Thursday, March 18, 2010

March 18, 2010 Rep. Chad Faulkner, a Knox Deputy, Requested Attorney General's Opinion on Deputies Running for Office

There is an interesting article in the News-Sentinel discussing Rep. Chad Faulkner.  Click here.  Faulkner requested the recent State Attorney General's Opinion on deputies running for partisan office.

[After this THIRD state AG opinion on this subject over a 6-month period and after campaigns had been underway for some time, Hamblen County attorney Rusty Cantwell finally advised Sheriff Esco Jarnagin that Jarnagin had to ask the deputies running for office to resign or be fired. The local "news"paper apparently didn't ask or didn't report on comments from any local members of the Civil Service Board (Joel Seal, Scott Purkey, and Tim Horner) or the Civil Service Board attorney Jeff Taylor about this matter.  Click here.]

Faulkner is a deputy sheriff in Knox County who ran for State Representative while holding the office of deputy. The AG's opinion not only raises the question of whether he may now run for Sheriff of Union County but also whether he legally ran for State Rep (a partisan office) in the last election.

The Federal Hatch Act is now getting as much attention as the Sheriff's Civil Service Act of 1974. 

Some, but not all, counties across the state adopted Civil Service for sheriff's department employees. Hamblen adopted Civil Service during former Sheriff Otto Purkey's last term---at Purkey's request and in the presence of numerous officers who requested that the county commission adopt the Act. 

The Federal Hatch Act and Tennessee's Little Hatch Act have been around for a while.

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