published Sunday, May 5th, 2013

Fort Oglethorpe mayor plans charter review panel

  • photo
    Mayor Lynn Long at his office in Fort Oglethorpe. Photo by Mike O’Neal

Lynn Long, the mayor of Fort Oglethorpe, wasn't happy to have state lawmakers from this area establish a special committee to look into his city's charter.

So Long plans to launch his own charter review committee.

He's told each councilman to supply the names of two registered city voters to serve on the panel.

"I think that's the right way to do it," Long said, taking aim at charter review legislation written by state Sen. Jeff Mullis, R-Chickamauga, and state Rep. Tom Weldon, R-Ringgold.

They called for the creation of a seven-person Fort Oglethorpe Charter Study Committee after Long and the majority of the City Council on March 22 forced the resignation of City Manager Ron Goulart and terminated police Chief David Eubanks and Public Works Director Jeff Long.

"These acts have created a great amount of turmoil and consternation among the citizens of the city," Mullis' Resolution 693 stated.

"I don't know anything about Mr. Mullis' committee," Long said. "He can do whatever blows his skirt up."

"Mr. Weldon ... I wouldn't know him if he walked in the door," Long said.

Told of Long's intent to form a charter review committee, Mullis said, "Well, bless his heart. Good for him."

Mullis said Long's committee wouldn't have the power to change anything about Fort Oglethorpe's charter.

"He can't change anything in the charter without the Legislature," Mullis said. "He might want to read the law."

The Legislature's Fort Oglethorpe Charter Study Committee will have a Dec. 31 deadline to report on its findings or make recommendations for legislation, the resolution states.

Contact staff writer Tim Omarzu at tomarzu@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6651.

about Tim Omarzu...

Tim Omarzu covers Catoosa and Walker counties for the Times Free Press. Omarzu is a longtime journalist who has worked as a reporter and editor at daily and weekly newspapers in Michigan, Nevada and California. Stories he's covered include crime in blighted parts of metro Detroit and Reno, Nev.; environmental activists tree-sitting in California's Sierra Nevada foothills; attempts by the Michigan Militia to take over a township¹s government in northern Michigan. A native of Michigan, ...

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