City may support an alternative response service

By Mike Steely

Senior Writer

The Knoxville City Council meets Tuesday evening and may discuss three different resolutions in support of creating an Alternative Response effort with the idea of having medical and mental health professionals respond to some 911 calls.

One resolution, sponsored by council members Andrew Roberto, Lauren Rider, Lynne Fugate, Charles Thomas and Tommy Smith, calls on the city to pursue partnerships to address mental health, substance abuse, and behavioral health needs for low-income and uninsured people and asks for matching funds to develop plans for alternative response services.

Councilwoman Amelia Parker has two resolutions dealing more directly with the creation of an Alternative Response Team. One calls for a plan to pilot the implementation of an alternate response program. She is also calling for additional trauma-informed services and a date for a public hearing on the issue.

The council may also vote on two voluntary annexations, one at 2920 Dresser Road for 5.29 acres and the other at 7624 Sabre Drive for 0.64 acres.

The council will hear zoning appeals from Taco Bell at 5613 Kingston Pike regarding a planning commission decision; from Daniel J. Moore on a denial at 2900 North Broadway; and from John Holmes regarding the denial of six variances at 2230 Laurel Avenue by the Board of Zoning Appeals.

The council will also consider changing the city codes dealing with fines for underage beer sales and establishing a process for appeals.

Parking lot regulations and landscaping requirements may also be discussed by the council.

The council may talk about applying for $10 million from the federal government with a $2 million city match in the Safe Streets and Roads for All grant funds.

The Community Action Committee may get several allocations from the city council including $105,608 for its rapid rehousing program; the Homeward Bound Program may get $60,000; and $1.3 million from COVID funds for transportation needs.

Mayor Indya Kincannon may make several appointments to the Design Review Board and the Airport Authority.