Some in Hamilton County Fear Civil Service System Will Go Too Far in Protecting Bureaucrats

Hamilton County Mayor Weston Wamp (R) and others argue that the civil service measure recently passed by county commissioners bestows excessive protections on bureaucrats. 

The legislative body approved the policy and another resolution extending County Attorney Rheubin Taylor’s contract, which Wamp tried to terminate earlier this month. The civil-service resolution would require a dismissal of a protected county staffer to undergo review by a special commission. 

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Hamilton County Mayor and Commissioners Clash over Removal of County Attorney

The Hamilton County, Tennessee Commissioners on Wednesday unanimously acted to continue the jurisdiction’s relationship with County Attorney Rheubin Taylor.

In so doing, the legislative body countermanded Mayor Weston Wamp’s (R) decision against reappointing Taylor to the job. Following the commissioners’ meeting, Wamp held a press conference to address the uncertain status of the county lawyer. He expressed displeasure with the commissioners’ actions which took place after they sought the advice of outside legal counsel to determine how to keep Taylor on staff. 

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Hamilton County Commission’s Defeat of 34-Cent Property Tax Increase Leaves Teachers with ‘Defeated Faces,’ Disappoints School Board Member’s Dog

  A split Hamilton County Commission voted 5-4 Wednesday against a 34-cent increase on property taxes for the school system, and one school board member reacted by saying his dog was disappointed in the outcome. Voting against were Greg Martin, Randy Fairbanks, Chester Bankston, Tim Boyd and Sabrena Smedley (pictured above), according to a story by The Chattanoogan. In favor were Chip Baker, Katherlyn Geter, Warren Mackey and David Sharpe. County Attorney Rheubin Taylor said the rejection means none of the budget will be approved until the schools come back with a new budget leaving out the requested $34 million in new funds, The Chattanoogan said. That will happen after the Hamilton County Department of Education meets again. The county commission has until Aug. 31 to approve the overall budget, according to a story by the Chattanooga Times Free Press. County Mayor Jim Coppinger’s proposed $819 million budget included $443 million for the school district’s general purpose budget, a 5 percent raise for teachers, plus the addition of 14 counselors, 15 social workers, 15 truancy officers, 11 art teachers, 10 special education teachers and 32 special education assistants, the newspaper said. News Channel 9 said teachers were disappointed. Teachers filed…

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