A Cookeville resident is worried new housing developments will force him out of his home.
Thomas Binford of Scenic Drive addressed City Council members Thursday night to express his concerns.
“I’m being told it’s either move my home or lose my home,” Binford said. “In all of this, I am innocent. I don’t think it’s right for me to lose the home I’ve worked so hard to have, because they’re wanting to come in and build housing.”
The property Binford currently lives on is adjacent to The Gables at Veterans housing complex and the new Shoppes at Eagle Point.
Binford said he is currently on SSI disability and receives only half of what a social security recipient would.
“As you guys… are all stand-up guys who are supposed to oversee our community for everything that’s right,” Binford said, “I’m asking you to make way for those of us in the community, who are on SSI disability, to be able to keep our homes.”
Binford said although he’s in favor of development in the city, he doesn’t want to lose his home over it.
“Just to say, ‘well OK, social security won’t allow me to have enough to move my home and I’m, going to be made homeless,'” Binford said. “That doesn’t seem right somehow. [It] doesn’t seem to fit in with the code of ethics all you guys work on.”
City Manager Mike Davidson said during the meeting Binford had been in contact with his office earlier in the week.
“We’ve tried to find resources and ideas to share with you, but at this point, I’m not sure we as a city have any suggestions at this point,” Davidson said.
Binford and Davidson continued the discussion privately immediately following Thursday’s council meeting.
Davidson said Friday although the city itself may not be able to help, they may be able to point those effected towards the right people who can.
“What we’re trying to do is provide resources to him… that might be able to help with his situation, or if there’s others up there that are in a similar situation,” Davidson said. “Just [making] resources available to them where they can reach out to those agencies and see if they can relocate their mobile home, or just have another place to live and call home.”
Davidson said the city has not yet found an agency that would meet Binford’s specific needs.