published Thursday, April 1st, 2010

Chattanooga: Temp judge starts Monday in Chancery Court


by Monica Mercer

A special senior judge from Franklin, Tenn., is set to temporarily fill the vacancy left by Hamilton County Chancellor Howell Peoples, who retired Wednesday.

Senior Judge Donald Paul Harris will begin presiding over cases on Monday, Clerk and Master Lee Akers said this morning.

In February, the Tennessee Judicial Nominating Commission had nominated three local candidates to take Chancellor Peoples’ place. Gov. Phil Bredesen was to have appointed one of the nominees by the time Chancellor Peoples retired.

But it’s not yet clear this morning what the governor plans to do. No appointment has been made.

Mr. Akers said Judge Harris could very well serve until the special election in August, or Gov. Bredesen could still choose to make an appointment.

“It’s all just rumor at this point,” Mr. Akers said.

See tomorrow’s Times Free Press for complete details.

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