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  • Knowledgebase-Alderman Salaries : Mandatory vs. Optional
    Original Author Hemsley Sid Co Author Product Create Date 03 27 2000 Last Reviewed on 03 19 2010 Subject Boards Municipal City councilmember Personnel Compensation Mayor Aldermanic government Type Legal Opinion Legal Opinion Reference Documents Text of Document Please remember that these legal opinions were written based on the facts of a given city at a certain time The laws referenced in any opinion may have changed or may not

    Original URL path: http://www.mtas.tennessee.edu/KnowledgeBase.nsf/cae6677dbd7f74a5852573ae005a41d4/5ff51baade30311685256b98004c4a03?OpenDocument (2015-11-11)
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  • Knowledgebase-Alderman Vacancy
    and hold the office of mayor or alderman in the city of unless he or she shall have been domiciled in your city for as much as one 1 year prior to the date of such election shall have reached the age of twenty five 25 years prior to the date of the said election and unless he or she meets other requirements provided by law as qualifications for running for representative in the general assembly Article II 9 of the Tennessee Constitution sets out requirements for running for state representative No person shall be a Representative unless he shall be a citizen of the United States of the age of twenty one years and shall have been a citizen of this State for three years and a resident of the county he represents one year immediately preceding the election This provision also does not contain a continuing residency requirement There are other statutory provisions however that apply to state representatives and that by virtue of the charter requirement in 4 b would also apply to your aldermen unless the language running for state representative is strictly construed as applying only to running for and not holding the office One of these provisions is Tennessee Code Annotated 8 48 101 which provides that Any office in this state is vacated by 3 Ceasing to be a resident of the state or of the district circuit or county for which the incumbent was elected or appointed The state Attorney General has ruled questionably in my opinion that this provision applies to municipal office holders I am enclosing a copy of these opinions The city charter requirement that aldermen must meet the same requirements as state representatives makes it more likely than in the situations on which the Attorney General opined that

    Original URL path: http://www.mtas.tennessee.edu/KnowledgeBase.nsf/cae6677dbd7f74a5852573ae005a41d4/2c1a68a895eca14185256b45004bef71?OpenDocument (2015-11-11)
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  • Knowledgebase-Alderman Voting for Himself as Mayor
    provision of the city s charter that the vice mayor is automatically elevated to the office of mayor upon the sitting mayor s resignation However I have never been able to find any Tennessee cases or cases from other jurisdictions that indicate what happens when the vice mayor under a similar charter provision elects not to accept the office of mayor For that reason I assume that because an alderman is elected to a certain term of office under Section 6 3 101 or 6 3 102 of the general law mayor aldermanic charter he continues to hold office for that term even if he elects not to accept the office of mayor With respect to the question of whether the alderman who is the prospective mayoral appointee can vote for himself for that office State ex rel v Thompson 246 S W 2d 59 Tenn 1952 the city commission actually the city council of Paris Tennessee appointed one of its members the city manager The member of the city council appointed the city manager voted for himself The main questions in that case were whether the city council had the authority to appoint one of its own members the city manager and whether the city councilman appointed city manager vacated the former office by accepting the latter office However in addressing those questions the Court also addressed the question of whether it was legal for the city councilman to have voted for himself as city manager Citing 42 Am Jur page 955 section 97 presently 63 Am Jur 2d Public Officers and Employees 100 the Court said So it is contrary to the public policy to permit an officer having an appointing power to use such power as a means of conferring an office upon himself or to permit an appointing body to appoint one of its own members Emphasis is mine The Court followed that up with a similar citation from McQuillin on Municipal Corporations revised Volume 2 page 159 477 presently 3 McQuillin Municipal Corporations 3d Revised Ed 12 75 Pursuant to the general rule a council although possessed of the power of appointment may not select one of its own members as clerk of the council or as a member of the board of assessors For a like reason a member cannot vote to confirm his own appointment to office Emphasis is mine It was subsequently held in Jackson v Hensley 715 S W 2d 605 Tenn App 1986 that the above rule reflected the common law rule and that the common law could be overturned by statute There are a significant number of cases from other jurisdictions on your question In virtually all of them the courts have held that a member of a governing body cannot vote for himself with respect to positions over which the board has appointing power See State ex rel Bergin v Goodrich 84 A 99 Conn 1912 State ex rel Kenny v Ranslow 154 A 2d 526 Super Ct

    Original URL path: http://www.mtas.tennessee.edu/KnowledgeBase.nsf/cae6677dbd7f74a5852573ae005a41d4/81935aa71beb359f85256b980049f6a6?OpenDocument (2015-11-11)
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  • Knowledgebase-Aldermen as Officers under Charter and Personnel Ordinance
    further enacted That the corporate authority of said City shall be vested in a City Council consisting of a Mayor and seven Aldermen Later however the charter uses the word officers in a way that clearly does not include the aldermen Article III Section 2 provides for the appointment by the city council of certain officers Then the charter says this All officers of the city except the city attorney shall devote all their time to their respective offices This section goes on to provide that Any officer may be terminated by a minimum of five 5 votes of the council including the mayor Again this is not talking about the aldermen I guess the lesson to be drawn here is that words gather much of their meaning from context Based on your City s charter provisions good arguments can be made that aldermen are considered officers for some purposes and not for others The real issue you are asking about however seems to be whether Section 13 122 of the Municipal Code regulates the conduct of aldermen This section provides Except for the receipt of such compensation as may be lawfully provided for the performance of his regular duties it shall be unlawful for any city officer or employee to be privately interested in or to profit directly or indirectly from business dealings with the city unless a specific officer or employee is approved as an eligible vendor This section is part of Article V of Title 13 of the Municipal Code entitled Personnel System There is no definition of officer in the definitions section Section 13 101 of this article Section 13 102 however designates who is covered by the provisions of this article Subsection a creates two 2 classes of personnel those in the classified service and

    Original URL path: http://www.mtas.tennessee.edu/KnowledgeBase.nsf/cae6677dbd7f74a5852573ae005a41d4/646c9b375604aa38852571e60066c0e3?OpenDocument (2015-11-11)
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  • Knowledgebase-Aldermen as Officers under Charter and Personnel Ordinance
    it further enacted That the corporate authority of said City shall be vested in a City Council consisting of a Mayor and seven Aldermen Later however the charter uses the word officers in a way that clearly does not include the aldermen Article III Section 2 provides for the appointment by the city council of certain officers Then the charter says this All officers of the city except the city attorney shall devote all their time to their respective offices This section goes on to provide that Any officer may be terminated by a minimum of five 5 votes of the council including the mayor Again this is not talking about the aldermen I guess the lesson to be drawn here is that words gather much of their meaning from context Based on the City s charter provisions good arguments can be made that aldermen are considered officers for some purposes and not for others The real issue you are asking about however seems to be whether Section 13 122 of the Municipal Code regulates the conduct of aldermen This section provides Except for the receipt of such compensation as may be lawfully provided for the performance of his regular duties it shall be unlawful for any city officer or employee to be privately interested in or to profit directly or indirectly from business dealings with the city unless a specific officer or employee is approved as an eligible vendor This section is part of Article V of Title 13 of the Municipal Code entitled Personnel System There is no definition of officer in the definitions section Section 13 101 of this article Section 13 102 however designates who is covered by the provisions of this article Subsection a creates two 2 classes of personnel those in the classified service

    Original URL path: http://www.mtas.tennessee.edu/KnowledgeBase.nsf/cae6677dbd7f74a5852573ae005a41d4/e965f88e1263e0f9852571db00492a75?OpenDocument (2015-11-11)
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  • Knowledgebase-Aldermen Decline to Accept Salary and Then Demand Payment of Salary
    judicial functions are plainly opposed to public policy They strike at the very foundations of government and intend to destroy the confidence in the integrity and discretion of public action which is essential to the preservation of civilized society The principle is universal and is applied without any reference to the mere outward form and purpose of the alleged transaction Citing Osborne v Allen 143 Tenn 343 352 226 S W 221 224 Section 935 Emphasis is mine The Court continued in language worth quoting at length The problem naturally in the instant case is one of application In considering the problem too it makes no difference whether or not the contract can be purged of its illegality by the fact that the act of the officials was not harmful nor by the fact that it was done in good faith Osborne v Allen supra And as the Chancellor says Public officials of the class here shown are entitled to apply fees collected during any term of their office to salary deficiencies occurring in prior terms that is the fees available for the payment of salaries of such officers under the Anti Fee Bill are all fees collected by such officer during the term or terms of his office without reference to the origin of the date of creation of the fee or charge Citations omitted by me I am of the opinion that the agreement entered into by the complainant and the Chairman of the County Court of Sumner County in which it was attempted to change or fix the compensation of complainant as Circuit Court Clerk of said county different from that provided by statute is against public policy contrary to the law as interpreted by our highest courts and void ab initio Moore et al v White et al Carmichael v Hamby Gregory v Trousdale County Citations to Tennessee cases cited in full above omitted by me Maryland Casualty Company v State of Texas 130 Tex 206 107 S W 2d 865 and 1189 A L R 1468 MacMath v U S 248 U S 151 39 S Ct 31 63 L Ed 177 Peterson v Parsons 139 Kan 701 33 P 2d 715 Winchester v Abzill 255 Ky 389 9 S W 2d 51 Grant v Rochester 70 App Div 460 80 N Y S 522 and numerous citations of authorities in 118 A L R 1467 It is stated in the last mentioned authority That the rule in most jurisdictions is that inasmuch as a contract by a public officer or employee to render services for compensation less than that fixed by law is invalid and recovery of the whole legal compensation may be had This statement is supported by citation of authorities of numerous states And this Since it appears that the clerk was entitled to a deputy at said time and that a salary of 200 per month was reasonable compensation and that the Clerk had the right to apply to the Circuit

    Original URL path: http://www.mtas.tennessee.edu/KnowledgeBase.nsf/cae6677dbd7f74a5852573ae005a41d4/fe363dd6e79d0b23852577f3004d0c74?OpenDocument (2015-11-11)
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  • Knowledgebase-All Consumers of Publicly-Provided Utilities Must Pay for What They Receive at the Same Rate Charged to Others for a Like Service
    researched Tennessee case law to see if there were any cases involving the same or similar fact situation you described to me that of a municipal utility s failure to shut off service at a residential address upon notification by a prior tenant who then vacated the premises In addition the utility then continued to provide water gas and sewer service to the present tenant for three months but not bill the customer for said services or attempt to collect the collect the customary deposit for the past three months The question is whether the utility is in any way precluded from collecting these back charges even though the failure to collect is due to the utility s inadvertence I am enclosing for your review the case of Memphis Light Gas Water Division v Auburndale School System 705 S W 2d 652 Tenn 1986 In that case an electric utility has underbilled a customer for four and half years due to an error in the billing department s method of computing the amount of electricity consumed by the customer Id When the error was finally discovered the utility demanded payment for the back amounts but the customer refused to pay Id The customer claimed that the utility was equitably estopped i e barred because of unfairness from attempting to collect the debt The Supreme Court disagreed The Court pointed out that there were no reported cases in this jurisdiction that had considered this particular issue but that the weight of authority in other jurisdictions was that when a public utility negligently under bills a customer the defense of equitable estoppel was not available as an argument to prevent the utility from collecting for the amount of services actually consumed The rationale for this conclusion is as we discussed on the

    Original URL path: http://www.mtas.tennessee.edu/KnowledgeBase.nsf/cae6677dbd7f74a5852573ae005a41d4/981c36199df29c9685256c5300469a79?OpenDocument (2015-11-11)
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  • Knowledgebase-Allocation and Distribution of Beer Tax Revenues
    in this state Distribution of the tax monies is set forth in T C A 57 5 205 57 5 205 Distribution of tax revenues The state privilege tax collected under 57 5 201 57 5 204 shall be paid into the state treasury and shall be divided as follows 1 From the proceeds of the amount so collected ten and five hundredths percent 10 05 shall be paid to the several counties equally to be used by them for general purposes ten and five hundredths percent 10 05 shall be divided between the existing incorporated municipalities according to population to be used by them for general purposes and forty one hundredths percent 41 shall be reserved and transferred to the department of mental health and mental retardation to assist municipalities and counties in carrying out the provisions of the Comprehensive Alcohol and Drug Treatment Act of 1973 compiled as title 39 chapter 17 part 4 53 11 408 57 3 306 title 33 chapter 8 and this section Any municipality or county shall have the right to take not more than two 2 special censuses at its own expense at any time during the interim between the regular decennial federal census Such right shall include the current decennium Any such census shall be taken by the federal bureau of the census or in a manner directed by and satisfactory to the Tennessee state planning commission The population of the municipality or county shall be revised in accordance with the special census for purposes of distribution of such funds effective on July 1 following the certification of the census results by the federal bureau of the census or the state planning commission to the commissioner of finance and administration the aggregate population shall likewise be adjusted in accordance with any

    Original URL path: http://www.mtas.tennessee.edu/KnowledgeBase.nsf/cae6677dbd7f74a5852573ae005a41d4/aef667f71b3bd20085256bf1006a21ac?OpenDocument (2015-11-11)
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