CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) – Hamilton County Commissioners were united in Supporting three major issues brought before them at today’s meeting.
The commissioners had no complaints about a list of school building projects that was created by the school board. The plan designates which schools will get needed facilities…or in the case of CSLA, closed down. Commissioner Smedley said there has been plenty of transparency.
District 7 Commissioner Sabrena Smedley said, “The topic of schools, the needs of schools, uh..what the needs are in my district in particular, uh the talks of building a new middle school and doing something to help CSLA have been an on-going conversation since I was elected back in 2014.”
The commission moved on to hear from attorney Ronnie Berke. He’s been selected to head up a team that will determine just how much the current opioiod epidemic is costing Hamilton county agencies.
Attorney Ronnie Berke said,”In Hamilton county in 2016, for every one thousand people, there were one thousand and 86 prescriptions for opioids. Uh, its a major problem.”
Berke says a civil lawsuit could be filed against companies who, he says, lied to the medical community about the dangers.
He said, “We would also be seeking uh, money damages for what the state ..I mean what the county has expended. Uh, so that’s part our investigation …is ..we would be going around and talking to all the various agencies –the courts, the jail , the fire department, juvenile court , uh..all the different county governmental agencies to determine what is this costing the county in dollars and cents.”
Berke said no suit will be filed without the county’s permission. He would be working with a group of Tennessee municipalities in that investigation.