BRUNSWICK, Ga. (CN) – A county official says he was fired after serving as foreman of a grand jury that investigated his county’s Health Services Board. John R. Tanner says he lost his job as executive director of the Bacon County Development Authority after the county’s Health Services Board Chairman Roger Boatright was elected chairman of the County Commission.
Tanner says Boatright fired him in a personal vendetta.
Tanner was chosen in 2006 to serve on the county’s grand jury and was also chosen as the grand jury’s foreman. During that term, the grand jury investigated the Bacon County Health Services Board, of which Boatright was the chairman.
Two years later, Boatright was elected chairman of the Bacon County Board of Commissioners.
Shortly after the election, Boatright told Tanner that “he had not forgotten the grand jury investigation while he was on the Health Services Board and would see to it that Tanner was terminated from his job with the Bacon County Development Authority, which is funded by the Bacon County Board of Commissioners,” according to Tanner’s federal complaint.
Tanner says that on Jan. 13 this year, the Board of Commissioner sent a letter – signed by Boatright – to the county Development Authority, threatening to cut off its funding if Tanner was not fired. Less than a month later, on Feb. 6, Tanner was fired.
Tanner seeks damages for retaliation and civil rights violations. He is represented by Brent Savage of Savannah.