Friday, March 9, 2012

Law director term limit considerations

By now, you probably know that county Law Director Joe Jarret is stepping down five months early. He's also suggested that Bud Armstrong, who defeated him earlier this week in the elections, apply for the position.

(Keep in mind, the County Commission, which is currently accepting resumes, is charged with appointing an interim director.)

Now, a few folks, including commission Chairman Mike Hammond say that Bud is the front runner for the gig. And that would make sense.

But, it's not a given that he'll apply. He says to call him later next week.

You see, Armstrong has his own business to think about. But, he also has to think about term limits.

As it stands right now, county officials, including Jarret, say that if you've been appointed to a term and then you serve a term, you're still eligible to run one more time. The Charter Review Committee, however, is expected to address this and let voters determine the definition of words like “term limit” and “appointment” and “elect.”

Voters in November could very well decide that an appointment is considered a term. So, if Bud got the gig, he could end up doing four years in five months. In other words, he'd serve one term before he even began serving the term residents actually elected him to.

Then again, voters might not do anything.

I asked Bud about this.

“I'm worried more about what's in the best interest of Knox County than what's in the best interest of (my) career,” he said.

He added that when he ran for the post he “wasn't looking for a life-time position and not necessarily eight years or even eight years and five months.”

He suggested that at this point his clients – he still has a law practice and cases to close – are what would stop him from applying for the job.

In the meantime, if you want to apply for it, then click right smack here for the directions.

1 comment:

Brian Paone said...

How about Daniel Sanders? He's a bit green in the LD, but from what I understand he's fairly talented - certainly capable of handling five months as a caretaker. He'll likely transition smoothly to Bud as well, given Sanders' involvement with the 8th District Reds.

I still don't think Bud's right for the job and will sorely regret losing the services of a far better-qualified employee, but it is what it is.