CHATTANOOGA, TN – At the very end of today’s County Commission meeting, County Commissioner Larry Henry, with no public notice, brought forward an “emergency resolution” that empowers him to seek legal actions against Occupy Chattanooga in the supposed interests of “health” and “safety”. No public discussion took place on this matter prior to today and the resolution itself was not included on the publicly available agenda prior to the vote.
A reporter interviewing Occupy Chattanooga members on the lawn of the Courthouse said that the County Commission was planning to waste tax-payer money by pursuing
legal action in Chancery Court. Occupy Chattanooga has been peacefully and very
respectfully (even deferentially) demonstrating since moving to the courthouse in
The County Commission had previously met in secret, violating the Open Meetings Act
or “Sunshine Law”, to discuss taking legal action against Occupy. Since then, County
Commissioners Warren Mackey and Tim Boyd have both publicly stated their opposition
to the current “Sunshine Law” which demands greater government transparency in favor
of a new law which would allow for private, closed-door deliberations.
According to the Hamilton County Commission website, the next planned meeting of the
County Commission is an Agenda Setting Meeting on December 29th and then another
Regular County Commission Meeting is scheduled for January 4th. All meetings are
held at 9:30 AM.
County Commission Chairman Larry Henry can be reached at (423) 894-6269 & (423)209-7200
News Channel 3 Eyewitness News has reported the following about the County
Commission’s actions today: The move was conducted as an “emergency resolution”, which allowed the resolution to be added to the agenda without notice. Chairman Henry tells Eyewitness News commissioners have been crafting the resolution for some time.
This obviously leads me to wonder, when exactly was the County Commission “crafting”
this resolution? They have not discussed the resolution prior to today. Was this
resolution the product of their previous closed-door meeting that violated the
Sunshine Law? It would seem that the County Commission has acted illegally by
deliberating/scheming in private about how to begin the process of evicting Occupy