The Big Picture: Grants, Giveaways, Cuts & Sacrifices

The_Big_Picture_2The Big Picture in Tennessee State Government: grants & giveaways for corporations, cuts & sacrifices for working folks.

The conservative majority in the Tennessee Legislature want to “slash dependent benefits for unemployed Tennesseans and starve poor kids who don’t get good grades in public schools while the Governor appropriates funds to increase the amount of cash giveaways to corporations looking to come to Tennessee for a hand out* and thinks it’s no big whoop to give more taxpayer dollars to a dysfunctional department that is rife with mismanagement.

Slash dependents via Tennessean:

Republican lawmakers are pushing legislation to slash dependent benefits for unemployed Tennesseans…The bill, which cleared a key House committee with little resistance on Tuesday, would save the state an estimated $62.5 million annually, according to the Tennessee Department of Labor.

Starve poor kids via Nashville Scene:

Rep. Barry Doss, R-Leoma, said it was OK with him if children go hungry for a little while if it makes them buckle down with those books.

“I am more concerned about the child starving for a lifetime than I am for a few days because if these children don’t get an education and the parents are not going to be responsible, then they are going to be burdened for a lifetime,” he said.

Governor appropriates funds via Tennessean:

Gov. Bill Haslam is rolling out his appropriations bill, which includes nearly $45 million to increase the amount of cash grants available to companies…The state has appropriated more than $200 million to the program over the last three budget years and Haslam proposed pouring another $80 million for last year and this year.

Taxpayer dollars via Citizen Action and Tennessean:

The Department of Labor and Workforce development is rife with mismanagement that negatively affects both workers and businesses and Governor Bill Haslam wants to add another division to it paid for by millions of taxpayer dollars? Apparently he thinks this is a brilliant idea ’cause that’s what his workers’ comp bill does – adds a fully staffed workers’ comp division under the control of the Department of Labor. This is neither smart nor efficient government. It’s ineffective and wasteful.

It’s not looking too good for regular folks.


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2 Responses to “The Big Picture: Grants, Giveaways, Cuts & Sacrifices”
  1. Patty Currey says:

    “Gov. Bill Haslam is rolling out his appropriations bill, which includes nearly $45 million to increase the amount of cash grants available to companies”

    This is from your post: The Big Picture: Grants, Giveaways, Cuts & Sacrifices published in 2013.
    Do you know to what extent this is still occurring? Sumner Enterprise Park is a project proposed by Sumner County Executive Anthony Holt. He proposed this, project which almost got voted on, and would raise taxes, without any public input. Here is a link to the project:
    Their presentation for Sept 19th meeting only included clippings of other industrial parks hoping to attract businesses by offering tax breaks. The large industrial parks featured in their “packet” of materials from the Sept 19th meeting are current parks. Do you know how much money has been spent versus how much these parks contribute to the local economy? Anthony Holt was wanting to spend $20 million for 800+ acres in Gallatin zoned agriculture and re-zone it commercial without an impact study of any kind. The citizens are against this due to the fact that Gallatin has an industrial park with lots of empty space. Would the TNCA be willing to help us halt this project? Thank you for your time.


    Patty Currey

  2. Andy Spears says:

    Thanks for your comments.
    Can you email me directly at – include this information and any other details, and I’ll get back to you.

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