Department heads were the topic of discussion during the Middlesboro City Council committee meetings on Tuesday. The members on the committees stated each department head needs to be present during committee meetings and the regular council meeting.
Councilman Bo Green said the head of each department should be present so the council can ask necessary questions. Earlier in the year, an ordinance was mentioned concerning department heads showing up to meetings.
Former fireman Allen Farmer stated in 1992 or 1993, the council passed an ordinance stating department heads needed to be at the meetings.
“If we have a question, who do we ask if the department heads are not here?” questioned councilman Gary Mills. “We are the legislative body. If we tell them they are suppose to be here and we all vote on that…they better be here.”
The committee members stated there were a few department heads who show up regularly, including Middlesboro Police Chief Jeff Sharpe, Middlesboro Fire Chief Tim Wilder and Stormwater Manager Michael Boyd.
At one point during the meeting, councilman Ronnie Carter stated job descriptions may have to be rewritten to make sure some of the department heads show up.
There are plans to make a motion to enforce the ordinance requiring department heads to be at there respective committee meetings and the regular city council meeting.
The committee members stated the police chief should be at the safety and finance meeting, codes enforcement at the community development and safety meeting, fire chief at the safety meeting, the sewer department head at the sewer meeting and the street department head at the street meeting.
All department heads should be at the regular council meeting.
Another item discussed at the meeting involved the old Middlesboro hospital building. Council member Evelyn Farmer stated there are negotiations occurring, but it has nothing to do with the city.
Anthony Cloud is a staff writer for the Middlesboro Daily News. He can be contacted via email at email@example.com or by phone at 606-248-1010, ext. 208.