Cleveland Mayor's Salary Raised, But Not As High As Projected; Council Critical Of Handling Of Lt. Tyson Case

Friday, August 29, 2014 - by Hollie Webb

The future salary of the Cleveland Mayor's Office was changed from a projected $40,000 annually to $24,000 during a special Friday afternoon city council meeting.

Councilman Richard Banks made a motion to raise the salary to $30,000, but the motion failed. 

The $24,000 salary will double the current $12,000 per year.

Councilman Banks said Mayor Tom Rowland, the second longest serving mayor in the state of Tennessee, goes "goes way beyond the call of duty." 

He said, "He has not been compensated for what he has done."

Councilman Banks stated that after Mayor Rowland eventually retires, "We have to have someone who will step in his shoes and look at what he's done and be somewhat encouraged to follow in his footsteps. Unless we set a compensation rate like other cities...then Cleveland will suffer." 

Councilman Dale Hughes also spoke during the meeting about the recent termination of Lt. Steve Tyson, who has been reinstated. Lt. Tyson was terminated after taking a pain pill for his kidney stones one night after work. Failing a random drug test, he was terminated without question. Community and family members took great issue with this, as well as its portrayal by the media.

Councilman Hughes asked the police chief, "You've known this guy for 27 years and you didn't show him the courtesy to call him in and eyeball him to see if he was impaired?" 

He said, "I'm disappointed...If it wasn't stopped at your level, it should've been stopped at the manager's level. He just deserved better treatment than that. I think somebody fumbled the ball on that."

The police chief and city manager Janice Casteel said they were only following procedure. During the previous city council meeting, the council voted to make changes to those procedures. 

Ms. Casteel said, "They don't have the discretion to pick this one or pick that one."

Councilman Banks said, "Every small offense does not warrant what Steve Tyson was subjected to." 

Councilman George Poe Jr. said the incident tarnished the image of the police department.

Councilman Banks made a motion asking the city manager and police chief to give the council all information relating to the incident including emails, phone calls and text messages. 

He said in order to prevent the situation from happening again, the council needs to fully understand what went wrong before the council revises the policy.

The motion passed.


Latest Hamilton County Jail Booking Report

Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: AVIU, ALDRIN  3881 RUFUS RD MASON,  Age at Arrest: 31 years old Arresting Agency: Chattanooga CRIMINAL IMPERSONATION --- BIRO, ANDREW  5916 THURMAN LN HIXSON, 37343  Age at Arrest: 26 years old Arresting Agency: Hamilton County VIOLATION OF PROBATION (DISORDERLY CONDUCT) VIOLATION ... (click for more)

Cleveland Honored By Environmental Health Association

The city of Cleveland has been chosen to receive the 2016 Community Partnership Award presented by the Tennessee Environmental Health Association, Mayor Tom Rowland said Monday. The award is given to an individual or organization that has made significant impact either on the profession of environmental health or the environmental health of the community. This is the first ... (click for more)

Make America Good Again - And Response

“No people can be great, who have ceased to be virtuous.”   Samuel Johnson (1709 – 1784) Last week I witnessed first hand the 2016 Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio. As I observed the happenings within the Quicken Arena, the one theme that continued to pop up again and again, was  Make America Great Again .  Of course, that being ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Keep Mike Carter’s Genius

Mike Carter, who has just been chosen as the “Best Overall” member of the Tennessee Legislature by a group known as the Tennessee Forum and “Legislator of the Year” by Citizens for Home Rule, is truly both. A lawyer and then a Sessions Court judge for 8 ½ years, he is overwhelmingly favored to win a third term during next Thursday’s election and rightly so. While it is laudable ... (click for more)

Dunbar Promoted To Head Wrestling Job At Ooltewah

J.D. Dunbar had been promoted to head wrestling coach at Ooltewah High School. Dunbar, an assistant with the Owls’ mat program since 2012, becomes a head coach for the first time at the high school level. He replaces Bryant Blackmon, who recently resigned. The 36-year-old Dunbar is also the school’s strength and conditioning coach and assistant head football coach on ... (click for more)

Another Big Week For Chattanooga Football Club

More than 10,000 fans gathered at Finley Stadium last Saturday to see a 5-3 penalty kick win over Miami United.   CFC keeper Gregga Hartley made a save and scored the winning penalty kick, helping his team to advance to the national semifinals on Saturday.  They will host Sonoma County Sol at 7:30 in the comfy confines of "Fort Finley"  Chattanooga is the top ... (click for more)