TLDR: Nanny State

March 7, 2023

We have a Metro Council meeting tonight. You can review proposed amendments and analysis of the agenda. There is a public hearing.

Meanwhile, the barrage of attacks from the state legislature continues. Just this week, a terrible new amendment was filed that would eliminate runoff elections. The entire point of a runoff election—whether traditional or instant—is to ensure that the victor has the support of a majority of the electorate. For SB1527 to eliminate that will push us further to the extremes—both left and right—that turn so many people off of politics.

I'm happy to have a local conversation—with Nashvillians—about the appropriate size of the Metro Council. But out of spite and because they can, the state legislature is about to forcibly cut it in half. This is an exercise in maximum chaos. Will we have a Council election this August? Who knows??

We can celebrate a victory in protecting CM Zuara's work to honor the Civil Rights legacy of Nashville when an absurd bill renaming a stretch of Rep. John Lewis Way was withdrawn. Nashvillians spoke up and rallied about this issue—and it worked.

And it's important for us to speak up!

Let's keep telling the state how we feel about their overreach. If you don't know your state legislator, find them. Call them. Email them. Let them know that as a Nashvillian, you're also a Tennessean, and you expect them to respect that.

What's Happening

What's Coming

  • I'm interested in a bill related to the discharge of weapons. [BL2023-1740]
  • The Titans deal. I'll have more to say on this soon. [BL2023-1741]
  • There's a bill requiring a dashboard on affordable housing. I've done a lot of data visualization in my day, and I don't think legislative definition of this will be sufficient for it to serve our long-term goals, but I do hope it prompts some visibility of the issue. [BL2023-1742]

What I'm Hearing

  • After the rain stopped pouring and the wind stopped blowing, I heard a lot of people were frustrated about not having more information about why power was out for longer in their specific circumstances. We need to keep working on what we can and are willing to communicate.

What I've Been Up To

  • After planting trees with neighbors, I stopped by the Historic Germantown neighborhood association meeting this month.
  • I had the honor of hearing from Brenda Haywood new details from her story of civil rights courage as a part of Nashville Public Library's installation of a "Moments from the Movement" exhibit during Black History Month.
  • I dropped by the monthly community safety meeting in Napier.

What You Can Do

Mayor's Race

As we dealt with the fallout of last week's wind storms and celebrated some community successes, I'm so grateful to you for your patience, feedback, and grace with me and one another.

Talk soon.

My best ...


Freddie O'Connell

Metro Council, District 19

Mayoral Candidate, 2023


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