Norris predicts gov will grant Memphis budget wishes

Memphis and Shelby County business and governmental leaders flooded the hallways of the Legislative Plaza Wednesday and Senate Majority Leader Mark Norris told them he expects Gov. Bill Haslam to approve much of the Greater Memphis Chamber’s legislative agenda, reports the Commercial Appeal.

Norris told the crowd that he and other Shelby lawmakers are “working hard” with the governor on a supplemental amendment to Haslam’s state budget plan that will include the local priorities outlined Wednesday. The governor proposed a $34.8 billion state budget Feb. 1 and he and legislative leaders always draft a comprehensive amendment that includes legislative priorities every year before the final budget is approved, in late April.

“I’m not going to spill the beans here but all the things that are important to you are important to me and important to Gov. Haslam,” Norris said. “There aren’t any bad proposals. There’s just a question of funding availability and timing for that funding. I meet with (Haslam) every Wednesday. We’re working on every single project that’s been mentioned here today and it’s hard work.

“Some of these things now are projected to be funded. If I talked about them it would be premature and they might be at risk. But we are working very hard to meet your expectations and to help move the community forward.”