Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN

Area News

July 5, 2013

Grievance vs Grievance

Oglesby withdraws grievance while city waits on legal opinion on Miller's filing

Accusations have been made in both directions and grievances filed by and against the interim Crossville city manager and city clerk.

There is a question if the grievance filed by interim city manager Jack Miller against City Clerk Sally Oglesby, a subordinate, is allowed or if Miller, not considered a full-time employee because of his interim appointment, falls under the grievance procedure.

In a memo issued June 28, Crossville Human Resources Coordinator Sandy Gruber advised members of the personnel board the city had contacted the Municipal Technical Advisory Service legal counsel for guidance and direction on the grievance filed by Miller.

Oglesby withdrew her grievance in writing July 2, stating that she was not conceding that “the actions of the interim city manager were appropriate,” but that she felt that the decision to remedy the situation lies in the hands of the city council and not the personnel committee.

Oglesby's original grievance outlined a pattern of harassment dating back to 2007 when she was called into a meeting with Miller, Gruber and city Finance Director Fred Houston. At that meeting, Oglesby relates that Miller called her “abusive, a liar, not respected, a gossip, and considered poison by all employees and the city council.” Oglesby said those in the meeting were told not to discuss it but, within a short period of time, the story had spread all over city hall.

Oglesby's grievance continued, saying that following Bruce Wyatt's resignation as city manager, a few members of the council asked if she would serve as interim. Oglesby said she has never sought that position nor applied for the regular city manager position. She relates that on April 12, 2013, she and others received an email from Councilman Jesse Kerley requesting a copy of a written reprimand Miller had allegedly given her for “having a tyrant attitude toward employees.” Kerley's email alleged the reprimand had been removed from Oglesby's personnel file. Kerley also was seeking a memo Oglesby had supposedly written about her having the “power and money” during a previous period when she served as interim manager.

Gruber reported no such reprimand had ever been in Oglesby's personnel file and that she had never seen a memo like the one Kerley described.

Oglesby reported after the email from Kerley, she called the council members she had spoken to and told them she “did not want to serve as interim and be the subject of harassment and attacks on her personal integrity.”

Oglesby reports after Miller was hired, because of the harassment she felt she was subject to during his previous tenure, she maintained her distance and communicated with him electronically and through intermediaries.

On April 29, Miller called a staff meeting to discuss the subject of rumors of his hiring as a “hit man” for the council and that “firings, reassignments and restructuring of employees were planned.” Miller questioned department heads as to “morale, sources of the rumors and what concerns were out there. Hearing very few comments, he went down each row and demanded a response from everyone in attendance.” Oglesby described the action as “very intimidating.”

Later in the meeting, she told Miller she felt a lot of the morale problem had to do with the “chaos amongst the council and that their dysfunction was causing a lot of concern.”

Oglesby described the June 7 staff meeting that has previously been discussed in a city council meeting and a story and audio of the full meeting is available on the Crossville Chronicle's website. Oglesby describes it as “the most humiliating, embarrassing and harassing meeting I have ever encountered.”

Oglesby countered Miller's accusations with memos, her job description and other back up documentation.

Miller's grievance against Oglesby is titled, “An unorthodox approach to restoring ethics and integrity to the city of Crossville bureaucracy.” Miller sates the personnel issue should have been handled by internal administrative processes but, “due to the unique relationship of the employee with a member of the governing body, we are compelled to seek redress via external means.”

Miller's grievance continues, “It appears that this often belligerent, insubordinate, autonomous employee is being protected by certain members of city council.” Miller states he hopes “this very talented individual can be rescued from the ill-advised actions and rhetoric of her agenda-driven supporters and detractors. Our altruistic objective is to, indeed, educate/re-orient this high ranking city employee.”

Oglesby's memo withdrawing her grievance stated the process has deteriorated to “name calling, intimidation, defamation of character and chaotic situation among the city council, the employees and the entire community.” Oglesby said she was concerned about members of the personnel board who have ties to the city and whose decision could be seen as not impartial, even though she feels they would be.

Oglesby added while she originally thought Miller's attitude toward her was left over from his previous time as manager, she says she has received information it was retaliation for information she provided to attorneys on behalf of the city's insurance carrier defending former city councilman Boyd Wyatt from the lawsuit filed against him by Miller over Miller's previous firing. That lawsuit was dismissed after an initial action and has been appealed by Miller.

Wrote Oglesby, “I try to live my life positively by building people up not tearing them down. Normal people don't go around destroying other human beings.”

Oglesby's memo summed up saying, “It is my desire to take the high road, hold my head up high, continue to treat my fellow employees with respect, and continue to serve the council and citizens of Crossville to the best of my ability.”

Text Only
Area News
  • state park bath house.jpg Historic CMSP bathhouse gets new use with renovation

    When a new pool was constructed at Cumberland Mountain State Park in the 1980s, the beach area was converted to a quiet place to watch the water and the bath house was boarded up.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Cole dismissed from teaching position

    The Cumberland County Board of Education voted 8-1 to dismiss tenured special education teacher Stephanie Cole, who remains at the Cumberland County Jail without bond charged with the July 20 fatal shooting of Louis Tammaro Jr.

    July 29, 2014

  • Crash sends one to jail, cyclist to UT

    A crash involving a motorcycle and a pickup truck resulted in one man being flown to a regional trauma center and the second man being arrested after he fled the scene, Crossville Police reported.

    July 29, 2014

  • County to include more meeting info on web site

    Cumberland County commissioners approved a change in the commission's rules which requires the full package of materials supplied to the commissioners to be posted on the county's web site.

    July 29, 2014

  • jobless june.jpg County jobless rate up for June

    County unemployment rates for June 2014 show the rate increased in all 95 counties of Tennessee. In Cumberland County, the jobless rate rose from 7.4 percent in May to 8.3 percent for June.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • lver-greg morris.jpg New veterans rep joins Career Center staff

    The Tennessee Career Center in Crossville now has more resources available to assist veterans seeking employment. The center recently hired Gregory Morris as a local veterans employment representative (LVER) to work with both unemployed veterans as well as employers seeking job applicants.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Richard Lemert.jpg Lemert pays visit to Crossville

    Richard Milo Lemert, (left) great nephew of Milo Lemert of Crossville, recipient of the Congressional Medal of Honor, is pictured with L.T. Thurman Jr. It was Richard Lemert's first visit to Crossville and during his brief stay, he stopped by the Milo Lemert Building on Main St. and viewed the plaque that was placed in honor of his great uncle. Milo Lemert was married to Nell Snodgrass of Crossville and was killed in action on their first wedding anniversary. Thurman's father, Litton T. Thurman Sr., received the Distinguished Service Cross in the same WWI battle that Lemert was awarded the nation's highest honor. Richard Lemert resides in Raleigh, NC, and is planning to attend the Medal of Honor Convention in Knoxville Sept. 10-13.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • IMG_2558.jpg Understanding the structure of addiction and recovery

    Bradford Health Services hosted a free workshop Friday for area agencies on the structure of addiction and recovery. Robbie Keeble who is recovery liaison for Bradford, was the featured speaker. With rates of substance abuse so prevalent in the Crossville area, several local agencies arranged to instruct participants on how addiction works in the brain and the process that those struggling with addiction need to take in order to recover successfully. There were 94 attendees in all, including several social service agencies, health care providers, law enforcement personnel, businesses and concerned citizens. If you are interested in attending or hosting a future training on matters related to substance abuse, contact Bradford Health Services at (931) 528-6803.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • TMSAA rules get one-year try out

    Changes are coming for the elementary sports programs next year, with a 6-3 vote of the Cumberland County Board of Education. That vote of support of recommendations from the athletic committee was met with concerns from board members that the move towards county-wide rules and regulations was an attempt to move toward middle school teams.

    July 28, 2014 1 Video

  • ffg fire 1.jpg Fire damages home in Fairfield Glade

    Not only did Fairfield Glade volunteer fire fighters battle a blaze Saturday afternoon at 107 Runnymede Rd., hot weather conditions were a challenge as well.

    July 28, 2014 2 Photos

Marketplace Marquee
Must Read
Section Teases
Seasonal Content
AP Video
Raw: Japanese Soldiers Storm Beach in Exercises Raw: Weapons Fire Hits UN School in Gaza Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Two Women Narrowly Avoid Being Hit by Train In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast New Sanctions on Key Sectors of Russian Economy Crayola Announces Family Attraction in Orlando US Ready to Slap New Sanctions on Russia Kerry: Not Worried About Israeli Criticism Boater Rescued From Edge of Kentucky Dam Girl Struck by Plane on Florida Beach Dies Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre House to Vote on Slimmed-down Bill for Border Looming Demand Could Undercut Flight Safety Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza Giant Ketchup Bottle Water Tower Up for Sale Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Weather Radar
2014 Readers' Choice
Graduation 2014