In late April, the city unanimously rescinded its choice to proceed with the bond purchase following public outcry

Crossville – Referendum or no referendum? That was the question being asked by concerned citizens in Crossville this week as the Crossville City Council (council) held special called sessions to discuss the construction of a proposed $55 million recreation center.

When Crossville announced earlier this year that they were looking to acquire a $55 million “tax exempt general obligation bond,” the public took notice of the price tag and immediately asked the age-old questions, “how would that be paid back” and “where would that money come from.” At the time, sources close to the deal informed The Upper Cumberland Business Journal (UCBJ) that such a bond could force the city of Crossville to raise taxes threefold.

In late April, the city unanimously rescinded its choice to proceed with the bond purchase following public outcry and reportedly made the decision to put the measure up for referendum. But things may have changed in the meantime.

The Crossville City Council held a special called work session and meeting Tuesday to discuss with developer’s potential design options for the proposed recreation center and water park in the city. Citizens made their disapproval clear when they asked the council if they would take the recreation center project to a referendum, something the council made clear was the plan following public outcry over the possibility of raising taxes to pay for the project.

“This is just one concept,” said Crossville mayor R.J. Crawford at the meeting. “When we get to the finish line and we don’t feel comfortable with it (rec. center), there are other ways we can redirect.”

One council member made it clear that if a project doesn’t have support, it shouldn’t move forward.

No decisions were made and no votes were taken, but the council did hear the voice of the people, a voice that asked the question, “will the council decide to take it (the rec. center) to a referendum?”

The council will hold another meeting to discuss the project moving forward at an unspecified date in early July. This is an ongoing story. Check back for updates.

Image by Drazen Zigic on Freepik.

Ron Moses is the managing editor of the Upper Cumberland Business Journal and can be reached via email. Send an email.

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