Tennessee Central Economic Authority
Tennessee Central Economic Authority was previously known as Four Lake Regional Industrial Development Authority.
Historically, TCEA is unique.
In 1974 the Tennessee Valley Authority announced construction of the world's largest nuclear power plant at Hartsville, Tennessee.
In 1975 the impacted counties--Trousdale (Hartsville) and the four contiguous counties (Macon, Smith, Sumner and Wilson) formed the Hartsville Project Coordinating Committee to work together with TVA to mitigate impacts as the project was developed.
In 1977 construction employment reached a high of 7,000 at the Trousdale County site.
In 1982 after progressive cutbacks, construction was halted with employment virtually eliminated, resulting in significant economic dislocations in the regional economy.
In 1983 a Farmer Home Administration sponsored analysis, "The Hartsville Project Impact Study" was released calling for the establishment of an industrial development authority to specifically focus on the work of attracting jobs to the area.
Legislation creating the Four Lake Regional Industrial Development Authority was passed by public act of the State Legislature on April 15, 1986. In addition, By-Laws were executed on May 15, 1986.
The enabling legislation states that the Authority was "created and established for the purpose of developing the resources of the region embracing the counties of Macon, Smith, Sumner, Trousdale and Wilson .... " More specifically, the Authority "is directed to focus its activity toward economic development and improving employment opportunities in the region ...."
In 1988 the Authority contracted staff and initiated a work program.
After years of contact and pleas with the then 3-member TVA Board of Directors, approximately 554 acres of the mothballed TVA nuclear site were sold to the Four Lake Authority in June 2002 for regional economic development purposes. The property was purchased for the appraised value of $1.7 million with the stipulation that the Four Lake Authority make a minimum of $1.5 million in infrastructure improvements during the first five years of ownership. These initial infrastructure improvements (water, sewer, and natural gas lines), as well as a 750,000 gallon water storage tank, were completed in 2005.