Monday, June 22, 2009
Shelby County D.A. Bill Gibbons is runnin' to be Tennessee's next Guv. He had this to say 'bout the General Assembly's recent closing-down:
The Tennessee General Assembly has adjourned with at least some progress on the big challenges facing our state but with much more left to do.
Most disappointing is the continued failure to make major, comprehensive changes in our sentencing laws to keep violent offenders off our streets and out of our neighborhoods. Legislators did enact tougher sentences for attempted first degree murder involving use or possession of a gun, and every step helps. We are in a battle with the gang members and drug traffickers. As governor, I will make it a legislative priority to give law enforcement the tools it needs to win the battle, including elimination of parole for violent offenders.
Adoption of legislation to expand the pool of students eligible for charter schools is a big step in the right direction. It was a tough fight, especially in the House. This is not the end of the fight. Many in the education bureaucracy will continue to resist change. Charter schools are still limited to just five communities in Tennessee. Every community in our state should have the right to create charter schools as alternative types of public schools. As governor, I will push for that.
The General Assembly provided bond funding to acquire 1,700 acres in Haywood County for a megasite industrial park to help position west Tennessee for recruitment of new industry. Such megasites have been successful in east and middle Tennessee. Earlier this week, I had the chance to visit the middle Tennessee megasite, where Hemlock Semiconductor will locate, bringing hundreds of good paying jobs to the Clarksville area. The Haywood County site will help west Tennessee compete for new, high-paying jobs. It's a perfect example of how state government can provide the necessary infrastructure for job growth.
Amen, Bill. Boy-howdy you'd make a better guv'na than the gap-toothed sombitch we have now ...!