Running for office may get easier for Chattanooga city workers

photo Chris Anderson

It may get easier for Chattanooga's city employees to decide whether to run for one of the 31 partisan races up for grabs in Hamilton County this year if Councilman Chris Anderson's ordinance passes.

Now, any city employee who runs for public office has to take a leave of absence after he or she begins to campaign or qualifies to run.

Anderson's proposal would reverse Chattanooga's city code to allow city employees to continue to work while running for office. The ordinance also would expand the current rules that allow an employee to keep their job if they win, as long as the new responsibilities don't conflict with the city duties. If an administrator felt like the employee's public office interfered with the city job, the employee could appeal to the city's chief operating officer.