Friday, September 19, 2008

September 19, 2008 T-FIRE Asks Commission To Support Proposal To Prohibit Use of Illegal Immigrants on Local Government Projects

At yesterday's meeting of the Hamblen County Commission, Wayne Dollar of T-FIRE (Tennesseans for Immigration Reform Education/Enforcement) asked the commission to require that contractors on local government and school construction projects sign or "attest" that they will not knowingly use illegal immigrants on a government contract that they are awarded.

Several months ago, the City of Morristown passed a somewhat similar proposal that applies to city contractors.

The document that contractors would sign can be compared to a "drug-free" workplace and other routine documents that are part of the process of submitting a bid on government work.

Here are excerpts from the T-FIRE proposal:

The Contractor...does hereby ...certify... and assure Hamblen County Government and/or Hamblen County Board of Education that the Contractor shall not knowingly utilize the services of an illegal immigrant in the performance of the above Contract....

The Contractor in undertaking measures to ensure that no employees working on this Contract are illegal immigrants shall, at a minimum, utilize E-verify as a means of determining the immigration status of employees who shall work...on this Contract. Further, the Contractor...will require that all subcontractors...utilize E-verify to verify the immigration status of (their) employees....

Hamblen County Government and/or Hamblen County Board of Education reserves the right to review the Contractor’s and his subcontractors' E-verify information to determine compliance with the above Attestation.

The proposal was sent to Committee for review and discussion in October. If passed by county commission, can this "no illegal worker" certification apply to school construction? Yes.

How? Either before or at the time that school construction money is appropriated by commission, commission can include a condition that the "no illegal worker" certification document must be a part of bid packages for school construction.

[Wayne and I are T-FIRE officers who are concerned as are many people across Hamblen County and across the state of Tennessee about the impact of illegal immigration on burgeoning crime and law enforcement costs, healthcare, jobs, education, etc.]

Friday, September 12, 2008

September 12, 2008 Claiborne Sheriff David Ray: Pre-Trial Diversion on Statutory Rape with Community Service in Hamblen County

The Tribune reported yesterday that Claiborne Sheriff David Ray will be doing 250 hours of "community service" at some as yet unnamed Hamblen County "agency." Here's the Tribune link. And here's the standard warning about Trib links: They don't stay active very long.

Just how did the Sheriff of Claiborne County end up with pre-trial diversion and community service in Hamblen County?

Check the Knox News-Sentinel here and here.

Ray's community service is part of a pre-trial diversion agreement that was signed by Ray, Ray's attorney John Rogers, and Connie Trobaugh, Assistant D.A. who signed the agreement with permission of District Attorney Berkeley Bell in August.

The complete terms of the diversion are here. Paragraph 13 is a "Special Condition." It states that Ray's community service will be performed in Hamblen County and that his probation will be supervised by the Board of Probation and Parole in Hamblen County.

Apparently, the Defendant Sheriff and the District Attorney's office didn't want Ray to have to do community service in his own community (Claiborne County) or in the community (Hancock County) where the alleged crime occurred.

Hamblen County is the designated community for Ray's "community" service. But finding an agency in Hamblen County that would allow Ray to come and work for them was a problem. Apparently not too many Hamblen County agencies wanted Ray around.

And what is the unnamed Hamblen County agency that finally agreed to allow Sheriff Ray to do his "community service" for them? The Tribune reporter apparently couldn't get or chose not to provide that information in the article. Instead, the reporter noted that the location and the nature of the work Ray is to perform in Hamblen County is a "tightly-guarded secret."

Maybe Sheriff Ray will be found doing his community service at Hamblen County's Cherokee Park with yet another famous divertee---Cherokee Park Director Frank Parker. And it is even possible that they both will be joined later by Parker's Co-defendant Paul King.

Or maybe Hamblen County Mayor David Purkey will arrange for Ray to do his community service for the Hamblen County Maintenance Department--like Purkey did for his relative Lynn Wolfe. Maybe Ray will also get to take advantage of the special Lynn Wolfe perk where you get to turn in timeless time-sheets.

If he gets the Wolfe perk, Ray can just fill in a bunch of time sheets (without hours worked), sign them (without hours worked), have them signed by his supervisor (without hours worked), and then turn them in to Purkey (without hours worked) and all will be taken care of. A sweet, sweet deal for special friends and relatives.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

September 10, 2008 Constable/Cherokee Park Manager Paul King Asks for Diversion on Theft Charges

Paul King, an elected Constable who is also employed by Hamblen County government as manager of Cherokee Park, was indicted by a Hamblen County grand jury in May 2008 and charged, along with his boss Cherokee Park Director Frank Parker, with theft over $500.

King, following the lead of Co-Defendant Parker, has filed papers with D.A. Berkeley Bell requesting pre-trial diversion.

Co-Defendant Parker admitted in his request for diversion to making a false statement to the T.B.I. during the investigation and attempted to shift blame to the Victim for somehow "pestering" him into committing the crime. King, in his request for diversion, simply says "At the time, I knew it was wrong and should not have done it."

BACKGROUND: King's Co-Defendant Frank Parker, was Director of Cherokee Park, a sitting county commissioner, and a Hamblen County deputy at the time of the October 2007 incident. Parker and King were indicted for theft over $500. In addition, Parker was indicted for felony official misconduct. Parker resigned from his county commission seat just before filing his request for diversion in June. Parker was granted pre-trial diversion by D.A. Berkeley Bell in July 2008.

In Parker's request for diversion, he accepted "criminal responsibility" for his actions and also stated that he had made a false statement to T.B.I. Agent Chris Bevins during the investigation. Parker apparently told T.B.I. Agent Chris Bevins that he kept $500 of the $750 that was stolen. In his later "diversion" account of what happened, Parker stated that he and King actually split the money--$375 apiece. After diversion was granted, Sheriff Esco Jarnagin stripped Parker of his deputy status. Parker, however, is still Director of Cherokee Park with full salary and benefits.

September 10, 2008 Catching Up!

Yes, I have neglected blogging for over a month now.

No excuse---just busy with work and family activities.

A lot has happened in the last month. It's time to start catching up....