News & Updates

Views and opinions about the key issues facing Nashville

May 16, 2019
Impact of economic development spending on property tax rate

When I proposed an increased property tax rate last year, one of the arguments against was that the city should stop all the corporate giveaways before thinking about a rate… Read more »

May 15, 2019
New TIF legislation

The Metro Tax Increment Financing Study and Formulating Committee released its report last week. The TIF committee will give a presentation about the report in the Council Chamber on May… Read more »

May 08, 2019
TIF Study & Formulating Committee report is out today

Since last November, I have been the chair of the Metro Tax Increment Financing Study and Formulating Committee. This is a new group to study how Metro uses tax increment financing… Read more »

May 04, 2019
The myth that “belt tightening” could fix the budget

A year ago, many of us argued that Metro’s property tax revenue was out of step with the city’s historical practices and that this was the leading cause of Metro’s… Read more »

May 03, 2019
1st thoughts about Mayor’s proposed FY20 budget

Late in the afternoon on May 1, the Council received a PowerPoint presentation about the Mayor’s proposed FY20 operating budget. I pushed out a series of tweets that evening with… Read more »

April 30, 2019
Proposed FY20 budget expected tomorrow

The Mayor’s proposed FY20 budget is expected to be out tomorrow. This post is about what I am expecting to see in it. There’s no way to talk about that… Read more »

April 17, 2019
More on the announced affordable housing plan

A few days after the Mayor announced his affordable housing plan, I posted this initial assessment. Since then, the Council’s Ad Hoc Affordable Housing Committee met with MDHA for two… Read more »

April 04, 2019
Metro’s Health & Ed Board

Over the last four years, I’ve worked to shine light on the darkest corners of Metro government. The toughest nut to crack so far has been an organization called “The… Read more »

April 03, 2019
HEFB Report on Debt Obligation Forms (2/17 through 1/19)

These are the Report on Debt Obligation Forms filed by the Metro Health & Education Facilities Board from February 2017 through January 2019, plus a summary that shows the legal… Read more »

March 28, 2019
The new affordable housing initiative

A lot of people are asking me what I think about the Mayor’s newly announced affordable housing plan. His press release is here. And his office has set up a… Read more »

March 19, 2019
Maybe hold back on the high fives for now??

Yesterday, the administration announced its intention to give Metro employees their overdue cost of living pay raise in the upcoming budget. I fully support that. But I think the Metro… Read more »

February 10, 2019
Metro Internal Audit – Collier and MNPS reports

The Metro Audit Committee meets next on February 12. We will consider the Metro Auditor’s reports about Collier Engineering and various allegations related to MNPS. Both are getting media attention… Read more »

February 10, 2019
General thoughts about Metro’s internal audit function

I’ll warn you right now…this post will be hard to keep interesting. But as Metro’s Internal Audit function has been more in the forefront on issues like Collier Engineering, various… Read more »

February 03, 2019
Council Feb 5 Agenda

The Council has a full agenda on February 5. It includes several items that are guarantied to make someone mad. Here’s what I am looking at (in the order they… Read more »

January 06, 2019
Mendes – what is that?

Through my life, I’ve been asked a lot about my last name. What is Mendes? Where is Mendes from? What are you? Mendes – what is that? Sometimes people ask… Read more »