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KNOXVILLE — Area residents interested in the future of the Little River Watershed are invited to a public forum on Oct. 30.

The meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. at the Blount County Public Library in Maryville. It will last no longer than two hours. The Little River is the main source of Blount County’s drinking water. Its watershed is a fast-growing area, a popular recreational site and the home of many native plants and animals.

Dubbed “Little River, Big Future,” this public forum — like two previous ones — is being facilitated by the University of Tennessee Community Partnership Center and partnering state and local government agencies, environmental resource groups, and community organizations concerned with sustaining local resources.

Discussion will focus on the sustainable development of the watershed’s resources. Leaders will detail the new Targeted Watershed program and create citizen-led advisory committees to develop and guide previously identified programs related to recreation, education, urban, rural and septic storm water management, and solid waste recycling.

Earlier this year, the Environmental Protection Agency awarded the Blount County Soil Conservation District an $835,000 Targeted Watershed grant. The funding will help create and implement programs that address many concerns identified by residents of the watershed community during previous phases of the planning process.

Hundreds of watershed residents attended previous Little River, Big Future public meetings. During those meetings many watershed community needs were identified and were included in the EPA proposal

For more information on the Little River, Big Future program, see

Amy Blakely, (865) 974-5034,
Eric Ogle, (865) 974-9036,