Some Commissioners Still Have Concerns, But County Budget Passes 5-4

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Some County Commission members on Thursday morning tried to delay a budget vote, saying they still wanted to review it further, but it passed 5-4.

In favor were Chairman Larry Henry and Commissioners Greg Beck, Marty Haynes, Jim Fields and Chester Bankston.

Opposed were Fred Skillern, Tim Boyd, Joe Graham and Warren Mackey.

Commissioner Graham said he $665 million budget is up by $22 million, and he did not understand where the new money was coming from. He noted the county school system is getting almost $9 million more than the past year.

He said he wanted to see full details on the final budget before voting for it. Louis Wright, finance director, said it will be another month before that is ready.

Commissioner Skillern said it would be the second year in a row that the county did not increase the fund balance (rainy day fund). He said that ought to rise as the overall budget increased.

County Mayor Jim Coppinger said the budget process was the same as the past few years.

He said no one on the commission "has been misled in any way."

There is again no property tax increase or fee increase, he said.

The final budget is $665,319,053. The current budget is $643,206,407.

Total requests at the start of the budget process had been $670.5 million.

One final adjustment approved by the County Commission was to allow Criminal Court Clerk Gwen Tidwell to retain $400,000 for her budget from her excess fees.




  


Federal Government Sues Life Care's Forrest Preston, Saying He Received Millions In Medicare Funds He Was Not Entitled To

Federal attorneys have sued Forrest Preston, founder and chairman of Cleveland, Tn.-based Life Care Centers of America, claiming that he was "unjustly enriched" by receiving Medicare funds he was not entitled to receive. The civil suit in Chattanooga Federal Court asks for the return of "millions of dollars." The government earlier sued Life Care on similar charges based on ... (click for more)

Signal Mountain Man Charged In Plot Against Muslim Town To Be Evaluated; Doggart Faces New Charges

A Signal Mountain man who admitted plotting to kill Muslims in a town in Upstate New York to show that it was "a true threat" is to undergo an evaluation at a facility in Lexington, Ky. Robert Doggart will be tested at the Federal Medical Center. Also, Doggart is facing new charges after a superseding indictment was issued this week. He is charged with solicitation to commit ... (click for more)

Thankful For The Vital Role Teachers Played In My Life

Re: Roy Exum: Teachers Day Tomorrow Roy, I am especially appreciative of your poignant column written in tribute to teachers.  It made me tear up, as I have encountered both as a student and a career educator-- teachers like the second-grade teacher who said, "I wish you were my little girl" and teachers like Mrs. Poindexter.   My teachers have played such a vital ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: ‘No’ To Schools Budget

When the Hamilton County Commissioners and officials of the Hamilton County Department of Education met for 3 ½ hours on Tuesday, they studied a proposed budget of roughly $385 million – this $24.2 million over an anticipated $361 million in revenues. Now let’s pretend it is a Tuesday night at your own kitchen table and your favorite son – after misbehaving in a somewhat stunning ... (click for more)

Mustangs Clip Raiders, 4-3, On Chambers' Clutch RBI Hit In 10th

(Story will be updated) CLEVELAND, Tenn. – Winning two regular season games against Cleveland was no picnic for the Walker Valley Mustangs. Capturing a win-or-go-home District 5-3A tournament showdown with the Blue Raiders was even tougher to nail down for coach Joe Shamblin’s squad. Bunts by Jacob McCall and Hunter Shamblin set the stage for Jacob Chambers’ walk-off ... (click for more)

East Ridge And CFCA Reach New Contract

The city of East Ridge and the Chattanooga Futbol Club Academy (CFCA) have agreed to a new five-year soccer field-use agreement for five fields at Camp Jordan Park. The agreement allows CFCA to practice at Camp Jordan Park and play games there on fields 1-5. The East Ridge Futbol Club (ERFC) plays recreation soccer on fields 6-8 and often works with CFCA to use field 5 on Saturday ... (click for more)