognition helps draw attention to the fact that trees are an important part of our community.”

 

CONTACT:    Patrick Walding, city forester
                             Public Works – Street Division
                             423.975.2681

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March 26, 2019

Bristol Highway lane closures to remain in place through Wednesday evening

Crews from the City’s Water and Sewer Services department will be performing line maintenance at 3519 Bristol Highway through 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 27.

Two lanes of traffic will be closed from Green Valley Drive to Timberlake Road for the duration of the maintenance. One lane of traffic will be open going southbound on Bristol Highway into Johnson City. Both northbound lanes will remain open.

 

CONTACT:    Michael Manuel, assistant water/wastewater superintendent
                             Water and Sewer Services
                             423.975.2638

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March 22, 2019

Water and sewer line maintenance to impact traffic on Bristol Highway

Crews from the City’s Water and Sewer Services department will be performing line maintenance at 3519 Bristol Highway beginning at 7 p.m. Sunday, March 24 and continuing through 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 26.

Two lanes of traffic will be closed from Green Valley Drive to Timberlake Road for the duration of the maintenance. One lane of traffic will be open going southbound on Bristol Highway into Johnson City. Both northbound lanes will remain open.

 CONTACT:    Michael Manuel, assistant water/wastewater superintendent
                              Water and Sewer Services
                              423.975.2638

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March 22, 2019

Johnson City announces new recycling guidelines for plastics

RecyclingChanges - Copy


The City of Johnson City has adjusted the types of plastics it collects curbside and at drop-off sites to align with the requirements of a new recycling vendor. The change in vendors occurred in mid-March following the closure of Tri-Cities Waste Paper, which previously bought the City’s cardboard and plastic recyclables. No changes have been made to the other items collected by the City.

 “The recycling market is ever-changing for a variety of reasons and right now, we’re finding that some of the plastics we were able to accept before are simply not being taken by vendors,” said Phil Pindzola, director of Public Works. “Thankfully – while other municipalities across the country have had to stop recycling plastic altogether – the way in which we collect has allowed us to make adjustments and keep the majority of the types of plastics we collect in the recycling stream.”

 Residents can help ensure that items are diverted from the landfill by placing only approved items in the recycle bin and making sure the approved items have been cleaned properly and have lids and/or caps removed.

“We are hopeful that we will be able to expand our plastics collection at a later date,” Pindzola said. “Until then, we are asking our citizens to pay extra attention to the plastics they are placing in the recycle bin.

 The new list of accepted plastic items is limited to milk jugs, water bottles, juice containers, soda bottles, laundry detergent containers, fabric softener containers, bleach bottles and windshield solvent bottles marked with a plastic code of “1” or “2.” All other containers, even those marked with a “1” or “2,” will not be accepted and must be placed in the trash. The new guidelines apply to both curbside and drop-off sites.

 In Fiscal Year 2018, the City of Johnson City collected and recycled about 6,000 tons of material. Most of the material was cardboard (3,171 tons) and paper (1,322 tons), which are the easiest items to recycle due to market demand. The City also recycled 640 tons of glass, 309 tons of plastic and 31 tons of aluminum. The remaining tonnage came from garbage carts, scrap metal, batteries, e-waste, and oil.

 “Being diligent about recycling the other items we accept – especially paper and cardboard – is a great way citizens can contribute to the recycling program,” Pindzola added. “We also encourage everyone to reduce plastic waste like straws, bags, and packaging as much as possible.”

 Recycling Guide

 PLASTICS

 RECYCLE: Milk jugs, water bottles, juice containers, soda bottles, laundry detergent containers, fabric softener containers, bleach bottles and windshield solvent bottles. All items must have a plastic code of “1” or “2.”
COLLECTION: Empty contents, rinse and crush; remove lid or cap.
NON-RECYCLABLE: Above listed items with plastic codes other than “1” or “2.” Other plastics not listed above. Styrofoam, plastic wrap and bags, butter and yogurt bowls, motor oil/antifreeze containers.

 CARDBOARD and PAPER  

RECYCLE: Phone books, newspapers, magazines and inserts, catalogs, paperback books, discarded mail, cereal boxes, soft drink cartons, cardboard, paper and grayboard (cereal boxes, etc.).  
COLLECTION: Remove inner materials and flatten. Flatten corrugated cardboard and reduce to 24” widths.  
NON�€�RECYCLABLE: Shredded paper. Do not include paper products in inclement weather conditions.  

ALUMINUM CANS

RECYCLE: Beverage cans.  
COLLECTION: Empty contents.  
NON�€�RECYCLABLE: Food cans, paper and plastic cans, paint cans, buckets and foil plates.  

GLASS

RECYCLE: Clear, green and brown glass.  
COLLECTION: Empty contents and rinse; remove lid.  
NON�€�RECYCLABLE: Light bulbs, plate glass, mirrors, and drinking glasses.

To learn more about the City’s recycling efforts and how to prepare items for collection, visit https://www.johnsoncitytn.org/services/recycling.php

 

CONTACT:    Phil Pindzola, director
                             Public Works
                             423.434.6079

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March 18, 2019

Human Trafficking 102 community event set for Tuesday

The Johnson City/Washington County Family Justice Center (FJC) is partnering with the Community Coalition Against Human Trafficking (CCAHT) to host “Human Trafficking 102” at 5 p.m. on Tuesday (March 19) at Memorial Park Community Center in Johnson City, Tenn.

The program, a follow-up to the “Human Trafficking 101” program offered earlier this year, will provide attendees with detailed instruction on identifying and responding to trafficked individuals. This event is free and open to the public. Attendance at the previous program is not required.

“This training will provide practical tips for identifying exploitation and trauma-informed responses for working and building relationships with individuals who have experienced trafficking,” said presenter Natalie Ivey, director of advocacy and outreach for the Community Coalition Against Human Trafficking. “The audience will gain an appreciation for the reality a trafficked individual might face, which will result in a better understanding of the dynamics of trauma bonds and how social stigmatization contributes to the cycle of exploitation.”

The Family Justice Center is committed to bringing education and advocacy to the community. 

 “Human Trafficking is a topic that is now raising public awareness with news headlines,” said Kelsey Fish, coordinated community response coordinator with FSJ. “We want our community to know that the FJC’s role is to bring education and conversation to the difficult topics like human trafficking, domestic violence, and sexual assault. We want you to know signs of trafficking, that this is something that happens locally and globally, and that we are here to help.” 

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About CCAHT

The Community Coalition Against Human Trafficking was founded in 2009, after a severe need for resources and help for human trafficking victims was identified in East Tennessee. The organization serves to build awareness, conduct trainings, engage in successful intervention, and provide adequate aftercare for the victims. CCAHT prides themselves on being client focused, collaborative, and passionate about their cause. For more information, visit their website at ccaht.org.

About FJC

The Johnson City/Washington County Family Justice Center was founded in 2016, and seeks to provide services for victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. The FJC works with multiple partner agencies throughout the community, and can provide services such as: Advocacy, Safety Planning, Orders of Protection, Civil-legal Support, and Counseling. The Family Justice Center prides itself on being a safe location for individuals to ask questions and seek help for themselves or others. For more information, visit the FJC Facebook page or call 423-722-3720.

CONTACT:     Kelsey Fish, coordinated community response coordinator
                              Family Justice Center
                              423.722.3720
                              kfish@johnsoncitytn.org

March 15, 2019

Sesquicentennial Commission to host Business and Industry Showcase

The Sesquicentennial Commission is celebrating business and industry in Johnson City throughout the month of March.

A Business and Industry Showcase will be held 4-7 p.m. Wednesday (March 20) at the Carnegie Hotel. More than 25 businesses will be on hand to speak with community members about their history and the contributions they have made to Johnson City.

“Our goal with this event is to spotlight some of the businesses and industries that have helped shape Johnson City,” said Sesquicentennial Commissioner Jenna Moore. “We want to show where we’ve been, where we are and where we’re headed. We also hope folks will come by and leave with a little more knowledge about what all is made right here in our community.”

In addition to booths featuring companies such as General Shale, AO Smith and StartUp Tri-Cities, the City of Johnson City will provide attendees an opportunity to make a video message for inclusion in the 2019 time capsule. Local restaurants will provide food and drink at the event.

Other events to be held this month include:

  • The Business & Biscuits professional development series sponsored by Young Professionals of the Tri-Cities. Lisa Carter, CEO of Niswonger Children's Hospital will be the featured speaker. This event will be held 6:30-8 p.m. Tuesday, March 26 at Maple Street Biscuit Company.  
  • The Regional Business Excellence Awards Luncheon sponsored by the Chamber of Commerce serving Johnson City-Jonesborough-Washington County TN. This event will be held March 28 at Millennium Centre.  Find more information at the Chamber’s website, http://www.johnsoncitytnchamber.com/regional-business-excellence-awards/.

For more information about the yearlong sesquicentennial celebration, visit www.jctn150.com or follow @jctn150 (Johnson City 150 — Sesquicentennial Celebration) on Facebook.

 

CONTACT:    Jenna Moore, Sesquicentennial Commissioner
                             Sesquicentennial Business and Industry Committee
                             423.534.2061
                             moore@johnsoncitytnchamber.com

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March 15, 2019

Commission to tour EMA, 911 facility

The Johnson City Board of Commissioners will tour the Emergency Management Agency and 911 facility on Lake Park Drive at 3 p.m. Thursday (March 21).

CONTACT:   
Beth Greene, executive assistant
                             Administration
                             423.434.6002

 

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March 14, 2019

Johnson City Board of Dwelling Standards and Review to meet next week

The Johnson City Board of Dwelling Standards and Review will hold a special called meeting at 7 p.m. Tuesday (March 19) in the Commission Chambers of the Municipal and Safety Building, 601 E. Main St., to hear an appeal regarding property maintenance of 2203 McKinley Road, Unit 211. 

CONTACT:    Hedy Bartley, secretary
                             Development Services
                             423.232.1226

 

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March 08, 2019

Annual spring leaf collection starts April 1

The City of Johnson City’s annual spring leaf collection is held the first two full weeks of April. This year’s collection period will take place from Monday, April 1 through Friday, April 12. 

Residents are asked not to bag leaves and to have leaves piled behind the curb (not in front of the curb or on the street) no later than 7 a.m. on April 1 to ensure pickup. Leaves will not be collected in alleys. All leaf piles should be free of trash, debris and limbs or they will not be collected.

As a reminder, brush collection takes place year-round but may be altered due to leaf collection. The City defines brush as: tree trimmings, shrubbery (with no roots), limbs, etc., generated by routine maintenance of a property by the homeowner. Here are some collection guidelines to help homeowners as they clear brush and prepare for spring yard work:

  • Brush piles must not exceed 10-foot lengths, must be piled straight and placed behind or on the curb for collection. Do not place brush on center medians or islands.
  • Do not place brush next to objects such as fences, guy wires, and poles or under trees. Equipment is restricted in those areas.
  • Brush may not be mixed with other debris. Brush mixed with leaves, grass, lumber, dirt, rock, concrete, building materials or other debris will not be collected until properly separated.

Anyone hired to trim or remove trees, shrubs, etc., is required to remove the resulting brush from the property. Failure to do so may result in a court citation.

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March 04, 2019

Police chief announces promotion of Hilton and Morgan to sergeant

Johnson City Police Chief Karl Turner announced two promotions on Monday (March 4). The Police Department’s promotional process consists of a written test, job-specific written exercises, and an assessment/interview. In addition, candidates have their work history evaluated and are awarded points for education level.

“I’m proud to announce the promotions of Sgt. Hilton and Sgt. Morgan,” said Chief Turner. “Their leadership is an asset to our organization, and I’m happy to see them move to the next level in their careers.”

David Hilton has been named a sergeant in the Criminal Investigations Division (CID). A native of East Tennessee, Sgt. Hilton began his career with the Johnson City Police Department in 2002 following his graduation from Milligan College. He served as a master police officer and field training officer before transferring to CID in 2014. As an investigator, Sgt. Hilton was the lead detective on two high profile, demanding homicide cases that were solved as a result of his diligence and dedication to the victims and their families.

Josh Morgan will return to the Patrol Division as a sergeant. A graduate of East Tennessee State University, Sgt. Morgan began his law enforcement career with the Cape Coral (Fla.) Police Department. After returning to East Tennessee, Sgt. Morgan spent a year with the Kingsport Police Department before becoming a Johnson City Police officer in 2014. He has since served as an investigator and an FBI Task Force officer.

CONTACT:    Karl Turner, chief
                             Johnson City Police Department
                            423.434.6149

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March 01, 2019

Commission to open "Sesquicentennial Headquarters"

The Sesquicentennial Commission will open the old JCPenney’s building for select dates in March and April to allow for public viewing of the 1969 time capsule contents, historical photos, a model train, and other memorabilia. The building, located at 309 E. Main St., will be open 1-4 p.m. on March 15, 16 and April 6, 27.

The centennial time capsule contents were first unveiled as part of the City’s kickoff of the Sesquicentennial Celebration on Jan. 5. Several hundred people attended that event to view the more than 50 items including religious materials, municipal records and materials, industrial reports, medical records, educational reports and items, commercial items, and cultural and current life items. The Johnson City Kiwanis Club was instrumental in organizing the collection of items for the time capsule, which was buried on the grounds of Science Hill High School.

Visitors to the Sesquicentennial Headquarters will have the opportunity to offer suggestions for what should be placed in this year’s time capsule, which will be buried on the anniversary of the City’s founding, Dec. 1. Sesquicentennial merchandise will also be available for purchase.

For more information about the yearlong sesquicentennial celebration, visit www.jctn150.com or follow @jctn150 (Johnson City 150 - Sesquicentennial Celebration) on Facebook.

CONTACT:   Ann Marie French, public information specialist
                            Communications and Marketing
                            423.434.6021

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February 25, 2019

Johnson City Board of Commissioners to host joint work session with BOE

The Johnson City Board of Commissioners will hold a joint work session with the Board of Education at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday (Feb. 27) in the Administrative Conference Room of the Municipal and Safety Building, 601 E. Main St., to discuss Liberty Bell Middle School.

CONTACT:    Beth Greene, executive assistant
                             Administration
                             423.434.6002

 

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February 25, 2019

Johnson City Board of Commissioners to tour EMS Headquarters

The Johnson City Board of Commissioners will visit and tour the Emergency Medical Services Headquarters, 296 Wesley St., at 3:30 p.m. Thursday (Feb. 28).

CONTACT:    Beth Greene, executive assistant
                             Administration
                             423.434.6002

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February 22, 2019

Citizen Survey shows continued positive results for Johnson City

The 2018 Citizen Survey found 85 percent of respondents gave a rating of excellent or good for overall quality of life in Johnson City. The results of the survey are on par with previous surveys conducted every two years since 2012; however, the most recent survey found residents giving higher ratings to public places where people like to spend time, their neighborhoods, and to the overall image of the city.

“The 2018 survey results confirm what we already know – Johnson City is a wonderful place to live,” said Budget Director Lora Young, who facilitates the survey in conjunction with the National Research Center (NRC). “More importantly, the data collected is used in planning projects and providing services to the public.”

Citizen responses indicated that safety within the city and the economy of the city were the two most important characteristics of the community. About eight in 10 residents gave excellent or good ratings to the overall quality of City services in Johnson City. The top rated services listed on the survey were related to safety, City parks and garbage collection with about nine in 10 residents offering positive marks.

The 2018 Citizen Survey asked respondents to prioritize City efforts for the next five years. About nine in 10 survey participants indicated that tax incentives for new business development and additional transportation improvements should be a priority for the City. When asked about their level of satisfaction with several efforts made by the City in the past two years, residents expressed the highest satisfaction levels for downtown improvements and recreational opportunities.

“These trends are a reflection of the City prioritizing citizen feedback from previous surveys to make needed improvements in City services,” Young said. “The citizen survey is tool that allows us to measure our success and provide the best services possible.”

The survey was mailed to 2,000 randomly selected households in October, garnering a 25 percent survey response rate, which is on par with national rates. A supplemental online survey, identical in content to the mailed survey, was open to the City’s daytime population including individuals that work, study, shop, dine, or visit the city.

Complete results from the survey can be found at www.johnsoncitytn.org. For more information, please email citizensurvey@johnsoncitytn.org or call 434-6196.

 

CONTACT:    Lora Young, budget director
                             Administration
                             423-434-6196

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 \

February 22, 2019

Johnson City Board of Commissioners to meet Monday evening

The Johnson City Board of Commissioners will hold a special called meeting at 6 p.m. Monday (March 4) in the Administrative Conference Room of the Municipal and Safety Building, 601 E. Main St., to consider the second reading of Ordinance 4684-19, an ordinance to rezone a parcel located at 220 E. Millard St. from B-3 (Supporting Central Business District) to I-1 (Light Industrial District).

CONTACT:    Beth Greene, executive assistant
                             Administration
                             423.434.6002

 

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February 21, 2019

Senior Center hosts Community Input Day

The Johnson City Senior Center at Memorial Park Community Center, 510 Bert St., will host a free lunch as part of its annual Community Input Day from noon-2 p.m. Tuesday, March 5.

 Attendees are encouraged to submit comments about the senior center and its operations for use in its reaccreditation process. Please preregister by Friday, March 1, in person at MPCC or by calling 423-434-6237. Those 18 and older are invited.

 For more information, call 423-434-6237.

CONTACT:    Deb Fogle, senior services manager
                             Parks and Recreation
                             423.434.6231

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February 19, 2019

City Commission sets Capital Improvement Plan work session

The Johnson City Board of Commissioners will hold a work session to discuss the Capital Improvement Plan at 4 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 21 in the Administrative Conference Room of the Municipal and Safety Building, 601 E. Main St.

CONTACT:    Beth Greene, executive assistant

                             Administration
                             423-434-6002

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February 15, 2019

Parks and Recreation to host bat presentation

Nature Program Coordinator Connie Deegan will host “Behold the Bat,” a presentation designed to help attendees learn about the benefits and struggles of one of our most mysterious groups of mammals. The presentation will also address the do’s and don’t’s of attracting them to your property with a bat house.

 Families are welcome to attend this presentation on Monday, Feb. 25, from 10:30-11:30 a.m. at Memorial Park Community Center, 510 Bert St.

 The event is free and open to all ages. Register in person at MPCC or by calling 423-434-6237.

 CONTACT:    John Harrell, senior services program coordinator
                              Parks and Recreation
                              423-434-6229                   

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February 13, 2019

Volunteers needed for Board of Building Codes

The Johnson City Board of Commissioners will consider two appointments to the Board of Building Codes. One vacancy is for a gas/mechanical representative and the other vacancy is for an electrical representative. Both appointments will serve a three-year term. Applicants must be City residents.

This board is responsible for hearing and deciding appeals and variances to the Johnson City Building Code. The board also decides questions of code interpretation and recommends any code changes to the Board of Commissioners. The board meets on an as-needed basis on the first Tuesday of each month at 4 p.m.

Any citizen who is interested in serving as a member of the Board of Building Codes may submit an application online at www.johnsoncitytn.org/boards or may obtain one by calling 423-434-6009. For more information regarding this board, please call the Codes Enforcement Office at 423-434-6048. Applications will be accepted through Friday, March 8.

CONTACT:    Sheri Keenan, administrative coordinator
                             Administration
                             423-434-6009

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February 13, 2019

Sesquicentennial Commission sets regular meeting schedule

The Sesquicentennial Commission will meet at 8 a.m. the second and fourth Tuesday of each month. The next meeting will be held on Tuesday, Feb. 26. All meetings will take place in the Administrative Conference Room of the Municipal and Safety Building, 601 E. Main St.

CONTACT:    Ann Marie French, public information specialist
                             Communications and Marketing
                             423-434-6021

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February 11, 2019

Lane closures continue at 100 block of East Market Street

Johnson City’s Water and Sewer Services Department will be conducting sewer line maintenance at the 100 block of East Market Street between South Roan and Buffalo streets from 8 a.m.-3:30 p.m. until work is complete. Lane closures will be in place while work is performed. One lane will also be open but drivers are urged to avoid this area when possible.

CONTACT:     Steve Harsh, water/wastewater maintenance superintendent
                              Water and Sewer Services 
                              423-975-2636

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February 11, 2019

MPCC offers after-school program

Memorial Park Community Center, 510 Bert St., will host an after-school program for children 6-12 years old. The program includes homework helpers and snacks. Children will also be able to utilize the gymnasium and pool as well as participate in arts and crafts.

The program is available Feb. 11-May 24, and will be held from 3:30-5:30 p.m. Monday-Friday. Cost is $20 per child per month. Register in person at MPCC.     

For more information, call 423-434-5749.


CONTACT:    Kelly Finney, center supervisor
                             Memorial Park Community Center
                             423-434-5758 

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February 07, 2019

Senior Services to host trip to Southern Spring Home and Garden Show

Senior Services at Memorial Park Community Center, 510 Bert St., is offering those 50 and older transportation on Friday, March 1 to the Southern Spring Home and Garden Show at The Park Expo and Conference Center in Charlotte, N.C.

The 2019 Southern Spring Home and Garden Show features appearances by Julia Collin Davison, host of America’s Test Kitchen, and Laura Leboutiller of Garden Answer. The event also includes several hundred exhibitors and vendors. Visit the show's site here.

Cost is $28 per person for transportation only. Tickets are $12 for the show, and will be purchased individually upon arrival. A motorcoach operated by Todlow Coach will depart MPCC at 6:45 a.m. and arrive at the show around 10:30 a.m. Lunch is not provided but will be available from vendors at the show. The motorcoach will depart at 3 p.m. and return to MPCC at 7:30 p.m. The return trip will include a stop for a meal. 

Please register at the Senior Services or recreation desk by Saturday, Feb. 23. No refunds.

For more information, call 423-434-6237.

CONTACT:    Donna Campbell, senior services office manager
                             Parks and Recreation
                             423-434-6230                   

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February 05, 2019

Lane closures continue at 100 block of East Market Street

Johnson City’s Water and Sewer Services Department will be conducting sewer line maintenance at the 100 block of East Market Street between South Roan and Buffalo streets from 8 a.m.-3:30 p.m. through Friday (Feb. 8). Lane closures will be in place while work is performed. Drivers are urged to avoid this area when possible.

CONTACT:     Steve Harsh, water/wastewater maintenance superintendent
                              Water and Sewer Services
                              423-975-2636



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February 04, 2019

City Commission sets wayfinding signage work session

The Johnson City Board of Commissioners will hold a work session to discuss wayfinding signage at 3:30 p.m. Thursday (Feb. 7) in the Administrative Conference Room of the Municipal and Safety Building, 601 E. Main St.

CONTACT:    Beth Greene, executive assistant
                             Administration
                             423-434-6002

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February 04, 2019

Senior Services to offer free health programs

Senior Services at Memorial Park Community Center, 510 Bert St., will provide the following health services beginning in February:  

  • Think Pink — Cooking to Prevent Cancer: Tuesday, Feb. 12, 6-8 p.m. A hands-on experience for attendees to learn easy, quick and healthy recipes that will be sampled after class. The program also focuses on the importance of breast and cervical cancer screenings. Reservation required. All ages. Free.
  • Dining with Diabetes: Mondays, Feb. 18, 25 and March 4, 11 a.m.-noon. For people with diabetes and their support persons. Includes tips for managing the disease and preparing meals that help control blood sugar. Elizabeth Renfro with the University of Tennessee Extension Office will provide information, cooking demos, samples and recipes. Space limited. All ages. $5 per session/$10 for all three.
  • Relief for Dry Eyes: Tuesday, Feb. 19, 10:30-11:30 a.m. Cindy Larkin, a certified ophthalmic assistant and dry eye specialist with Johnson City Eye Clinic, will discuss the cause of dry eyes, factors that may be making symptoms worse, and innovative new treatments. All ages. Free.
  • Memory Loss — What’s normal, What’s not?: Tuesday, Feb. 19, 12:30-1:30 p.m. Tracey Kendall Wilson with Alzheimer’s Tennessee will offer strategies for keeping the brain healthy. Attendees will learn the differences between normal, age-related forgetfulness and serious medical problems. Take-home resources available. All ages. Free.
  • All About Arthritis: Tuesday, Feb. 26, 10:30-11:30 a.m. Learn more about the most common types of arthritis and treatment options, plus tips for managing everyday pain and stiffness. All ages. Free.   
  • Free Hearing Test: Wednesday, Feb. 27, 9-11:30 a.m. Screenings provided by East Tennessee Hearing Center. Space limited. All ages. Free.
  • Thyroid Disease: Thursday, Feb. 28.  Noon-1 p.m.Dr. Deepika Reddy Nallala, an endocrinologist, will discuss how the thyroid gland impacts health. Attendees will learn what affects the thyroid and how disorders are treated. All ages. Free.

Please preregister for all programs, and/or seek further information by calling 423-434-6237.

CONTACT:   Deb Fogle, senior services manager
                            Parks and Recreation
                            423-434-6231

 

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February 04, 2019

Johnson City Parks and Recreation to hold job fair Feb. 20

Job seekers looking for part-time or seasonal work should mark Tuesday, Feb. 20 on their calendars. The Johnson City Parks and Recreation Job Fair will be held from 5:30-7 p.m. at Memorial Park Community Center, 510 Bert St.

Available positions include:

  • Maintenance – Seasonal maintenance employees will be responsible for but not limited to mowing, edging, ball field preparation, limited equipment operation, and event setup. Knowledge of basic work etiquette and ability to perform manual labor required. Candidates must have a valid driver’s license to apply.
  • Programming – Summer youth program assistants will supervise and facilitate activities for children ages 6-16 in a day-camp setting. All applicants must be able to communicate effectively, have general knowledge of recreational activities, and be able to work uninterrupted for seven weeks.
  • Lifeguards – Lifeguards conduct safety surveillance of all pools and slides and are also responsible for upkeep of pools and slides including vacuuming, sanitizing and general janitorial duties. Candidates should be lifeguard certified by the American Red Cross. If a qualified lifeguard applicant is not certified, Parks and Recreation will certify the candidate upon completion of a proficiency swim test.
  • Athletics – Positions available include soccer referees for youth programs, umpires for youth and adult softball, softball scorekeepers and tennis instructors for youth and adult programming. General knowledge of sports rules required. Some training provided.

All applicants must be 16 years of age or older and able to pass a background check. Johnson City Parks and Recreation is an equal opportunity employer. For more information, call 423-283-5815.

 

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February 01, 2019

February Friday Night Dance to feature PF Flyers

Senior Services at Memorial Park Community Center, 510 Bert St., will feature The PF Flyers from 7-10 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 15.

Based in Piney Flats, the PF Flyers are a five-piece band that plays traditional and classic rock ‘n’ roll, Motown, beach music, ballroom dance, and some country.

The dance, for individuals 50 and older, will be held at the MPCC gymnasium/dining room. This is the only scheduled dance for the month of February. Cost is $5 per person. SilverSneakers® members can attend for $3. No registration is necessary.

For more information, call 423-434-6237.

CONTACT:    Lauren Qualls, program coordinator
                             Senior Services
                             423-461-4852

 

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February 01, 2019

Senior Services offers Heart Wise Health Fair

Senior Services is hosting a Heart Wise Health Fair from 9:30-11:30 a.m. on Thursday, Feb. 14 at Memorial Park Community Center, 510 Bert St. The event will include heart health and wellness information, free massages, food samples, screenings, and giveaways. This event is free and no registration is required.

Attendees can participate in cholesterol and blood sugar level screenings between 8-10 a.m. The cholesterol panel includes screenings for total cholesterol, HDL, LDL, triglycerides and glucose. Attendees should fast eight to 12 hours prior to the screening for best results. The cost for the cholesterol screening is $15. The A1C screening measures average blood sugar over three months and no fasting is required. The cost for the A1C screening is $20. 

Following the health fair, Ballad Health is sponsoring a free “Love Your Heart Lunch” from noon-1 p.m. Nurse Practitioner Spencer Maden will serve as guest speaker and will provide tips on how to maintain a healthy heart.

Preregistration is required for lab tests and lunch. Please call 423-434-6237.

CONTACT:    Deb Fogle, senior services manager
                             Parks and Recreation
                             423-434-6231

 

 

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February 01, 2019

Sesquicentennial Commission sets work session, regular meeting

The Sesquicentennial Commission will hold a work session at 9 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 9 and a regular meeting at 8 a.m. Tuesday, Feb. 12. Both meetings will take place in the Administrative Conference Room of the Municipal and Safety Building, 601 E. Main St.

 CONTACT:    Ann Marie French, public information specialist
                              Communications and Marketing
                              423-434-6021



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January 29, 2019

Parks and Recreation Advisory Board changes regular meeting time

The Johnson City Parks and Recreation Advisory Board has voted to change its regular meeting time to 4 p.m., effective Feb. 28.

The board meets the fourth Thursday of each month in the boardroom of the Winged Deer Park Administrative Office, 4137 Bristol Highway.

For additional information, please contact Missy Hollifield at 423-283-5815 or mhollifield@johnsoncitytn.org.

CONTACT:    Missy Hollifield, office manager
                             Parks and Recreation
                             423-283-5815

 

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January 29, 2019

City Commission sets work session with PBA

The Johnson City Board of Commissioners will hold a joint work session with the Public Building Authority at 4 p.m. Thursday (Jan. 31) in the Administrative Conference Room of the Municipal and Safety Building, 601 E. Main St.

CONTACT:    Beth Greene, executive assistant
                             Administration
                             423-434-6002

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January 29, 2019

BOC agenda review canceled

The Johnson City Board of Commissioners agenda review meeting scheduled for Monday (Feb. 4) has been canceled. The City Commission meeting will convene as regularly scheduled at 6 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 7 in the Commission Chambers of the Municipal and Safety Building, 601 E. Main St.

CONTACT:    Beth Greene, executive assistant
                             Administration
                             423-434-6002

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January 29, 2019

Volunteers needed for Industrial Development Board

The Johnson City Board of Commissioners will consider three appointments to the Industrial Development Board. The IDB was created as a means of financing business/industrial facilities that will create employment and economic growth. This board meets on an as-needed basis.

Applications may be submitted online at www.johnsoncitytn.org/boards or at the Municipal and Safety Building, 601 E. Main St. For an application to be mailed or faxed, please call 434-6009. The deadline for submitting an application is March 22. Applications are only kept on file for the current year.

For more information regarding the Industrial Development Board functions, please call Alicia Summers at 794-9173.

Sheri Keenan, administrative coordinator
Administration
423-434-6009

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January 29, 2019

Firefighter Examination Registration Information

Registration dates:   February 4, 2019 – March 7, 2019

 Requirements for registering:  18 years of age by 3/23/2019, high school graduate or GED, physically able to perform the duties of a firefighter trainee as defined by the City of Johnson City, and not have been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor involving moral turpitude other than a minor traffic violation.  Applicants must possess a valid drivers’ license with NO suspensions or revocations within the past 24 cumulative months.

 To register, present the following to the Human Resources Department, 601 E. Main Street, Johnson City, TN  37601:

$25.00 Non-refundable examination fee;
City of Johnson City Application for Employment;
Release & Waiver Form (print from johnsoncitytn.org);

 Copies of the following (Copies will not be made for applicants):

  • Birth Certificate;
  • High School Diploma/GED or Transcript with Graduation Date;
  • Drivers’ License;
  • Social Security Card;
  • College/University Diploma (if applicable);
  • Certification from TN State Fire School (if applicable);
  • EMT Certification (A or B) (if applicable);
  • DD-214 for Veterans Credit (if applicable).

When registering, a test date and time for the firefighter exam and physical ability will be scheduled.  For more information, call 423-434-6018.

EEO/AA 

 

January 28, 2019

Parks and Recreation offers Girl Squad program

Keystone Community Center will serve as Girl Squad headquarters for girl bosses ages 13-17. Participants will have fun making trendy creations, taking selfies with action shots and backgrounds, and sharing common interests through journaling.

The program will be held 3-5 p.m. every Monday and Tuesday, beginning Feb. 11. There is no charge for the program. Please register in person at Memorial Park Community Center, 510 Bert St.

For more information, call 423-434-5749. 

CONTACT:    Mary Lee Baker, program coordinator
                             Parks and Recreation
                             423-434-5725

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January 25, 2019

100 block of East Market Street lane closures announced

Johnson City’s Water and Sewer Services Department will be conducting sewer line maintenance at the 100 block of East Market Street between South Roan and Buffalo streets from 8 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Jan. 28-Feb. 1. Lane closures will be in place while work is performed. Drivers are urged to avoid this area when possible.

CONTACT:     Steve Harsh, water/wastewater maintenance superintendent
                              Water and Sewer Services
                              423-975-2636

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January 24, 2019

Sewer Line Maintenance to impact traffic on West Main Street

Work crews from the City’s water and sewer services department will be conducting sewer line maintenance at 127 W. Main St. from 8:00 a.m.-3:30 p.m. today, Jan. 24, as well as Friday, Jan. 25. The right hand lane will be closed.

CONTACT:     Jason Duncan, general supervisor
                              Water and Sewer Services
                              423-483-5985

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January 24, 2019

Volunteers needed for Health and Education Facilities Board

The Johnson City Board of Commissioners will consider two appointments to the Health and Education Facilities Board. This board meets on an as-needed basis and aids medical and educational facilities in obtaining tax-free loans as allowed by a combination federal and state statutes. Each term is three years.

Applicants should be interested in community affairs and must be city residents. Applications are available at the Municipal and Safety Building, 601 E. Main St., and can be faxed or mailed by calling 423-434-6009. To complete an application online, please visit www.johnsoncitytn.org/boards. Applications will be accepted through Feb. 22.

For additional information regarding the Health and Education Facilities Board, please contact Sheri Keenan at 423-434-6009.

 

CONTACT:    Sheri Keenan, administrative coordinator
                             Administration
                             423-434-6009

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January 23, 2019

Parks and Rec offers Jump Start Seed Swap and Pollinator Day

Johnson City Parks and Recreation will host a seed swap from 9 a.m.-noon on Saturday, Feb. 2 at Memorial Park Community Center, 510 Bert St. Attendees will swap native, heirloom and veggie seeds. 

Attendees who do not have seeds to swap will find plenty of information jumpstart their gardens. The event will include exhibits – many emphasizing pollinator needs and citizen science opportunities – a guest speaker and children’s activities.

The event is free and open to all ages. 

9 a.m.: Doors open

                       9-9:45 a.m.: Exhibits available for viewing

                       9:45 a.m.-10:15 a.m.: Dr. Darrell Moore, ETSU Biological Sciences professor

                       10:15 a.m.-noon: Guests welcome to visit exhibits and swap seeds.

Sponsors/partners includeBoone Watershed Partnership, Build It Up TN, ETSU Art & Design Dept., HERBalachia, What’s the Buzz, Southern Appalachian Plant Society, Tennessee Smart Yards, Wild Ones, Zoo Knoxville, Carver Peace Gardens, ETSU Biology Department staff and students, Jacob’s Nature Park at Sinking Creek, Tri-Cities Food Cooperative Interest Group.  

For more information, call 423-283-5821. 

CONTACT:    Connie Deegan, nature program coordinator
                             Parks and Recreation
                             423-283-5821

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January 22, 2019

Parks and Rec sets Adult Spring Softball League registration, schedule

Adult spring softball leagues are forming. Divisions and associated fees include: men’s open/church ($400/14 games), women’s open/church ($200/eight games), and coed open/church ($300/10 games). A $5 non-resident fee applies.

Registration begins Monday, Feb. 4 and ends Friday, April 5. Please register at the Winged Deer Park Athletic Office, 4137 Bristol Highway, from 8:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. Entry fee, completed roster and photo IDs are required when registering. Players may play on only one men’s, women’s or coed team. Ages 16-18 may play with signed parental consent form. 

Practices begin March 4 and games begin April 22. The coaches meeting is Wednesday, April 3 at 5:30 p.m. at the Athletic Office.

For more information, call 423-283-5822.

 

CONTACT:    Amanda Hollifield, athletics manager
                             Parks and Recreation
                             423-434-5825

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January 22, 2019

Senior Services offering tickets and transportation to ETSU basketball games

Senior Services at Memorial Park Community Center, 510 Bert St., invites those 50 and older to cheer on the East Tennessee State University Buccaneers basketball team and take advantage of special pricing on tickets and bus transportation to Freedom Hall Civic Center for two games in February.

The ticket cost is $6 per person per game and includes round-trip transportation from MPCC.

The Bucs will host the Wolford College Terriers on Thursday, Feb. 7. The bus will leave MPCC at 6 p.m. and return about 9:30 p.m. The game begins at 7 p.m.  Register and buy tickets for this game by Jan. 31.

The Bucs will host the Mercer Bears on Saturday, Feb. 16. The bus will leave MPCC at 3 p.m. and return about 6:30 p.m. The game begins at 4 p.m.  Register and buy tickets for this game by Feb. 9.

For more information, call 423-434-6237.

CONTACT:   Lauren Qualls, program coordinator
                            Senior Services
                            423-461-4852

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January 18, 2019

Section of Pardee Street closed today

Pardee Street from Mary Key Street to Bert Street will be closed from 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. today, Jan. 18 for sewer line maintenance. Emergency traffic will not be able to pass.

CONTACT:     Jason Duncan, general supervisor
                              Water and Sewer Services
                              423-483-5985

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January 17, 2019

Johnson City receives clean audit report and upgraded credit rating

The City of Johnson City has received results from the annual audit for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2018. Results of the audit include the following:

  • For the 18th consecutive year, the City received a “clean” opinion for the FY2018 audit with no significant deficiencies reported by the auditors.
  • The City’s overall net position increased by $29 million.
  • The City’s governmental funds increased by $20 million, due mainly to strong tax collections and principal payments on long-term debt. Business-type activities reported a $9 million increase due mainly to principal payments on long-term debt and positive operational performance by the utility funds.
  • The City’s total outstanding long-term debt decreased by $16 million (7.6 percent) due to principal payments. No new debt was issued during the year.
  • General Fund revenues were $900,000 over projections, and – thanks to lower spending by City departments and healthy growth in taxes and building permits – expenditures came in $2 million below budget. The strong performance resulted in a $1.6 million surplus that was set aside for economic development and the rainy day fund.
  • Total fund balance in the general fund grew from $25.4 to $27 million, $7.4 of which is unassigned, $13.9 million of which is restricted, $2.1 million of which is committed for specific purposes, and $3.6 of which is assigned.
  • Current property taxes continued a pattern of steady growth, experiencing an increase of 2.2 percent, with no property tax rate increase. The City’s property tax rate continues to be the lowest in the Tri-Cities.
  • Local and state sales tax collections experienced growth of 2 percent.
  • The City invested $31 million in capital improvements including the renovation of Freedom Hall Civic Center concessions and restrooms; the completion of the Mountainview Road and Browns Mill Road traffic circle; culverts for stormwater management on Boone and Sevier streets; and the completion of numerous water and sewer line extensions, replacements and upgrades.         
  • The Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada awarded a Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting to the City of Johnson City for its Comprehensive Annual Financial Report for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017. This was the City’s 17th consecutive year receiving the award.
  • Standard & Poor’s upgraded the City’s credit rating from AA- to AA during the fiscal year; the City maintains a Aa2 rating from Moody’s Investors Service and a AA rating from Fitch Ratings.

 “Under the guidance and direction of the Board of Commissioners and with the hard work of our dedicated employees, the City of Johnson City remains in a solid financial position,” said City Manager Pete Peterson. “This report is a direct reflection of our collective commitment to providing quality services to our citizens in an affordable way while positioning us for the future.” 

CONTACT:    Janet Jennings, director
                             Finance
                             423-434-6033

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January 17, 2019

City Commission sets work session with BrightRidge

The Johnson City Board of Commissioners will hold a work session with BrightRidge and to discuss other City business at 4:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 24 in the Administrative Conference Room of the Municipal and Safety Building, 601 E. Main St.

CONTACT:    Beth Greene, executive assistant
                             Administration
                             423-434-6002

 

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January 16, 2019

Spring youth soccer registration opens Jan. 28

Johnson City Parks and Recreation youth soccer registration will be open from Monday, Jan. 28 through Thursday, Feb. 28.

Cost is $25 for Johnson City residents, $30 for non-residents. A $20 late fee will apply beginning March 1. Practices start March 16; games begin April 6.

Age groups are 3-5 (coed),6-7, 8-9, 10-11, 12-13, 14-15. Children are placed according to Johnson City school districts. An average of two games will be played each week (per team) during a 10-week season. Games played at Civitan Park and Winged Deer Park.

Register online at www.myjcparks.org or at the Winged Deer Park Athletic Office, 4137 Bristol Highway., Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Early registration is encouraged as team placement is not guaranteed.

Age cutoff date is Aug. 15, 2018.

For more information, call 423-283-5822.

CONTACT:    Amanda Hollifield, athletics manager
                             Parks and Recreation 
                             423-434-5825

 

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January 16, 2019

MPCC seeks certified instructors for yoga, tumbling, and dance classes

Memorial Park Community Center, 510 Bert St., is looking for certified instructors to lead its Mommy and Me yoga, tumbling and dance classes. Classes will be held Monday-Friday. Times will vary according to schedule.

For more information, please call 423-434-5758.

CONTACT:    Kelly Finney, center supervisor
                             Memorial Park Community Center
                             423-434-5758

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January 11, 2019

My Little Valentine Daddy Daughter Dance tickets now on sale 

The very popular My Little Valentine Daddy Daughter Dance is coming to Memorial Park Community Center, 510 Bert St., on Saturday, Feb. 9 from 6-8 p.m., and tickets are now on sale for those who want to get dressed up and dance the night away.

Tickets are $10 per person through Jan. 24, and $20 per person from Jan. 25-Feb. 8. Children under 3 get in free. Tickets can be purchased online at myjcparks.org, or in person at MPCC. Tickets purchased online must be picked up before the day of the dance.

The Daddy Daughter Dance is open to dads, grandads, guardians and daughters of all ages who will enjoy an evening of DJ music, refreshments, special guests and door prizes. Photo packages can be purchased for $15 online, or in person the day of the dance. The package includes four to five digital images that will be emailed to you for personal use. 

No tickets will be sold the day of the dance.

For more information, call 423-434-5749.

CONTACT:    Rachel Bowers, program coordinator
                             Memorial Park Community Center
                             423-434-6224

 

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January 11, 2019

MPCC offers interactive Fitness Expo

Memorial Park Community Center, 510 Bert St., will showcase new classes at a free Fitness Expo. Visitors are welcome to bring their tennis shoes and workout gear and join in.

 Tours of the facility will be conducted Thursday, Jan. 24, from 10-11:30 a.m. and again from 5-7 p.m. Some of the classes featured will include: pool aerobics, R.I.P.P.E.D., Pound, WERQ, Bells and Barre, yoga, Zumba and SilverSneakers®.

 All ages are welcome. No registration required. Door prizes will be awarded, and light refreshments will be served from 5-7 p.m.

 For more information, call 423-434-5749.

CONTACT:    Kelly Finney, center supervisor
                             Memorial Park Community Center
                             423-434-5758

 

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January 11, 2019

Block of East Myrtle closed Monday

The 200 block of East Myrtle Avenue – between Welbourne and Elm streets – will be closed Monday (Jan. 14) between 8 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. for sewer line and manhole maintenance. This work will be weather permitting.

CONTACT:   Mike Carver, supervisor
                            Water and Sewer Services
                           423-975-2687

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January 09, 2019

MPCC hosts Glow Stick Swim

Memorial Park Community Center, 510 Bert St., will host special swimming event. The pool will be filled with glow sticks, the lights will be turned down and the music turned up for an evening of fun from 7-8:45 p.m. on Friday (Jan. 11). 

Cost is $2 for age 12 and under; $3 for age 13 and over. All ages are welcome. Parents or guardians must accompany children under 6. No registration is required.

For more information, call 423-434-5754.

CONTACT:     Rachel Evans, aquatics supervisor
                              Parks and Recreation
                              423-434-5755

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January 08, 2019

Carver's Martin Luther King Jr. celebration to include Van Brocklin tribute

The Martin Luther King Jr. Prayer Breakfast will be held 9-11 a.m. onSaturday, Jan. 19, at Wesley Memorial United Methodist Church, 225 Princeton Road. Former state representative Johnnie Turner will serve as guest speaker. This event will include a special tribute to Ralph Van Brocklin. The Rev. Vincent Dial of Bethel Christian Church and his wife, Mary Dial, will be recognized. Donnie Hamilton and Terry Phillips, who are retiring from Johnson City Transit, will also be recognized.

Tickets are $15 per person and may be purchased at Wesley Memorial United Methodist Church; Carver Recreation Center, 322 W. Watauga Ave.; and Money Services, 1111 N. Roan St. Proceeds will benefit the Carver Youth Historical Committee. Appalachian Community Federal Credit Union is sponsoring the event.                                                          

On Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Monday, Jan. 21, the following events will be held at Carver Recreation Center:

Martin Luther King Jr. Story Time: 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Youth will learn about Martin Luther King Jr. through stories, crafts and music. Lunch will be provided. The program is free and open to all ages. The program is provided in partnership with ETSU Office of Multicultural Affairs.

NAACP Blood Drive: noon-6 p.m.

Martin Luther King Jr. Dinner: 6-8 p.m. A celebration of the life of Martin Luther King Jr. with musical entertainment and food. The Rev. Ernest Widby, New Zion Faith Center, will be the guest speaker. In addition, Bill Adams will be inducted into the Carver Wall of Fame for his community service. Retired bus driver Carolyn Brady and retired schoolteachers Thelma Norris and Peggy Crumwell also will be recognized. The program is free and open to all ages.

For more information, call 423-461-8830.

 

CONTACT:    Herb Greenlee, supervisor
                             Carver Recreation Center
                             423-461-8830

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January 08, 2019

Watauga Road traffic detours in effect Jan. 5

A traffic detour for a section of Watauga Road will be in effect 8 a.m.-8 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 5. Work crews from the City of Johnson City’s water and sewer services department will be in the area for a planned sewer line repair.

Details of the closure include:

  • All southbound traffic on Watauga Road will be routed to Mose Street through Charles Street to East Lakeview Drive.
  • Northbound traffic will still be allowed on Watauga Road during the repair.
  • No left turn will be allowed from East Fairview Avenue to Watauga Road.
  • No left turn will be allowed from Watauga Road to Bernie Street.
  • Bernie Street will be closed to all traffic during repair.

CONTACT:    Jonathan Lane, engineer   
                             Water & Sewer Services
                             423-975-2629


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January 04, 2019

Jerry Pierce and the Nightlife Band to headline January Friday Night Dance

Senior Services at Memorial Park Community Center, 510 Bert St., will feature Jerry Pierce and the Nightlife Band from 7-10 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 18.

The dance, for individuals 50 and older, will be held at the MPCC gymnasium/dining room. This is the only scheduled dance for the month of January. Cost is $5 per person. SilverSneakers® members can attend for $3. No registration is necessary.

For more information, call 423-434-6237.

CONTACT:    Lauren Qualls, program coordinator
                             Senior Services
                             423-461-4852

 

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January 04, 2019

Senior Services sets trip to ETSU basketball game

Senior Services at Memorial Park Community Center, 510 Bert St., invites those 50 and older to cheer on the East Tennessee State University Buccaneers basketball team. The Bucs will host the UNC Greensboro Spartans on Saturday, Jan. 19 at the Freedom Hall Civic Center.

Tickets to the game are $6 per person and include round-trip transportation from MPCC. The bus will leave at 3 p.m. and return about 6:30 p.m. The game starts at 4 p.m. Register and purchase tickets at either MPCC desk by Jan. 12.

For more information, call 423-434-6237.

CONTACT:   Lauren Qualls, program coordinator
                            Senior Services
                            423-461-4852

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January 03, 2019

Senior Services offers new chess club

Senior Services at Memorial Park Community Center, 510 Bert St., invites players of all ages and skill levels to participate in its new chess club. Join others who enjoy the practice of strategy and persistence in a casual atmosphere each Wednesday from 1-3 p.m.

No fee or registration is required.

For more information, call 423-434-6237.

CONTACT:    John Harrell, program coordinator
                             Senior Services
                             423-434-6229                   

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