Tag Archives: woodson

Woodson Revises Resignation Date to July 9 With Election in Mind (her successor’s)

Senate Speaker Pro Tempore Jamie Woodson has delayed resignation from her Senate seat until July 9.
Woodson, R-Knoxville, said she submitted a revised letter of resignation Friday to Senate Speaker Ron Ramsey because an earlier resignation could cause legal problems in fixing election dates to avoid extra expense.
Originally, Woodson planned to resign effective upon the end of the General Assembly’s 2011 session or July 1, whichever came first. After consulting with various officials, it was determined that July 9 is the preferred date for the resignation, she said.
With the Senate District seat becoming vacant on that date, the timing laid out in various statutes governing special elections will make the primary election for her successor fall at the same time as the Knoxville city elections on Sept. 27.
Woodson announced earlier she will give up her seat to become head of the State Collaborative on Reforming Education (SCORE), founded by former U.S. Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist.

Passage of Haslam-backed Charter Schools Bill Hailed

News Release from Senate Republican Caucus:
(NASHVILLE, TN), May 20, 2011 – The State Senate approved major public charter schools legislation on Friday to create an environment that promotes the growth of high quality public charter schools in Tennessee. The bill is sponsored by Senate Speaker Pro Tempore Jamie Woodson (R-Knoxville) and was one of three education reform measures proposed by Governor Bill Haslam to improve student achievement by giving students the resources and opportunities they need to succeed in an increasingly competitive global economy.
“Public charter schools are a critical tool to improve public education and provide every child in Tennessee the opportunity to receive a great education,” said Speaker Woodson. “This bill creates an environment that promotes the growth of high quality charter schools, allows districts access to innovative tools to address their unique challenges, and gives many more parents the option of sending their child to a school that better suits his or her needs.”

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‘Innovative’ Bill Could Impact Memphis City Schools Flap

A bill to allow Tennessee school districts to fix their boundaries in the name of “innovation” adds yet another tangle — by coincidence, it seems — in the ongoing Memphis school merger dispute, reports the Commercial Appeal.
Some merger proponents worry that Shelby County Schools’ leaders would jump at a new opportunity to avoid taking in Memphis’ city school system by freezing the suburban system’s borders.
However, SCS doesn’t appear to be behind the proposed “innovative school district” legislation, which is scheduled for a House floor vote on Thursday. (Note: The bill is HB175, by Rep. Harry Brooks and Sen. Jamie Woodson, both Knoxville Republicans.)
“I don’t believe that it is, if you will, a disruptive action or exit strategy for (SCS) to get out of their fight of the merger,” Shelby County Commissioner Mike Ritz said Friday. “But we are waiting on an opinion from the county attorney to confirm that.”
A federal judge has been overseeing mediation discussions between SCS, the county commission and other parties and is scheduled to hear oral arguments Thursday on the school merger lawsuit.
…Woodson, a Germantown native, said the proposal has nothing to do with the local school merger issue.
“It is not related to that very important community conversation in any way,” Woodson said. “We would not in any way want to interfere with the lawsuit.”
The “innovative school districts” are similar to “special school districts” in that both allow systems to freeze their boundaries.
However, Woodson said, the biggest difference is that the new bill doesn’t involve taxing authority for districts.

Vines on Senate District 6 Race Shaping Up

Becky Duncan Massey’s decision to run to succeed Speaker Pro Tempore Jamie Woodson, R-Knoxville, pits two women who are considered strong competitors against each other in the special state Senate District 6 race, reports Georgiana Vines..
Massey, executive director of the Sertoma Center and sister of U.S. Rep. John J. Duncan Jr., will formally announce Monday. Councilwoman Marilyn Roddy already is out campaigning after withdrawing from the Knoxville mayor’s race.
Massey said Thursday she would have the press conference to announce her candidacy. “I wanted to end speculation,” she said. She is naming attorney Howard Vogel as her treasurer.
The ballpark (where the announcement will be made) is in the Holston Hills area where she grew up when her late father, John Duncan Sr., was mayor and a congressman. She is an aunt to Knox County Trustee John Duncan III.
…Roddy has named J.E. Henry, a retired Regal Entertainment Group executive, as her campaign treasurer. She had a fundraiser on Sunday and has announced another for May 24 with more than 100 people – many of them Republicans – serving on the host committee.
…Knox County Commission Chairman Mike Hammond, a Republican, said he’ll make a decision next week about seeking the post. He planned to talk with his family, which is having a reunion this weekend, about the situation, he said.
Issues to consider are the time away from Knoxville plus his job situation, he said. Hammond is WIVK program director and operations manager.
“Plus the other thing – I’m only in one year of a four-year term. Do I want to give up that term when I have three more years left?” he said.
While the Senate district leans Republican, Democrats may have a candidate or two. But it won’t include lawyer Wayne Ritchie, a former state House member.
In an email he said he would not seek the nomination, but was “glad to see some strong interest in the seat from a number of good candidates.

Knoxville Mayor Candidate Roddy Eyes Race for State Senate

Knoxville Councilwoman Marilyn Roddy, the frontrunner in raising money for the nonpartisan Knoxville mayor’s race, said today that she is considering running for the state Senate, reports Georgiana Vines.
Specifically, Roddy is mulling seeking the seat being vacated by Speaker Pro Tempore Jamie Woodson, a Republican representing the 6th District Senate seat in Knox County.
She was vague when asked whether a Senate bid would mean ending her mayoral race.
“This is a situation that has arisen very suddenly,” Roddy said. “It is something my family is thinking about and praying about. Any decision like this has to involve your family first.”
Roddy, interviewed by phone from Nashville, acknowledged she had met with Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey, the Republican speaker from Blountville. Roddy, also a Republican, said a daughter had a lacrosse game that took her to the area.
She gave as her reason for meeting with Ramsey that “any future mayor needs to know how state government works.”

Jamie Woodson Resigning Senate Seat

Senate Speaker Pro Tempore Jamie Woodson announced today that she will resign her state Senate seat to become president and CEO of an education reform organization founded by former U.S. Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist.
Republican Woodson, who has served 12 years as a legislator from Knoxville, said her resignation as a senator will be effective on July 1 or at the adjournment of the current legislative session, whichever comes first. Legislative leaders have a goal of adjourning by May 25.
Under state law, the Knox County Commission will chose an temporary successor in the Senate District 7 seat, who will serve until a special election is scheduled by the governor. That could be timed to coincide with Knoxville city elections on Sept. 27.
Woodson said she would not support anyone to succeed her, “either publicly or privately.”
Frist said Woodson was chosen to lead the State Collaborative on Reforming Education (SCORE) after a nationwide search for the most qualified person.

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TN Consumer Protection Act No Longer Applies to Insurance

A Tennessee law that allows consumers to collect three times their actual damages when defrauded or deceived will no longer apply to insurance companies and agents under a bill given final legislative approval Monday night.
Critics contend the bill (HB1189) lessens citizen rights against insurance companies that refuse to pay legitimate claims and engage in other abusive practices. Tennessee Citizen Action, which advocates for consumer rights, said in an alter that it “attempts to gut the Tennessee Consumer Protection Act.”
But Senate Speaker Pro Tempore Jamie Woodson, R-Knoxville, who is Senate sponsor of the bill, said ample consumer protections will remain in state law.
She said the bill “clarifies legislative control over the insurance industry” in response to “judicial activism” that caused insurance companies to be covered by the Consumer Protection Act.

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‘Far-Right’ Groups Join The Fray in Opposing TEA

Conservative groups are helping push the Republican legislative efforts to outlaw collective bargaining by Tennessee teachers and other bills to curb the influence of the Tennessee Education Association, according to Rick Locker.
Although their numbers were dwarfed by the 200 to 300 teachers opposing the anti-bargaining bill at a hearing Wednesday, tea party activists also attended wearing stickers in support of the bill, along with leaders of Eagle Forum of Tennessee, Family Action Council of Tennessee and other groups.
In the hours leading up to the Senate Education Committee vote on SB 113, Tennessee Tea Party urged members to pressure senators “to stand firm against the teachers unions.”
“We have two senators who are holding out and need some pressure applied … Senators Rusty Crowe and Jamie Woodson,” said the tea party’s website. Both Crowe, R-Johnson City, and Woodson, R-Knoxville, joined in a 6-3 party-line vote to send SB 113 to the Senate floor. Approval there is expected, given the GOP’s 20-13 majority.
… Family Action Council founder and former GOP state senator David Fowler notified his members about the bill, criticizing “all the liberal social policies that the TEA and its national ally, the National Education Association, stand for,” he wrote.
Other bills would prohibit payroll deduction for TEA dues and remove TEA’s authority to nominate a teacher member of the state pension system trustees.
The bills’ sponsors denied they are retribution for TEA’s larger political contributions to Democrats than Republicans, but Fowler said in his Web posting: “Now with Republicans firmly in control, the TEA is on the brink of ‘payback’.”

And there’s a quote from TEA’s Jerry Winters:
“The fact that the tea party and the Eagle Forum and some of these far-right, out-of-the-mainstream groups are supporting this ought to send a message to the citizens that this is not about education, it’s about politics.”
See also blogging Ben Cunningham, veteran anti-tax activist and tea party supporter, reminiscing about TEA’s support for a state income tax (with pictures). He was on hand at the Legislative Plaza to support passage of the bill in question.