Eugene Murray announced his candidacy for his fifth term on the Wilson County Commission in District 21.
Murray is a 1962 graduate of Wilson County High School and a Wilson County native. He attended Cumberland College, Volunteer State Community College and the University of Tennessee Extension School in Nashville. In addition, he’s completed 188 credit hours of further education and attained a certified public administrator degree through the University of Tennessee Center for Government Training.
He has also completed 45 credit hours and received his certificate for public service level one for county executives.
Murray has live in District 21 for the past 35 years with his wife of 50 years, Jean Enoch Murray. The Murrays have three grown children, Marjorie (Larry) Ferrell, Anthony (Kellie) Murray and Sharie (Dwight) Jones. They also have four grandchildren and two step-grandchildren.
Murray served with the Lebanon Police Department in the 1970s and early 1980s from patrol to detective. He was appointed interim circuit court clerk for Wilson County in the early ’80s.
He worked for Toshiba America Consumer Products and retired as material manager after nearly 24 years.
“I have worked for many years to improve the intersection of Maddox Simpson Drive and Sparta Pike, and their intersection with Interstate 40 at exit 239,” Murray said. “These improvements have been completed with a new traffic pattern with the help of the Tennessee Department of Transportation and the city of Lebanon mayor’s office.”
Murray listed some other accomplishments while serving on the commission.
“We funded and opened a new Lebanon High School in 2012,” he said. “We approved bond issues to finance a new Watertown High School that will open in the fall. We funded a new Rutland kindergarten through second grade, and it was opened in 2012. Also in 2012, we completed renovations to West Elementary School. When Watertown High School will open in 2014, Wilson County will have the distinction of not having a high school older than 12 years.
“As county commissioner, we addressed the school security resource officers and funded an SRO officer for each of our county schools during the 2010-14 term.”
Murray serves as chairman of the Planning and Zoning Committee and successfully, through the committee process, passed the first new building codes for Wilson County.
“Planning and zoning continue to work toward better legislation in considering the placement and monitoring of cell towers that are placed in residential areas,” he said. “We also continue to look at legislation toward the management of unkept properties and construction salvage storage.”
Murray serves as elected chairman of the Finance Committee, which is responsible for establishing policy and procedure, as well as administering the funds, for Wilson County.
He also serves as chairman of the Cable TV Committee, which informs the commission of all matters concerning cable television and all franchises in the county.
“We have worked for a number of years for a WEMA station in the 21st District,” Murray said. “We will open a new WEMA station on Maddox Simpson Parkway by Aug. 1. This station will offer a quicker and more efficient response time to District 21. Taxpayers in the 21st District should see a reduction in their homeowners insurance with the opening of the Maddox Simpson fire station. This new fire station will be fully staffed with fire and medical personnel.”
He also serves as a member of the Ethics Committee, Development and Tourism Committee, Judicial Committee, Steering Committee and Ad Hoc Committee from time to time.
“We have moved Wilson County forward over the past years, but we also know there are lots of challenges ahead,” Murray said. “Schools will continue to be a challenge to maintain and build for a fast-growing county. We will upgrade the Carroll Oakland School in the north section of the county during the 2014-15 school year.
“Highways and bridges are always on the front burner, and we have one of the best road departments in Tennessee. We have no dirt or gravel roads in the county, and we will continue to upgrade existing roadways.
“We have built new and upgraded existing jail and court facilities to bring our judicial system in compliance with all state and federal codes.”
Murray said he wanted to remind voters the District 21 voting place changed with redistricting, and voters will vote at Southside Elementary School or the Ward Agricultural Center. Early voting begins July 18 and runs through Aug. 2.