East Ridge Council Votes 3-2 To Make Hal North Permanent City Attorney

Thursday, June 13, 2013 - by Gail Perry

The East Ridge City Council on Thursday night voted to name interim City Attorney Hal North as the permanent city attorney.

His pay continues at $10,000 per month. 

Attorney North noted that he still is operating without a contract and would not be eligible for severance pay. He said the council could fire him at any time and he can quit at any time. 

Voting in favor were Vice Mayor Jim Bethune and Council members Denny Manning and Marc Gravitt.

Opposed were Mayor Brent Lambert and Councilman Larry Sewell.

Prior to the vote, Mayor Lambert said a citizen had advised him "just this afternoon" that the recent naming of a charter study commission had been done illegally. He said he checked with the Municipal Technical Assistance Service and it agreed.

He said the council was not supposed to name a new charter study panel until five years had elapsed from the last one. He said the new one was named "one month shy" of the five years.

Mayor Lambert said the mayor could have done so sooner, but he said he was absent the night the panel was named.

Other council members asked why he had not called Attorney North on the issue, and he said MTAS officials "are the experts in city government."

Mayor Lambert said he had nothing against those named to the panel, which has met twice, but "want it done right."

Attorney North said the "simple solution" was to declare the previous action void and pass a new charter resolution.

That is what the council finally agreed to do.

A third meeting set for Monday of the current charter commission was called off.

The new commission will contain the same members. 

In the discussion about the hiring of a city attorney, Councilman Gravitt read a list of accomplishments by Attorney North. He said he has done considerable work on several upcoming legal cases facing the city.

Mayor Lambert said he is "a good attorney," but he said he wanted a search process.

Vice Mayor Bethune said the council has had seven months to evaluate Attorney North.



Woodmore Elementary On Half Day Schedule Tuesday

Due to the air conditioning unit being down, Woodmore Elementary School will operate on a half day schedule, Tuesday.  Parents have been notified by the principal through a BlackboardConnect message.  Buses will run the morning routes as normal but school will dismiss at 12:30 p.m.  Buses will run at 12:30 p.m.  Car riders and walkers will also be dismissed ... (click for more)

Chattanoogan Who Climbed Brooklyn Bridge And Took Selfie Is On His Way To Face Charges In New York

A Chattanoogan who climbed to the dizzying heights of the Brooklyn Bridge and then took a photo of himself is on his way to face charges in New York. Authorities there filed charges against David Karnauch after he pulled the stunt in early July with heavy traffic below him. Karnauch was due to appear before General Sessions Court Judge David Bales on Monday afternoon, but ... (click for more)

DWT Is DUI - And Response

A routine narrative of a DUI arrest report goes something like this:   The defendant was operating a motor vehicle in the 00 block of sonsoroad. The driver was weaving back and forth across the marked roadway. The defendant drove through a stop sign. Was stopped at an intersection despite the traffic light was green. Entered the lane of another vehicle and caused a ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: UT’s Gender-Neutral Dopes

With due apology to Smokey, the University of Tennessee’s famed blue-tick hound, the tail is wagging the dog at UT-Knoxville. Donna Braquet, the director of the university’s Pride Center, wants to suck 99.9 percent of the 28,000 students into a ridiculous scheme that will make the campus “welcoming and inclusive for all” … .01 percent. Her idea is to do away with binary gender ... (click for more)

Jumper, Ex-Baylor Star, To Start For Vols Against Bowling Green

When 25 th -ranked Tennessee plays Bowling Green on Saturday afternoon at Nissan Stadium in Nashville, former Baylor School standout Colton Jumper will be the Vols’ starting middle linebacker. The 6-foot-2-inch, 227-pound Jumper played at Baylor for coach Phil Massey and recorded 251 tackles, 39 tackles for loss, 22 sacks, two interceptions, caused five fumbles, recovered two ... (click for more)

County Schools Waiting On Report On Condition Of East Ridge High Stands

County school officials are awaiting a report from city of East Ridge inspectors on the condition of the concrete football stands at East Ridge High School. Lee McDade, assistant supt., said maintenance of the stands is up to the county schools. The concrete stands are currently roped off. The concrete complex includes a lower area with coaches' offices and player dressing ... (click for more)