The Roane County
Commission met Monday night at The Courthouse in Kingston for their first
meeting of the new year and it was filled with persons wishing to speak about a
resolution to keep out refugees from Roane County. Local officials were taking a stand against
Governor Bill Lee’s willingness to open up Tennessee to foreign refugees.
There was a Roane County Commission resolution stating, “Roane County does not want to be forced into participating in the federal refugee resettlement program due to either Governor Lee’s consent and/or being within the permissible placement radius of a resettlement agency office,”
Last month Lee announced his consent to refugee resettlement in Tennessee. After about 12 persons spoke from both sides of this hot topic, the commissioners began to debate the issue for nearly an hour. Commissioner Junior Hendrickson (the sponsor of the resolution made a motion seconded by commissioner Meadows to get it on the floor for discussion, only to see it be withdrawn after Commissioner Ben Wilson asked that it be taken off the agenda, which passed 8 to 6. Whether or not the resolution will come up again was not immediately decided by anyone speaking to that last night.