WZTV FOX 17 - Top Stories
"Over the life of the paper 3.5 million papers have been distributed on sidewalks of Middle Tennessee," says Contributor Executive Director Tasha French.
Some cities like Franklin see the sidewalk vendors as a problem because the newspapers are primarily sold to drivers while they're behind the wheel.
"It would still let those transactions happen on city sidewalks, they just could not happen in the middle of the roadway," says Franklin City Administrator Eric Stuckey.
French says in 3 years homeless residents have earned $7 million through tips and sales of the Contributor, and vendors are trained on safety.
"Sidewalk to vehicle sales have been done safely for some time and this effects people's livelihood," says French.
During Tuesday night's public hearing, residents weighed in.
"The Contributor does a lot of good in giving these men and women an opportunity to put structure in life and earn commissions for selling the papers," says resident Clyde Redford.
City leaders say it's a safety issue. Others say it's a risk the homeless should be allowed to take.
"This is no different than any other job," says French. "All jobs might have a risk assigned with them."
"I feel like the safety risk would only be in someone's heart maybe breaking when they come to the realization that they're in the car and not the ones on the street," says Mary Ellen Redford.
Brentwood was the first city to pass an ordinance prohibiting the sale of merchandise from a public street. The Contributor and the ACLU filed suit and lost and are now appealing the ruling in federal court. Franklin won't vote on its ordinance until next month.
Wednesday, January 23 2013, 12:00 AM CST
Courthouse in line for repairs, updates
May 25, 2013 15:50 GMT
MANCHESTER, Tenn. (AP) -- Officials in Coffee County are looking to update their historic courthouse instead of replacing the 141-year-old structure.
After all, they said the building is in pretty good shape. As far as repairs, it just needs some new paint and molding, as well as work to repair some water damage. But county maintenance director Robert Gilliam says the entire structure needs updating in order to make it last until the next century.
Gilliam and County Mayor David Pennington told the Chattanooga Times Free Press (http://bit.ly/19ivpQ6 ) that officials have taken care to maintain the building and it hasn't had any major renovations in decades.
Historical society spokeswoman Joanna Lewis said the group is trying to come up with fundraising ideas for the project.
Information from: Chattanooga Times Free Press, http://www.timesfreepress.com
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