Mayor Is Now Suing Entire Shelby County Commission

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (localmemphis.com) - Look, let's just say it. The whole lawsuit thing between Shelby County Commissioners and Mayor Mark Luttrell over the commission filing a lawsuit against "Big Pharma" in connection with the opioid crisis is really getting heated.
By the way, try to say that sentence three times fast.

The Mayor announced Monday he's suing the entire county commission over the lawsuit, not just the chairman. Then, the commissioners fired back, voting to tell the mayor to withdraw his lawsuit.

Mayor Luttrell hasn't liked Shelby County Commissioner Heidi Shafer's lawsuit since the day it was filed, some three weeks ago. 

Shafer said people are dying in Memphis and Shelby County, and it was an emergency. She has the right to file a lawsuit for Shelby County in cases of emergency.

"It's hard to get a feel for it," Heidi Shafer said a few weeks ago, "...but the amount of deaths we've seen, and the increase in crime, and the number of new complaints for this kind of thing, and the different kinds of crime directly related to opioids."

Commissioners such as Terry Roland say Mayor Luttrell regularly keeps them in the dark about issues of importance. They claim he hadn't been meeting with them on opioids.

Luttrell says this lawsuit stops everything he'd been working on dead in its tracks. And he claims he was ready to present the entire package to commissioners, before all this happened.

"We thought we had been working with them," the mayor said. "They had not voiced any dissatisfaction with working with them as recently as six weeks ago. Commissioner Roland affirmed what we were doing, applauded us for what we were doing and we appreciate that."

A big step in this case will be a court hearing Tuesday, Nov. 14 at 1:30 p.m. before Judge James Kyle, who will determine which side is right. The vote Monday afternoon by the commission will have no affect on the court hearing.


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