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Athens City Manager Resigns Monday Night

From Local 3 News:

The city manager in Athens, Tennessee will resign on Monday night after a year’s worth of back-and-forth between him, city council members and citizens of the city.

During a packed and, at times, quite heated special city council meeting, the council reached a separation agreement with City Manager Seth Sumner. It’s just a day before a new city council is scheduled to be sworn in.

As part of the agreement, which was approved 4-1, the city will pay a lump sum of six months of Sumner’s salary, which would amount to $60,247.20, plus benefits. Sumner said he would resign Monday night if it was approved.

Several incoming city council members told Local 3 News they were planning on terminating Sumner once they were sworn in on Tuesday.

“I wish that we would have went another route,” said Eaton. “But in the same sense, this makes a little bit more business sense to go ahead and get this done so we can move forward.”

The agreement also detailed any pending lawsuits against Sumner in his role as city manager would become moot, and any future legal action would be levied against the city and not against Sumner, himself.

“Following the election, the city manager and others, based on the rhetoric and the things that were said during the campaign, realized that once a new council was seated, that he more than likely was going to be terminated,” said Athens City Attorney Chris Trew.

Mayor Bo Perkinson and Vice Mayor¬†Mark Douglas Lockmiller were voted out of office during last Tuesday’s elections.

The new city council is scheduled to be sworn in on Tuesday, November 15 at 6:00 p.m.