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Open house held to discuss potential new natural gas pipeline

Over 50 landowners in Trousdale and Smith counties attended an open house meeting last week to learn more about a proposed expansion of a natural gas pipeline.

Enbridge, which has operated a natural gas pipeline through Trousdale County since 1949, held the event to provide information on a its proposed Ridgeline Expansion Project, which would expand capacity and potentially service a new Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) plant.

Natural gas is one option for generating power that TVA is considering for replacing its Kingston Steam Plant in Roane County. That plant, which operates on coal, is scheduled to be retired between 2026 and 2033.

There are multiple new options for locating a new gas line, and Enbridge officials said surveying the proposed routes would help determine the final spot. Ideally, a new line would fall within the easement of the current line and would not require the purchase of new land. Enbridge would need to obtain permission to use around a 150-foot wide stretch of property along the route for construction and would have to pay landowners for that access.

In addition to beginning a new line in Trousdale County, local investment would also include an electric compressor station similar to the one already at the Hartsville TVA site. Typically a compressor station uses about 40 acres and uses natural gas. The proposed new Hartsville station would use solar energy instead and require a bit more acreage.

“It would compress the gas. We get gas from Columbia Gulf, compress it into that pipeline and at the other end, TVA if they want can open those taps and have gas flow into their power-generating station,” said Art Haskins, manager of stakeholder engagement for Enbridge. “It would be totally new capacity and doesn’t affect the existing pipeline at all.”

At the open house, which was held at Hartsville’s Community Center, property owners were able to see maps showing where a proposed line would cross their land and receive information about environmental concerns and other issues pertaining to a new pipeline.

“We’ve already been meeting with elected officials, economic developers already. We’re sending out survey permission to landowners because we need to survey the existing corridor,” Haskins added. “This meeting is an invite to all landowners to learn more about the project.”

Further public meetings will be held as part of the proposed timeline for the project. Under that timeline, community open houses would be held in the spring and summer of 2022, with a required public comment period to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission starting in the fall of 2022. Construction would not begin until fall of 2025 with completion expected by fall 2026.

TVA will have to create an Environmental Impact Statement and make a final decision on whether natural gas will be used at its new Kingston plant. That decision is not expected until spring/summer 2023.

“TVA might choose one of the other options and then we wouldn’t build this pipeline,” Haskins noted. “We’re months into what might be a five-year process.”

Reach Chris Gregory at 615-450-5756 or

Trousdale County rebounds with playoff-opening victory

Trousdale County jumped out to a 14-0 lead and built their advantage to 23 points en route to a 31-16 victory over Tyner Academy last Friday in the first round of the Class 2A playoffs.

It marked the fourth consecutive season that the Yellow Jackets (9-1) have eliminated the Rams (7-4) from the postseason.

“I think our players showed a lot of character this week and overcame a lot of adversity,” said TCHS coach Blake Satterfield. “I thought tonight our players had a message to prove and I was proud of my boys. I thought they did a heck of a job.”

After winning the coin toss, the Rams chose to defer to the second half and gave the Jackets the opening possession.

Trousdale County would take advantage, marching down the field in eight plays and scoring on an 8-yard run from Brian Banks around the left end. A two-point try was unsuccessful but the Jackets led 6-0 just 4:10 into the game.

On Tyner’s second play from scrimmage, the Jackets were able to extend their advantage as defensive tackle Xavier Harper showed off his athletic ability by grabbing a short pass and racing 39 yards to the end zone for a pick-six. Bryson Claiborne added a two-point run to put Hartsville’s boys ahead 14-0.

Tyner cut into the deficit late in the first quarter when Josh Jackson connected with Marcus Lewis for a 30-yard touchdown, then ran in a conversion to make it 14-8.

Early in the second quarter, Claiborne scored his 18th touchdown of the season on a 27-yard run to extend the Jackets’ lead back to 20-8.

Trousdale County would add to its advantage in the third quarter as Cole Gregory burst through the Tyner line and raced 54 yards for a touchdown. Claiborne’s two-point carry put the Jackets ahead 28-8.

Carsey West banged in a 20-yard field goal with 8:02 remaining in the game to make it 31-8.

“That was good. Any time a guy has knee surgery then comes back and kicks a field goal is miraculous,” Satterfield said. “It was good to see we can do that if we have to.”

Tyner would add a late touchdown on a 9-yard carry by Deonta Taylor, followed by a Jackson pass to Lewis.

Trousdale would recover an onside kick attempt and run out the clock on the victory.

Claiborne ran for a career-best 192 yards on 24 carries, putting him over 1,000 rushing yards on the season. Gregory added 94 yards on nine attempts and Banks had 11 carries for 46 yards.

On defense, the Jackets forced four turnovers with Keenan Burnley grabbing a pair of interceptions.

"Freedom Rally" planned in Trousdale County to protest mandates

A group of Midstate conservatives is planning a “Freedom Rally” this weekend in Trousdale County to protest what they see as government overreach.

The “Let’s Go Brandon” rally is scheduled to take place in Hartsville City Park on Saturday, Nov. 13 beginning at noon. The name comes from a Internet meme mocking President Joe Biden.

A number of right-wing speakers are in the lineup for the event, including controversial Mt. Juliet Pastor Greg Locke, GOP candidate for governor Curtis Carney and Larry Linton. Musical acts scheduled to be on hand include Tyson James, Bryson Gray and Chandler Crump.

Organizers of the event appeared on the WTNK “Lunchtime With Eleanor” radio show last Friday and spoke about their motivations for putting the rally together.

“We want to get together a bunch of patriots to do something to help save our country,” said Daniel Wagner, who runs a website called Unframe of Mind. “We want to have a bunch of like-minded individuals come together and stand against (vaccine) mandates.”

“We’re loud and we’re not backing down,” added Hartsville resident Denby Morgan, who is also helping organize the rally. “This is about saving America for our generation, our children and grandchildren. This should not be a partisan issue. It’s a ‘We the People’ issue.”

Organizers say they are against measures taken to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic such as mask mandates and vaccine mandates.

“It should be our body, our choice,” Morgan said. “No one should lose a job (over this)… They’re not accepting religious exceptions either.”

“The answer is always freedom,” Wagner said. “We believe it’s people’s right to assess the risks… If you want to get the shot, get the shot. If you want to wear a mask, wear a mask. We don’t feel it’s the government’s responsibility to mandate it.”

There are also scheduled to be food trucks and other vendors on hand, and attendees are encouraged to bring masks that will be burned en masse during the rally.

The hashtag “#LetsGoBrandonRally” has been created for those seeking more information on the event. Admission is free but donations will be accepted to cover costs.

Reach Chris Gregory at 615-450-5756 or

Hartsville Rotary, Trousdale schools plan food drive

After a one-year absence, the Hartsville Rotary Club in conjunction with Trousdale County Schools is preparing to launch the annual Food Drive to benefit the Community Help Center.

The Food Drive will run from Monday, Nov. 15 through Wednesday, Nov. 17. Students can bring canned goods to school during that period, and will be provided with information on what items are needed prior to the beginning of the Food Drive.

Students can have their names entered into a drawing for a monetary prize for bringing canned goods. A student’s name will be entered once for every five items donated.

One student in each grade from pre-K through 12th will win a $25 prize, while four homeroom teachers will also win $25 prizes.

The school with the largest donation per student will receive the rotating trophy, affectionately referred to as the “Beaner Award” for the can of beans atop the trophy, to display for one year. Jim Satterfield Middle School currently has a five-year streak of claiming the trophy.

“Trousdale County Schools, its teachers and students are most appreciative of the opportunity to join together with the Rotary Club in order to fight hunger in Trousdale County,” said Director of Schools Clint Satterfield. “I know Jim Satterfield Middle School is excited to defend its food drive championship trophy again, as well as the other two schools are to take it away from them!”

Members of the Rotary Club will pick up donated items on Wednesday, Nov. 17 and take them to the Community Help Center.

According to estimates, the Food Drive typically results in around 6,000 pounds of food donations to the Community Help Center, which then distributes the items to Trousdale County residents in need.

“This is one of the Hartsville Rotary’s longest-running service projects and we appreciate the partnership and cooperation of Trousdale County Schools,” said Rotary Club president-elect Chris Gregory. “We are happy that we can continue to serve the community with this worthy cause.”

Reach Chris Gregory at 615-450-5756 or