Dorsey Is City Manager Finalist For Both East Ridge And Signal Mountain

Monday, May 06, 2013
Denny Manning and Chris Dorsey
Denny Manning and Chris Dorsey
- photo by Deb Martin

Chris Dorsey, former city manager for Red Bank, is a finalist for open city manager posts at both East Ridge and Signal Mountain.

Honna Rogers, outgoing town manager at Signal Mountain, said the finalists to replace her include Mr. Dorsey, Tracy Baker and David Rutherford. Tracy Baker is the assistant city administrator for Sevierville, Tn., and David Rutherford is the city manager of McMinnville, Tn. The salary range discussed was $78,588 to $90,376. Ms. Rogers' salary is $84,178.

A reception is set Tuesday for the public to meet the three Signal finalists.

Meanwhile, the East Ridge City Council on Saturday night was ready to hire Mr. Dorsey on the spot, but he said he had not expected things to move so fast. Several council members at the time speculated that he might also be a finalist for the Signal Mountain opening, and he would not comment on the speculation. He would only say he was still interviewing with another city.

Mr. Dorsey said he had expected to come to the unusual Saturday night session and be interviewed along with two other finalists. But the other two dropped out, leaving him as the sole contender.

After he fielded a number of questions and following a long recess, Vice Mayor Jim Bethune made a motion to offer Mr. Dorsey $120,000, three weeks vacation and a $350-per-month car allowance, He called the candidate "a perfect fit for our city."

However, Mr. Dorsey said he would need to follow through on a commitment to finish the interview process with another city. He also noted that Councilman Larry Sewell was absent. He said he would not want to be hired where he did not have the approval of all the council members.

He asked to have time to consider the offer until the next council meeting on Thursday night.

Vice Mayor Bethune withdrew his motion, saying, "He's not ready to accept the job."

Councilman Denny Manning was so high on the candidate that he first said he would not withdraw his second to the motion, but later he did.

Mr. Dorsey said he would not want to win the job "by default," but Interim City Attorney Hal North said that was not the case. He said the council had other options, including hiring an interim city manager until the city charter could be changed.

Mr. Dorsey was asked what happened to cause him to be fired in a  surprise 3-2 vote at Red Bank. He said a motion was made out of the blue at the close of a meeting to dismiss him. He said the action left him "in total shock."

He said he would not change "99.9 percent" of his actions at Red Bank, though he said he "might change one or two small things."

The audience was given a chance to quiz him, and citizen activist Frances Pope asked his stance on the Open Records Act. He said sometimes requests can take time to complete, but he said it should be done in a timely fashion.

Mimi Lowrey asked if he would be "intimidated" by any council member, and he said, "No, I'm not a yes person." 

Mr. Dorsey said he would need to give a month's notice to Pasco County, Fla., where he is budget director. He said he is the middle of the budget process there.

His family, including children 11, 8 and 6, still live here and he commutes. He said his children are happy in the Hamilton County Schools.

 


Corker Honors Life Of David Abshire

Senator Bob Corker released the following statement on the passing of David M. Abshire, former U.S. ambassador to NATO and co-founder of the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS): "I am saddened to hear of the passing of a great Chattanoogan, Ambassador David Abshire. From his distinguished service in the military to his time as ambassador to NATO and as ... (click for more)

Kelvon Dozier Faces Multiple Charges After Armed Burglary On Sunnyside Avenue

Police were called to a home on Sunnyside Avenue after the owner drove up and saw three men leaving the house and running into an SUV. The owner was also able to get part of the tag number. When he told police, they realized his description matched a vehicle they had pulled over earlier. Because of this, police were able to identify the driver and his address. The owner also ... (click for more)

A Vote For Education Is Critical In Tennessee

In a state where just 28 percent of eighth graders are proficient in math and 33 percent are proficient in reading according to national assessments, education is deserving of more attention in 2014 elections. Across the country, more parents are making informed decisions about their child’s education, but for Volunteer State parents without resources, choices are difficult to come ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Saban: ‘Ratings Don’t Matter’

When the first College Football Playoff rankings were released earlier this week, Alabama football coach Nick Saban got it right on the button when he shrugged, “I don't even care, to be honest with you." "To me, none of it matters, What does it matter?” he laughed at the Tide’s No. 6 ranking. “I mean, it only matters where you end up at the end. So what matters to us is how ... (click for more)

Owls Beat McMinn, 30-12, To Complete Unbeaten Regular Season

Undefeated. Sounds nice, huh. After a sluggish first half that produced only three points on a Laszlo Toser field goa., third-ranked Ooltewah came to life in the third quarter, riddled McMinn County’s defense with three Kelvin Leon touchdown passes in the third quarter and went on to beat the Cherokees, 30-12, at James N. Monroe Stadium to secure the school’s third unbeaten ... (click for more)

Notre Dame Clobbers Grundy Co. For 7-AA Title

Notre Dame coach Charles Fant is always hoping that his Fighting Irish football team can get off to a fast start. He never thought it would be as quick as what he saw Thursday night at Jim Eberle Field. With a District 7-AA championship on the line on an evening when they honored all of the fall senior athletes, a football game turned into a track meet and eventually a victory ... (click for more)