ear (2006-19)

Limits Limbo

Swann Dive

The Fragile 15

Runyon Redux?

United Way United

Stop and Say Hi

Bug in Our Ear

Limits Limbo

One reason for the delay is that the Knox County Election Commission intervened in the suit to seek a determination whether Sheriff Tim Hutchison , Trustee Mike Lowe , Register of Deeds Steve Hall , County Clerk Mike Padgett and others are subject to term limits. Under rules of civil procedure, they are entitled to 30 days to respond.

But leaving the fate of all these elected officials in limbo until June bumps into the time frame needed for orderly selection of candidates to replace any incumbents who are ruled ineligible to run in the Aug. 3 general election. That selection process, via Republican and Democrat party conventions, must be completed more than 40 days prior to the election in order to get replacement candidates’ names on the ballot.

Assuming Weaver finds the charter valid, as the county law department is urging him to do, that’s almost certainly sayonara for the five plaintiffs in the case: Commissioners Diane Jordan , David Collins , Billy Tindell , Phil Guthe , and John Griess . The same goes for four other term-limited commissioners who also won their party primaries: John Schmid , Mark Cawood , Larry Clark and John Mills . But the fate of the sheriff and the other so-called constitutional officers would still be up in the air. If Weaver finds the charter invalid, the law department will seek an expedited appeal to the state Supreme Court. But it’s doubtful whether a decision could come in time to avoid making the Aug. 3 election even more of a shambles than the May 2 primary. 

Swann Dive

Even though Swann won the election, it would appear that Lee got what he wanted. Swann was bruised and bloody after it was all over and was revealed to have had his own child-support issues.

Given the damage done to both candidates, the lawyers are wondering if Swann might not face a challenge from an independent in the general election. But a lawyer challenging a sitting judge is considered unlikely—it can be career hell if you lose.

The Fragile 15

The 2006 list contains some perennials, like the Cal Johnson building on State Street and McClung Warehouses on Jackson, but also a few new ones, some of which spring from recent news headlines. No. 1 on the list has some attitude: It’s ca. 1935 South High, believed to be saved until Knox County Commission rejected a private developer’s plan last year; No. 2, listed together, were the Glencoe and the Elliott, two early 20th-century apartment buildings condemned a few weeks ago by the Fire Marshall, victim of that real-estate euphemism, “deferred maintenance.” Another melancholy surprise is Knoxville College Historic District, historic buildings still home to a college on life support. Brownlow Elementary in the Fourth and Gill neighborhood, which one developer ceded to another in the last year, is a new entry, as is Minvilla, a.k.a. the Fifth Ave. Motel—which, after a residential development plan was abandoned, is subject of a homeless-shelter project.

One of the biggest surprises is that the list includes some Market Square addresses. According to KH, Market Square’s remarkable success in the last year has overlooked the fact that three buildings are in pretty bad shape. One, occupied by Gus’s restaurant on the square’s northwest corner, is maybe the oldest-continuously used restaurant space in town; other underachievers on the Square are on the east side, vacant storefronts at numbers 26 and 36.

Runyon Redux?

The agency is still saddled with billions in debt from its nuclear program and has had two rate increases in the last six months. There is pressure from Congress and the new board to address the debt and concern about yet another rate increase before this year is out. Three within 12 months will have utility customers screaming.

That means a hard look at reducing TVA costs, which translates to payroll.

            

United Way United

She met Joe Pryse when he was at UT Hospital, while was a loaned executive to United Way. He is now an administrator at the Roane Medical Center hospital in Harriman. Their first date was a hike up House Mountain on Valentine’s Day two years ago.

Miller has been a widow since 1998, when she lost her husband Bob after 17 years of marriage.

Stop and Say Hi