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Thorn wants to make changes in Russellville operations

John Thorn is running for election in District 1 on the Russellville City Council.

Having lived in Russellville “off and on since 1940,” Thorn moved back into the city from a farm in Waco three years ago.

“I got involved at city hall, and I’ve seen a lot of things being done that I don’t agree with and a lot of things that need to be done that aren’t being done,” Thorn said. One problem he sees is Russellville’s solitary electrical feed. As a TVA retiree, he said the single feed could prove problematic for the city, particularly if it was ever damaged by adverse weather conditions. “I am going to do anything I can do to get us another feed in, and I know how it needs to be done,” Thorn said. “Somebody on this end needs to sound the alarm.”

Thorn is against the pay raise the council approved recently for council members – a 33 percent increase from $7,200 to $9,600 a year – and wants to see “the working man” see increased salary and wages. “I’m going to propose (the council pay raise) be rescinded until they can pay $10 an hour to everyone who works for the city.” He is also against department heads having so much power in the City of Russellville – “They have authority to do things they shouldn’t have. The city delegates authority for things the council and mayor should be taking care of … They don’t want any responsibility,” Thorn said.

If elected, Thorn’s priorities will including seeing the city cleaned up and working with the newly-established STAR group to provide increased facilities and programming for people with special needs in Russellville. He is also focused on infrastructure – fixing streets with potholes – and economic development. “One of the biggest things we need in retail is a home improvement and building supply,” Thorn said.

Thorn takes inspiration from his father, who never served in public office but was always civically engaged.

“He cared about people, and he was involved in doing things right,” Thorn said.

Thorn said his knowledge of money management skills, from running his excavating business, will be one asset he brings to the council.

He is married to Sarah. Children are son Charlie Thorn, daughter Debbie Thorn, who both attended RCS, son Craig Richeson and daughter Suzanne Pitt. They have eight grandchildren and four great-grandchildren with another on the way.

He belongs to the Franklin County Cattlemen’s Association and is on the waste water board. He is a member of Lodge F.&A.M. 371, the Cowboy Church of Franklin County and the Franklin County Baptist Church Builders.