There were two potential county board candidates present.
During the commissioners’ comments portion of the meeting Board member Tommy Garner said, “I see two of our potential commissioners in the audience tonight. I challenge both of you that if you see or hear something that you know that is not right, I sincerely hope that you will raise holy hell and not care who you offend.
“Because nothing beats the truth. Now last week’s Ripple,” he said, holding the paper and quoting from an article. “Now suppose for a moment that you have been sued, and some of you probably have been, and you schedule a meeting with your attorney to assess and discuss the game plan.
“Would you invite one of your so-called enemies to the meeting? I hardly think so. It also brings up the issue of e-mail everybody is fussing about. If you will notice at the end of our meeting tonight, we are having a closed session consulting with attorney, which is perfectly legal because there are some delicate issues that sometimes need to be discussed with our attorney.
“Well Mr. Wooten’s picture was in the Ripple at one time, shown serving food, helping the opposition who had filed a lawsuit against us, but yet he is in the closed session while we discussed our game plan with our attorney.
“So therefore we had very few options, so it came down to the e-mails that were sent to certain people and one person not receiving them. I hope now that those of you that bitched and raised hell about this the whole time understand why we did what we did.
“And I hope you potential commissioners here are learning something,” he said. He quoted an article about board members suspending their authority to the judge.
“The saga of whether or not Judge Craig was going to remove some people from office, we seemed all too comfortable with that. Was that because we didn’t hire an attorney? We vacated our own rights by doing so. If anybody wants to question any of this, right here it is.”
The judge did not choose to walk away, he contended.
“That is a tractor-trailer load of horse hockey,” he said. “That is no more correct than I’m about the sprout wings and fly out of this room because if it had not been for Chad, David and myself bailing them out by voting the way we did, yes, we would have gone to court. The judge didn’t walk away. He just backed off for a moment.”
Board member Grady Wooten responded.
“I’m going to going to say very little tonight because I don’t think I should say much,“ he said. “There’s several branches of government, but two important branches are the judicial and legislative. Going and getting the lawyers to defend my position as a board member was justified because the judicial at that point was impacting the legislative decisions and was participating in the legislative decision of this board.
“If that Jan. 8 session hadn’t been held, it would have cost the county many, many, many times what it cost. Just remember there is a judicial branch of government. There is a legislative branch of government. I have done my best to protect the legislative branch of government against the judicial branch.”
Fire department volunteers were thanked for their work. Several board members attended an awards banquet held for the fire department members.