In May 1991, St. Francis County, Arkansas, adopted an Employment Policies and Procedures Manual, which included the following statement: Except as otherwise provided in these policies and procedures, the tenure of an employee with permanent status shall continue during good behavior and satisfactory performance of his duties, except the Road Supervisor and Chief Deputies who are At Will Employees. On January 4, 1999, while the manual was still applicable, Jerry King, Louis Pugh, and Herman Greenwood were discharged from their employment on the county road crew. None of them was in the position of road supervisor or chief deputy. Each had been employed long enough to achieve permanent status. Though the county had arranged unemployment benefits for the discharged employees, they were understandably unhappy with the situation. They filed a wrongful termination lawsuit against the county. They contended that, because they had exercised "good behavior and satisfactory performance of duties," they could only be terminated for cause. Did the manual create a contract for employment with King, Pugh, and Greenwood that was not atwill, which the county breached?
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