Tuesday, December 6, 2022
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Overton Executive Declines Commission Chair, Clark Appointed

Overton County Commissioner Darwin Clark elected chair of the county commission Monday night.

That after County Executive Steven Barlow declined the appointment.

“My opinion at this time for this year is to do veto power, so I can build a relationship with my commissioners,” Barlow said. “It is hard to lead a commission without having a relationship with them.”

County executives can either serve as chair that decides a tie vote or can veto a overall commission’s vote. Barlow said he consulted Putnam County Mayor Randy Porter who operates in the same fashion.

“It goes by a year by year basis,” Barlow said. “Next year I can be a chair if I wish. Randy Porter in Putnam County is my advisor on this, so I will be taking veto instead of chair.”

Commissioner Donna Savage responded to Barlow’s decision. She said, “You do understand whenever you take veto instead of chair that you really don’t have any decisions.”

Barlow said he understood the meaning behind the selection. Barlow said he will still be an active member of the county court.

“I can still have the relationship and still explain and still attend meetings and voicing what I would like to see in my vision,” Barlow said. “That doesn’t mean I sit in my office, and I have nothing to do with you guys.”

Commissioners can overturn a veto by another majority vote 30 days later. After the discussion, Commissioner Darwin Clark and Greg Nivens were nominated as chair. Clark won the seat in a 8-7 vote. Nivens was appointed chair pro-tem.