Darren Doyle, Edmonson Voice
Judge Executive Wil Cannon presented an idea to magistrates at the Monday, July 13 Fiscal Court meeting to release the authority of county government over the Little League program while adding a Fiscal Court-appointed representative to serve as special events coordinator between the court and program.
The plan comes in the wake of the recent controversy surrounding the resignation of the newly hired Program Director Greg Hudson, who only held the job for about three months. Hudson resigned after he discovered what he said were guidelines set by county government that would not allow him to properly perform his job duties, guidelines he was not originally aware of, mainly regarding open record matters.
This prompted the Fiscal Court to find another solution to the ongoing Little League issues, one that could work without county government being in charge. Many concerned citizens and parents disagreed with Cannon's recommendation to release county government of control of the program as some said it would fail without proper direction, direction that needed to come from Fiscal Court.
The Fiscal Court took no action other than discussion at the last meeting, as Magistrate Mark Woosley was unable to attend. Today, however, was a different story, as the county approved Hudson to withdraw his resignation and allow him to remain employed by the county, but as a Special Events Coordinator.
Hudson addressed the court and explained that the new position would allow him to continue his vision for the betterment of the Parks and Rec program with the addition of 3-on-3, volleyball, and disc golf tournaments, as well as having a summer concert series each year, the proceeds of which would fund Parks and Rec programs.
"These are opportunities for us to raise money to go directly back into the Parks system to make repairs and improvements," Hudson said.
Cannon wants the Baseball/Softball program to have it's own board that would be elected by parents and coaches, a board that would govern itself with the help of an advisor (Hudson). The bottom line is that the Baseball/Softball program won't have to answer to Fiscal Court, yet according to Cannon, the board would still have leadership that so many have expressed concern for.
"What I recommend, is that we have an advisor that could serve as a go-between with the board and the county after it was elected by parents and coaches and help them along," Judge Cannon said. "The advisor can make sure they're doing things properly and Greg's probably the most knowledgeable person there is in the county as to how Little League is supposed to operate."
Magistrates unanimously approved the motion to allow Hudson to withdraw his resignation and for the county to change his job title from "Program Director" to "Special Events Coordinator/Advisor," beginning immediately.
"If we continue on how things have been going with what Greg has been able to do so far, I suspect that the program will continue to see improvements, and with virtually nothing extra coming from the taxpayers," Cannon said.