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Controversial TVA shoreline program dropped

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By The Staff

STAFF REPORTS

The TVA board terminated the agency’s maintain-and-gain program at its Aug. 20 board meeting.

The program allowed property owners to trade water-access rights with TVA.

It came under scrutiny for a deal involving North Carolina Congressman Heath Shuler.

The former University of Tennessee quarterback served on a congressional committee that had oversight authority over TVA.

He was accused of having a conflict of interest after one of his companies was involved in a maintain-and-gain deal with TVA to gain water access rights for The Cove at Blackberry Ridge, a subdivision in Roane County.

The TVA Office of the Inspector General reviewed the program and found certain actions by TVA employees and others created the appearance of preferential treatment.

The inspector general also concluded the program lacked protocols to ensure a transparent and independent review of applicants having known conflicts of interest, and  recommended that TVA eliminate the program.