House Sends Bill To President’s Desk To Hold Government Employees Accountable

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Tom Graves on Thursday voted for and the House passed the Dr. Chris Kirkpatrick Whistleblower Protection Act (S. 585), sending it to the president’s desk. The bill enhances whistleblower protections, increases awareness of whistleblower protections and requires punishment of supervisors who retaliate against whistleblowers.   

“By ramping up whistleblower protections, we’re encouraging individuals who witness mismanagement, waste or abuse to come forward,” said Rep.

Graves. “The American people should be able to trust that public servants can speak out if their coworkers are not acting ethically and honestly. For example, if another doctor at the VA sees something wrong, such as Dr. Kirkpatrick did, that doctor should be able to flag the problems without intimidation or fear.”

The bill is named after Dr. Chris Kirkpatrick, who was a clinical psychologist at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). Dr. Kirkpatrick was reprimanded after reporting that some of his patients were too drugged to treat and then fired after reporting that a patient threatened him. Tragically, Dr. Kirkpatrick committed suicide shortly afterwards. A VA investigation later found that Dr. Kirkpatrick's concerns were justified.

Hamilton County Clerk's Office Honors Donors With Donate Life Flag

Hamilton County Clerk Bill Knowles announced his office will raise the Donate Life Flag during the month of April.  Blue and green flags will be flying outside courthouses and county office buildings around Tennessee in recognition of National Donate Life Month.  This is an effort by county clerks to bring attention to the importance of organ and tissue donation.  ... (click for more)

Advocates For Tennessee American, Walden's Ridge Speak At First Of 3 Public Hearings

Those advocating that the town of Signal Mountain turn its water system over to Tennessee American Water Company spoke at a public hearing on Thursday night, while others favored the Walden's Ridge Utility District. Tennessee American Water, the local supplier of water for the Town of Signal Mountain for 93 years, will bring $1 million in new revenues to support the priorities ... (click for more)

Avoid Underage Drinking And Other Prom Drama

My high school prom took a dramatic turn when two guys got their tuxedo jackets mixed up. One of them belonged to my date, who kindly offered to keep my wallet in his pocket. That’s the jacket another young man mistakenly grabbed off the back of a chair before heading to an underage drinking party that got shut down by police well after midnight—as kids scattered in every direction.  ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: ‘In God We Trust …And Protecting Our School Children

On a day that the Tennessee Legislature overwhelmingly approved a bill that would prominently display the words “In God We Trust” in every school building in the state, the Hamilton County School Board gave my boy Bad Little Johnny cause to get a magic market and scribble underneath, “but ‘Everybody Else Is Gonna’ Need A Pistol!’” Hamilton County Sheriff Jim Hammond, who was ... (click for more)

Central Nips Signal Mountain With Late Rally, 4-3

Since dropping down to Class AA after the 2009 softball season, the Central Lady Pounders have owned District 6-2A competition. The Lady Pounders have rolled out dominate pitching and clutch hitting in a way that has been anything but fair to the opposition.   The dawning of the new season along with a new coach, however, was supposed to signal an end to the tight ... (click for more)

Currie To Get $2.5 Million In UT Separation Agreement

The University of Tennessee announced it has completed an amicable resolution parting ways with former Tennessee Vice Chancellor and Director of Athletics John Currie. The University has agreed to pay John Currie $2.5 million payable as follows: Currie will be paid $2,220,454.60 no later than April 1, Currie has already been paid his salary for December 2017 through February ... (click for more)