Judge Rules Domestic Partners Ordinance To Proceed As Drafted By Petitioners; Rally Set In Support Of Ordinance

Monday, July 7, 2014

Circuit Court Judge Neil Thomas on Monday morning ruled that the Domestic Partners Ordinance referendum will proceed as drafted by the group that gained signatures to put it on the ballot.

The judge ruled after hearing arguments on Thursday afternoon and considering the issue over the weekend.

The city of Chattanooga and Lt. Corliss Cooper and oartner Robin Smith had sought  to have wording drafted by the city explaining the ordinance put on the ballot instead of the shorter version that will now go forward.

The start of the printing of the ballots had to occur by noon today to have them ready for the Aug. 7 election.

The new city policy, which allows benefits to same-sex or live-in partners of city employees, was set to go into effect the first of July. However, it was put on hold due to the referendum.

Meanwhile, a rally was set at the steps of City Hall today at 5:30 p.m. in support of the ordinance. Those set to take part included City Council members Moses Freeman and Chris Anderson.

The group said, "Fair-minded elected officials, faith and community leaders will rally today to demand equal protection for all city of Chattanooga employees."

The policy was approved by the City Council in a 5-4 vote.

The petition drive was led by Tea Party president Mark West. Enough signatures were gained in a two-week drive.

Judge Thomas said he found a Tennessee Supreme Court decision that was directly on point. He said in that case involving a vote on a new form of government in Shelby County the court left the ballot referendum as originally drafted.

The judge denied a temporary restraining order and said his decision was final.

City attorneys and attorney Stevie Phillips said they would be conferring with their clients on whether to appeal.


Latest Hamilton County Jail Booking Report

Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: ALLEN, EDWARD HOMELESS CHATTANOOGA, 37410 52 Chattanooga PUBLIC INTOXICATION BEENE, JENNIFER LENA 4717 ELDRIDGE ROAD HIXSON, 37343 30 Chattanooga DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE DRIVING ON ROADWAYS LANED FOR TRAFFIC, VIOLATION LIGHT LAW VIOLATION RESISTING ARREST OR OBSTRUCTION OF LEGAL ... (click for more)

Corker Gives Statement On White House Veto Threat Against Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act Of 2015

Senator Bob Corker made the following statement regarding the White House’s  threat  of a presidential veto against his bipartisan bill requiring congressional review of any comprehensive nuclear agreement with Iran. "It is disappointing that the president feels he is the only one who speaks for the citizens of our country," said Senator Corker. "Congress put these ... (click for more)

Net Neutrality: The Beginning Of The End Or Just A New Beginning?

“The Internet is simply too important to be left without rules and without a referee on the field,” says Tom Wheeler, chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, “Today’s order is more powerful and more expansive than any previously suggested.”  The FCC’s vote for so-called Net Neutrality purports to allow the agency to regulate the Internet as a public utility.  ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: My Garden On March 1

As I try to do at the beginning of each month, I stroll through my garden to see the good and the bad. This morning there is still a solid covering of snow but, as usual, there is still a lot to see. March is historically known for “coming in like a lion and leaving like a lamb” so let’s see who gets what: A LAMB to the fact 90-year-old Floyd Hartwig of Easton, Calif., and his ... (click for more)

Regoin 3-AA Boys Final At Chattanooga State Monday

The fifth meeting between the Brainerd Panthers and the Central Purple Pounders will be held at Chattanooga State on Monday night with the tipoff set for 7 p.m. This upcoming game will be the biggest to date as it's for the Region 3-AA boys championship. Monday's winner will be at home on Tuesday for a sectional game while the loser will be on the road Tuesday night.  Brainerd ... (click for more)

Brainerd, Central Boys Advance To Region 3-AA Hoop Finals

LOUDON, Tenn. -- Brainerd won both regular-season matchups while Central won at the Best of Preps third-place consolation game before capturing the District 6-AA title last week at Red Bank. The season tally is now two wins each against each other and now they are ready for Round 5 following the Region 3-AA semifinals here at Loudon High School Saturday afternoon. Brainerd ... (click for more)