During the March 1 Collegedale commission meeting, Mayor Katie Lamb announced the commission’s plan of action for filling the current position of city manager after current City Manager Ted Rogers retires on March 12.
Rogers has served as the Collegedale city manager for the last 15 years since 2006 when he was appointed by the Board of Commissioners.
At the Feb. 15 commission meeting, Commissioner Ethan White called for Rogers to be terminated, citing recent events involving the termination of Collegedale’s Parks and Recreation Director Traci Bennett-Hobek. White also expressed lack of communication and loss of trust with Rogers.
According to Rogers, his choice to resign was completely voluntary and done with the intention to retire.
“While I am indeed disappointed in the many untruthful allegations spoken against me, I choose, as I always have, to travel the high road where there is never a traffic jam,” Rogers said in a letter to Lamb and the Board of Commissioners. “I am blinded by the brightness of my future endeavors and humbled by the outpouring of support I have received.”
During the March 1 commission meeting, commissioners voted on the retirement package for Rogers. This vote will allow Rogers to keep his phone, laptop and desk chair. Additionally, in the package, Rogers will receive his current salary and benefits through Dec. 31, 2021. Starting Jan. 1, 2022, Rogers will be responsible for his portion of medical benefits.
The commission also discussed its plan to hire a new city manager. The city is hoping to fill the position within 110 days, according to Lamb. In the meantime, Vice Mayor Tim Johnson proposed for City Engineer Wayon Hines to act as interim city manager starting on March 15.
Commissioners voted 3-2 for Hines to fill the position as interim city manager.
On Feb. 23, former Chief of Collegedale Police Brian Hickman gave his letter of resignation to City Manager Ted Rogers, effective Feb. 25.
On Jan. 12, the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Internal Affairs (IA) was tasked by Sheriff Jim Hammond, at the request of Rogers, to conduct an investigation into an incident involving Hickman, according to the final IA report.
Hickman was involved in a pursuit on Jan. 2 where he followed the suspect in his personal vehicle, which was carrying his wife and daughter, who is a minor. Hickman’s vehicle was damaged during the pursuit, immobilizing it, but no injuries were sustained, according to a Jan. 20 interview between Hickman and IA.
The investigation was completed on Feb. 1, and the allegation of pursuing a vehicle in a non-city owned vehicle was sustained, according to the IA report.
While Hickman’s final day was on Feb. 25, he will receive his current salary and benefits until March 31, according to the resignation letter.
“I understand that I remain in good standing and am eligible for rehire and all other benefits accorded to former employees,” Hickman said.
According to the City of Collegedale’s website, the acting chief of police is Sergeant Jack Sapp.
The City of Collegedale is not ready to respond at this time in regard to the resignation of Hickman and Rogers, according to Collegedale’s spokesperson.