Posts tagged Tennessee
On Monday, Governor Bill Haslam signed The Freedom of Unwarranted Surveillance Act, into law. This bill was introduced by Senator Mae Beavers, and had a roller coaster adventure through the legislative process. But it eventually passed – unanimously – in both state houses. The tally was 32-0 in the Senate and 91-0 in the House.
The new law states that drones are prohibited with the following exceptions:
(1) To counter a high risk of a terrorist attack by a specific individual or organization if the United States secretary of homeland security determines that credible intelligence indicates that there is such a risk;
(2) If the law enforcement agency first obtains a search warrant signed by a judge authorizing the use of a drone; or
(3) If the law enforcement agency possesses reasonable suspicion that, under particular circumstances, swift action is needed to prevent imminent danger to life. (a very high bar in legal standards)
A party aggrieved by a violation of this bill may initiate a civil action against a law enforcement agency to obtain all appropriate relief, as determined by the court, in order to prevent or remedy a violation of the new law. Evidence obtained or collected in violation of this new law will not be admissible as evidence in a criminal prosecution in any court of law in the state. Any law enforcement agency that uses a drone, or other substantially similar device to gather evidence or obtain information, must comply in all respects with the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States and article I, section 7, of the Constitution of Tennessee.
A BIG STEP FORWARD
Some activists have criticized the bill due to the particular exception allowing one person in the federal government to authorize drone use. While it does raise legitimate concerns, as things existed before today, Tennesseans had no protections against drones.
Prior to the new law, without The Freedom from Unwarranted Surveillance Act:
1. The DHS could call on Tennessee to use drones for any “non-emergency” situation it wants.
2. The DHS could call on Tennessee to use drones for any emergency situation it wants.
3. Law enforcement in Tennessee could use drones in any situation they want.
Signing the bill into law eliminates number one and number three, so this bill ushers in a MASSIVE improvement over the status quo.
At this stage in the ‘drone game,’ the feds are working hard behind the scenes to get states to operate the drones for them.
In fact, the primary engine behind the expansion of drone surveillance being carried out by states and local communities is the Federal government itself. Department of Homeland Security issues large grants to local governments so that those agencies can purchase drones. Those grants, in and of themselves, are an unconstitutional expansion of power.
The goal? Fund a network of drones around the country and put the operational burden on the states. Once they create a web over the whole country, DHS steps in with requests for ‘information sharing.’ Bills like these put a dent in this kind of long-term strategy. Without the states and local communities operating the drones today, it’s going to be nearly impossible for DHS plans to – take off.
In fact, this has been as much as confirmed by a drone industry lobbyist who testified in opposition to a similar bill in Washington State, saying that such restrictions would be extremely destructive to the drone market and industry.
Without the new law signed by Governor Bill Haslam, the only thing standing between Tennessee and a full-fledged drone surveillance state was a little funding. And that’s coming down the pike in most states.
While the The Freedom from Unwarranted Surveillance Act might not have been the perfect bill, it is a solid law which provides strict regulations on drone use. Activists in Tennessee need to keep the pressure on to ensure that further restrictions are put in place in the future.
LEGISLATION AND TRACKING
If you’re outside of Tennessee, please contact your own legislators regarding anti-drone legislation. If none has been introduced in your state, you can email them The Privacy Protection Act model legislation.
Track the status of drone nullification in states around the country HERE
About Kelli Sladick
I’m originally from Ohio. I’m a veteran of the US Navy. I graduated from undergrad with two degrees and one in graduate school. My current home is Nashville, TN.
Photo added to original post.
By Tona Monroe
Wheel Tax is latest ploy demonstrating hypocrisy of Republicans
Blount County voters will once again decide if they wish to pay a Wheel Tax, in the specially called election on June 11. The cost to the taxpayers for the special election will be at least $80,000, but saving money is of little concern to the resolution sponsors who have a habitual history of tax and fee increases. The Wheel Tax is the latest demonstration that being a Republican doesn’t necessarily mean limited government and low taxes.
All 21 members of the Blount County Commission were elected as Republicans in 2010, at a time when people were angry with Democrats and calling for a return to constitutionally limited government. The Blount County Republican Party sent a post card mailer warning people not to vote for local Democrats because of the big tax and spending Democrats in Washington DC. The three Democrats on the Commission were easily defeated.
Blount County voters handily defeated a wheel tax in 2006, with 71% of the voters rejecting it. Voters rejected a sales tax increase in 2008. Both of these votes took place prior to the current Commission, but Republicans had a super majority on the previous Commission, with a majority of the current Commissioners sitting on the previous Commission.
The current all-Republican Commission voted to raise the property tax rate the first year of their new term in 2011. While some of the Republican Commissioners voted against the tax increase, many of them voted for most or all of the spending that caused the tax increase, which makes them guilty of big spending and culpable for the tax increase.
Instead of creating a Committee to cut waste, the Commission created a Committee to Study Lost Revenue. The all-Republican Commission finished out the last month of the first year of their current term with litigation fee increases, with the resolution reading “WHEREAS, Blount County is in need of additional revenue.”
Rather than increase property tax in the second year of the current term, a sales tax increase was proposed in 2012. Blount County voters defeated the proposed sales tax increase a second time, but with a much narrower margin of defeat than in 2008.
Now the Wheel Tax is back, as the all-Republican Commission faces a huge spending increase from Blount County Schools, in its third year. The timing of the special election is interesting, the middle of June when School is out and people are taking vacations. The Commission has been unable to get voters in November elections, when voter turnout is at its highest, to approve tax increases. The date of the election appears to be deliberately set to catch people off guard so that the tax can be slid through, knowing that government employees usually vote, while hoping that those opposed are unaware or busy during the specially called election.
Republicans gave Blount Countians a property tax increase and fee increases in their first year. Republicans tried to give Blount Countians a sales tax increase in their second year. Now Blount Countians are faced with a Wheel Tax. The Commission could implement a Wheel Tax on its own authority with a two-thirds majority vote during two consecutive Commission meetings. Republican Commissioners don’t want to do this, partly because they hope to get the voter to do it for them.
The other reason is because the Wheel Tax won’t fix the School Budget problem entirely. The $86.8 million School Budget means a funding deficit of $6.9 million. Commissioner Holden Lail, one of the Wheel Tax resolution sponsors who is a retired Blount County educator and is married to Blount County educator, doesn’t know how much the Wheel Tax will actually generate. Estimates range from $2.5-3.5 million, which is far short of the $6.9 million needed. The Commission would then have to decide whether to increase the property tax rate to fund the deficit or tell the School Board to cut its budget.
The Wheel Tax proposal is sloppy, slothful and sly. It’s sloppy because the amount it generates is unknown but the best estimate shows it only providing about half of the requested increase. It’s slothful because it raises taxes without making any attempt to cut wasteful spending. It’s sly because it’s planned to avoid a general election so that County employees can ramrod it through.
The people of Blount County need to critically evaluate the performance of this all-Republican Commission. Voters have rejected all proposed tax increases, while the all Republican Commission has proposed a tax increase each year. Republicans railed about the dangers of big government Democrats in Washington DC in 2010, but the people of Blount County have an all-Republican Commission that hasn’t gone a single year without trying to increase taxes since their rhetoric about the Democrats in Washington DC.
Tona Monroe, a regular contributor to BCPublicRecord.com, is actively involved in state and local politics having a keen desire for restoring privacy and our right to travel. She resides in Greenback, Tenn. with her husband and dogs and enjoys a healthy lifestyle and dog rescue work.
Posted by NextNewsNetwork
WWE Pro Wrestling champion Glenn “Kane” Jacobs is about to deliver a mental smackdown on Tennessee’s Lieutenant Governor over a debate on the internet tax AKA the “Marketplace Fairness Act”!
As many Tennessee residents are aware of, RINO Ramsey has many interests, but we the people of Tennessee is not one of them. Ramsey, along with fellow “republican conservatives”, such as Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker, help to prove the only difference in party politics is the lapel pin they may be wearing.
From an earlier message sent by Matt Collins:
Lt. Governor Challenged To Debate Internet Sales Tax By Professional Wrestler
Ron Ramsey Pushes Internet Sales Tax; Grassroots Pushes Back
Knoxville, TN – Lt. Governor Ron Ramsey was challenged to a debate on the Internet Sales Tax by professional WWE wrestler and anti-tax activist Glenn Jacobs. In a blog post today Glenn Jacobs (stage name Kane) criticized the Lt. Governor for pushing the Internet sales tax and called for a debate on the topic at the Lt. Governor’s convenience. The blog post can be viewed here: http://www.tnliberty.org/?p=
“Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey claims that the Internet sales tax mandate is not a new tax. Nor, according to Ramsey, is it an unfair tax. Ramsey is wrong on both counts.” Glenn writes. “ I, therefore, invite Lt. Gov. Ramsey for a policy debate on the issue of the Marketplace Fairness Act in a public forum at his convenience.”
In recent weeks Glenn Jacobs has been appearing in various media outlets advocating against the national Internet sales tax mandate with appearances on nationally syndicated terrestrial radio, satellite radio, and local radio stations in Tennessee. Jacobs has written multiple blog posts and op-ed pieces against the national Internet sales tax mandate.
Earlier this week the TN Campaign for Liberty challenged Lt. Gov Ramsey to show he had paid the obscure TN Use Tax for his online purchases after he called the vast majority of Tennesseans “criminals” for not paying it. That release can be viewed here: http://tnreport.com/2013/05/
The national Internet sales tax mandate will likely come up for a vote in the US House of Representatives later this year. The bill is known as the “Marketplace Fairness Act” and is being opposed by the Campaign for Liberty, eBay, the Cato Institute, the Heritage Foundation, the National Taxpayers Union, Americans for Tax Reform, Americans for Prosperity, Freedomworks, the Heartland Institute, Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn, and many other conservative figures.
Glenn Jacobs lives with his family in Jefferson City, Tennessee and is a co-founder of the Tennessee Liberty Alliance www.TNLiberty.org. Mr. Jacobs is a critic of big government and a professional wrestler with the WWE.
If it’s a “states’ rights” issue, why are they asking permission from the federal government? (Internet Sales Tax)0
For many months now, “limited government, free market, reduced spending, Conservative Republicans™” Lamar Alexander, Bob Corker and Bill Haslam have been lobbying for and/or sponsoring the Marketplace Fairness Act, also known by a more appropriate title: the Internet Sales Tax. The tax-raising Republicans have been touting this as the states collecting taxes “that were already theirs”, or “making it fair for the brick-and-mortar businesses located in the state”, or “restoring state sovereignty” as if this is some sort of 10th Amendment takeback from the federal government – when in reality it is just a tax increase. Their appeal to the currently popular anti-federal sentiment in the country is not only unconvincing, it is without constitutional merit. Note that they are counting you as fools to fall for this “states’ rights” language.
If these leaders truly believed in “marketplace fairness” for brick-and-mortar stores, then Tennessee would not have cut the sweetheart deal with online retailer and corporate welfare queen Amazon to locate here and not collect any sales taxes – even for sales within the state. How’s that for an unfair advantage? Nobody argues that a sale made within the state isn’t subject to state sales taxes – except for our state government and Amazon, who enjoys an unfair advantage over all the other brick-and-mortar retailers in Tennessee thanks to Governor Haslam who now claims to be interested in “marketplace fairness”. Amazon also received a 10-year, 50% tax break on property taxes to locate in Loudon County. Apparently tax revenue (or is that “fairness”?) is for sale to the highest bidder. We don’t need a new federal law to correct that.
Article 1, Section 9 of the U.S. Constitution states in part:
“No tax or duty shall be laid on articles exported from any state.”
The federal government cannot issue a federal tax on interstate sales. They are exports, whether to another state or another country. The federal government can however regulate interstate “commerce” or transportation of the goods between states. The states themselves do not have this power over one another. They cannot regulate interstate trade period – which is precisely why sales taxes for purchases you made in another state have not been collected. They are exports to your resident state. So the money-grubbers in the state created the “use” tax to take some of your money anyway – despite the fact that they provide zero services to the brick-and-mortar store in the other state you imported from and your “use” of the item you purchased doesn’t induce any burden on your neighbors that require additional tax revenue that isn’t covered somewhere else by another tax.
So why ask permission from the federal government? Because they have to. Article 1, Section 10 of the U.S. Constitution states in part:
“No state shall, without the consent of the Congress, lay any imposts or duties on imports or exports, except what may be absolutely necessary for executing its inspection laws: and the net produce of all duties and imposts, laid by any state on imports or exports, shall be for the use of the treasury of the United States; and all such laws shall be subject to the revision and control of the Congress.”
So guess what? The states are only entitled to collecting their new Internet Sales Tax and subtracting their expenses for executing inspections of these imports/exports. The rest of the revenue is required by the U.S. Constitution to go to the U.S. Treasury. At best, Tennessee could add more cigarette gestapo agents to the state Department of Revenue. The net revenue proceeds to the states legally should be ZERO, because see, the founders really did believe in some semblance of free trade and INDEPENDENT states.
There is no “state right” to this money. There never was.
Authorities are still searching for answers following a bizarre firefight Sunday between a suspicious person and a security guard patrolling a Tennessee nuclear power plant.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation has taken the reigns of the probe, but so far authorities say they have yet to identify the mysterious man who fired at least two shots at a security guard early Sunday morning next to a facility on the property of the Tennessee Valley Authority’s Watts Bar nuclear power plant, about 60 miles southwest of Knoxville.
The FBI is being joined in the investigation by the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
According to investigators, a Tennessee Valley Authority security officer was routinely patrolling the nuclear plant at around 2 a.m. Sunday when he located a suspicious person in a restricted area, only a few hundred yards from the protected area that houses the nuclear reactor and power production facilities.
“They spoke for a few seconds. The officer didn’t believe there was any danger,” TVA spokesman Jim Hopson tells reporters.
In a manner of only seconds, though, things quickly changed. The suspect successfully fled the scene seconds later, says Hopson, but not before exchanging gunfire with the security guard.
Hopson says that amid the confrontation, the suspect pulled a handgun and fired at least two shots at the officer and then fled in a nearby flat-bottomed boat docked at a concrete ramp on the shore of the Tennessee River.
“The individual fired on the officer, striking the officer’s vehicle,” Hopson says. “The officer returned fire, and as the officer was calling for backup, the individual fled the scene.”
The security guard was not harmed in the incident, and authorities believe the suspect got away without being hit as well. More than 48 hours later, though, investigators are still not sure what to make of the event.
“To protect the health and safety of the general public, is to ensure those who may want to interfere with our safety system or the reactor itself, don’t have that opportunity,” Hopson says. “But anytime you have shots taken at a security officer at a nuclear plant, that’s a big issue.”
In the immediate aftermath, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission put the Watts Bar facility on “unusual event” alert, the lowest of the agencies four emergency classifications, but removed that warning after a search of the property later in the afternoon.
I read about this incident on Sunday afternoon but no real info was available. Still almost no info but passing along for those that may have missed the story.
Posted by Gunblastdotcom
Jeff Quinn ( http://www.gunblast.com ) attended the 2nd Amendment Day rally in Clarksville, TN on March 29th, 2013. The featured speaker was State Senator Mark Green (R, District 22). We had a nice turnout, and more rallies are planned for the future. We encourage all freedom-loving Americans to attend similar rallies near them, and STAND UP to those who want to strip away our precious, God-given rights.
Please visit and appreciate the event organizers:
Senator Mark Green:
Tennessee Gun Country:
Midsouth Shooters Supply:
State Legislature Truth Updates April 5, 2013
Last week in the Tennessee General Assembly, House bills requiring labeling of GMO foods and seeds were deferred until 2014. House Subcommittees are shutting down for the year, while Committees finish hearing bills as the legislature prepares to begin budget discussions.
This week, a bill prohibiting United Nations representatives from monitoring elections in Tennessee failed in the House Civil Justice Subcommittee. A bill making evidence obtained by drones inadmissible in court, except when a warrant is obtained or in exigent and authorized exceptions, passed the Senate Judiciary Committee unanimously. The bill authorizes civil suits against law enforcement agencies to prevent or stop violations of the legislation.
Several tax bills are moving forward. The House unanimously passed a bill reducing the sales tax on food ¼ of a % saving about $25 million a year which is about $3.50 per individual. This makes the State portion of sales tax on foods 5%. A bill raising the Hall income tax exemption levels for senior citizens in 2013 from $16,200 to $33,000 for single filers and from $27,000 to $59,000 for joint filers passed the Senate Tax Subcommittee. Tennessee has the highest beer tax rate in the nation. The Beer Tax Reform Act of 2013 removes the wholesaler beer tax of 17% replacing it with a flat tax of $35.60 per barrel. The legislation is moving forward in both the House and Senate.
The Workers’ Compensation Reform Act of 2013 passed the House Finance, Ways and Means Committee and is headed to the floor next week. The state workers’ compensation system was established in 1919. Tennessee is one of only two States to adjudicate workers’ compensation claims in the trial courts, causing medical costs related to workers’ compensation to be some of the highest in the nation. The overhaul is suppose to make the system more efficient by allowing allow workers to receive benefits faster and return to work sooner. The bill has already passed the Senate 28-2, with Blount County Senator Doug Overbey voting against it.
A bill allowing State legislators to nominate their parties candidate for general elections of US Senators was taken off notice. This bill attempted to partially return the process of selecting Senators back to State legislature. The 17th amendment to the US Constitution allegedly ratified 100 years ago, requires popular election of US Senators, although some States were already doing this prior to the amendment. A copy of the State Legislative Journals documenting the ratification process of the 17th amendment in Tennessee is available at www.bcpublicrecord.com. This reporter visited the Tennessee State Library and Archives to obtain documentation of Tennessee’s ratification process for the 14th, 16th and 17th amendments to the federal Constitution and is happy to share those documents.
This is Tona Monroe with Blount County Public Record. I am delighted to bring you these weekly State legislative updates and thank Truth Radio for the opportunity. For more information on these bills, visit www.bcpublicrecord.com.
I’m for anything and everything when it comes to getting people off welfare. Most people who eventually lost their benefits after welfare reform was passed in the late 1990s say their lives improved because they started working and were supporting themselves.
Education’s often seen as the key to breaking the cycle of poverty. Do well in school and you’ll find a good job. Fail and you’re destined to a life of being poor.
So it’s understandable that a Tennessee lawmaker would back legislation linking school performance to welfare benefits — until you stop to think about the cold, hard realities of parenting a family under such circumstances.
Knoxville Republican Stacey Campfield proposed Senate Bill 132 in January. It would require up to a 30 percent reduction in Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) — or welfare — payments to parents or caretakers with children who “fail to maintain satisfactory progress in school.”
Despite facing a firestorm of controversy after first suggesting the bill, Campfield has persevered. Rep. Vance Dennis, a Republican from Savannah, Tenn., sponsored the bill in the House. This past week, the bill cleared both committees and appears to be on its way toward passage and law.
By Alex Newman
Following Alabama’s lead, lawmakers in the Oklahoma House of Representatives voted overwhelmingly to approve popular legislation protecting private-property rights and banning a controversial United Nations “sustainable development” scheme known as Agenda 21, which critics say represents a serious threat to American values and liberty. If approved by the Senate as expected, the law would also prohibit state and local governments from working with the UN or its affiliates to implement any sort of “international law” that violates the U.S. or Oklahoma constitutions.
The bill, H.B. 1412, was passed in the state House last week on a bipartisan vote, with a Republican-led coalition of 67 supporting the legislation against 17 Democrats who opposed the measure. It originally passed out of the States’ Rights Committee in late February and is now in the state Senate, where a broad coalition of activists — supporters of national sovereignty, private property, the Constitution, individual liberty, Tea Party groups, and more — is working to ensure its passage.
Of course, Oklahoma is just the latest state to take action against the highly controversial UN plan, which calls for a transformation of human civilization under the guise of promoting so-called “sustainability.” In May of last year, Alabama became the first state to officially ban UN Agenda 21 after a law to protect private property and due process rights was signed by Gov. Robert Bentley. The wildly popular bi-partisan legislation was approved unanimously in both houses of the state legislature.
Before that, lawmakers on both sides of the aisle in Tennessee adopted a resolution blasting the dubious UN agenda as a radical “socialist” plot at odds with individual liberty, private-property rights, and the U.S. Constitution. Lawmakers in Kansas followed suit. Numerous other state governments, under heavy pressure from activists across the political spectrum, are also working to ban the “sustainable development” scheme in their jurisdictions. City and county governments, meanwhile, are taking action to protect residents, too.
In Oklahoma, lawmakers said legislation was needed to defend citizens and their rights from the UN scheme as well. Despite having never been ratified by the U.S. Senate as required by the Constitution, supporters of the bill explained, officials at all levels — especially the federal executive branch, mostly using unconstitutional “grants” and decrees — have been quietly working to implement the controversial 1992 international agreement across America.
“House Bill 1412 is a short little bill, barely two pages long; it deals with a big topic though, protecting personal property rights,” noted Republican Rep. Sally Kern, who sponsored the legislation in the Oklahoma House. “This bill is specifically dealing with the intrusion of our government into personal property rights that has been happening for the last 20 years and is getting worse through the Agenda 21 of the UN, their sustainable development program.”
Rep. Kern pointed out that as many as 10 federal agencies under multiple U.S. administrations — George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and Barack Obama most recently — have been working to implement the UN scheme. She also offered numerous examples of the agenda being foisted on Oklahoma, noting that other states have passed similar legislation to protect citizens as well.
A handful of Democrats, apparently ignorant about UN Agenda 21, sounded confused during the questioning session on the House floor, asking bizarre questions such as whether or not cities would be barred from building bike lanes. Rep. Kern answered well. While noting that it is important to protect the environment, Kern said Oklahoma should not be subservient to outside forces — plus, as countless analysts have pointed out, Agenda 21 has little to do with protecting nature anyway.
“One of the goals of the United Nations Agenda 21 Initiative is to influence governments,” Kern explained. “My constituents are concerned about that influence and about their property rights being infringed upon by government regulations that originated from Agenda 21. My legislation addresses those concerns by protecting individual property rights.”
Kern said it was “very easy” to see what was going on and which organizations were linked to the controversial global plan, urging fellow lawmakers to do some research and check out the UN website itself. “You can go and look up the President’s Council on Sustainable Development,” she added, singling out ICLEI — formerly known as the International Council of Local Environmental Initiatives — as one of the UN-linked groups working to foist the controversial “sustainability” plan on America and the world.
The ultimate UN plan was outlined and agreed to by national governments and dictatorships worldwide at the 1992 “Earth Summit” in Rio de Janeiro. “Agenda 21 is a comprehensive plan of action to be taken globally, nationally and locally by organizations of the United Nations System, Governments, and Major Groups in every area in which human impacts (sic) on the environment,” the UN admits on its website, sparking suspicions from analysts who point out that virtually every aspect of human existence has some “impact” on the “environment.”
When one realizes that the UN considers carbon dioxide — a gas exhaled by humans and necessary to plant life — to be a pollutant, the true scope of the global agenda becomes clear. Plus, as the UN admits in its documents, the global organization believes private ownership of land should be curtailed. Other official papers and statements reveal that the UN is seeking a “complete transformation” of the global economy in ways that are completely at odds with national sovereignty, individual liberty, American traditions of self-governance, and more. Even individuals’ thoughts are in the crosshairs, according to UN documents.
The Oklahoma bill passed by the House last week reads: “The state or any political subdivision of the state shall not adopt or implement policy recommendations that deliberately or inadvertently infringe upon or restrict private property rights without due process, as may be required by policy recommendations originating in, or traceable to United Nations Agenda 21/Sustainable Development.” Also prohibited under the measure is state or local government participation in “any other international law or ancillary plan of action that contravenes the Constitution of the United States or the Oklahoma Constitution.”
The legislation also ensures that state and local governments are barred from working with UN-linked groups promoting the controversial agenda. “Since the United Nations has accredited or enlisted numerous nongovernmental and intergovernmental organizations to assist in the implementation of its policies relative to United Nations Agenda 21/Sustainable Development around the world, the state and all political subdivisions of the state shall not enter into any agreement, expend any sum of money, receive funds contracting services or give financial aid to or from any nongovernmental or intergovernmental organizations accredited or enlisted by the United Nations,” the bill continues.
Unsurprisingly, a few members of the increasingly discredited establishment press sought to demonize or ridicule supporters of the legislation, variously claiming that opposition to Agenda 21 was either a “conspiracy theory” or that the UN scheme is harmless. It remains unclear why supporters of the UN plot continue to falsely allege that opponents consider it a “conspiracy” — a conspiracy is secret by definition, and the global organization has documents about Agenda 21 and the goals all over its website.
Analysts have also pointed out that if, as some proponents of the scheme claim, the UN agenda is non-binding and does virtually nothing, such fiendish opposition to laws protecting private property and due process would seem bizarre, almost ludicrous. However, despite half-baked efforts by the UN and its allies to vilify opponents of Agenda 21, it appears that grassroots pressure within both parties is having a significant effect.
The Oklahoma legislation to ban Agenda 21 will be assigned to a state Senate committee soon — probably within the week, according to sources in the legislature. If it eventually passes, as analysts and lawmakers widely expect, the bill would go to Republican Governor Mary Fallin to be signed into law. The governor’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
By: Tona Monroe
Utility companies are entrusted with precious resources and often have a government granted monopoly on the products provided to their customers. Goods and services provided by companies that face competition must work to earn your business. Competition is good for consumers, but it’s usually lacking with utility companies.
Water is essential to life. No one would live more than a few days without it, yet few people live in an environment where it’s feasible to dig a well. Thus, most people are dependent upon water supplied from a municipal source monopoly.
The problem is further compounded with Water Boards in Tennessee because many of these Boards are unelected and get to select the nominees that local elected officials must make their appointments from. It’s a closed loop system where unelected Boards get to choose unelected nominees. Customers must address their grievances with the local elected official who has the precarious job of choosing from the list of people the unelected Board provides. Customers can address their concerns to the Board, but members face no fear of defeat in upcoming elections since they are appointed, and worse, are able to choose the nominees for the appointments. Usually these Boards re-nominate themselves.
There is no mandate to fluoridate the water provided to customers in Tennessee. Several Water Boards stopped fluoridating when legislator Joey Hensley M.D. sent a letter to the Boards informing them of some of health dangers with adding fluoride compounds to water.
Many still continue the practice of fluoridating though. Hensley was frustrated with the lack of accountability of the Water Boards in his district so he passed legislation in the House to require the Boards in his district to be elected. The legislation didn’t pass in the Senate.
HB 1186 by Representative John DeBerry and SB 1211 by Senator Stacey Campfield will give voters a say in whether they want water fluoridation to continue, if their Board is fluoridating. As written, the bill doesn’t allow for a vote to add fluoride to areas where there is no fluoridation. It only allows for citizens who have previously had no voice on the matter to say whether they wish for the practice to continue. This legislation brings together the unusual combination of a Democratic sponsor in Memphis with an ultraconservative Republican in East Tennessee, showing that thoughtful comprise can be good for the democratic process.
Tona Monroe, East Tennessee Government Examiner
Tona Monroe, a regular contributor to BCPublicRecord.com, is actively involved in state and local politics having a keen desire for restoring privacy and our right to travel. She resides in Greenback, Tenn. with her husband and dogs and enjoys a healthy lifestyle and dog rescue work.
Here is the link to HB1186 and SB121.
Below is the information for the committee that will hear this bill on 3/12.
Rep. Art Swann, Chariman R 615-741-5481
Rep. Kent Calfee R 615-741-7658
Rep. Charles Curtiss D 615-741-1963
Rep. Barry Doss R 615-741-7476
Rep. Pat Marsh R 615-741-6824
Rep. Jason Powell D 615-741-6861
Rep. Curry Todd R 615-741-1866
Rep. Tim Wirgau R 615-741-6804
Additionally, these same members are the same legislators to contact in support of the smart meter bill.