Hamblen County Commission Chairman Howard Shipley announced Monday night during committee meetings that a vote to replace late County Commissioner Louis “Doe” Jarvis will take place next week during the commission’s regularly scheduled meeting.
The commission is looking to fill the position of Jarvis, who led the 5th District. Jarvis died late last month following a prolonged illness.
Shipley said they have five people from the district who have expressed interest in filling the spot. They include Gene Brooks, Dianne Hardin, Mike Minnick, Mike Reed and Jim Wills.
Those interested in filling the commission seat will have to be nominated by a sitting commissioner during the meeting and a vote will then be taken by the full body.
Jarvis served more than eight years on the commission and served as the commission’s budget committee chairman, as well as being chairman of the full body last year.
The finance committee of the commission also went over several budget amendments and approved additional expenditures.
“What you have before you is something that happens every June,” County Mayor Bill Brittain said. “It’s budget cleanup.”
One of the line items dealt with an additional $515,000 expenditure for medical expenses at the county jail, which continues to be a source of financial concern.
County officials said they had underestimated the cost of medical expenses at the jail at the beginning of this fiscal year’s budget, but have since increased the estimate. Next fiscal year’s budget has been increased substantially to make it fall more in line with how much money is required in that line item.
Brittain also announced during committee meetings that the county is looking at teaming up with the city of Morristown to assist in planning services. He said as the county grows its becoming more densely populated since it is one of the smallest counties in the state.
There are also other benefits, he said.
“It increases the relationship between city and county planning departments,” he said.
The county currently partners with the East Tennessee Development District, but has outgrown its services, Brittain said. The cost to the county for partnering with the city would be $15,500 annually.
The committee voted 9-0 to forward the proposal on the full committee next week.
In another instance, Shipley told the audience that anyone videotaping would have to move to the back of the room due to a new policy adopted last month by the county commission.
Attorney Linda Noe, who regularly videotapes the commission meetings from the front, interjected.
“I addressed this last meeting and I thought you were going to consult with your attorney” Noe said.
Shipley said they had and said that she could continue to tape in front, but would have to be in the center of the bench on the front row.
Noe agreed and moved her camera over.