Mayor cleared in CRMC hiring investigation

By Michelle Price
UCBJ Managing Editor

COOKEVILLE – An investigation into the hiring of Cookeville Mayor Ricky Shelton by Cookeville Regional Medical Center (CRMC) for the newly created position of Chief Strategy Officer has shown that Shelton did not violate any city charter provisions or state statutes in his pursuit and acceptance of the position.

The investigation was conducted at the request of the city council who voted on Feb. 11 to “request that the city manager retain outside legal counsel to assist members of the city council in investigating the legality and or appearance of impropriety of the mayor being hired as a high-level employee with the city-owned Cookeville Regional Medical Center.”

A five-page report from Knoxville attorney William J. Carver of Kramer Rayson LLP was sent to Cookeville City Manager James Mills on Wednesday. The report, while clearing Shelton of violating any charter provisions or state statutes, states that due to the wording of Cookeville’s Charter and CRMC’s Private Act, “the scope of this investigation performed on behalf of the City must be limited to whether Mr. Shelton violated any City Codes or State Statutes. This investigation does not address whether Mr. Shelton, or CRMCs process to hire a Chief Strategy Officer, violated CRMCs Charter or By-Laws.” 

The report was sent to council members on Wednesday afternoon. A few hours later, it was emailed to local media (with the exception of this publication). 

The report in its entirety can be found below.

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Michelle Price is the managing editor of the Upper Cumberland Business Journal and can be reached via email. Send an email.

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