For over 10 years, residents of Hawkins County have been striving to have 1.9 miles of Grainger County Slate Hill Road resurfaced, which leads into our county. We have contacted Congressman Phil Roe, Senator Bob Corker, the mayor of Grainger County, road superintendent Jim Renfro (Grainger County), TVA, TDOT and others, in an effort to achieve some action in this matter.
Our most recent appeal to Governor Haslam to ask that his office give us some assistance in this regard has been met with “We can not help you.” This we find to be totally unacceptable and as prejudicial as the Grainger County road commissioner’s refusal to resurface this section of Slate Hill Road just because it is used mainly by Hawkins County residents. We feel that the State of Tennessee controls all monies related to road improvements and should have the power to withhold funds from Grainger County until they agree to upgrade their last section of Slate Hill Road.
A few years ago, the part of Slate Hill Road that had Grainger County residences on it was resurfaced, but the 1.9 miles remaining that is primarily used by Hawkins County residents was not resurfaced. This was mainly due to the fact that only Hawkins County residents use this portion. This is highly prejudicial, after all we are all citizens of Tennessee.
This section of Slate Hill Road is very dangerous as it is. Many head-on collisions have barely been avoided, as drivers want to drive in the center to avoid the plethora of potholes. The fact that ambulances from Morristown will not use this road to access Mooresburg residents is a contributing factor as to the importance of bringing this portion of the road up to normal standards.
We feel that we are left with only one option, and that might be a discrimination suit against Grainger County for their lack of appropriate action before it might cost a person’s life, due to their negligence.