Is Burchett Asleep at the Helm of Knox County? Is He Too Busy With Ribbon Cuttings and Elementary School Lunches

We all know about how Knox County Mayor Tim Burchett sent a low level staffer as a proxy to the E-911 Board meeting to motion and have approved an expenditure of $8.2 million or more to replace the 911 radio system. But, is this the first time Burchett has blown off an important meeting where decisions critical to Knox County were being decided?

On February 27, 2011, Knoxville News Sentinel County beat Reporter Mike Donila reported here about Burchett’s dismissal attendance voting record. Within his first six months in office the story reported.

In fact, the mayor who took office in September has so far missed more than 80 percent of the meetings held by the dozen committees, organizations and panels on which he serves.

He’s not expected to make Monday’s regularly scheduled county pension board hearing – a conference he’s never attended.

In fact, his proxy to the E-911 Board was mentioned in the February 27, 2011 article and the article states.

Jason Lay, a senior accountant in the mayor’s finance department, serves as his proxy on the panel for the Knox County Emergency Communications District. When questioned, Burchett said he didn’t know Lay.

Burchett went on to say,

“Burchett said his committee representatives immediately discuss “critical issues” with him or talk about the minor ones later during weekly staff meetings.” 

If  Burchett didn’t know Lay (a Senior Accountant with Knox County)  six months into his first term as Mayor, how was Burchett briefed in a weekly manner. So this RFP has been a 18 month work. It is fair to assume that Burchett still has never met Lay?

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