On Monday, July 31, County Mayor D. Gary Davis appointed Ron Wilson, county building official, to continue as planner for the county — but with a twist.
Wilson will continue overseeing the building department, detailing in a press release he will also be “covering planning, zoning, flood plan management and stormwater.” Michael Chastain will continue serving as inspector, and Sarah Jenson will continue to be in charge of stormwater, he said.
In a phone interview with the Cleveland Daily Banner, Wilson noted he has been working with Bradley County for the past six years and sees his origins in building and inspections for the City of Athens as pivotal to his success as a planner over the past few months.
“A lot of my job in building and inspections in Athens trained me for this position,” Wilson said. “No, I was not the planner, but I worked closely with the planner, so both roles have been educational for me.”
Balancing building and inspections with his interim planning department duties since Thomas resigned as planner on April 21, he recalls being asked by Davis if this was “too much work.”
“‘Well, not really,'” Wilson recalls telling the mayor. “‘There’s so much intertwined between the building officials and the planner, and they mesh so well that once I do this, it will be natural.'”
He added, “There wouldn’t be a conflict of trying to do one or the other because they both go together.”
Of what he was most excited about in his new role, Wilson said, “Just seeing the county grow, and doing it in a way that is beneficial to everybody … My purpose with the planning commission is to make sure that people’s hard-earned money is invested in their properties where they don’t lose money.”
The Bradley County Regional Planning Commission meets at noon on the third Thursday of each month in the county commission room of the courthouse.
Wilson can be reached at the planning and inspections office at 423-728-7106, or by email at RonWilson@bradleycountytn.gov.
Article by Grant Bromley, Cleveland Daily Banner