Friday, April 22, 2011

Commish to table fee office plan

I slapped this together for tomorrow's newspaper. Some commissioners held a meeting today (yeah, it was sun shined) to talk about items on this Monday's commission agenda. The Good Doctor, Commissioner Richard Briggs, said they would table a plan to talk about the fee office mess. Because happy hour was approaching, I left, so I could call county Mayor Tim Burchett and Register of Deeds Sherry Witt (to talk about the issue - not to hit happy hour with). Here's some variation of what will run in tomorrow's paper:

The county commission on Monday expects to table a proposal to take control of some fee office budgets now that the mayor and register of deeds – the one holdout to the proposal – are working through the issue.

“I think we both have the same objective and we’ve both been in government a long time and I think we can get a compromise worked out where we can both agree on the objective,” said County Mayor Tim Burchett, adding that he met with Register of Deeds Sherry Witt earlier this week. “We’re not that far apart, so if we slow down, we can get there a little faster.”

Witt agreed.

“I’m hopeful that we can all work together and we can come to a compromise that I feel comfortable with in regards to my duties as register of deeds, protecting my employees and protecting the taxpayers of Knox County,” she said.

At issue is a proposal by commissioners – and backed by the mayor – to take more control over the staffing levels and salaries for half the county’s fee offices - the trustee, the register of deeds and county clerk. The commission was expected to vote on the much-discussed plan during its regular meeting on Monday.

Now it looks like they’ll put it aside for 30 days, said Commissioner Richard Briggs, who is sponsoring the plan.

“I think (Witt) was concerned that there were things she needed to run her office and the money wouldn’t be there and it would fall negatively on her,” he said.

Right now, the fee offices file salary lawsuits in Knox County Chancery Court, outlining much of the departments' annual spending plans. The mayor as a matter of protocol signs off on the suits. Under the new plan, the offices – much like the school system and sheriff’s office – would submit budgets to the mayor first for initially review and then to the commission for final approval.

As it stands, Trustee John Duncan III and County Clerk Foster Arnett Jr. support the plan.

3 comments:

Brian Paone said...

Well, I'm starting to see why Witt's a favorite target 'round here. She seems to be doing a bang-up job of painting her back with a bulls-eye.

“I’m hopeful that we can all work together and we can come to a compromise that I feel comfortable with in regards to my duties as register of deeds, protecting my employees and protecting the taxpayers of Knox County,” she said.

You'll do what the voters tell you to do, Sherry. You and every other elected official. You work for us, and the only reason you're allowed to "negotiate" is the same reason Burchett's allowed to "negotiate" - enough people aren't annoyed at this childish nonsense.

Yet.

“I think (Witt) was concerned that there were things she needed to run her office and the money wouldn’t be there and it would fall negatively on her,” he said.

Uh, yeah, it's pretty bad when an elected official blows their budget. That WOULD fall negatively on her or anyone that does, and rightfully so.

My keyboard for public servants without these damned egos.

By the way, never purchase anything - ANY. THING. - from Airport Honda. Or a Joe Jemley. Thank God they're sloppy with paperwork or we'd have been shafted on a used car. Bastards couldn't even have the truck road-ready for its pre-purchase inspection until most of the paperwork was already finished. (Most. Not all. Thankfully.)

When the truck bombed the inspection ($32 and a bit of change at Buckner's Automotive on Sutherland, and WELL WORTH EVERY DAMNED DIME!), we figured, "oh, okay, well - we just won't complete the rest of the paperwork and we'll get our truck back".

Oh no. Not according to Joe "Jackass" Jemley.

Informing Jackass Jemley of the situation earned five minutes of the "hard-sell" routine as his bald, bloated carcass did his very best (which sucked out loud) to stick my wife and I with this truck.

I told him I didn't have time for the hardass routine, and to relinquish my wife's truck.

He said "The 2000's your truck now. Your wife's truck is ours. Have a good one."

Calling the police did no good. But calling the bank did. Thankfully, Jackass Jemley doesn't know enough about his own damn place of employment to be a proper sales manager and, y'know, teach his crew to actually close the sale and get all of the bank's conditions met BEFORE engaging in thievery and lemon-selling.

Sorry, Jemley. The bank doesn't think we can make the income requirement now. Also, one of the other conditions is getting OUR title for OUR '97, which you're just not going to be able to do.

Not everyone, unfortunately, can be lucky enough to get out of a situation like this - which is why I would buy a FLEET of cars from Greg Lambert before I'd even consider returning to Airport Honda of Alcoa or EVER dealing with Jackass Joe Jemley ever again.

(I know that rant's not related. Shut up.)

Anonymous said...

Burchetts only backing down cause he cant handle the heat at budget time. Here kitty kitty

Brian Paone said...

Donila, what the hell is wrong with your anonytards? They don't even spout GOOD insults. Hell, they barely even try.

You need better anonytards.