Veteran City Police Officer And Partner File Suit Over Domestic Partner Ordinance

Monday, June 30, 2014

A lawsuit was filed Monday afternoon against the Hamilton County Election Commission on behalf of Lt. Corliss Cooper, a veteran officer of the Chattanooga Police Department with over 27 years of service and her partner Robin Smith.  

The complaint was filed by attorney Stevie Phillips of the firm of Davis & Hoss, who said the Hamilton County Election Commission "voted to change the language that will appear on the Aug. 7th ballot regarding the Non-Discrimination Ordinance approved by City Council last November."

Attorney Phillips said, "The Election Commission initially voted to accept language that was submitted by the city attorney. The original language, approved and published by the election commission, included a summary of the ordinance and a fiscal note certified by the chief financial officer.

"Subsequently, an outside group filed a complaint arguing that the language was too supportive of the Ordinance.  In response, the election commission held an emergency meeting without notifying the public and stripped the 170 word summary down to 15 words -- eliminating important information that would help voters understand the law."

The lawsuit asks the court to declare that the language chosen by the election commission is in violation of the Chattanooga City Charter and state law, to find that the Election Commission violated the Tennessee Open Meetings Act, and to enjoin the commission from printing or disseminating the ballots.  

Attorney Phillips stated, “The voters of the city of Chattanooga need to understand what this Ordinance means when they vote on it.  The Hamilton County Election Commission, a body that should be fair and neutral, is allowing outside political forces to influence their decision making.  The people who stand to lose are the voters of the city of Chattanooga.”     

Lt. Cooper said, “I put my life on the line every day for the citizens of Chattanooga.  This ordinance ensures that my family will receive the same protections and benefits as every other officer in the Department.”

Click here to read the complaint.

 


Corker Says Measure Will Direct More Money From Crime Fund To Victims

Victims of crime will have access to hundreds of millions more dollars next year under a provision included in the budget resolution being considered today, Senator Bob Corker said.   The budget resolution provides an estimated $2.5 billion in funds to victims of child abuse, domestic violence, sexual assault, and other crimes without using taxpayer dollars, he ... (click for more)

Collegedale's New Imagination Station Playground On Track For Opening June 15

The new Imagination Station playground in Collegedale is on track to open June 15 if the weather continues to cooperate, said Eric Sines, director of parks, playgrounds and public works, at the Collegedale Commission meeting Monday night. The popular wooden playground has been closed since last fall when the site was prepared for installation of new state-of-the-art equipment. A ... (click for more)

Dr. King Wouldn't Approve Of The Mayhem In Baltimore

I am mostly certain that Dr. King never meant for this kind of violence to happen.  I don't recall any of the protests he led not being peaceful.  He would most definitely not approve of people burning, looting, the complete and utter unnecessary mayhem, or anything like what happened in Baltimore. Do you really believe Dr. King would condone 8, 10, 12-year-old children ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Why The Lynching Stopped

Over the weekend I became fascinated by Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke, and yesterday I devoted my Monday opinion piece to the fact this black man, who for 25 years was a cop in Milwaukee and who is now in his fourth term as the sheriff, believes the arrest of six Baltimore police is “a miscarriage of justice.” The more I read and researched Sheriff Clarke, the more I ... (click for more)

Central Nips Hixson On Wild Pitch In 6-AA Baseball, 3-2

It was one of those games that could have gone either way. But when you get to the winners' bracket final in a district baseball tournament, you come to expect games like this. Hixson's Parker Tyo and Central's Bret Hardy hooked up in one of those classic pitcher's duals and both pitched well enough to win. But Hardy gets that honor after his Purple Pounder teammates scored ... (click for more)

Willingham Pitches Boyd-Buchanan Past Silverdale In 5-A Baseball

River Crowther allowed two runs on eight hits in five innings Monday afternoon, but all he has to show for an outstanding effort is a loss after his Silverdale Baptist Academy teammates came up short in a 2-1 winner's bracket final against host Boyd-Buchanan in the District 5-A baseball tournament. Crowther probably deserved a better fate, but he was one-upped by Buccaneer junior ... (click for more)