Tag Archives: bureau

TBI Reports Crime Decline in TN Schools

News release from TBI:
Nashville, Tenn. – The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation today released its annual study dedicated to crime in Tennessee’s schools. Produced by TBI’s Crime Statistics Unit, the study spans a three-year period between 2010 and 2012 and is based on crime data submitted by Tennessee law enforcement agencies to the Tennessee Incident Based Reporting System (TIBRS).
The reported number of crimes that occurred at schools decreased by 12 percent from 2011 to 2012 with 12,477 offenses reported in 2011 to 10,980 offenses reported in 2012. Examination of 2010 through 2012 data revealed a 16.5 percent drop in crime reported at schools over a three year period. This report is based on incidents submitted by law enforcement agencies and excludes offenses reported by colleges and universities. Those statistics are compiled in TBI’s “Crime on Campus” report that was released earlier this year.
“School Crimes Report” Quick Facts
•Simple assault was the most frequently reported crime at 3,956 or 36 percent of offenses.
•Of the 3,930 weapons reported at schools, 82 were firearms.
•Crimes against persons made up the largest majority, nearly 50 percent, of reported school crimes.
•More crimes occurred on Thursday than any other day of the week and the month of February had the highest frequency of school crime.
•47% of the time, the relationship between the offender and victim was acquaintance.
•Marijuana greatly outnumbered all other seized drugs at school in 2012 accounting for nearly 75 percent of drug seizures.
It is important to understand the characteristics surrounding school crime and its offenders and victims. This understanding will help schools, policy makers, law enforcement and the public learn how to better combat crime that occurs at these institutions. To view the “School Crimes Report” for 2011 in its entirety, click here.

Al-Jazeera Coming to Nashville

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Al-Jazeera plans to open a news bureau in Nashville.
The Tennessean reports (http://tnne.ws/18HPsHc) the news organization that bought Al Gore’s Current TV for $500 million earlier this year has said it will begin broadcasting Al-Jazeera America sometime late this summer. The network plans news bureaus in 12 cities across the country.
Bob Wheelock, executive producer of Al-Jazeera English, confirmed Nashville as one of the bureau sites during an interview with WWJ-AM 950 in Detroit on Thursday.
He said the network wants to have bureaus in cities where other networks do not. Those cities include Detroit, New Orleans and Nashville.
Wheelock said the new channel will broadcast stories about Americans by Americans.
Vanderbilt religious studies lecturer Abdulkadir Gure said Nashville probably was chosen because it is geographically, politically and demographically central.

Mr. Carroll Goes to Washington (for Chattanooga TFP)

From the TFP’s Alison Gerber:
At a time when many newspapers are scaling back coverage and closing bureaus, the Times Free Press is doing something to buck the trend. We’re sending a reporter to Washington, D.C. and reopening the bureau we closed there in 2008.
Reporter Chris Carroll, who covers politics for the newspaper, moves to Washington this week. And, while D.C. reporters are notorious for practicing “pack journalism,” where everyone follows the herd to the biggest story of the day, Carroll won’t be following anyone. That’s not his nature nor his assignment.
He’ll be there to cover Washington through the lens of what readers in Tennessee and Georgia care about and report on the states’ congressional delegations. And this is a good moment in time to do that.

For the full editorial page column, click HERE.

Ramsey, Some Other Legislators, Open to ‘Tweaking’ Greenbelt Law

As an auctioneer and a cattleman, Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey is familiar with Tennessee’s Greenbelt Law and believes the property tax break is working as it should in the “overwhelming majority” of cases — he suspects at least 90 percent.
At the same time, he said, “I’m sure there are incidences across the state where there are unintended consequences.”
Although many legislators see no problem with the law, even praise it, Ramsey, as presiding officer of the state Senate, is willing to consider “tweaking” it to prevent abuses.
For example, the law now requires that a property produce $1,500 in gross “agricultural income” annually to qualify for greenbelt status, a figure unchanged for 20 years. Research by the News Sentinel and The Commercial Appeal of Memphis for a recent series of articles also indicates the provision is difficult to enforce.
“Maybe that’s too low,” said Ramsey of the $1,500 threshold in an interview. “We could look at raising that or, even better, make it so the local governments may police it more.”

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Probe of Burchett Campaign Finance Doings Sought

University of Tennessee professor Mark Harmon on Wednesday asked the state Bureau of Ethics and Campaign Finance to launch an investigation into a number of questionable campaign finance statements filed by Knox County Mayor Tim Burchett.
More from Mike Donila:
In an email to the bureau’s executive director, Drew Rawlins, the former county commissioner cites a number of recent News Sentinel articles that detail accounting discrepancies in the mayor’s campaign reports. He notes Burchett “signed off on the veracity” of the statements, and asks state officials to look into the issue “expeditiously before memories fade, documents are lost, or the document retention deadline expires.”
Harmon’s request comes a day after the Knox County Democratic Party opted not to look into the matter or make its own request to the state. The party’s chairwoman, Gloria Johnson, said she had spoken to Burchett and the organization was willing to let him look into the discrepancies first.
Harmon, a journalism teacher who served on the commission from 2006-10, said “I thought it would be better to have answers than to have lingering questions,” so he submitted his request on Wednesday.
Rawlins was out of town Wednesday and could not be reached for comment.
The bureau’s counsel, John Allyn, said Harmon would probably be asked to fill out a sworn complaint available online before investigators could move forward.
From there, Allyn said, a six-member board comprised of three Democrats and three Republicans would meet in Nashville on Aug. 8 to discuss the issue. The registry of election finance would then decide whether to issue the mayor a “show cause” letter, which would require him to explain how the errors occurred and to fix them if possible.
Allyn said often the registry lets candidates “resolve matters by amending the report and clear up the record if they don’t have a major item.”
“If it’s something extreme, then no amount of amending will change it,” he said.
Allyn said if Burchett receives a show cause letter then he would have until Sept. 12 to submit information or write the registry, letting members know how and why misstatements occurred. The board would then decide whether to dismiss any issues or assess a civil penalty, which can be as much as $10,000 per offense.
“I can assure you that no one wants to clear this up more than I do, but it’s (Harmon’s) prerogative to ask them to look into it,” the mayor said. “But I find it very odd that the News Sentinel found out about this before I have been officially notified.”