WILSON COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) — Two million dollars has been approved for a soon-to-be animal birthing barn on the Wilson County Fairgrounds.
Wilson County commissioners voted to appropriate the funds Monday night at their commissioner meeting. The vote passed 23-2.
However, some commissioners told News 2 they are not happy about the price tag — especially after Wilson County Schools was denied funding back in June.
“There are a lot of people out there that thinks chocolate milk comes from a brown cow,” Tim Edwards said.
Tim Edwards and Jeniffer Apala with Edwards Feed Inc. said building the Agriculture Learning Center has been their dream since 2018. The goal is to help educate the community about agriculture and give hands-on interactions all year round for students.
“For FH, home schools, city schools, county schools, surrounding schools,” Edwards said.
Edwards said the only thing stopping them is the funding as the project is expected to cost $5.5 to $6 million. So, they asked the county commissioners to fund $2 million.
“The birthing barn is part of the selling point for the Tennessee State Fair. Governor Lee is a big proponent for it,” Dan Walker, Wilson County Commissioner, District 10 said.
County Commissioner Dan Walker said the money would come out of the capital projects fund. Meanwhile, Wilson County Schools was recently denied funding.
“It’s only been a month or half since we did the budget so the concern is why are we going to spend so much money on this but not help the schools out,” said John Gentry, Wilson County Commissioner for District 11.
“The main thing is education that is what we are looking and thriving for. We want the public involved,” Edwards said.
With the funding approved, Edwards said they hope to begin building the Agriculture Learning Center in 60 to 90 days.
He said they are hoping by this time next year it will be ready — just in time for the Tennessee State Fair.