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Posted: Friday, 19 May 2017 3:06PM

Judge Logsdon, Sheriff Chaffins have contentious exchange after Fiscal Court votes to move sheriff's office and county clerk's office, without consulting sheriff and county clerk; Chaffins says, ‘This is pathetic’ as he leaves meeting

In a surprising, out-of-the-blue move, Judge-Executive Gary Logsdon made a motion at Friday’s Fiscal Court meeting to move the Grayson County Sheriff’s Office and County Clerk’s Office to the Old Judicial Building.

According to Logsdon, the Sheriff’s Office will use the entire second floor of the building, and the County Clerk’s Office will move to the third floor.

The motion was met with great displeasure by both Sheriff Norman Chaffins and County Clerk Sherry Weedman, primarily because, inexplicably, neither official was consulted about the move.

Chaffins was particularly, and visibly upset with the decision, telling Logsdon, “I was never consulted, or told … It’s disheartening that I’m just finding out that we’re moving.” Chaffins said he would like to “sit down and discuss options.”

Logsdon responded by saying, “When you have issues you can’t sit there.”

“There’s nothing wrong with discussion,” Chaffins said, with Logsdon saying, “The previous sheriff didn’t complain one time.”

Chaffins responded, “I’m not the previous sheriff.”

The sheriff’s office has well-known roof leakage and mold issues, and space is also a concern, which has led Chaffins to previously request his office be moved to the old library building. On Friday, though, Logsdon shot down that idea by saying that another government entity asked to move into the old library before Chaffins made his request.

“I wish … we could have all gotten together to discuss what are options were,” Chaffins said to Logsdon. “I came early on and asked about the (old) library (building) right when they were deciding to build a new library. I spoke with several Magistrates and even spoke to you, and everybody thought it was a good idea.”

Immediately after the motion to move both offices was seconded and approved by Magistrates, Chaffins gathered his papers and left the meeting, saying, “This is pathetic.”

Soon after Chaffins exited the meeting, a female reporter asked Logsdon, “When are you going to be moving the offices and how much will renovations cost, and where is that money coming from?”

In a show of indefensible disrespect similar to his outburst at Grayson County High School student
Tristan Deering at a Fiscal Court meeting last year where Logsdon responded to a question from Deering about a smoke-free ordinance for the county by saying, in a non-sequitur, “I’m not black and I’m not Obama,” Logsdon told the female reporter in a raised, almost yelling, voice, “We’re going to find it honey-child let me tell you that! You ain’t gonna stop this guy from finding the money.”

The reporter then asked if Logsdon has an estimate on what it will cost to move both offices and renovate two floors of the Old Judicial Building, with Logsdon responding, again in a raised voice, “Well, we’re gonna do it. It ain’t no what it’s gonna cost, we’re doing it for the health and safety of the county.  It ain’t about what the news media thinks (about) where we’ll get the money. We’ll find it, we’ll cut somewhere.”

The reporter then said her questions were not meant as criticism, to which Logsdon replied, almost yelling at the reporter, “You fuss at me because I do something and you fuss at me because I don’t. I’m different than I used to be.”

Logsdon repeatedly said the move was about the “health and safety” of the public and county workers, but never seemed to understand that both Chaffins and Weedman’s issue with the decision was that it was made without their consultation.

Additionally, apparently, no studies or estimates on the cost of moving two major governmental offices has been completed.

K105 will have more on this story in the coming days.

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