Tag Archives: City Council

John Butler to run for City Council

Betty Bean
Government/Politics columnist

Knoxville NAACP president Dr. John A. Butler will be a candidate for City Council in this year’s elections.

Butler is presiding elder of the Knoxville District, AME Zion Church, and pastor of Clinton Chapel AME Zion Church in Mechanicsville. He will contend for the district seat now held by Daniel Brown, one of five term-limited incumbents who will step aside in December.

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The long, costly road to sidewalks

Wendy Smith
Government/Politics columnist

Sidewalks: everybody wants them, but few will get them, unless the budget changes, or neighborhood groups band together to gift property to the city. That was the takeaway from an informational meeting presented to city council members by Public Works director David Brace last week.

The city’s budget for new sidewalks is approximately $750,000 per year. The cost of new sidewalks ranges from $100 to $300 per linear foot, depending on the challenges of the terrain and the cost of purchasing right-of-way.

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Hart’s departure could bring back Lady Vols

Victor Ashe
Government/Politics columnist

With Dave Hart’s retirement, which will be greeted with applause by Lady Vols fans, it is time to restore the name as a lasting tribute to Pat Summitt.

Hart’s contract amendment will give him a buy-out of over $600,000; the public will want to know if he receives any other retirement benefits from the state or university.

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City Council politics

Victor Ashe
Government/Politics columnist

Vice Mayor Duane Grieve only has 17 months left on City Council, but next year could be a busy one for him should Rogero vacate the mayor’s office by accepting a position in a possible Hillary Clinton administration. If that happened, Grieve would immediately become interim mayor for 10 days until City Council meets to set the date of the special election to elect a new mayor for the unexpired term and to pick a longer-term interim mayor, which could be Grieve or one of the other eight council members.

In this case, there would be a special citywide election to fill the post as more than 10 months are left in the Rogero term (it runs to December 2019). Both council members Marshall Stair and George Wallace are considered potential candidates. Others mentioned include former mayoral aide Eddie Mannis, current mayoral aide Indya Kincannon and Alvin Nance, former head of KCDC. Grieve, too, is mentioned.

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Ex-senator Brock won’t attend GOP convention

Victor Ashe
Government/Politics columnist

The East Tennessee Development District, along with the East Tennessee Human Resource Agency, celebrates 50 years at an awards banquet at the Museum of Appalachia in Norris on July 14. This agency has assisted many disadvantaged persons in the mid-east Tennessee area.

■  Former U.S. Sen. Bill Brock, who lives in Annapolis, Md., is a former Republican National Committee chair, but he will not attend the Republican National Convention for the first time in over three decades.

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The Corker factor

Victor Ashe
Government/Politics columnist

What happens if Sen. Bob Corker is Donald Trump’s vice presidential choice?

He will strengthen the ticket and bring a foreign policy perspective currently missing. He would be a solid choice for Trump. If a Trump-Corker ticket prevails, in Tennessee it opens up a Senate seat. Even if Corker is not on the ticket, he might be a cabinet choice if Trump wins, which also opens up the Senate seat.

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Bonovich comes out punching

Wendy Smith
Government/Politics columnist

Few city residents braved the rainy weather last week to vote in the primary for three contested City Council seats. But they’ll get a second chance to choose from exactly the same candidates, minus two at-large Seat C contenders, during the Nov. 3 general election.

The Seat C field has been reduced to incumbent Finbarr Saunders and challenger Paul Bonovich, a small business owner. Saunders raked in 64 percent of votes, while Bonovich received 13 percent − just 45 votes more than third-place finisher David Williams, who had 12 percent. Kelly Absher finished fourth with 11 percent.

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