Gov. Bill Haslam had a media availability Tuesday wherein he fielded questions on multiple topics, though saying nothing really novel about anything. Richard Locker sorta rounded up the gubernatorial commentary HERE in notable fashion and the following includes excerpts from his story and a a sample of other media reporting on what the governor said today.
Not sure yet about gun bills, via Andrea Zelinski:
Gov. Bill Haslam says he hasn’t decided what position he will take on bills rehashing unresolved terms of the past gun legislation.
Lawmakers have filed bills that would resurrect from recent years both the so-called “guns in parks” and “guns in trunks” debates that have pinned legislators between gun rights advocates and either businesses or municipalities.
“We’re having some discussions now. We have not come down with a final decision on what we’re going to do,” Haslam told reporters after a speaking engagement at Lipscomb University Tuesday, adding he’ll have a position on at least some of the legislation this week.
The governor said he met Monday with mayors from the state’s four largest cities about some of the legislation and said the focus is on “who owns the property and who gets to make that” decision about whether guns are allowed in parks or parking lots.
On Rep. Sheila Butt and race, ‘We need a conversation,’ via The Tennessean:
Although Gov. Bill Haslam didn’t condemn recent controversial comments from Rep. Sheila Butt regarding the need for an
“NAAWP,” the governor did say Tennesseans need to speak openly about issues of race.
“My point in this whole thing has been: I honestly think we need to have more open conversations about race in Tennessee and in the country, too, for that matter,” Haslam said Tuesday morning after an event at Lipscomb University in Nashville.
“My first point would be Facebook’s not the place to do that. But I think there are some forums where that needs to happen.”
Does he want to be president?, via Locker (link above)
“I honestly don’t know and doubt it, just to be frank. I see all these guys running now and I see what they’re going through, and I know they’re going to go through it for two years. You better really want to do that and at this point in my life, I don’t have that kind of burning passion to do that. So who knows. Life changes but at this point in time it’s a little hard to see that happening.”
On the FCC broadband ruling, also lifted from Locker below, though also noted in separate AP story with more detail posted HERE.
“I just don’t know enough about it yet. … I think the question obviously is, is the local government subsidizing something that makes it harder for business to compete,” Haslam said.
On why preferring one school voucher bill over another (interrelated previous post HERE), via Locker:
The Dunn-Gardenhire bill “came to us in the form most like the bill we had proposed last year. (Lawmakers) interested in vouchers and the advocates who have been pushing for vouchers came to us and said, ‘If we get this passed, would you fund it in the budget?’ We said we would as long as it looked like this, and the Dunn-Gardenhire bill was the one that looked like it.”
On business incentive funding, like the $165M going to Volkswagen in this year’s budget (Locker again):
“The reality is, none of us like doing incentives when we encourage business to come here but it’s the price of playing in the game. When other states are out there doing very lucrative deals, we can’t just unilaterally disarm. …
“I think what we’ve tried to do is be a lot more precise about the benefit that would come from that business moving and to look at it like you do in your business as a return on the investment — what the state has to do and what would the return be.”