Politics

Political news

Chas Sisk / WPLN

Gov. Bill Haslam’s administration took its charm offensive to the state legislature Wednesday, with a session aimed at convincing reluctant lawmakers to take the "courageous step" of supporting his Insure Tennessee health care plan.

Chas Sisk / WPLN

Gov. Bill Haslam’s plan to expand Medicaid, known as Insure Tennessee, got a chilly reception during a crucial first hearing at the state legislature.

A Senate panel questioned Tuesday whether the state would be bound forever to the governor's proposal to offer health coverage to 200,000 Tennesseans if it approves the plan at a special session next week.

TN Photo Services

A Tennessee lawmaker whose district includes Nissan’s flagship plant is trying to limit the use of temporary workers on the assembly line, which was the most productive in the U.S. last year. The legislation targets companies like Nissan that are receiving government subsidies.

Auxiliarist via Flickr

The candidates to be Nashville’s next mayor are rather short on specific ideas to slow gentrification, though they agree its one of the city’s biggest challenges.

WPLN asked this: is it the city’s job to help low-income families stay put, even as real estate values soar around them, sending rent and property tax bills through the roof?

Auxiliarist via Flickr

WPLN asked this: is it the city’s job to help low-income families stay put, even as real estate values soar around them, sending rent and property tax bills through the roof?

Tucsonrailfan via Flickr

It was already becoming clear that Nashville’s next mayor would abandon divisive plans for the Amp bus rapid transit line. Then Thursday, Mayor Karl Dean did it for them. Prior to the decision to shutdown work on the Amp, WPLN asked the six major candidates where they would like to start work on transit. (Uncut audio of their responses is at the bottom of this post.)

Tucsonrailfan via Flickr

The Amp would have connected East Nashville and West End, via a bus-rapid transit system that sparked controversy and was ultimately scrapped. Prior to the decision to shutdown work on the Amp, WPLN asked the candidates where they would like to start work on transit. 

Metropolitan Transit Authority

The Metro Transit Authority has officially pulled the plug on the Amp.

The bus rapid transit line had been in a holding pattern since October, when Nashville Mayor Karl Dean announced he wouldn’t pursue further funding before leaving office this year. The MTA voted today to end all work on the project.

The Amp was one of Dean’s pet projects. He raised the idea of bus rapid transit during his run for the mayor’s office eight years ago, and brought it as far as securing federal funding.

screenshot from US Senate video

Tennessee Republican Bob Corker took over as Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations committee Wednesday. He began his first meeting with a joke: “I  have never operated a gavel. I learned as a young man how to operate a hammer." Corker says his staff told him to be a little more gentle with his new tool.

But as soon as the laughter faded, Corker got down to business, introducing a bill to give Congress a say over any nuclear agreement with Iran.

TN Photo Services

No one running to be Nashville’s next mayor has promised to end corporate subsidies, but their appetites for incentives do vary.

WPLN asked the six major candidates their general feeling on tax breaks and cash grants for companies. Companies would get celebrity treatment with businesswoman Linda Rebrovick as mayor.

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