Herald Chronicle, 2018 Leadership Franklin County—7
olid local government often has its
arms outreached to state govern-
ment to accomplish goals, and the
Franklin County Leadership program
got the opportunity to hear personally
from Tennessee’s leaders about how it
all works together.
The final Leadership program class
trip was to Nashville on Feb. 7 with a
tour of the State Capitol building that
was built in 1845 and took 14 years to
The day began bright and early at
the Franklin County Chamber of Com-
merce to load up in vans for the hour-
and-15-minute trip toNashville.
It took some time getting through
traffic toNashville with the first thing on
the agenda being able to sit in on a 110th
General Assembly House session and
seeing how it operates daily.
The Legislative Library goes up four
stories and has a beautiful spiral stair-
case. There, the class got to hear from
several lawmakers with the whole day
being organized by Kim Reasonover,
administrative assistant for State Rep.
David Alexander fromFranklin County.
ed with Secretary of State Tre Hargett,
who is inhis third term.He took the time
to talk about some of the main details a
secretary of state handles.
Hargett talked about how part of his
job is to make sure elections throughout
the 95 counties are fairly run.
He also pointed out that Tennessee
is the lowest taxed state in the country.
Next up was Beth Harwell, house
speaker and a candidate in the upcom-
ing gubernatorial election.
Harwell equated her position as
house speaker to her career as a teacher
in how she presides over legislative dis-
cussions and how she is in charge of op-
Harwell also said her job is to keep
the legislature on task and assign the
committees that all the representatives
Harwell even shared how she got
into politics, and it was especially inter-
esting to learn how a girl growing up on
a Pennsylvania farm ends up speaker of
theHouse in Tennessee.
Her presentationwas followedbyLt.
Gov. and Speaker of the Senate Randy
McNally explained that if anything
were to happen to the governor, he
would take over to lead Tennessee. Be-
ing the speaker of theHouse, in addition
to lieutenant governor, he assigns Sen-
McNally brought up an interesting
point that Tennessee is one of few states
that operates without debt.
After McNally, the last lawmaker
to speak was Sen. Janice Bowling, who
represents Franklin County. She talked
about how it’s important for future lead-
ers to stick up for the rural areas because
they have lost a lot of representation in
Nashville over the years.
She also said providing fiber optics
service toensure rural areas are connect-
ed to the outside world is paramount.
Following Bowling’s presentation,
lobbyist Erica Vick tried to debunk the
theory that lobbyists are the evil ones
by explaining what they do. They are a
middle man for lawmakers and compa-
nies, she said.
After Vick spoke, there was a quick
tour of the capital building and a picture
on the steps leading up towhere the rep-
resentatives and senatorsmeet.
Before the tour ended, leadership
participants ended the day by touring
the new Cordell Hull Building, which
now houses all of the legislators’ of-
fices and hearing rooms. The building is
named inhonor of the formerU.S. secre-
tary of state fromTennessee.
Drew Getty tries his hand at be-
ing a Tennessee lawmaker during
the tour of the Tennessee Capitol
building. He is believed to have
punched “yes” on an upcoming
—Staff Photo by Seth Byrd
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