Candidates Withdraw Names From County Commission Race

By: Kim Bedford
By: Kim Bedford

Knoxville (WVLT) - Chancellor Daryl Fansler heard arguments for and against a special election Monday to fill the 12 vacant positions in violation of the Open Meetings Act. The chancellor is expected to make his ruling in the next couple of days.

Volunteer TV's Kim Bedford explains why some candidates are taking their names out of the running for seats, unless they can be chosen by you.

More than 60 candidates are up for the eight Knox County Commission seats and the four county wide offices, but whether they'll be running for an election or preparing for an appointment is up to Chancellor Daryl Fansler.

"Just from what I have heard, it appears to me as though he's leaning toward the appointment process," Commissioner Mike Hammond said.

If that's the case, several candidates say they'll take themselves off the list. For now.

"I will not seek an appointment to Knox County Commission. I will serve the residents of the second district only when elected by the voters," candidate Cortney Piper said.

Cortney Piper says while she may have to wait for an election, she's confident the right people could be appointed in the interim.

"I've talked to a few people in my district who are interested in that type of care-taker position. So with good diligent effort with the commissioners on there right now, I think it can be accomplished," Piper said.

District 4A is without any representation right now, leaving candidates like William Daniels torn between being appointed and elected.

"As I knock on doors, one of the things I constantly hear is are you an incumbent? Are you one of the ones that have been kicked out of office? And that concerns me," Daniels said.

Which is why Williams says finding people willing to step up and be appointed before the August elections could be quite the challenge.

"To find people with the qualifications you would want to serve full time may be a little more difficult than what it would to get people to run as a candidate," Daniels said.

Another example is Daniels' running mate, Ruthie Kuhlman.

"I will not seek appointment. I want to be elected by the people of Knox County," Kuhlman said.

Chancellor Fansler says he'll issue an opinion as quickly as possible. We'll bring you the ruling as soon as it comes down on volunteertv.com.


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