Hear Us, Tullahoma

Hear Us, Tullahoma is a grass-roots community campaign to raise awareness and raise funds to offset the legal expenses of citizens trying to defend their property rights, the safety of our city’s school children and the quality of life in Tullahoma, Tennessee for all residents.    We need your financial help. 
 
Earlier this year, Tullahoma residents in two different parts of town learned their property rights had been ignored when the city rezoned all or part of their neighborhoods without their knowledge and without the rezoning maps to show exactly when these actions were taken or the proof that proper notice was ever given on the rezoning actions.
 
These actions only came to light when the city approved controversial developments on adjoining properties.   When the residents spoke up our city officials refused to listen.   
 
City officials told residents in the Washington Circle neighborhood that their statute of limitation to challenge the rezoning had expired; leaving homeowners in a residential neighborhood with devalued properties zoned "light industrial".
 
Zoning Article 
 
City officials told residents of the Oak Park and Westside Heights neighborhoods that the proposed gas station development was “a done deal” and their only option was to file a costly lawsuit in Coffee County Chancery Court.
 
For everyone who drives down Westside Drive or Clement Drive, it appears that the gas station project is ‘a done deal’, but it is not!  Two legal actions have been filed to evaluate this development’s easement on an Oak Park subdivision lot and to challenge the actions employed by our city officials to move this project forward.  The developers have chosen to work on this project at their own risk.
 
Our elected officials know a legal action in Chancery Court is so costly that low, middle or fixed income residents cannot financially afford to stand up for their rights.  Even as a group of citizens, the cost exceeds what we can manage alone.  We need all the citizens of Tullahoma to get involved.  We need small contributions from many to be effective in taking a stand for our community.
 
Hear Us, Tullahoma supports the rights of all property owners to enjoy or develop their property as they choose, as long as they abide by the laws of our city and state.  We also believe the City of Tullahoma is required to HEAR US and citizens should be able to speak up without fear of retribution or retaliation.   
 
The State of Tennessee grants all citizens the right to an appeal of any action, ruling or decision of any city department, official or board through their local government without having to resort to burdensome legal bills in Chancery Court.  Yet, the City of Tullahoma has refused to grant such an appeal.
 
The residents of Oak Park and surrounding neighborhoods exhausted every effort to avoid taking on legal expenses.  We attempted to work with the developers to find a way to build their gas station that respected our key concerns:  maintaining the property values of our neighborhood, insuring that gasoline and run-off did not pollute our wells or leach into our basements, and insure our children still had a safe route to Farrar School.  They refused the offer.
 
Concerned citizens appeared before the Board of Mayor and Alderman and were told the City could not HEAR US.  Area residents appeared before the Planning Commission with well-prepared documentation of issues that required further investigation prior to approval of this gas station.  
 
The Issues Article 

The citizen's concerns were disregarded in an irregular and questionable public meeting a week later. 

Special Meeting Article 

The City repeatedly denied requests for a formal appeal.
 
A Declaratory Action and Writ Certiorari have been filed in Chancery Court.  The Declaratory Action was required to defend the Oak Park Restrictive Covenants that prevent the use of residential lot for a commercial enterprise. The Writ Certiorari was required to appeal the actions and inactions of Codes Director Lawson, our Planning Commission and our Board of Mayor and Alderman that are in violation of our Municipal Code, our Zoning Ordinances and our Comprehensive Development Plan.

The legal expenses on these actions will exceed the limits of this campaign, so please donate generously.  Donations can be made anonymously and all funds will go directly into our legal fund.  

If the Oak Park Covenants cannot be upheld, then neither can yours.
 
If our city is not held accountable to abide by local ordinances and state laws, we all lose. 
 
This is more than just a gas station and it is bigger than one neighborhood.
 
Hear Us, Tullahoma.
 
 
 

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Organizer

Rhessa Hanson 
Organizer
Tullahoma, TN
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