Are counties required to keep felons sentenced to more than a year?

We’ve been told that the county is required to keep state sentenced inmates until the Department of Corrections takes them.  However, after reading state law, I wonder if that is incorrect for felons who have been sentenced to more than a year.  See 41-8-106 (a) and (g) (1) below.

According to the inmate numbers provided by Jail Administrator Captain John Adams, the Blount County Adult Detention Facility averaged 174 TDOC (state) sentenced felons with a year or more remaining on their sentence.  If you couple that with the federal inmates, which are discretionary, the jail would not be overcrowded, according to recent inmate totals.

On March 31st, The Daily Times reported that the total number of inmates in the local jail on March 30th was 517 including 76 federal inmates and 142 Tennessee Department of Corrections inmates sentenced and awaiting transfer to a state facility.  If the federal and state inmates were removed from the jail, the inmate total would have been 299, which is well below the certified capacity of 350 beds and below the 90% rate that some consider the optimal standard of 315 beds filled.

Are we required to keep these state felons with a sentence of more than a year?  Read below and see what you think.

From a May 27th email:

“Commissioner Monroe,  In the last year (May 28,2015 to May 27, 2016) our State sentenced inmates break down in the following way:

TDOC – Convicted felons awaiting space in the prison system with at least 1 year left to serve.

Average Daily Count – 174        Highest Daily Count – 193         Lowest Daily Count – 122

TDOC (Local) – Convicted inmates with less than 1 year to serve. May be felon or misdemeanor. These inmates serve their time here.

Average Daily Count – 85          Highest Daily Count – 104         Lowest Daily Count – 40   

I hope this helps.    Capt. Adams”

—–Original Message—–
From: “Randy Vineyard” <rvineyard@blounttn.org>
Sent: Friday, May 20, 2016 2:19pm
To: tona@breezeair.net
Cc: “Jeff French” <jfrench@bcso.com>, “Jimbo Berrong” <jberrong@bcso.com>, “Ed Mitchell” <emitchell@blounttn.org>
Subject: RE: 46915 CONTRACTED PRISONER BOARD

Commissioner,

Blount County has no contract with the State on inmates. The State pays us $37/day/inmate as is the case with most counties.

There may be different arrangements between the State and privately managed detention facilities.

If you have further questions about this matter those may be better addressed by the BCSO.

Thanks

Randy

Randy Vineyard, IOM

Blount County Finance Director

341 Court Street

Maryville, TN 37804

865-273-5719 (office)

rvineyard@blounttn.org

The information in this email and any attachment is confidential and may be legally privileged.  If you are not the intended recipient, please destroy this message, delete any copies held on your system, and notify the sender immediately.  You should not retain, copy, or use this email for any purpose, nor disclose all or any part of its content to any other person.

From: tona@breezeair.net
Sent: Thursday, May 19, 2016 2:00 AM
To: Randy Vineyard
Subject: 46915 CONTRACTED PRISONER BOARD

Dear Finance Director Vineyard,

The line item for revenue for state inmates/prisoners is 46915.  It is identified as “contracted prisoner board”.  Does Blount County have a contract with the state for housing inmates/prisoners?  Or does the county receive a daily per diem instead?

Thanks,

Tona

41-8-106.  Housing state prisoners — Contracting — Reimbursement of costs — Debt service. 

(a) No county shall be required to house convicted felons sentenced to more than one (1) year of continuous confinement unless the county, through the authority of its county legislative body, has chosen to contract with the department of correction for the purpose of housing certain felons. The department shall promulgate rules for requirements and procedures for contracting.

(b) Counties may contract, in writing, with the state or with other counties for responsibility of correctional populations.

(c)  (1) Counties shall be reimbursed for housing convicted felons pursuant to the general appropriations act and according to rules and regulations for determining reasonable allowable costs as promulgated by the department, in consultation with the comptroller of the treasury. The department is authorized to include capital costs within the meaning of reasonable allowable costs. Capital costs may include, but are not limited to, debt service.

   (2) The commissioner is authorized, without promulgation of rules and regulations, to agree to reimburse a county for debt service on debt issued by the county in constructing correctional facilities for the purpose of housing inmates sentenced to the county under the authority of a contract entered into under subsection (a). In addition to principal, interest and redemption premiums, debt service may include other necessary items or costs reasonably related to the issuance of such county debt. Upon entering an agreement, the department is authorized to reimburse the county for one hundred percent (100%) of debt service, regardless of whether the county is actually housing inmates under a contract, and until a contract is terminated. The commissioner may not, following execution of any such agreement, amend existing rules and regulations or promulgate new rules and regulations that will impair the state’s obligation to reimburse debt service as provided in an agreement. Any obligation for the reimbursement of debt service shall be a contractual obligation of the state.

(d) It is the intent of the state that the holders of debt issued by a county for which the department has agreed to reimburse debt service pursuant to an agreement under this section may rely on, and benefit from, this section and of any obligation by the department and the state to reimburse the county for debt service contained in any agreement, and the state pledges to and agrees with any holders that the state will not amend this section, or limit or alter the obligation of the department and the state to reimburse debt service under any agreement, in any way that would impair the rights and remedies of any holders, or of the county, with respect to reimbursement. This subsection (d) shall not affect the right of the commissioner to terminate any agreement entered into under this section pursuant to the terms set forth in any agreements.

(e) The subsidies paid to counties pursuant to this chapter shall be the only compensation from the state to which counties are entitled for housing state prisoners and shall be in lieu of the fees allowed in § 8-26-106 or any other section.

(f) The department is further authorized to provide additional subsidies to counties for the purpose of community and other diversion programs for pretrial detainees, misdemeanants or convicted felons subject to available appropriations and in accordance with the rules and regulations promulgated by the department.

(g)  (1) The department shall take into its custody all convicted felons from any county that had not contracted with the state as authorized by subsection (b). The department shall not be required to take actual physical custody of any of the felons until fourteen (14) days after the department has received all certified sentencing documents from the clerk of the sentencing court.

   (2) The commissioner is authorized to compensate any county that has not contracted with the state as authorized by subsection (b) for that county’s reasonable, allowable cost of housing felons. The rate of compensation to these counties shall be determined by and is subject to the level of funding authorized in the appropriations bill; however, the commissioner shall not compensate any county that fails or refuses to promptly transfer actual physical custody of an inmate to the department after being requested by the department, in writing, to do so for each day or portion of a day that the county fails to transfer the inmate. The written notice shall include the date it intends to take custody of the inmate for transfer to the department. The notice shall be given as soon as practicable before the transfer date. By June 15, 2005, the department shall notify each sheriff of the provisions of this subdivision (g)(2) and the consequences for failing to comply with it.

(h) In the event that a county has been reimbursed pursuant to this section for housing convicted felons for a continuous period of three (3) or more fiscal years and has received the maximum amount allowed per prisoner per day as reasonable allowable costs during this period, then the county shall thereafter be presumed to be entitled to the full maximum amount allocated per prisoner per day as reimbursement of reasonable allowable costs for housing such prisoners and will not be required to provide documentation to the department regarding costs incurred beyond information necessary to determine the number of prisoner days for which the county is entitled to reimbursement.

HISTORY: Acts 1981, ch. 491, § 6; T.C.A., § 41-10-106; Acts 1984, ch. 896, § 3; 1985 (1st Ex. Sess.), ch. 5, §§ 46, 53; 1986, ch. 744, § 26; 1988, ch. 869, § 1; 1989, ch. 462, § 1; 1991, ch. 374, §§ 4, 5, 7; 2003, ch. 355, § 58; 2005, ch. 174, § 3; 2011, ch. 229, § 1.

Government Can’t Help; It Can Only Hurt

by Ron Paul

Three recent stories regarding three government agencies — the IRS, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), and the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) — show why we should oppose big government for practical, as well as philosophical, reasons.

In recent months, many Americans have missed their flights because of longer-than-usual TSA security lines. In typical DC fashion, the TSA claims the delays are because of budget cuts, even though Congress regularly increases the TSA’s funding!

The TSA is also blaming the delays on the fact that few Americans have signed up for its “PreCheck” program. Under PreCheck, the TSA considers excusing some Americans from some of the screening process. Those who wish to be considered must first submit personal information to the TSA and pay a fee. Only a bureaucrat would think Americans would be eager to give the TSA more information and money on the chance that they may be approved for PreCheck.

The TSA is much better at harassing airline passengers than at providing security. TSA agents regularly fail to catch weapons hidden by federal agents testing the screening process. Sadly, Congress will likely reward the TSA’s failures with continued funding increases. Rewarding the TSA’s incompetence shouldn’t surprise us since the TSA owes its existence to the failure of government to protect airline passengers on 9/11.

If Congress truly wanted to protect airline passengers, it would shut down the TSA and let airlines determine how best to protect their passengers. Private businesses have a greater incentive than government bureaucrats to protect their customers and their property without stripping their customers of their dignity.

The head of the VA also made headlines last week when he said it is unfair to judge the VA by how long veterans have to wait for medical care, since no one judges Disney World by how long people have to wait in line. Perhaps he is unaware that no one has ever died because he waited too long to go on an amusement park ride.

For years socialized medicine supporters pointed to the VA as proof that a government bureaucracy could deliver quality health care. The stories of veterans being denied care or receiving substandard care demolish those claims.

If Congress truly wanted to ensure that veterans receive quality health care, it would stop forcing veterans to seek health care from a federal bureaucracy. Instead, government would give veterans health-care vouchers or health savings accounts and allow them to manage their own health care. Congress should also dramatically reduce the costs of providing veterans care by ending our militaristic foreign policy.

Another story last week highlights the one thing government does do well: violate our rights. The House Judiciary Committee held a hearing on impeaching IRS Commissioner John Koskinen over his role in the IRS’s persecution of conservative organizations.

Those who value liberty and constitutional government should support impeaching Koskinen. However, truly protecting Americans from IRS tyranny requires eliminating the income tax. Despite the claims of some, a flat tax system would still require a federal bureaucracy to ensure Americans are accurately reporting their income. Since the income tax is one of the foundations of the welfare-warfare state, it is folly to think we can eliminate the income tax without first dramatically reducing the size and scope of government.

The TSA, VA, and IRS are just three examples of how government cannot effectively provide any good or service except authoritarianism. Individuals acting in the free market are more than capable of providing for their own needs, including the need to protect themselves, their families, and their property, if the government gets out of the way.

Source: http://ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2016/may/29/government-can-t-help-it-can-only-hurt/

May 2016 Commission Report

The rules are made to be broken by the Blount County Commission.  Enforcement of commission rules is selective to advance the agenda of the political machine and cover-up their actions.

Agenda Committee meeting
Federal Inmates/Prisoners – Commission refuses to take a position
After being prohibited by Blount County Corrections Partnership Vice Chairman (BCCP) Rick Carver from putting a recommendation to stop housing federal inmates in the local jail on the BCCP agenda, I took the matter to the commission.  A majority of commissioners didn’t even want to discuss the matter.  Commissioner Andy Allen objected to the consideration of the question, which means that you don’t want to discuss the resolution.  The motion failed because a 2/3rd majority of 14 commissioners is required to pass this motion.

Those voting against discussing the matter include Commissioners Andy Allen, Brad Bowers, Shawn Carter, Rick Carver, Grady Caskey, Mike Caylor, Gary Farmer, Mike Lewis, Jerome Moon, Steve Samples and Tom Stinnett.

Those voting to discuss the matter include Commissioners Mike Akard, Archie Archer, Tom Cole, Dodd Crowe, Jamie Daly, Ron French, Karen Miller and me (Tona Monroe).

Commissioner Kenneth Melton was absent.  Commission Seat 5A was vacant.

All the commissioners except for Akard, Archer, Daly, Miller and I voted to refer this to the BCCP.  Now that the matter has been sent to the to the BCCP, the Vice Chairman Rick Carver can’t stifle it.  However, this was the place to send the matter to die because the BCCP is heavily stacked with people who work for the Sheriff or who are close to him.

What state law authorizes the Sheriff to sign a contract with the US Marshals Service?
The sheriff has said that he has unilateral authority to enter into an agreement with the US Marshals Service to house federal inmates.  I’ve asked to be given that law.  A basis starting point for all those in government is provide proof of authority to act.

It’s possible that the sheriff has this authority, under state law.  It should be simple to show the public this law.

I’ve asked the County Technical Assistance Service (CTAS) to provide me with the law that authorizes the sheriff to sign a contract to house federal inmates.  However, they have not provided me with the law or an opinion that is specific to the matter of housing federal inmates.

Special called commission meeting
Chairman Moon called a special meeting to appoint a replacement for Jeff Headrick who resigned his commission seat after being appointed by the commission to office of Highway Superintendent.

There were 3 nominees: Chris Arnette, Ed Cherry and Peggy Lambert.  I nominated Chris Arnette, a lady who is active in the community and who has been attending commission meetings because she is concerned about her community and wants good government.  Peggy Lambert previously was appointed to the commission to replace Bob Ramsey who resigned from his commission seat after winning election to the office of State Representative.

The commission chose Peggy Lambert.

  • Those voting Chris Arnette included Commissioners Mike Akard, Archie Archer, Jamie Daly and Tona Monroe.
  • Commissioners Grady Caskey and Dodd Crowe for voted for Ed Cherry on the first ballot and Peggy Lambert on the second ballot after Ed Cherry was eliminated for receiving the lowest number of votes.
  • Commissioners Shawn Carter, Tom Cole, Mike Lewis and Karen Miller were absent.
  • The rest voted for Lambert.

Lambert has a history or trying to suppress free speech at commission meetings and threatening to sue those that she disagrees with.  She voted to disband the Ethics Committee.  Her brother and husband serve on the Public Building Authority.  She is part of a well connected political family.  She is perfect for the those referred to the good ole’ boys, although there is rarely anything good that they do.

Commission meeting
Commissioners Tom Cole, Mike Lewis and Karen Miller were absent.

New budget form is already causing problems
A few months ago the commission adopted a new budget amendment form.  I voted against the new form.  You can read more on that matter here.

There are now four boxes: transfer, increase, decrease and adjustment.  Adjustment is a nebulous term that obfuscates what is actually happening with your money.

Commissioner Mike Akard proposed amendments to each of the budget amendments that had the adjustment box checked.  I seconded each of his amendments and voted for each of them because they attempted to clarify the true nature of the budget amendments.  Theses were simply clarifying amendments but apparently the majority of commissioners don’t even want the facts clearly stated in budget amendment resolutions.

Schools back for more money
The schools had two budget requests this month.  The first was a request for an additional $30,000 to cover the cost of fixing light poles at stadiums.  The School Board under budgeted what was needed for the project.

The second was a request to appropriate an additional $80,000 to the capital fund because revenues have come in higher than projected.  I tried to table the $30,000 request, which means postpone it until later in the meeting, so that the $80,000 could be approved and then the $30,000 request could be paid for with the $80,000.  The motion to table failed.  There was no good reason for the School Board to request an additional $30,000 when they were being given $80,000 in new revenue to spend.

In hindsight, I don’t think that tabling the matter was even necessary.  The commission should have approved the $80,000 and sent the $30,000 request back to the school board telling them to take the $30,000 out of the $80,000.  That would have sent a message to the School Board to live within their means but the commission doesn’t exercise much, if any, fiscal discipline either.  Only commissioner Mike Akard and I vote no.

Those of you who live in the 4th and 6th School Board districts should give serious consideration to those races.  The school budget is over half of the annual local budget.  Fiscal conservatives are needed on the School Board.

Courthouse security request
There was a $210,000 budget increase for a courthouse security project.  That was all the description said.  See pages 18-19.  No one in the county government offered any explanation for how this money will actually be used.  Furthermore, this amount will almost double the current budget for courthouse and jail maintenance and is more than the recommended budget for the entire upcoming year.  See page 120.

I didn’t know that the courthouse parking lot was being renovated until someone told me about it after reading it in the paper.  It is alarming how little commissioners are actually told about plans for projects in county government.

Cover-up and tyranny continue
Those who comprise the political machine of Blount County have gone to great lengths to suppress debate and freedom of speech surrounding the local jail and criminal justice system.  Actions this month piled higher and deeper on the problem.

I’ve written in the past about my attempts to amend the BCCP minutes, how those amendments failed and how the commission secretary failed to record those amendments in the minutes.  This month I was prohibited from even fully stating my amendment to the minutes of the April 18, 2016 called commission meeting.

Chairman Jerome Moon cut me off and declared my amendment out of order before I could even finish stating my amendment.  One could ask how he could have possibly known that the amendment was out of order when I wasn’t even allowed to fully statement the entire amendment.

The amendment was an attempt to document that the chairman cut citizens off and the commission prohibited me from speaking about the jail study in reference to expanding the jail.  It is not out of order for citizens and commissioners to cite sources that support their positions.  Why is the political machine working so hard to stifle discussion on the jail study?

The meetings have become more tyrannical with time.  The tyranny has gone from the amendments being excluded from the minutes of a meeting to not even being able to state the amendment.

I challenged the rule of the Chair.  The clique voted to uphold Moon’s ruling without even hearing the entire amendment.  I then invoked Rule 5 asking to read the proposed amendment as a statement rather than an amendment.  The commission voted against allowing me to offer the statement.

Think about that for a moment.  The commission has now upheld a commissioner not even being able to state an amendment to the minutes.  Freedom of speech of the citizens and the power of each commissioner to be heard and act on issues should be sacred but they have been squashed by the Blount County Commission.

Gary Farmer waves finger in Chairman Moon’s face
During discussion Jerome Moon interrupted commissioners Dodd Crowe and Gary Farmer telling them they were off topic but he let both of them continue.  Favoritism is shown.  They were allowed to continue speaking, but I was not.

Gary Farmer shook his finger in Chairman Jerome Moon’s face and told him that he could continue speaking.  Moon backed down and Farmer spoke as he wanted to.  I have no desire to shake my finger in Moon’s face but I wonder if I could have continued speaking if I had.

I didn’t object to Crowe or Farmer speaking because neither were actually off topic.  Both were making their cases as to why a resolution wasn’t good for Blount County.  I disagree with them but they have been given the power to be heard and to take action on matters.

This is a dangerous place to be.  Commissioners discussing why something is or isn’t a good idea should be able to speak without interruption.  Some commissioners selectively chose to interrupt commissioners like me because they know that the commission will uphold the ruling of the chair, while allowing Dodd Crowe and Gary Farmer to speak at great length and discuss what they want .

Up next
The annual budget.  Hang onto your wallets.

Regarding the budget, here is a question to ponder: Should government “servants” make 2, 3 and 4 times what the taxpayers make?

Happy Memorial Day!

Should government “servants” make 2, 3 and 4 times what the taxpayers make?

After looking at the salaries of several state government employees and having reviewed the payrolls of local governments, I sent this email to the Tennessee General Assembly.

Legislators,

As you hit the campaign trails, think about the impact that your actions have on the people that you are suppose to represent.

You’ve passed state mandated minimum salaries for office holders, including local elected officials and judges.  Those state mandated minimums are double, triple and even quadruple what the average salaries of taxpayers are.

For example: County Clerk, Register of Deeds, Trustee and the Property Assessor in Blount County will receive a salary of $82,801.

http://ctas.tennessee.edu/sites/default/files/2017%20Salary%20Schedule%20Final.pdf

Compare that to the working taxpayers of Blount County.  The average salary in 2013 was $42,731.  That means that your state mandated minimums are almost double the average salary.  Other elected officials such as the Highway Superintendent, Sheriff and Mayor will receive more than $82,801 and make more than double the average salary.

Perhaps the most disgusting salaries are those of the judges.  You’ve come up with a way to hide calling what you do a pay raise by saying they receive a cost of living increase.  Does someone making $161K need a cost of living increase, when the average salary is slightly more than 1/4 of what the judges are paid?

Why are the judges special?  Please don’t tell me that they have to be well paid to attract the best people.  The best people are often the ones who help people without compensation or for far less.  Those who run private practices may make more but they have no guaranteed salaries and also don’t have standard hours.  Please don’t tell me that judges work all the time because they have all kinds of staff doing work for them.  These judges locally, always have time to make all the special dinners to be treated as elite people in society.  There are plenty of people who work as many or more hours than judges and receive far less pay.

You passed legislation to add more to the court costs to fund these outrageous salaries when what you should have done is said these people already make enough and stop giving increases under a different description.

These salaries don’t reflect that in Blount County, they receive one of the best health care plans on the planet.  It is far better than what most private companies are offering.

What you have done with these state mandated minimums that are far more than the people earn is create a privileged class who have forgotten that it is their roles to serve, not to live lavish lifestyles off the hard work of the people.  Many of the people of Blount County, and likely of the entire state, resent that government officials are being paid far more than they make.

Stop the pay increases and the cost of living increases for these “servants” who are already making double, triple and quadruple what the people they are suppose to be serving are making.  These positions could easily go 5 years without a pay raise/cost of living increase and still make FAR MORE than the people that they are suppose to be serving.

Let freedom ring!

Search state salaries here

https://apps.tn.gov/salary-app/search

Warning to viewers: this could be hazardous to your health.  You may feel the urge to throw up, vomit, hurl, upchuck or any description that you may use to describe the sickening, nauseous feeling that will come upon you for viewing what your public “servants” make.  If you feel overwhelmed with disgust or anger, discontinue use of state website immediately and write your state legislators about the outrageous salaries that some state employees make.

sen.ken.yager@capitol.tn.gov, “Becky Massey” <sen.becky.massey@capitol.tn.gov>, “Bill Ketron” <sen.bill.ketron@capitol.tn.gov>, “Brian Kelsey” <sen.brian.kelsey@capitol.tn.gov>, “Doug Overbey” <sen.doug.overbey@capitol.tn.gov>, “Ed Jackson” <sen.ed.jackson@capitol.tn.gov>, “Frank Niceley” <sen.frank.niceley@capitol.tn.gov>, “Jack Johnson” <sen.jack.johnson@capitol.tn.gov>, “Janice Bowling” <sen.janice.bowling@capitol.tn.gov>, “Mae Beavers” <sen.mae.beavers@capitol.tn.gov>, “Mark Green” <sen.mark.green@capitol.tn.gov>, “Mark Norris” <sen.mark.norris@capitol.tn.gov>, lt.gov.ron.ramsey@capitol.tn.gov, “Steven Dickerson” <sen.steven.dickerson@capitol.tn.gov>, “Steve Southerland” <sen.steve.southerland@capitol.tn.gov>, sen.lee.harris@capitol.tn.gov, sen.sara.kyle@capitol.tn.gov, “Richard Briggs” <sen.richard.briggs@capitol.tn.gov>, rep.raumesh.akbari@capitol.tn.gov, rep.david.alexander@capitol.tn.gov, rep.joe.armstrong@capitol.tn.gov, rep.bill.beck@capitol.tn.gov, rep.harry.brooks@capitol.tn.gov, rep.kevin.brooks@capitol.tn.gov, rep.sheila.butt@capitol.tn.gov, rep.david.byrd@capitol.tn.gov, rep.kent.calfee@capitol.tn.gov, rep.karen.camper@capitol.tn.gov, rep.dale.carr@capitol.tn.gov, rep.mike.carter@capitol.tn.gov, rep.glen.casada@capitol.tn.gov, rep.john.ray.clemmons@capitol.tn.gov, rep.jim.coley@capitol.tn.gov, rep.barbara.cooper@capitol.tn.gov, rep.martin.daniel@capitol.tn.gov, rep.john.deberry@capitol.tn.gov, rep.barry.doss@capitol.tn.gov, rep.kevin.dunlap@capitol.tn.gov, rep.bill.dunn@capitol.tn.gov, rep.jeremy.durham@capitol.tn.gov, rep.jimmy.eldridge@capitol.tn.gov, rep.jeremy.faison@capitol.tn.gov, rep.andrew.farmer@capitol.tn.gov, rep.joanne.favors@capitol.tn.gov, rep.craig.fitzhugh@capitol.tn.gov, rep.john.forgety@capitol.tn.gov, rep.brenda.gilmore@capitol.tn.gov, rep.tilman.goins@capitol.tn.gov, rep.marc.gravitt@capitol.tn.gov, rep.curtis.halford@capitol.tn.gov, rep.ga.hardaway@capitol.tn.gov, speaker.beth.harwell@capitol.tn.gov, rep.david.hawk@capitol.tn.gov, rep.patsy.hazlewood@capitol.tn.gov, rep.gary.hicks@capitol.tn.gov, rep.timothy.hill@capitol.tn.gov, rep.matthew.hill@capitol.tn.gov, rep.john.holsclaw@capitol.tn.gov, rep.andy.holt@capitol.tn.gov, rep.dan.howell@capitol.tn.gov, rep.bud.hulsey@capitol.tn.gov, rep.jamie.jenkins@capitol.tn.gov, rep.darren.jernigan@capitol.tn.gov, rep.curtis.johnson@capitol.tn.gov, rep.sherry.jones@capitol.tn.gov, rep.roger.kane@capitol.tn.gov, rep.kelly.keisling@capitol.tn.gov, rep.sabi.kumar@capitol.tn.gov, rep.william.lamberth@capitol.tn.gov, rep.mary.littleton@capitol.tn.gov, rep.ron.lollar@capitol.tn.gov, rep.harold.love@capitol.tn.gov, rep.jon.lundberg@capitol.tn.gov, rep.susan.lynn@capitol.tn.gov, rep.pat.marsh@capitol.tn.gov, rep.judd.matheny@capitol.tn.gov, rep.jimmy.matlock@capitol.tn.gov, rep.gerald.mccormick@capitol.tn.gov, rep.steve.mcdaniel@capitol.tn.gov, rep.steve.mcmanus@capitol.tn.gov, rep.larry.miller@capitol.tn.gov, rep.bo.mitchell@capitol.tn.gov, rep.debra.moody@capitol.tn.gov, rep.antonio.parkinson@capitol.tn.gov, rep.joe.pitts@capitol.tn.gov, rep.mark.pody@capitol.tn.gov, rep.jason.powell@capitol.tn.gov, rep.dennis.powers@capitol.tn.gov, rep.john.ragan@capitol.tn.gov, rep.bob.ramsey@capitol.tn.gov, rep.jay.reedy@capitol.tn.gov, rep.courtney.rogers@capitol.tn.gov, rep.bill.sanderson@capitol.tn.gov, rep.charles.sargent@capitol.tn.gov, rep.cameron.sexton@capitol.tn.gov, rep.jerry.sexton@capitol.tn.gov, rep.johnny.shaw@capitol.tn.gov, rep.david.shepard@capitol.tn.gov, rep.eddie.smith@capitol.tn.gov, rep.mike.sparks@capitol.tn.gov, rep.billy.spivey@capitol.tn.gov, rep.mike.stewart@capitol.tn.gov, rep.art.swann@capitol.tn.gov, rep.bryan.terry@capitol.tn.gov, rep.curry.todd@capitol.tn.gov, rep.joe.towns@capitol.tn.gov, rep.ron.travis@capitol.tn.gov, rep.johnnie.turner@capitol.tn.gov, rep.micah.vanhuss@capitol.tn.gov, rep.terri.lynn.weaver@capitol.tn.gov, rep.dawn.white@capitol.tn.gov, rep.mark.white@capitol.tn.gov, rep.ryan.williams@capitol.tn.gov, rep.john.windle@capitol.tn.gov, rep.tim.wirgau@capitol.tn.gov, rep.rick.womick@capitol.tn.gov, rep.jason.zachary@capitol.tn.gov

More jail info

March 3, 2016 TCI re-inspection report for Blount County Adult Detention Facility  This was given to me with a cover letter dated February 12, 2016, even though the re-inspection was March 3rd.

Consultant service costs to renegotiate federal inmates/prisoner per diem rate

CTAS jail staffing analysis by Jim Hart

Federal inmate contract with US Marshals Service

Previous jail information is available here.

Evaluating the 2016 Tennessee Republican Party convention delegates – Part 3: At-large delegation

Boss Haynes photo: Getty Images

Boss Haynes  (photo: Getty Images)

By Horatio Bunce

 

This post is Part 3 in a series of posts evaluating the 2016 Tennessee Republican Party convention delegate slate produced after closed-door meeting and vote by the party executive committee. The state GOP has a convention delegation consisting of 58 members. There are also Alternates in addition to the 58 Delegates. The party leadership selects 17 of the 58 delegates. Three of these 17 are the existing state party chair, the RNC committeeman and the RNC committeewoman. The other 14 are selected by the state party leadership. This represents 29% of the total state delegation being selected by the established party leadership – not the Republican primary voters (or as RNC committeeman Curly Haughland refers to them: “the general public”). Getting to select where 29% of the delegation fits is a pretty good head start, wouldn’t you agree?

 

Since the delegate slate is disputed behind closed doors and you are only presented with a “final slate”, this requires an autopsy to determine just whom the party leadership chose as their 14. The party peppers the ballot both with at-large and congressional district delegates committed to various candidates. Some of these are incumbents that will carry name recognition, others are state executive committee members that apparently are not satisfied with choosing themselves in the 14 and also appear on the ballot. Covering enough of the candidates with party loyalists ensures an additional level of control post-election that can extend beyond 29%. Part 1 of this series identified a number of people on the delegate slate who did not appear on any Republican primary ballot. These obviously seem to have been selected by the party leadership and represent a total of 8 Delegates and 4 Alternates. Not only did party leadership choose these people (many among themselves), they also can dictate which candidate they “support”. Three of the 8 delegates are Haynes, Lambert and Ryder as expected automatically in, but still controlling which candidate they “support” (Cruz, Trump and Trump).

 

Part 2 of the series identified a number of people on the delegate slate who actually were on a Republican primary ballot and had declared themselves as “committed” to a candidate (or uncommitted in one case), and were subsequently rejected by primary voters, but now are listed as a delegate for a different candidate. These also obviously seem to have been selected by the party leadership and represent an additional total of 4 Delegates and 9 Alternates. Now at a total of 12 Delegates and 13 Alternates chosen by party leadership with their “support” dictated/changed as necessary. Why is this declared “support” important? After the elections only certain candidates are eligible for delegates. If you want certain people, who backed a loser the voting public wanted nothing to do with, to go to the convention…well, PRESTO! just change them into a delegate “committed” to the winner. More of these selections can be weighted to the winner of the primary, so if the establishment candidate “won” you have a commanding lead with hand-picked loyalists. If the establishment “lost” (see Single Digit Jeb, Rubio, et al) then you can poison the well of the not-supposed-to-win delegation with the same loyalists and displace delegates that supported that candidate. It’s a win-win scenario – for the established.

 

So there are at least five more Delegates and one Alternate owed to the party’s prerogative. This post will examine the At-large voting results to identify some more. The At-large delegates appeared on every Republican primary ballot in Tennessee. You could select any 14 of them, mixing and matching between “committed” candidates if you chose. Thus, the voting for the at-large delegates are a pretty good reflection of the statewide will of the primary voters. You would naturally expect the top 14 delegates in the at-large voting results to appear on the delegation slate. When are you going to learn Charlie Brown? Here are the at-large voting results presented in order by votes received and indicating the status of those top 14, along with some additional names highlighted that are part of the delegate slate that cannot be there except by choice from party leadership, because the voters did not choose them:

 

 

 

You will notice three of the top 14 did not make the slate as Delegates, only Alternates. In the case of #13 Rep. Shiela Butt, this is possibly understandable as there are no other committed Cruz at-large Delegates with less votes, only additional Alternates. However, in the case of Sen. Stacey Campfield and Martha Ruth Brown, both finished in the top 14, are not in the state party’s slate as Delegates, yet others found well down in the voting made the slate as Delegates for Trump (see #41 Sen. Bill Ketron and #60 Kay White). This, despite both Campfield and Martha Ruth Brown individually acquiring more votes than Bill Ketron and Kay White combined. Incumbent Ketron leapfrogged seven other Trump supporters that received more votes than he did. White jumped past 10 others. These are apparent party selections for delegates, bringing the total identified to 14. You will also note highlighted in red #59 Kelsey Ketron, party SEC member and daughter of incumbent Sen. Bill Ketron. She also appears to have been chosen by the party as there were many Trump supporters receiving more votes that could have been chosen as Alternates (or arguably were chosen by voters). This brings the party-selected Alternate count identified to 14. Also highlighted in red are #86 Rep. Gerald McCormick as a Rubio Delegate, #106 Nathan Buttrey, formerly “committed” to Single Digit Jeb, now as a Rubio Alternate and #116 Rob Ailey, formerly “committed” to Huckabee, now as a Trump Alternate. These are obviously party selected, but the last two were counted in Part 2 as changing candidates. Thus, as all the other Delegates and Aternates allowed to switch candidates, they are double-dippers. They provided noise in the at-large ballot, displacing delegates that may have actually been “committed” to Jeb or Huckabee and now displacing delegates that actually still are committed to Rubio and Trump. Now the score is 15 Delegates and 14 Alternates. Perhaps you could argue all four of the Rubio Delegates chosen from the at-large results are party-selected as no Rubio delegate finished in the top 25. Perhaps the explanation is that these are awarded proportionally also. However the at-large delegate award is Trump 9, Cruz 4 and Rubio 4. Maybe it’s Common Core Math. At the most, there are two Delegates to go. In Part IV, I will attempt to identify any additional party-selected delegates appearing on the slate from the Congressional Delegates.

 

School employee counts and new hires

Earlier this year I wrote about school spending and asked for a list of new hires.  Troy Logan, the Fiscal Administrator for the Blount County Schools provided this information below.

My best count is we budgeted for 1,182 full-time employees and 297 FTE part-time employees in FY 2015-2016.  Please note that the number of employees that we have changes on any given day based on attrition.  So, it is very difficult for me to count actual employees on a specific date.  However, based on our approved appropriations budget each year, I monitor and ensure on a monthly basis that we do not exceed the total dollars appropriated in each personnel budget line item.  If there are budget amendments necessary during the year, obviously they have to be approved by the BOE or County Commission.

Following are new positions added in FY 2015-2016.
 
2 FT high teachers – HHS English and WBHS Chemistry/Physics
1 FT middle teacher
1 FT elementary teacher
1 FT elementary art teacher
1 FT elementary pe teacher
2 FT elementary teachers – not new, but shifted from Federal to Local due to decreased federal budget
1 FT digital conversion and technology manager
1 PT to FT automotive teacher at WBHS
1 FT maintenance position
1 PT to FT communications and workforce development coordinator
6 PT teacher assistants
1 PT LPN nurse WBHS 9th Academy
1 FT transportation coordinator
1 PT to FT payroll manager certified

2017 NDAA bill to require women to register with Selective Service

Defense Bill Coming This Week: A Boost for War and Tyranny

By Ron Paul

For many of us concerned with liberty, the letters “NDAA” have come to symbolize Washington’s ongoing effort to undermine the US Constitution in the pursuit of constant war overseas. It was the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for 2012 that introduced into law the idea that American citizens could be indefinitely detained without warrant or charge if a government bureaucrat decides they had assisted al-Qaeda or “associated forces that are engaged in hostilities against the United States.” No charges, no trial, just disappeared Americans.

The National Defense Authorization bill should be a Congressional mechanism to bind the president to spend national defense money in the way Congress wishes. It is the nuts and bolts of the defense budget and as such is an important oversight tool preventing the imperial executive from treating the military as his own private army. Unfortunately that is no longer the case these days.

Why am I revisiting the NDAA today? Unfortunately since 2012 these bills have passed the House with less and less scrutiny, and this week the House is going to vote on final passage of yet another Defense Authorization, this time for fiscal year 2017. Once again it is a terrible piece of legislation that does great harm to the United States under the guise of protecting the United States.

Unless some last minute changes take place, this latest NDAA will force young women for the first time to register to be drafted into the US military. For the past 36 years, young men have been forced to register with Selective Service when they turn 18 or face felony charges and years in prison. Under a perverted notion of “equality” some people are cheering the idea that this represents an achievement for women. Why cheer when slavery is extended to all? We should be fighting for an end to forced servitude for young men and to prevent it being extended to women.

The argument against a draft should appeal to all: you own your own body. No state has the right to force you to kill or be killed against your will. No state has a claim on your life. We are born with freedoms not granted by the state, but by our creator. Only authoritarians seek to take that away from us.

Along with extending draft registration to women, the latest NDAA expands the neocons’ new “Cold War” with Russia, adding $3.4 billion to put US troops and heavy weapons on Russia’s border because as the bill claims, “Russia presents the greatest threat to our national security.” This NDAA also includes the military slush fund of nearly $60 billion for the president to spend on wars of his choosing without the need to get Congress involved. Despite all the cries that we need to “rebuild the military,” this year’s Defense Authorization bill has a higher base expenditure than last year. There have been no cuts in the military. On the contrary: the budget keeps growing.

The Defense Authorization bill should remain notorious. It represents most of what is wrong with Washington. It is welfare for the well-connected defense contractors and warfare on our economy and on the rest of the world. This reckless spending does nothing to defend the United States. It is hastening our total economic collapse.

Source: http://ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2016/may/15/defense-bill-coming-this-week-a-boost-for-war-and-tyranny/

Why “Dr.” Russell Moore’s political view is irrelevant

sna-bush-moore

Russell Moore and Single Digit Jeb – photo: NAMB

by Horatio Bunce

“Despise not prophesyings. Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.”

1 Thessalonians 5:20-21

“Dr.” Russell Moore, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission has had his share of the “news” limelight in recent months due to his Trash Trump on Twitter campaign which is mostly self-promotion and making merchandise of the people, but I guess every business ministry has to get publicity somehow. And, like Glenn Beck, Moore has also criticized evangelical voters who selected Trump and has gone so far as to compare them to the Israelites who begged Aaron to fashion a golden calf for them to represent the “gods that brought us out of Egypt”. He even had his own presidential candidate forum in Nashville last August. Actually, his organization announced a “series” of forums, but only the first one happened. Moore claimed to have invited all candidates that were “polling at 10 percent or higher to be interviewed, including Hillary Clinton…”. Uh…..right. So of course, only Single Digit Jeb showed up. And they got to watch a video interview of Marco Rubio. Now keep in mind, this is in front of a crowd of 13,000 Southern Baptists. Apparently “tea party darling” soon to become “evangelical” candidate Ted Cruz wasn’t interested? Well, actually Russell didn’t invite the Southern Baptist candidates, nor “evangelical” candidate and winner of the 2012 TN primary, Rick Santorum:

“As for Southern Baptist GOP candidates, specifically former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, Sen. Ted Cruz, and Gov. Rick Perry, Moore told Christian Examiner he did not invite them because that would have turned the forum “into a moment of identity politics instead of a time of conversation.”

[T]o do so would have sent a signal that we were looking for spiritual qualifications for civil office,” Moore said.

HUH? Isn’t that what Moore is complaining about NOW when it comes to Clinton and Trump – their lack of spiritual qualifications for civil office (whatever that means)? Did he really think putting these “non-Baptists” in front of a crowd of 13,000 Southern Baptists did not have the effect of identity politics – requiring the same kind of pandering they all did for Iowa?

Other Southern Baptists have noted Moore’s expressed liberal views – which happen to align more with Single Digit Jeb and Marco Rubio than other candidates, who also just happen to be the only two candidates to get the face time with Southern Baptists at Moore’s Civil Forum. Let’s face it, they didn’t typically draw 13,000 to their rallies later in the campaign.

For me though, this isn’t why I’m not interested in hearing from Moore, his ERLC or the SBC on how best to pick the next King Saul. My objection goes back to 1992. Back then the SBC publication, Baptist and Reflector, gushed about the “Southern Baptist” team of Bill Clinton and Al Gore and how they were the “evangelical” candidates. I was a “young skull full of mush” Limbaugh fan and his “talent on loan from God” had plenty of ammo for why not to vote for Clinton/Gore. Moore was old enough to vote back then. Maybe he remembers the SBC pumping up Hillary Clinton’s husband and lock-box Al. Or since he works there, maybe he could get the archives folks to post some of those 1990’s editions (I guarantee that I will be watching for it). So when “Dr.” Moore, who obtained his training from the same folks that pushed Bill Clinton in 1992, can admit maybe, just maybe the SBC played a part in training this generation in looking for golden calves from Bill’s wife….well, he might be relevant again.

Evaluating the 2016 Tennessee Republican Party convention delegates – Part 2: Hey, weren’t you with that other guy?

Boss Haynes (photo: Getty Images)

Boss Haynes photo: Getty Images

by Horatio Bunce

“And Simon Peter stood and warmed himself. They said therefore unto him, Art not thou also one of his disciples? He denied it, and said, I am not.

One of the servants of the high priest, being his kinsman whose ear Peter cut off, saith, Did not I see thee in the garden with him?

Peter then denied again: and immediately the cock crew.” John 18:25-27

This is Part 2 in a series of posts evaluating the 2016 Tennessee Republican Party delegate slate approved by the TNGOPe (“e” =  establishment). Part 1 detailed the many delegates and alternates appointed by the establishment themselves that appeared on no ballots you had access to. Thus, this portion of the convention vote is contrived by party leaders – not you the voters. However, this is just part of the shenanigans pulled by Boss Tweed Haynes and the GOPe. If you are watching the “news”, the GOPe ridiculed the Trump campaign claiming “they should know the rules better” when confronted with their absolute disregard of the Republican primary voters and replacing their votes (or not allowing a vote at all) with delegate slates totally manufactured by the entrenched party elite (see Colorado and Wyoming for example). However, it seems to be lost on the GOPe that when ridiculing the Trump campaign, they are simultaneously mocking YOU, the voter who thinks your primary vote actually counts. For some reason you have this silly idea in your head that when you and your neighbors voted for 14 state-wide, at-large delegates, that the 14 receiving the most votes would go to the convention, and when you and your neighbors voted for 3 congressional district delegates that the 3 receiving the most votes in each district (9 districts * 3 = 27) would go to the convention, but awarded proportionally – and that these 41 delegates would support the candidate they were listed as “committed” to. Boy, were you ever wrong.

In this post I list the delegates selected in the Boss Haynes TNGOPe slate that actually switched candidates from those they listed themselves as committed to on your ballot. That’s right. On your ballot some delegates were “committed” to certain candidates that you did not support (and therefore did not vote for them), but now have managed to find their way onto the TNGOPe delegate slate – now allegedly supporting a different candidate, and more importantly, DISPLACING DELEGATES THAT YOU ACTUALLY DID VOTE FOR. This slate of delegates was manufactured by the party behind closed doors and is not a representation of your voting. This slate had to be approved by the TNGOP state executive committee. Not all state executive committee members voted with Haynes approving this slate. Those will be named also. Republican party rules also called for the candidates receiving delegates to be consulted and approve the list of delegates allocated to them by the party. You can be the judge if that actually happened

You can find a sample ballot for the 2016 Republican presidential primary for Blount County here.

You can find the “unofficial” voting results here

You can find the Tennessee Republican party approved slate of delegates going to the 2016 national convention here.

Below you will find a marked-up version of the delegate slate with boxes and arrows indicating what I call “irregularities”, such as people who were not on the ballot at all, people who now are delegates representing a different candidate than they did on the ballot, or people who now are delegates that should not be if the will of the primary voters were recognized.

The following are now listed as delegates or alternates by the TNGOP who were “committed” to someone else on the ballot.

Delegate Name        Committed to on ballot              Now representing           Position

Paul Chapman                        Single Digit Jeb                      Ted Cruz              Delegate

Sara Sellers                             Marco Rubio                       Ted Cruz              Delegate

Karen Brown                          Carly Fiorina                          Ted Cruz              Alternate

Julia Hurley                            Single Digit Jeb                     Ted Cruz              Alternate

Lora Jobe                                John Kasich                         Ted Cruz              Alternate

Jennifer Winfree                    Marco Rubio                           Ted Cruz              Alternate

Nathan Buttrey                     Single Digit Jeb                       Marco Rubio         Alternate

Linda Buckles                        Ben Carson                            Donald Trump      Delegate

Melissa Gay                           Marco Rubio                          Donald Trump      Delegate

Rob Ailey                                Mike Huckabee                     Donald Trump      Alternate

Tina Benkiser                         Ted Cruz                               Donald Trump      Alternate

Ted Hatfield                           Uncommitted                        Donald Trump      Alternate

Susan Richardson Williams   Single Digit Jeb                         Donald Trump       Alternate

Analysis:

According to TNGOP rules (at least at time of primary) there were three candidates that should receive delegates in a “winner take most” fashion: Donald Trump, Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio. Well, here are 13 delegates/alternates that didn’t receive the necessary votes from their neighbors (that they ask to pay for their private club elections) to legitimately be chosen ahead of those you actually did vote for. Instead, the TNGOPe TRASHED YOUR VOTES for actual delegates committed to your candidate and substituted these shills.

Notice a pattern?  Of the 13 imposter delegate/alternates, six of them or 46% replaced Ted Cruz committed delegates on your ballot that actually received votes. Another six of them or 46% replaced Donald Trump delegates on your ballot that actually received votes. Only one displaced an actual committed Marco Rubio delegate.

Four of the 13 (31%) were Single Digit Jeb supporters on your ballot.

Jennifer Winfree was committed to Marco Rubio on the ballot. Couldn’t she displace an actual Marco Rubio delegate (that received more votes than her) instead of stealing from Ted Cruz?

Tina Benkiser was committed to Ted Cruz on the ballot. Couldn’t she displace an actual Ted Cruz delegate (that received more votes than her) instead of stealing from Donald Trump?

12 of the 58 delegates and 13 of the 55 alternates now shown as selected by the TNGOPe, not the voters – 21-24% of the vote already fixed – with people either not on the ballot at all or who are now deceiving by allegedly changing their “commitment”.

Finally, this is not new. Remember the excuses you were told when Rick Santorum “won” with no committed delegates on the ballot in 2012. Tennessee’s delegates to the Republican convention delivered a 100% unanimous vote for Mitt Romney, when over 70% of you did not vote for him. Do you still believe the line that the GOPe losers keep getting unanimous delegate votes because of “open” primaries?

In Part 3, we will look at even further denial of the will of the voters where certain party insiders displaced committed delegates who received more votes.