The ouster statute does not apply to the Anderson County law director, the defendant in a controversial ouster suit, Anderson County Commission Chair Chuck Fritts said Wednesday.
Law Director Jay Yeager is essentially a county employee rather than an official, and the ouster statute doesn’t apply to him, said Fritts, citing the opinion of a legal consultant at the University of Tennessee’s County Technical Assistance Service in Nashville.
Citing the CTAS opinion, Fritts said the petitioners who brought the ouster suit against Yeager should pay the legal costs if they lose. The county could pay Yeager’s legal fees if the ouster suit fails or is thrown out of court.
In an opinion sent to Fritts on July 29, CTAS Legal Consultant Stephen Austin said the Anderson County law director is a county employee and not a county officer.
“Accordingly, the ouster statutes are not applicable to the law director,” Austin said. Yeager made a similar argument in a July 11 motion to dismiss filed in Anderson County Chancery Court. [Read more…]