Live from Music Row Monday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. – host Leahy welcomed Metro Nashville’s City Council Member-at-Large Steve Glover to weigh in on Mayor John Cooper’s State of the Metro Address and recent Wall Street Journal article which highlighted the fiscal issues facing the city of Nashville.
Leahy: We are joined in studio with Metro Council member Steve Glover. Good morning, Steve.
Glover: Good morning, sir. How are you?
Leahy: Before we get to the two hours of Steve Glover’s view of the world, (Glover laughs) which I can’t wait to hear, we’re going to be joined. We want to get a weather update from Scooter. What’s going on weatherwise Scooter?
Scooter: We’re watching these storms right now that it’s kind of a light show in the borough at this moment. No warnings with any of this. This was the earlier cell that did prompt a tornado warning for Maury and Marshall County, but that is no longer in effect. And that is good news. But there is still a little kind of broad circulation with the storm.
So the winds are going to pick up, but there are no warnings with it. It’s a little bit like I said of a light show. And the back edge of this, at least for now, about to enter the Western half of Davidson County. It’s going to be a wet ride for this hour. But maybe as we get into the seven o’clock hour, we get a little break in the rain. The heavier rain as you get into Nashville from the West. But don’t worry, there are more storms on the way.
Leahy: All right Scooter, thanks for that weather update. Now, two things I want to get your reaction to Steve Glover, Metro Council member-at-large.
Glover: I’m getting larger over the last 12 months. Gained a little weight here buddy. (Laughter)
Leahy: Aren’t we all? So two things. Last week, The Wall Street Journal ran a detailed article on the five most fiscally irresponsible cities in America. Nashville was in that list number one. Number two, Mayor John Cooper delivered a State of Metro address last week. Give me your reaction to both of those.
Glover: Let’s go backward. Let’s do the State of Metro first and then back into The Wall Street Journal. So the State of Metro, according to what the Mayor said, he’s done a phenomenal job. If you don’t believe me, just ask him. He has told us he has gotten us back to stability, et cetera. What I will tell you is the people of Nashville, and the 34 to 37 percent property tax increase is what got us back to stability because this Mayor is not doing anything to cut expenses.
In fact, he’s adding and adding. Now there’s a couple of areas I agree with wholeheartedly he’s adding 40 firefighters, 20 EMTs, and he’s adding 40 police officers. I get kind of deep in the weeds sometimes.
Leahy: He’s adding 40 firefighters.
Glover: 20 EMTs. And 40 police officers. What he said about Southeast Nashville is we’re gonna be opening up this new precinct. So he’s gonna put in 40 new police officers over there to take care of that take 66 minimum to run a new precinct. So we’re still going to be behind in Nashville. This is what they do all the time.
They get on there because they have the microphone so often and they brag about how great they are. And by the way, when they did the video presentation of the budget on Friday versus sitting down with the Council live. I’ve never seen this before. Last year, under the COVID thing, they had that cover.
That cover is gone. That cover is now gone. And so why we didn’t do it in person I don’t know. But we’re gonna do it this coming Thursday. We’re gonna start getting really serious about it. And then they’ll want us to pass this thing.
Leahy: Immediately. Without looking at it.
Glover: Yes. So The Wall Street Journal, let’s go back to that one. The things I said are the right things. As far as I’m concerned, public safety should be that education should be your number one thing. And we’re going to talk about teachers. We’re going to top up the pay increases and all that other stuff. The other things Mayor did there was added, added, added just put on more layers of expense. And for them to say that we have fewer employees than we did. Well, that’s true.
But it’s not the whole truth. And they didn’t Paul Harvey on it. Because now we’re going to talk about the rest of the story today as we’re here. The Wall Street Journal article is exactly right. If you go back and you start looking at 11,12, I kind of warned us, but ’12, ’13, ’13, ’14, ’15. And right on down.
Leahy: We’re talking about budget years.
Glover: I started warning us many years ago, almost a decade ago, if not a decade ago, that if we did not stop spending and this massive, massive capital outlay and continuing to grow our debt level, then we were gonna be in big trouble.
Leahy: We’re in big trouble now.
Glover: I did something really crazy. I looked at the numbers.
Leahy: Yeah, well, you can’t do that. You can’t do that.
Listen to the full second hour here:
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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to the Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.