Home   |  Staff   |  Local News   |  Area Events   |  Birthdays   |  Photos   |  Contact Us   |  Employment
Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Eternal Beverages headed to Cocke County Industrial Park
Members of the Cocke County Finance Committee voted Tuesday evening to recommend that the county fund the preparation of a five acre "shovel ready" site, including the necessary infrastructure in the new Cocke County Industrial Park. Eternal Beverages of Walnut Creek, California, bottles naturally alkaline spring water, and has purchased 15 acres of the 100 acre first phase of the park from the owners, Bill Shults, Glen Shults and their sister-in-law Ellen Kousty. The full proposed park takes in more than 700 acres and stretched west from Highway 25E. Partnership President Lucas Graham said the firm currently is operating out of the former Unified Marine site. "The overall cost of the project for Phase 1 that they have submitted to the state and TVA for incentives, is a total capital investment with equipment and and the building is $11.8 million. The job creation over a three year period is roughly 34 new jobs with an average wage of just under $21 per hour. That is $8 above our current county average wage." Graham said the request from the firm is very reasonable. "If we are going to be competitive for companies then we need shovel ready sites, meaning they are graded, prepared and they have infrastructure up to the perimeter. If we can provide such a site and an industrial access road and utilities to that site, they are prepared to come here. they have signed a letter of intent with the property owners and have submitted their applications to the state and TVA. Preparing the site and constructing a 1,000 foot road to the acreage will cost an estimated $378,000. And the county currently has about $370,000 in it's industrial park fund. Committee member Gayla Blazer suggested another site be prepared at the same time so the county is prepared to recruit another firm. "These companies will pay taxes and the money will come back in taxes and money from the state. If we don't do this, we may as well say we don't want business and tell them to go to Morristown," she said. The committee did not address the suggestion. Committee Chair Forrest Clevenger said Bill Shults reduced the price of the land and agreed to sell the property to the firm so the county does not have to finance the acreage. "This is like a dream come true," responded Shults, who said the owners reduced to price by $5,000 per acre "to make the deal happen." He also announced that a trucking firm is looking to locate a 100,000 square foot distribution center in the park. "All of us have grieved over the loss of jobs in this county for years. We hope that this is the first step toward revitalizing the industrial base in Cocke County., because we will have an industrial site," added Shults. Roger Stokley, General Manager of the firm's local plant said Eternal Beverages is a financially secure firm, which is currently shipping out 15 to 18 truckloads of water per day locally. In other action, the committee heard from a representative of Vello Products, a firm which installs manual and electronic locks on jail cell doors. Lee Dennis said the locks would resolve issues raised during a recent jail inspection by the state fire marshal. And he said the locks could be removed to another facility if another jail is built in the future. But Dennis said the installation on the 13 cells and the front door would cost in excess of $100,000. EMA Director Kevin Benton who also serves as Emergency Management Services Coordinator asked the committee to approve a raise for him. Benton said he currently is paid $33,400 annually and he asked for an increase up to $42,000. He also has an assistant who works part-time. Benton said a 1950's jeep that the department purchased for $100, currently is being auctioned on-line and he estimates the vehicle will bring more than $11,000. The committee will recommend that the funds from the auction go to boost the salary, however that would provide funding for only one year.

Return to Today's News Stories - Front Page

Friday, May 17, 2019

  • Partnership update
  • Cocke Circuit Court pleas
  • Ealy looses her RN license
  • April employment numbers
  • Johnson execution

    Thursday, May 16, 2019

  • Cocke Finance Committee
  • Casada saga continues
  • Roberts arrest
  • Ownby arrest

    Wednesday, May 15, 2019

  • Newport City Council approves new budget
  • Dykes named Big Red coach
  • Tennessee crime stats
  • Memorial Day travel

    Tuesday, May 14, 2019

  • Cocke Finance Committee
  • Appalachian Trail killing
  • Kidnapping arrest
  • Gasoline prices move lower

    Friday, May 10, 2019

  • Cocke County rafting industry continues its growth
  • Cocke County Finance Committee
  • Shadow of the Smokies Trail

    Home  |  Staff  |  Photos  |  Local News  |  Contact Us  |  Employment

    © 2007 92.3 WNPC - Bristol Broadcasting Company, Inc.
    All Rights Reserved