Brentwood Arts to Assume Lease of Lakeside Resort

September 15, 2012
Dwayne Page
Lakeside Resort

The Corps of Engineers has agreed to allow Brentwood Arts to assume the lease of Lakeside Resort on Center Hill Lake

In a recent memo sent to UCHRA board members, Executive Director Luke Collins, wrote that the transaction on the lease will be finalized once Rural Development approves a loan to Brentwood Arts.

Meanwhile, Collins wrote that efforts continue to sell Lakeside Resort. "As promised, it is my desire to keep the Board members informed on a regular basis about activities and issues affecting UCHRA. One issue of great concern to many Board members is the proposed sale of Lakeside. While the process is taking longer than we had hoped, progress is being made toward that goal. On Wednesday, September 12, James Starnes, Pat Callahan and I, traveled to Nashville to meet with representatives of the Corps of Engineers. Also present were Jim Himelrick and Bob Pierce, current managers of the facility, and George Williams, Board member of Brentwood Arts. The Corps has agreed to allow Brentwood Arts (a non-profit 501C3) to assume the lease. At this point we await Rural Development's approval of a loan to Brentwood Arts before the transaction can be finalized," wrote Collins.

The mission of the Brentwood Art Society is to encourage, support, and develop art and cultural programs.

In April, Himelrick and Pierce, partners in American Modus, laid out their vision for Lakeside Resort in a power point presentation during a UCHRA policy council meeting in Cookeville. The UCHRA later voted to pursue an agreement with them.

Himelrick and Pierce proposed entering into a management contract with UCHRA as they worked toward acquiring their own land lease on the property with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and assuming all UCHRA loan obligations on the resort by January 1st, 2013

The 2012 objective was to restore the property to the 2010 level of cash flow, increase bookings through extensive marketing and high level of service, and carefully manage expenses and maintain the property at a high level.

The 2013 objectives are to make property improvements, upgrade landscaping, make unit interior improvements to lodging facilities such as adding flat screen TV's, carpeting, and other cosmetic upgrades. Increase amenities and family activities, add lake inflatables and cabins, pool amenities, etc.

American Modus Partners, LLC,. is a Brentwood based company which was organized in 2010. Himelrick and Pierce were part of the Investors Equity Holdings group that put $1.5 million worth of improvements into Nashville Shores before its sale in 2011.

UCHRA acquired Lakeside Resort several years ago, securing a 25 year lease at a dollar a year from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, who owns the property.

Lakeside Resort, consisting of 139 acres on the banks of Center Hill Lake off of the Cookeville Highway, created problems for UCHRA financially, apparently being unable to support itself or to service the debt on the note owed on property there.

On other matters, Collins' further wrote in his memo, "On August 30, the Policy Council and Executive Committee approved a motion made by the Personnel Committee on August 23 for UCHRA to create a position for a Grant Writer. The job was posted in-house and three current UCHRA employees applied. We are pleased to announce that Kelly Dishman has been selected to fill that position."

"On Friday, September 7, the sealed bids from firms seeking to be our new auditor were opened. A representative from the Comptroller's office was in attendance. The firm that successfully bid for the job is Jobe, Hastings & Associates, located in Murfreesboro, TN. The Comptroller's office will be reviewing the audit as well."

"Last week the annual TAHRA convention was held in Pigeon Forge, TN. Three UCHRA staff members attended the full convention. Agencies from other regions sent many more attendees. By sending only three, we kept expenses well below amounts spent on this convention in the past."

"Yesterday, Willie Kerr, Frank Smith, Mike Nesbitt and I traveled to Nashville to meet with representatives of Governor Bill Haslam's office. We were also able to meet with several State Senators and Representatives. We advocated for continued support of our programs and increases in funds wherever possible. In general the response was positive."

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