News

American Public Gas Association Recognizes Jim Hodges of MTNG

July 26, 2018
By: Dwayne Page

The American Public Gas Association (APGA) recognizes Jim Hodges, Executive Vice President & Chief Executive Officer of Middle Tennessee Natural Gas District, for his service on the association’s Board of Directors. Mr. Hodges’ term ended on July 25 at the 2018 APGA Annual Meeting in Portland, Ore. Mr. Hodges is also a past Chairman of the association. APGA is a national, not-for-profit association representing over 700 publicly-owned natural gas distribution systems in 37 states. APGA is the only trade association that solely represents the interests of public natural gas systems at the federal legislative and regulatory level. The following statement can be attributed to APGA President and CEO Bert Kalisch.

“Mr. Hodges brought to the APGA Board of Directors many years of experience working in the natural gas industry. His leadership ability and knowledge of energy issues, especially with natural gas utilities, served our members and industry well.

“APGA was fortunate to have had Mr. Hodges on the Board of Directors during an important time in Washington. With the many natural gas issues our industry faced in Congress, the administration and federal agencies, public natural gas systems were presented with numerous challenges and opportunities. Mr. Hodges understood the issues we faced, and APGA thanks him for his leadership and guidance to meet these challenges and to address the needs of natural gas consumers. We also express our appreciation to Middle Tennessee Natural Gas District for allowing Mr. Hodges to serve on our board.”

APGA is the national association of municipally and publicly-owned local distribution systems. There are about 1,000 public gas systems serving more than 5 million customers. These public gas utilities are not-for-profit retail distribution entities that are owned by, and accountable to, the citizens they serve. They include municipal gas distribution systems, public utility districts, county districts, and other public agencies that have natural gas distribution facilities.




Alderman Gayla Hendrix Responds to Mayor Poss’ Attorney

July 26, 2018
By: Dwayne Page

Smithville Alderman Gayla Hendrix has issued a statement concerning this week’s charges against Mayor Jimmy Poss and his son Tony Poss and takes issue with their attorney Tony Hagan’s assertions that it is a “political indictment”

Hagan calls the state’s charges of official misconduct and theft of property over $2,500 a political indictment and questions the timing with Mayor Poss up for re-election next week.

“Attorney Hagan’s, assertion that the indictment against Mayor Poss and his son is a “political indictment” is false,” said Alderman Hendrix.

“The Council and City Personnel were never informed that the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) intended to conduct an investigation until they contacted the city to schedule meetings. We (the Council) were not made privy to the results of the TBI investigation or their intent to issue indictments until such time as that occurred,” she said.

“The DeKalb County Grand Jury convenes in session once each quarter. While it may be unfortunate that the first scheduled Grand Jury session following the TBI investigation would occur the week prior to the election, the Grand Jury session was not scheduled as a “political” ploy, but rather in the regular course of business for the 13th Judicial District,” said Alderman Hendrix.

Her complete statement is as follows:

“As a member of the City Council for the City of Smithville, I deem it necessary to issue a public statement in an effort to address questions and concerns raised by the citizens of the City of Smithville respecting the recent indictments against Mayor Jimmy Poss and his son, Tony Poss.
It is an unfortunate event for our City that this has happened.”

“However, I would like to make our community aware that the City Council and City Personnel made every attempt to avoid the situation escalating to this magnitude.”

“We (the Council) were completely unaware of the unauthorized employment of the Mayor’s son until the first quarter of this year. Once Mayor Poss’ conduct was brought to our attention, we undertook an independent investigation which revealed the same violations as reflected in the report of the State Comptroller. Specifically: 1) the Mayor unilaterally created a part-time position and hired his son, Tony Poss, paying him a salary of $300 per week for six months without board approval and in violation of the City’s nepotism policy (In March, 2018, when the Council questioned Mayor Poss’ hiring of his son, Tony Poss was terminated immediately); 2) the Mayor further admitted to hiring other employees without the Council approval and without following the procedures promulgated in the Smithville City Charter, City Ordinances, and the City’s Personnel Policy.”

“Once made aware, the Council questioned the Mayor’s decisions and he admitted the allegations”.

“We, the Council, then requested that Mayor Poss tender an apology and offer to repay the funds to the city; however, he refused”.

“Therefore, the City Council convened a Special Meeting to discuss the allegations. Regrettably, the Mayor refused to attend this meeting and to answer any questions raised by the Council; therefore a public censure was issued”.

“The Council and City Personnel were never informed that the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) intended to conduct an investigation until they contacted the city to schedule meetings. We (the Council) were not made privy to the results of the TBI investigation or their intent to issue indictments until such time as that occurred”.

“Attorney Hagan’s, (counsel for Mayor Poss and his son) assertion that the indictment against Mayor Poss and his son is a “political indictment” is false”.

“The DeKalb County Grand Jury convenes in session once each quarter. While it may be unfortunate that the first scheduled Grand Jury session following the TBI investigation would occur the week prior to the election, the Grand Jury session was not scheduled as a “political” ploy, but rather in the regular course of business for the 13th Judicial District”.

“While a very unfortunate event, this situation has made the Council much more vigilant of the city’s business. As your city representatives, we intend to remain vigilant and fiscally responsible as we move forward, regardless of the election outcome. Significant progress has been made over the last few years, but there is much more work to be done”.




Back 2 School, Call 2 Prayer Sunday, July 29

July 26, 2018
By: Dwayne Page

An annual prayer for our schools observance will be held Sunday, July 29 at DeKalb County High School starting at 2 p.m.

Parents, church leaders, educators, and community leaders are invited to attend this special “BACK 2 SCHOOL -CALL 2 PRAYER” gathering. Information from the past year and projections related to the new school year will be presented.

Prayers will be offered by pastors and youth pastors for each school in DeKalb County and for school sponsored activities. A special prayer will also be offered for law enforcement agencies.

Instead of a closing prayer, those present will be asked to go to the geographical location of each school and pray. A prayer of blessing and protection will be offered for the students and faculty for the school year.




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