Wednesday, April 20, 2016

"Calling Out" Town of Rogersville

A few months ago we began receiving comments from various readers on illegal drag racing in Oakland, Greenhill, and Rogersville; the latter is an incorporated town and should be much easier to police than county areas serviced by scattered Lauderdale deputies. At that time, we received via an official source the following message from the Town of Rogersville:

There is absolutely NO TRUTH to the absurd claim that the City of Rogersville is selling, or otherwise issuing, permits for drag racing in the Industrial Park.

We published the above statement on April 7th, and no one at Call Out 256 refuted it. Yesterday we published some new concerns from a Rogersville citizen concerning a drag race that ostensibly took place on Sunday in that city. We say ostensibly, since Rogersville officials now say the race was on a county, not a city, road. Was it?

We were, after hours of unsubstantiated claims, sent this:

The above article is from the East Lauderdale News, and we believe it to be genuine. When we asked the Town of Rogersville to reply, we were told:

They didn’t get one from Rogersville. Lauderdale County Sheriff’s Office had to issue it. It was a county road.

We have to ask if the named street (Jarvis Brewer Drive) is outside the Rogersville town limits, why was the town council even asked permission to use the road? A map of Rogersville shows the entire park inside town limits. From the information we’ve been able to assemble, we’re suggesting this:

1. To those who have complained about illegal racing in Rogersville: It would appear that it’s legal. For those who think it damages the city in some way, we would suggest you protest to the town council. None of our bloggers lives in Rogersville or has a stake in city politics. If you need assistance in composing your concerns, we will be happy to help in that way. We do appreciate your concerns, but the Town of Rogersville is not apt to listen to anyone from outside its voting jurisdiction, and it would appear that it cares little for those who do.

2. To Call Out 256: First, we apologize for believing the town over your business; however, you might want to note that of the ten or so who supported you on FB, none supplied any data to back up their claims until repeatedly prodded, and absolutely none was polite in expressing a difference of opinion. If our bloggers didn’t care about the truth, we would have left the issue as it was. These supporters might want to look up the term “ad hominem attack.” They might also want to check their own veracity since no one here equated them with drug dealers or murderers.

3. To the Town of Rogersville: It would seem that you owe both Call Out 256 and our blog an apology. You also probably owe an apology to the person whose office you used to convey what are, at best, incorrect messages. You need to address the concerns of your citizens without prevaricating; it doesn’t make you any friends. In the past, this blog has supported Rogersville events. We will cease to do so until we do receive an apology for your fraudulent statements.

We want to add that’s it sad one cannot trust local governments to tell the truth. Were we na├»ve to take the Town of Rogersville’s statement as truth without checking in some other manner? Perhaps. It’s a mistake that we will not make again…and one we hope those thinking of doing business in Rogersville will not make.


From a reader:

I think I can clear up some confusion over last weekend's 'street racing' -- and legality thereof -- in the Rogersville Industrial Park ...

On April 7, you quoted a Rogersville city spokesman: "There is absolutely NO TRUTH to the absurd claim that the City of Rogersville is selling, or otherwise issuing, permits for drag racing in the Industrial Park."

What happened was: The Rogersville City Council agreed to allow the closure of a street inside the industrial park (Rogersville Business Park) for a group planning on filming footage for a 'reality TV show' on the condition the group provide: 1) an agreement indemnifying the City from liability; 2) proof of insurance for participants; 3) a city 'parade permit.'

The county may also have had to grant permission.

The group/producers making the request said the footage would possibly be used in a future episode of the Discovery Channel show "Street Outlaws" and said that at least some of the participants would be coming from this '256 Call Out Racing' group. It is said that the producers would be wanting to close the road twice: for initial filming (which was presumably what took place last weekend) and again at a later date.So, were 'permits sold or otherwise issued' for 'drag racing?' No, but permission was granted for this group to close the road for filming -- and what they filmed themselves doing was drag/street racing.


As for the above, we agree it's a likely scenario...but why is Rogersville intent on covering up the filming, and why do the race supporters keep referring to the money that was paid Rogersville?

Street Outlaws? Not the best title under the circumstances.

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