By DALE GRAHAM
The Cheatham County Commission met in regular session Monday night. All members were present except for 3rd District Representative John – Paul Wood, who resigned his seat on the commission last month due to moving to Robertson County.
In early business nominations were accepted for his seat. After voting, Connie Mayo, a former Cheatham County Teacher was sworn in by County Clerk Teresa Gupton, after which she took her seat.
A lengthy discussion about an old subject came up again. The Cheatham County Board of Education is seeking $297,000 for a paving project at Pegram Elementary School. Several commissioners have expressed their non-support of the Board’s construction management firm, Hewlett Spencer.
Commissioner Dale McCarver has been particularly vocal about the bidding process used by Hewlett Spencer, and the lack of local bids advertised for and sought after for these county projects. He presented an ammendment to the Commission, requiring those exact things before the bid will be let. He said that his ammendment was “very much inline with what the law is”. He added that the quality of their work is good, but that the county is “overpaying” for that work.
Commission Chair John Haines questioned whether the commission has the authority to tell the School Board to do their business. He said that he was not going to vote on something that he wasn’t comfortable with.
The discussion continued at length, and eventually commissioners decided to recess the discussion and the meeting until February 10th. They have asked to see copies of bid documents so that they can understand better how Hewlett Spencer handles the process.
The commission also lost another member, as 5th District Representative LuAnn Engelman turned in her resignation for personal reasons, effective February 15th. Engelman has been a commission member since 2006. You can read her statement to the commission here in its entirety:
Dear Commission Chairman John Haines & Commissioners,
After months of praying and searching for direction, I am asking that you please accept this letter as my notice of resignation, effective February 15, 2014.
This was not an easy decision to make. I am unable to commit time to such an important position due to circumstances beyond my control. I am not comfortable being in this position and unable to commit my time that the people of this county deserves.
I would like to thank all the commissioners that I have worked with for their guidance, friendship and most of all, their trust and guidance. I have sat under a great Mayor who taught me so much, had patience with me and helped guide me.
With this being said, I will greatly miss being a commissioner, miss each of you and miss a position that I truly loved.
The Cheatham County Commission meets in regular session the third Monday of each month at 7p.m. in the General Sessions Courtroom.