Atoka Adopts Revised Town Charter
Posted on Friday June 08, 2012
The Board of Mayor and Aldermen unanimously approved revision to the Atoka Town Charter during its regular meeting on June 5, 2012. The revisions were passed by the General Assembly on April 24 and signed by the Governor on May 10 in Nashville. The changes mark the most significant revisions to the Town charter since its drafting in 1911.
The Atoka Town Charter, formally adopted in 1911, has gone through a revision process over the past several months to update language to the modern function of municipal government and to bring the Charter into compliance with state law governing local governments.  Introduced in the General Assembly chambers by Representative Barrett Rich and Senator Mark Norris, the revisions received formal approval from the General Assembly on April 24, 2012. 

When the Charter was initially drafted in 1911, Atoka's was home to less than 200 citizens - a far cry from the 8,400 citizens who call Atoka home today.  The Charter made no mention of a Fire Department, a Parks Department, a Town Administrator or a Town Attorney - all commonplace in modern local government.  The revisions fully establish the authority of the Town to operate as a local government with all authority available to the Town under state law. 

Additionally, the revisions will establish a new veto authority for the Mayor of Atoka.  Under Atoka's current functioning, the Mayor's only formal role in the legislative process is to cast a vote on issues before the Board in the case of a tie.  The revisions maintain the Mayor's role of tie-breaker but also give the Mayor the right to veto any ordinance passed by the Board.  While the Board may override a veto, the new veto authority gives the Mayor a clear and formal voice on critical issues facing the Town. 

The new charter also raises the standard for final passage of a Town ordinance - now requiring four (4) yes votes from the Board of Mayor and Aldermen on final consideration, not just a simple majority. 

Mayor Walker will certify adoption of the charter to the Secretary of State's office and the new charter took effect immediately upon passage. 

A copy of the Town's charter is available here

Town of Atoka, Tennessee 334 Atoka-Munford Avenue Atoka, TN 38004
Phone: (901) 837-5300
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