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Local Government Liability Problems: Good or Bad?

The AJC tells of the insurance and liability woes of local governments in Georgia. Last year the new Sheriff of Clayton County Georgia, upon taking office, fired a number of deputies subject to civil service protections.  The story is the sheriff had the deputies driven from the jail house in vans used for prisoner transport while snipers watched from the jail’s roof top.

The deputies were reinstated by a state court judge, but after being reinstated the deputies then claimed they were subjected to retaliation. The deputies then filed a federal discrimination lawsuit against the county.  As a result of these shenanigans (and maybe others), the county’s insurer changed the policy terms at renewal. The county’s new insurance policy has a higher deductible (it went from $150K to $1 Million) and it no longer covers actions by elected officials. Only one other insurer was willing to cover the county’s elected officials — It demanded a $250K deductible for every one but the Sheriff who had a $500K deductible. The article bemoned the problems local governments were having obtaining insurance, but the fact that insurers are saying the governments have to share more of the costs of their actions is a benefit to taxpayers.  Next:  Candidates for public office campaigning based on the size of their personal deductible.



Rafael Mangual
Project Manager,
Legal Policy

Manhattan Institute


Published by the Manhattan Institute

The Manhattan Insitute's Center for Legal Policy.