Knox County Mayor Tim Burchett and Sheriff Jimmy “J.J.” Jones want to divert nonviolent, misdemeanor offenders with mental health issues to a 24-bed urgent care center for psychiatric treatment rather than take them to jail.
Burchett has patched together a funding package through partnerships with Helen Ross McNabb Center, the state and the city of Knoxville. Officials, starting with then-Atty. Gen. Randy Nichols, have worked eight years on this, and now it’s at risk of blowing apart.
Circuit Court Clerk Cathy Quist Shanks will not run for re-election in 2018, she told the Shopper News last week.
Shanks, whose job includes running the Civil Sessions and Juvenile courts, will have served 20 years in office by the time Election Day ’18 rolls around. She said she promised her husband, Greg Shanks, in 2014 that this would be her last term, and that she might have come to this decision sooner, if not for some unfinished business – completion of the build-out of Juvenile Court and conversion to “paperless” digital record keeping – that she wanted to complete.
Everybody knows about Tim Burchett and Big Foot. And Tim Burchett and metal detecting and Tim Burchett and motorcycles and Tim Burchett and World War II history (he lost an uncle in Europe and his dad, Charlie, fought in the Pacific).
Neighborhood activists reacted strongly to one of Mayor Tim Burchett’s new appointments to the 15-member Metropolitan Planning Commission. The city mayor gets seven appointments, the county mayor eight.
Word went out Thursday that Burchett has tapped Chris Ooten, an executive with Safe Harbor Development whose resume also includes working for Weigel’s and Schaad Properties in zoning, development and construction.
Gov. Bill Haslam hosted a luncheon Aug. 3 at the Governor’s Residence on Curtiswood Lane in Nashville to beef up the fundraising for the troubled Tennessee State Museum, which has signed on to a $160 million building project for a new museum building in Nashville.
The Legislature directed that $40 million of the $160 million be raised privately, which means the governor will have to do much of the heavy lifting for it to succeed in getting large donations.
While contenders are lining up to succeed him as Knox County mayor, Tim Burchett is lacing up his traveling shoes.
On Memorial Day, Burchett, whose final term will end in September 2018, had a speaking engagement in Sevier County. That’s hardly unusual – in recent months, he’s pressed the flesh at Lincoln Day and Reagan Day banquets, Republican Clubs, veterans’ and various civic organizations in Blount County, Roane County, Campbell County, Scott County, Union County, Loudon County, Oak Ridge and Clinton. Requests from Middle and West Tennessee are pending while Burchett works them into a schedule packed full of local appearances.
“When is the war on the mentally ill going to stop?”
This was Tim Burchett’s question when he made the rounds of the Sunday talk shows to denounce the state’s decision not to help fund a behavioral health urgent care unit (formerly known as the safety center).
Hey candidates! Give us less baloney and more meat and potatoes.
Although the first votes won’t be cast until 2018, county commissioner and radio personality Bob Thomas kicked off his campaign for county mayor this month with a baloney cutting at Howard Phillips’ real estate company in Powell. The location was no coincidence. In 2009, Tim Burchett announced his campaign for mayor there as well.