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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, October 21, 2017

  • Cocke County Grand Jury
  • Road rage

    Friday, October 20, 2017

  • Newport leaf pickup
  • September jobless in Tennessee
  • Newport attorney under investigation
  • Cocke County Partnership update

    Thursday, October 19, 2017

  • Gass appointment
  • Johnson arrest
  • Gruntzel arrest
  • Campbell jailed
  • Stewart stabbed, Ray is charged
  • Paint The Town Pink
  • Bump stock legislation
  • Mobile Job Center

    Wednesday, October 18, 2017

  • Water leak
  • Breast Cancer Awareness
  • US Senate seat
  • Earthquake awareness
  • National Energy Awareness
  • Emergency responders
  • Alexander on healthcare fix
  • Incredible Tiny Homes

    Tuesday, October 17, 2017

  • Bull Rider Noah Thompson
  • Cocke Legislative Body
  • Bob Self obit
  • Cocke County CLB
  • Cocke County Jail vandalism
  • Judge candidates headed to Nashville
  • Phil Fulmer in Newport

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