County Commission to Continue Prayers For Now

Federal Judge Sandy Mattice, in a 37-page ruling released this morning, denied a motion for a preliminary injunction that would have stopped opening prayers at Hamilton County Commission meetings. Instead, he set an Oct. 2 hearing to schedule a trial of the case on its merits. The county is facing a lawsuit over its practice of opening commission meetings with a prayer. Since the suit was filed, it has changed its practice to allow all area ministers, on a first come-first serve basis, to offer the prayer. In his ruling, Mattice said the commission bears responsibility for ensuring that its policy respects the rights of citizens and the First Amendment. Read more on Chattanoogan.com