Mayor Wamp declines to reappoint Hamilton County Attorney Rheubin Taylor
HAMILTON COUNTY, Tennessee (WDEF) – New mayor Weston Wamp had already asked Rheubin Taylor to step down.
This time, it wasn’t a request.
On Friday, the County Mayor officially informed Taylor that he would not be reappointed.
“I respect Mr. Taylor and appreciate his service to Hamilton County, however my transition team recommended we pursue a new direction in the County Attorney’s office as we seek to increase transparency and accountability in county government,” said Mayor Wamp.
The 73 year old Taylor has held the job for 28 years.
He is also a county commissioner for awhile.
Taylor has become a controversial figure in county government, recently.
The new mayor’s chief of staff detailed the issues they have with him.
“Mayor Wamp came to this decision based on concerns about private legal work Mr. Taylor conducts during business hours, concerns about breach of attorney-client privilege with our office, and previous admissions from Mr. Taylor that his office had systematically destroyed thousands of documents related to open records requests,” said Claire McVay.
Mayor Wamp asked Taylor to resign back in September when he was first sworn in.
But Taylor declined, saying he wanted to fulfill the two years remaining on his contract.
At that time, Wamp suggested he hire former Judge Gerald Webb as a potential successor (He lost re-election in August).
Rheubin Taylor has a long record of service to the community.
When he arrived here in 1973, Taylor was the first African-American licensed attorney in the city.
In 1978, he and the Rev. Paul McDaniel became the first African-American County Commissioners.
He also became the first African-American County Attorney.