Articles by: Blake Farmer

Patients Sue TennCare For Giving Them The Runaround

Patients Sue TennCare For Giving Them The Runaround

July 23, 2014 at 12:27 pm

Infants waiting on vaccinations, pregnant women forgoing prenatal care and people with deadly infections refusing to go to the hospital — these are the kinds of anecdotes contained in a new lawsuit against Tennessee’s Medicaid program.

SBC president Ronnie Floyd held a press conference along with other Baptist leaders after touring government facilities along the border housing unaccompanied minors from Central America. Credit: ERLC via Facebook

Back From The Border, Southern Baptists Call For Compassion Toward Immigrants

July 23, 2014 at 10:38 am

Leaders of the largest protestant denomination in the U.S. are returning from the Texas border. They’re calling on evangelicals to have compassion for the tens of thousands of unaccompanied minors flooding from Central America.

A hobbiest uses a drone to survey a cow pasture. Currently, drones are not allowed by the FAA for commercial purposes without a special permit. Credit: Lima Pix via Flickr

Tennessee Farmers Shown The Potential In Drones, But Told To Hold Off Using Them

July 22, 2014 at 4:11 am

When thousands of farmers gather this week in West Tennessee, they’ll be learning what drones could do for the agricultural industry, but only in the near future.

It's been primarily conservative groups protesting Common Core. This is a photo from a Sacramento protest. Many see the standards as a federal take over of the education system. Credit: Steve Rhodes via Flickr

Nashville School Board Candidates Wander All Over The Map On Common Core

July 21, 2014 at 4:52 am

Common Core has become a clear differentiator in Nashville’s school board races. Incumbents are confident in the new education standards adopted by most states. Challengers range from confused to fed up.

Four seats on the Metro Schools board of education are on the ballot, and charter schools in the district have become one of the few differentiators between the candidates. Credit: Metro Photo Services

Nashville School Board Candidates Heed Register’s Truce On Charters

July 18, 2014 at 4:44 am

Metro Schools superintendent Jesse Register has called for more civility in the sometimes-toxic debate over charter schools. Candidates for school board are having no trouble complying.

In April, the Shelby Avenue pedestrian bridge was renamed after John Seigenthaler at an event attended by top state and city officials. Credit: Metro Photo Services

Giant Of Journalism John Seigenthaler Dies At 86

July 11, 2014 at 1:23 pm

The journalist, political advisor and civil rights advocate – has died at age 86. He passed away at home, surrounded by family, according to his son.

Speaking on the Senate floor once debate began on the bill, Alexander characterized it as an example of 'runaway spending.'

Sen. Alexander Wants To Send The National Guard Back To The Mexican Border

July 11, 2014 at 7:43 am

As Congress considers what to do about the flood of unaccompanied minors flooding across the Mexican border, Tennessee Senator Lamar Alexander is calling to send guardsmen. At a hearing in Washington on Thursday, he advocated dispatching soldiers to parts of the border where there is no wall or fence.

Newly-elected UAW president Dennis Williams announces the creation of Local 42 in Chattanooga on Thursday. Credit: UAW via Facebook

UAW Starts Chattanooga Chapter Despite Volkswagen Rejection

July 10, 2014 at 9:38 am

The United Auto Workers have started a local chapter in Chattanooga meant for Volkswagen workers, UAW local 42. Employees narrowly rejected the UAW earlier this year in a secret ballot at the plant, so union officials are trying another route to show how much support they have.

Candidate George Flinn recently returned from a trip to McAllen, Texas. He used photos of him by the border in his most recent ad. Credit: Flinn for Senate

What Eric Cantor’s Loss Has To Do With Immigration Jabs At Lamar Alexander

July 10, 2014 at 4:34 am

In the final weeks of campaigning, two Republicans challenging Tennessee Senator Lamar Alexander are harping on the same issue – illegal immigration. Both Memphis businessman George Flinn and Rutherford County state Rep. Joe Carr have released ads trying to tie Alexander to the current influx on the southern border.

The Nashville Zoo already has an exhibit with elephants and giraffe, added in 2006. The expansion calls for a new 44-acre African exhibit that would include a boat ride between displays. Credit: Amiee Stubbs / Nashville Zoo

Plan To Make Nashville Zoo A National Contender Calls For Lions, Rhinos And Gorillas

July 9, 2014 at 4:25 pm

The Nashville Zoo unveiled ambitious plans Wednesday for a $160 million expansion – effectively doubling the number of animals on display.

Year-to-date closings for the Greater Nashville area are up 3.2 percent with 15,336 through mid-year 2013. Image via Flickr

Nashville’s June Home Sales Pick Back Up — And Set Another Record

July 8, 2014 at 3:16 pm

Homes in Nashville are moving faster than previous months and selling for more than ever before, according to numbers for June released by the Greater Nashville Association of Realtors.

VGT specializes in making Class II gaming machines which are more like electronic bingo than traditional Class III slot machines. Credit: Hyun Lee via Flickr

A Franklin Man Just Hit The Jackpot On Indian Casino Slot Machines — And It Wasn’t By Playing Them

July 7, 2014 at 4:24 pm

A Franklin businessman stands to make more than a billion dollars by selling his company that designs and builds slot machines. Video Gaming Technologies, headquartered in Cool Springs, has quietly become one of the biggest players in tribal casinos.

The Tennessee Tech mascot Awesome Eagle climbed into an old tree with arborist Scott Winningham for a photo shoot. Credit: TTU Photo Services

Campus Pruning At Tennessee Tech Described As ‘War On Trees’

July 7, 2014 at 4:13 am

They’re calling it the “War on Trees” at Tennessee Tech University in Cookeville, according to a spokesperson. Chainsaws are revving this summer, pruning century-old hardwoods and chopping down others altogether. The campus arborist has been forced to defend his strategy in order to smooth things over on campus.

On Tuesday, Governor Bill Haslam, Education Commissioner Kevin Huffman and a former principal from Covington, Tenn. announced the release of 2014 statewide TCAP results. District and school-level data will come out later this summer. Credit: Blake Farmer / WPLN

Muted Fanfare For TCAP Results As Debate Swirls Over Test’s Reliability

July 1, 2014 at 2:12 pm

Tennessee education officials have begun their annual release of standardized test results. This year’s TCAP scores are mixed, with improvements in math and slight declines in reading. The explanation has less to do with teachers and test-takers and more to do with the test itself.

Sens. Rand Paul of Kentucky and Lamar Alexander of Tennessee address reporters Monday. The two were apparently talking to health care executives about what they'd like to see instead of Obamacare. They've also worked together on restoring fishing rights below dams operated by the Army Corps of Engineers. Credit: Blake Farmer / WPLN

Rand Paul’s Not Endorsing Lamar Alexander, But The Two Are Making A Point To Be Seen Together

June 30, 2014 at 4:10 pm

Kentucky Senator Rand Paul made yet another appearance Monday with Tennessee’s Lamar Alexander, who is facing a Tea Party primary challenger. While considered one of the most moderate Republicans in the Senate, Alexander has been working in recent months to look more conservative.

Russell Moore, who heads the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, spoke to reports around the country after the Hobby Lobby decision came down. Credit: Blake Farmer / WPLN

Southern Baptist Reaction To Hobby Lobby Decision: ‘Hallelujah’

June 30, 2014 at 3:54 pm

The Nashville-based Southern Baptist Convention is praising God for the Supreme Court’s ruling in favor of Hobby Lobby, which challenged an Obamacare requirement to cover birth control. The denomination has been a vocal supporter of the Green family, which owns the for-profit retailer and are SBC members.

Dale Richardson (left) leads her troupe of teens and college students through a children's worship song in the studio of producer Dennis Scott. Credit: Blake Farmer / WPLN

A Secret About Nashville’s Child Studio Singers: Some Are Adults

June 30, 2014 at 4:21 am

Don’t presume that’s a real chorus of kids on the children’s music coming out of Nashville studios. More likely, it was someone like Dale Richardson, who has been singing in a child-like voice on recordings for nearly three decades.

A worker at Nissan's Smyrna plant, where the LEAF is made. Sales of the electric car rose 319%. Credit: Nissan

Mindblowing Stat: Nissan’s Smyrna Plant Now Makes Two Cars Every Minute

June 30, 2014 at 4:05 am

Nissan’s plant in Smyrna has quickly ballooned to become the most productive auto factory in the country. The Franklin-based company expects to build more than 650,000 cars there this year.

US Attorney of the Middle District of Tennessee David Rivera held a press conference Friday to announce the indictments of 22 people accused in a heroin drug ring. Credit: Blake Farmer / WPLN

Prosecutors Accuse Nashville Heroin Ring Of Contributing To Deadly Overdoses

June 27, 2014 at 2:03 pm

The U.S. Attorney in Nashville has indicted 22 people who are accused of selling heroin mixed with synthetic opioids imported from China. Law enforcement blames drug dealers for contributing to numerous overdoses.

The Infiniti engine plant in Decherd was built next door to the Nissan engine plant. Employees watched Thursday as their bosses stood with Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam and other officials to be photographed with the first engine produced at the plant. Credit: Blake Farmer / WPLN

Nissan’s Infiniti Opens First Dedicated Plant – And It’s In Tennessee

June 26, 2014 at 4:38 pm

Executives and dignitaries marked the start of a new engine line in Decherd Thursday. The standalone building is a step out from the Nissan nest.