Wednesday, June 26, 2019

The televised Channel 5 mayoral debate, part 1.

If you were not one of the few who attended in person or did not watch it live last night, here is part 1 of the mayoral debate between the four serious candidates for mayor, sponsored by News Channel 5 and The Tennessean.

Quick takeaways and my impressions from this debate is that Ray Clemmons would drastically hike taxes and give the school board any amount of money they requested and is the only candidate who thinks the Council should have raised taxes.  Only Mayor Briley thinks Nashville is going in the right direction. All are concerned about traffic, and affordable housing and education. All talk about communities that are left behind.

Carol Swain does not sound much more conservative than any of the others in the debate except for Clemmons. She does say, "we do not have a revenue problem, but a spending problem."  I like that   She condemns the "good ole boy" network and corporations that get handouts. She has a focus, and rightly so I think, on building sidewalks and says only 19% of the city has sidewalks and we should focus on building sidewalks instead of bike lanes. I am disappointing that Carol Swain says when negotiating with companies she would get them to "invest" in the city in things like affordable housing, etc.  I do not want the city trying to extract payoffs businesses any more than I want the city to bribe them to come here.

Without getting lost in the weeds of too much details, Councilman Cooper, comes across as someone with a deep understanding of what is wrong with Metro's finances and a commitment to fixing it. He says the recently proposed tax increase would have raised property taxes on police and firemen and they would not have gotten a raise. He does a good job of explaining why the tax increase proposal was a bad idea. Briley does a credible jobs of explaining and defending his policies. He looks better in the debate than I though he would.

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