Millington considers eliminating full-time mayor position - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Millington considers eliminating full-time mayor position

By Kontji Anthony - bio | email

MILLINGTON, TN (WMC-TV) - Two weeks after the Millington mayor stepped down amid a bribery scandal, city leaders are considering doing away with the full-time mayor position all together.

Millington aldermen are toying with the idea of a full-time city administrator rather than a full-time mayor.

"I think it's something that would be good for the city," said Alderman Mike Caruthers.

While the move comes just weeks after former Mayor Richard Hodges resigned amid bribery charges, aldermen said city leaders have weighed the pros and cons of a city overhaul for years.

"If we're going to do that, while we have an interim mayor, now seems the better time to get that accomplished," said Alderman Brett Morgan.

The mayor's office unraveled after a bizarre chain of events starting last November.

Hodges' wife committed suicide one day before TBI agents raided their home and city hall to investigate claims Hodges offered city services to pay off illegal gambling debts.

Someone then burglarized city hall.

Hodges resigned January 13 after pleading not guilty to two counts of bribery.

If the new city format gains traction, the mayor's role would be reduced to a part-time position.

"They can do more of focusing on economic development and that kind of thing," said Morgan.

The city administrator would control day-to-day operations.  Aldermen expect a first reading of the resolution on February 20.

"And then it goes up to the State Legislature, and they'd approve it," said Caruthers.

Aldermen said Millington is one of the only cities that does not have a city manager.  They are looking at Arlington's and Germantown's charters as templates.  They called this option a more efficient and open way to run the city.

"It's more transparent, and we can actually do things we need to do with a city manager that we couldn't do with a full-time mayor," said Morgan.

Aldermen said they want input from citizens first.

"We're going to try to do what is in the best interest of the citizens of the city," said Morgan.

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