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Limestone County refuses to disclose job applicants’ names

By Holly Hollman · 340-2445

ATHENS — The new assistant superintendent of Limestone County Schools will make between $77,000 and $112,000, but the taxpayers who will pay that salary may have to demand to know who has applied.

The Daily asked Superintendent Barry Carroll for a list of people who had applied as of Thursday, and Carroll replied that only the top six would be released to the public. The deadline to apply is Friday at 4:30 p.m.

“The screening committee will meet next week,” Carroll sent in an e-mail. “They will narrow the applicants down to six. At that point, I will release the names of the final six. We will interview six and narrow to two, possibly three, and I will make a recommendation to the board on Dec. 2.”

Applicants are sending their applications directly to Carroll at the central office, according to the job application on the school system’s Web site.

The Daily was unable to reach the system’s attorney, J.R. Brooks, to ask what exemption in state law Carroll is using as a basis for withholding the names.

Alabama’s open records law puts the burden of proof on the public officer to show an exemption that closes a public record from public view. Two state attorney general opinions have said applications for public jobs are public writings.

Despite not having a list from the school system, The Daily called those rumored to have applied, including three principals from Limestone County.

Ardmore High School Principal Mike Owens confirmed that he applied. He said he has a lot of experience to offer.

The Daily was unable to reach the other two principals who school officials and community members said have applied, Billy Owens from Tanner High School and Matt Scott from Creekside Elementary.

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