County Mayor questions need for CCT president

Published 8:19 am Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Carter County Mayor Leon Humphrey let the other members of Carter County Tomorrow’s board of directors know how he thinks the entity should be restructured during its meeting Tuesday.
Humphrey would like to see the CCT president position eliminated, the Chamber of Commerce stand on its own and the Workforce Development Complex and the Tourism Council to return to the county’s control.
“This is just my opinion,” he said. “I’m just one vote.”
Humphrey’s motion to defer hiring an interim CCT president until the county finalizes its budget Tuesday failed due to lack of support.
“I’m not surprised,” he said after the meeting. “The budget is approved, but nothing is set in stone until votes are cast after that public hearing.”
As a result of the motion failing, the CCT board of directors will continue with the process of hiring an interim president.
While the uncertainty of funding is the main reason Humphrey wants to stall the process, the rest of the board seemed confident they could hire an interim president with the money they have right now.
CCT currently has $161,000 in a reserve account, according to CCT Chairman Richard Tester.
“There’s no doubt we have enough to make this work,” Tester said.
Tester, who is a member of the search committee and one of three acting CCT presidents, said the committee will move forward with reviewing the seven resumes currently on hand.
Discussion lead by Sam LaPorte, CCT attorney, about how the board would like to restructure the organization dominated most of the meeting.
“We are at a crossroad on where to go,” LaPorte said. “There’s no right or wrong here just difference in opinions.”
Several members of the board were interested in exploring a partnership with the Washington County Economic Development Council.
“There are some decisions to be made before we commit to anything,” Tester said.
“Let’s focus on what we can do right now,” LaPorte said. “There are some big decisions to be made here.”
In other discussion, an executive session to discuss legalities involving the Workforce Development Complex was waived from the agenda.
Also, Tester gave an update about the addition of a total of 205 jobs in Carter County. A new business to be stationed at the old Send the Light Distribution center will bring a total of 130 jobs, and a new opportunity at the old Borla building will bring in 75 jobs.

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