Tag Archives: cookeville

More TN Views & News on Armed Guards in Schools

Congressmen Mostly Quiet, TN Cost Estimated
Nooga.com asked U.S. Sens. Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker, as well as U.S. Reps. Scott DesJarlais and Chuck Fleischman, whether they agreed with the NRA’s call for armed guards in all schools. All have taken campaign contributions from the NRA. (Full story HERE.)
Corker and DesJarlais didn’t respond .Fleischmann’s response didn’t address the question. Alexander did, sort of. Excerpts:
Asked to comment on LaPierre’s remarks Friday, Fleischmann, who boasted his NRA endorsement in television advertisements for his most recent campaign, voiced neither support nor disagreement.
“As a father, the events in Connecticut break my heart,” Fleischmann said in an emailed statement. “Children are our greatest treasure, and we need to ensure their safety, particularly in a school environment. No student should ever have to be afraid of going to school. Brenda and I send our prayers to the victims and their families.”
Fleischmann accepted $2,000 in NRA contributions this year.
…On Friday, Alexander indicated that congressional action would not be able to ensure student safety, as LaPierre suggested. The senator added his hope that school systems at the local level would be reviewing their current safety measures in the wake of the shooting.
“Washington can’t make school safe, but parents, communities and teachers can,” Alexander said in an emailed statement. “In light of the tragedy at Newtown, I would think every local school board would be thinking about whether they need to take additional steps to make their schools safe from guns and other acts of violence.”
Were the gun lobby’s call to gain traction, Congress would be tasked with providing funding for at least one armed guard in each of the nation’s 98,817 public schools–1,803 of which are in Tennessee.
According to statistics from the U.S. Department of Labor, the annual mean wage for a security guard at elementary and secondary schools is $31,420, making a rough estimate of the cost of equipping schools with armed guards more than $3 billion nationally–and more than $56 million statewide.

Haslam Thoughts on Video
TNReport has a video of Gov. Bill Haslam’s comments on the subject (previous post HERE), wherein he voices misgivings. “I know a whole lot of teachers who wouldn’t want to be armed,” he said – including his daughter, a 2nd grade teacher. But he thinks there should be a discussion of causes of “mass violence” in schools and elsewhere.
Cookeville Police Chief: Two Officers in Every School, Every Day
Each morning this week, Cookeville Police officers have driven through the parking lots at all city schools, hoping to help students, teachers, and parents feel a little bit safe, reports the Herald-Citizen..
And Police Chief Bob Terry is talking about a giant leap in school security here, an idea that he knows would cost taxpayers quite a chunk of money, but would be worth it if the horror that happened in Connecticut ever occurred here.
He would like to see two trained police officers assigned to work in each school in this county every day.
“The county has only one School Resource officer in each of the three high schools, but in today’s world, I would like to see much more security in all our schools,” Chief Terry said.
“I know it would cost us, and I am a taxpayer too. But just think about this: you can’t walk into courthouses carrying a gun, you can’t walk into a police station carrying a gun unless you are an officer, you can’t walk into many places without going through several kinds of security measures. But anyone can just walk into our schools.”

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Tennessee’s 54th State Park, Cummins Falls, Dedicated Today

More than 200 acres of land along the Blackburn Fork State Scenic River in Cookeville will officially become Tennessee’s 54th state park with a dedication ceremony at the site today. reports the Tennessean. The dedication comes as the state park system celebrates its 75th anniversary.
Tennessee Parks and Greenways Foundation acquired Cummins Falls in an auction for about $1.5 million.
“We bought it hoping for this outcome, but we’re a pretty brave little group,” said Kathleen Williams, president and CEO of the foundation. “We just took a chance that we could make this happen. We’ve never had the privilege of having some of our work result in the creation of a new state park, and we’re just thrilled about it.”

UPDATE NOTE: The Gov’s press released, issued after the dedication, is below.

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Today’s Haslam Handouts: Cookeville & Tullahoma

The governor is taking time this summer to visit towns and cities for presentation of government checks. Here are a couple of examples.
From the Cookeville Herald-Citizen:
Surrounded by local leaders, bicycle enthusiasts — and one very loud locomotive — Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam made a stop in Cookeville yesterday to dole out a $600,000 grant that will help in the construction of the long-awaited Tennessee Central Heritage Rail Trail.
Standing under shade at the Cookeville Depot downtown, Haslam presented the check amid smiles and applause. It’s the first time he’s awarded funds since he took office six months ago this Friday, he said. The moneys are part of a Tennessee Department of Transportation enhancement grant.
“We all agree Tennessee’s a wonderful place to live. But there’s certainly things we think can make it even better,” Haslam said, briefly interrupted at one point in his presentation by a passing train, horn blazing.

From the Tullahoma News:
Gifts, no matter what shape or size they come in are usually most welcome, and in Tullahoma’s case, a very nice present from the State of Tennessee was presented personally to the city Thursday from Gov. Bill Haslam.
Haslam made a special trip to Tullahoma to deliver a $256,360 symbolic check to go toward a revitalization effort in Tullahoma’s downtown area. About 125 were on hand to hear the governor’s presentation.
The money is part of a two-phase downtown rehabilitation project totaling $685,140 that includes a $364,690 phase one on West Lincoln Street — between North Jackson Street and Atlantic Street — and a $320,450 phase two — continuing the effort around the corner on Atlantic Street to Grundy Street.
The money related to Thursday’s symbolic $256,360 check will go toward phase two. The city’s phase two share will be about $92,000, including $64,090 as part of the 80-20 percent match with the state paying the greater share, and another $28,000 in engineering, design and right of way costs.