Irwin says he’s willing to consider options
CLINTON—Anderson County Mayor Terry Frank may be the only person authorized to hire an attorney to represent county commissioners responding to subpoenas or other legal notices filed in the ouster suit against Law Director Jay Yeager, a commissioner said Monday.
That means a motion approved 13-2 by the Anderson County Commission last week might have to be repealed, said Commissioner Dusty Irwin, whose district includes Norris and Andersonville. That motion allows each commissioner to hire their own attorney and bill the county, Irwin said.
He said his recommendation this week is based on his interpretation of state law and attorney general’s opinions. He’s called for a special meeting to repeal last week’s motion by Commissioner Myron Iwanski, who represents part of Oak Ridge and is former interim county mayor, and consider a new motion that asks Frank to find and hire an attorney to replace Yeager in the case.
“Although I am no lawyer, the attached seems clear that the commission cannot authorize or hire legal counsel in the absence of a law director, and our law director (Jay Yeager) has stated to the commission that he cannot represent or advise us on the ouster suit he is currently involved in,” Irwin said in a Monday e-mail forwarded to commissioners and the media. “Also, it appears to me that only the the county mayor can perform this hiring action and that the commission may only approve the expenditure by a majority vote.”
It’s not clear if other commissioners will agree. Iwanski was unavailable for comment Tuesday morning. [Read more…]