Frankford council laments high election costs

Legal fees ‘cost the Town a lot of money’

Date Published: 
March 21, 2014

According to Frankford Town Council President Jesse Truitt, this year’s recent town council election was unusually costly for the Town, resulting from having to pay various attorney fees in response to resident and would-be candidate Greg Welch’s ongoing debate about his voting status.

Welch, who asserts he registered to vote in Frankford in 2000, was originally denied resident status because officials said he was still a resident of Clarksville. He has been arguing his case ever since, through at least two town elections, but according to Town Administrator Terry Truitt, he still has not taken the proper steps to register.

Welch has long contested the issue and has even taken the matter to the state level, where a similar ruling was made by election officials.

But at the March 10 council meeting, the ongoing dispute was cited as the reason for the overwhelming election costs to the Town.

“That cost the Town a lot of money,” said Jesse Truitt. “It’s a shame we had to spend that kind of money.”

“And we’ll have to go through that again,” stated another council member, assuming that the matter will not soon go away.

Though he was not able to attend the re-scheduled council meeting on March 10, Councilman Charles Shelton sent a letter to the council requesting to stay in his current position as police liaison. After agreeing to that, the other council members also agreed to stay in their current positions, with Jesse Truitt as president, JoAnne Bacon as vice president, Sheryl Workman as secretary/treasurer, Shelton as police liaison and Pam Davis as the streets liaison.

Shelton will be sworn in to his new two-year term next month, but the rest of the incumbents were sworn in at the meeting by Police Chief Bill Dudley.

Also announced at the meeting was a partnership between the Frankford Public Library and the Frankford Police Department for a Cinco De Mayo cultural celebration, which we be held outside the library on Sunday, May 4. Dudley said the free event is intended to bring together the diverse population of the town of Frankford by offering an opportunity to enjoy some Hispanic-inspired dishes and entertainment.

“It should be a big deal,” he stated. “We have a very diverse town. Hopefully, mixing the cultures together will bring [the town] together.”

The celebration will run from 1 to 5 p.m. on May 4 and feature booths, vendors, a police helicopter and a K-9 demonstration.