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Saturday, October 07, 2017

Open records and meetings
The Tennessee Supreme Court has ruled that arms of local government are subject to the state's Sunshine and Open Records laws, and must be open to the public. In 2013, a group of Jefferson County residents, including Oliver Wood, filed a lawsuit in Jefferson County Chancery Court naming the Jefferson County Economic Development Oversight Committee (EDOC) as defendant. The Committee was established by the county, Jefferson City and Dandridge, to promote development in the county. Testimony of various public officials established that the EDOC played a significant role in promoting a planned megasite development, which was described as one of the most important economic decisions ever made by the county, and which involved a large expenditure of public funds. The group of property owners sought to gain access to the records and meetings of the Committee, but were denied. As a result of the subsequent lawsuit, Senior Judge Don Ash held that the EDOC was not a governmental entity and was not subject to the Sunshine and Public Records laws. Now the high court has reversed that ruling. “We find and hold that the undisputed facts establish that EDOC performs a governmental function, recieves a substantial amount of taxpayer funding, and is significantly involved with and regulated by the governing city and county legislative bodies. In light of our duty to broadly construe and interpret the Public Records and Open Meetings Acts in favor of governmental transparency and accountability, we hold that the EDOC is subject to these acts," says the Supreme Court. The case has been remanded to Judge Ash for further proceedings.


Return to Today's News Stories - Front Page

Saturday, May 26, 2018

  • Appropriations Committee considers the Farm Bill
  • Lots of new jobs in Tennessee
  • Cocke County man injured in dog attack
  • Jefferson crash injures three
  • THP beefs up enforcement

    Friday, May 25, 2018

  • Traffic...........Traffic
  • Indecent exposure arrests
  • Smokies lawsuit
  • April jobless numbers
  • Auto import tarriffs
  • Reward in Sevierville pedestrian death

    Thursday, May 24, 2018

  • Smelly South Highway 321
  • Hemp licenses available
  • Holiday travel

    Wednesday, May 23, 2018

  • Shelton pursuit and arrest
  • Rolling Thunder
  • Newport Planning Commission
  • Seat belts may be required on school buses

    Tuesday, May 22, 2018

  • Cocke Legislative Body
  • Memorial Day boating
  • NAFTA and tarriffs
  • Wallace in Newport on Saturday
  • Corker turns down ambassadorship
  • Immigration
  •    

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