Hamilton County Commissioners Use Desk Phones During Meetings—or—The Toilets of Hamilton County


By now you may have heard that Hamilton County Commissioners have phones on their desks and use those phones during meetings to call families, girlfriends, bookies, perhaps a favorite judge or two, and Big Daddy Claude. But that doesn’t violate the Sunshine Law!

If they should talk with each other during a meeting, it can’t by law, be about county business. The Sunshine Law says that all official business must be conducted in full viewing and hearing of the public.

Everyone knows that the Hamilton County Commission obeys the law.  Why? Because the Hamilton County Commission says it does! That’s good enough for me! I’m a true believer in the honor and integrity of the Commission just as I am in the honor and integrity of the Hamilton County School Board.

Here’s what the Commissioners had to say in the Times Free Press article.

Calls Commissioner Larry Henry received during meetings “didn’t have anything to do with whatever we were voting on,” he said. “I think one time I was asked by one commissioner if I was going to some reception or something that afternoon.”

“About 90 percent of the time, it’s some joke or something like that,” Commissioner Fred Skillern said.

“Nobody’s going to violate the Sunshine Law as far as I know,” Commission Warren Mackey said. “At least they haven’t around me.”

County Attorney Rubin Taylor said, “You’re not going to be able to find out every conversation going on. This is a trust factor.”

Well, I’m certainly convinced.  Certainly no politician would lie, deceive, or mislead. I know they only have the good taxpayers of Hamilton County best interest at heart.  They work for all the citizens, not themselves.

Even if you took away their $20,000.00 plus salary and benefits, I’m certain they, being the high-minded public servants they are, would still do the job.

Since the Commission likes to talk with each other during the meetings by phone, I have an idea that will help promote that camaraderie they share when nature calls.

Let’s install special toilet facilities for the Hamilton County Commissioners.

Hamilton County Commissioner's Bathroom

Doesn’t that make sense? The High Commissioners can all go potty together and exchange recipes, show family photos, and tell jokes without skipping a beat. All without violating the Sunshine Law because you and I know they wouldn’t discuss business while doing their business.

If they don’t need the thrones, here’s another idea.

After they finish their business, they can shake on it.

Isn’t this great? No need to use the telephone to tell jokes.  The jokes are close at hand!

I know what your thinking.  What suitable toilet paper for the Commission? It must be in keeping with their fiduciary trust and high-minded aspirations.  After all, there might be another public-private development lurking around the stalls.

Hamilton County Commission Toilet Paper

Perfect!  But knowing how much the Commission thinks of the citizens, here’s what they’ve come up with for visitors to those “official” meetings.

Visitors to the Hamilton County Commissioner's Meeting go in style!

Should the visitor to the meeting run out of TP, the Hamilton County Tax Assessor’s Office has some for sale.

Whatever the price, you know it's going to hurt!

God Bless the Hamilton County Commissioners! Long May their Telephones Ring for the Citizens of Hamilton County!

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Harry Statel


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