Knox Co. voters approve charter reforms

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Knox County voters overwhelmingly approved two charter amendments Thursday authorizing the recall of county officials and making it easier to put amendments on the ballot.

The reforms stem from a state Supreme Court decision in January 2007 upholding local term limits. That ruling put a dozen veteran officeholders out of a job and led to a subsequent court ruling invalidating the officeholders' replacements because they were appointed through backroom deal-making.

Thursday's election served as a general election locally for eight new county commissioners, the property assessor, county trustee, county clerk, register of deeds, county law director and sheriff.

Activists circulated petitions at the polls Thursday to put additional reforms on a future ballot that would ban nepotism in county offices and create an independent inspector general's office for the county.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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