Nashville ‘In Serious Danger’ of Turning into Chicago or San Francisco, Beacon Center Warns


Officials at the Beacon Center of Tennessee say they will now engage themselves more in local matters, not just state affairs — and this includes scrutinizing Nashville’s spending habits.

Beacon is a Nashville-based free market think tank.

In a new column on the organization’s website, Vice President of Communications and Outreach Mark Cunningham cited a property tax hike in Murfreesboro and the expansion of government-owned Internet in Johnson City, among other examples of local affairs needing scrutiny.

But in his column Cunningham focused especially on Nashville.

“As a Nashville resident and homeowner, the way the city has been mismanaged infuriates me. It’s not just one person or department either. The city continues to spend money it doesn’t have for programs it doesn’t need and the chickens are finally coming home to roost. Nashville will not always have this kind of growth, and if we cannot balance a budget now, how do we expect to do it when the growth slows down?” Cunningham asked.

“We are in serious danger of becoming the next Chicago or San Francisco if our city leaders fail to show some type of fiscal restraint.”

Cunningham went on to say “our city is run with less restraint than drunken college girls in front of a Girls Gone Wild cameraman,” and he faulted Nashville for having $4.5 billion in debt — more than double the entire state of Tennessee.

“Instead of carefully and effectively cutting the incredible amounts of waste or the hundreds of millions of tax dollars given out to corporations each year, Mayor Briley has simply asked department heads to ‘find savings’ in their budgets with no real direction,” Cunningham wrote.

“The city’s debt problem is so bad that the Tennessee comptroller—the state’s money cop—sent the mayor and city council a letter posing major concerns for the debt situation and lack of a plan to solve it. This is why local politics and local government matters so much.”

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Chris Butler is an investigative journalist at The Tennessee Star. Follow Chris on Facebook. Email tips to [email protected]

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9 Thoughts to “Nashville ‘In Serious Danger’ of Turning into Chicago or San Francisco, Beacon Center Warns”

  1. John C

    I am going to take a wild guess that Nashville is under the control of left wing liberal progressive socialist democrats. My guess is because their policies have failed in every major city in the Country.

  2. voncile

    This site needs a ‘Like’ button.

  3. Karen

    Sumner county government seems to be running as hard as they can to catch up with Nashville’s fiscal irresponsibility! They just voted to raise our property taxes again – last increase was just 4-5 years ago-this time another 20%+ increase as shown in this article Their plan is to raise taxes every 5 years.

    I realize with all the people moving here that it is putting a strain on our schools, infrastructure and roads, however, Sumner county had a surplus – how is that being spent? We also don’t need to spend millions renovating the event barn on the Comer property – that was supposed to be done by a private individual, not taxpayers. Then we have things like narrow 2-lane roads leading to new, large subdivisions where the developers had to pay a fee to city of Hendersonville to widen the road, yet the money was pocketed and spent elsewhere! This is happening all over Sumner County! Citizens needs to hold these politicians’ feet to the fire and make them budget like ordinary people have to or be removed from office!

    1. 83ragtop50

      Karen, We Sumner County residents MUST band together to replace the tax and spend commissioners and especially “mayor” Holt. My two commissioners were vert fiscally conservative when they were first elected but they now mostly vote with the “strong Schools” crowd who want to spend the county into bankruptcy.

    2. Loretta

      I’m not a Nashville, citizen. I live in Cookeville. Six weeks ago this paper said that the mayor, councilmen and other leader’s are discussing turning Nashville into a SANCTUARY CITY!! I hate to See this happen. You NASHVILLIAN’S better step up and stop this. Once it happen’s, you all are stuck!! Democrats want this, for some insane reason.You will be living with drug needle’s, fece’s, gang’s, etc.. Say no to it, asap. Theywill sneak it in on you, if you don’t pay attention..

  4. Overtaxed Nashvillian

    Too late.

  5. LEdwards

    This out of control spending is happening in every county and city throughout the state. There seems to be a plan to bankrupt the counties and cities where they no longer have flush funds and then they raise taxes. I remember we had a good friend that worked in Government in Orange County Calif.. That county was close to bankruptcy so many times. Why? Corrupt leadership, Corrupt developers, Entitlements, Overspending. Their answer always was, raise taxes and spend more. There is a solution to stop this plan: A Citizen Revolution, a movement in our cities and counties. It’s happen before, it can happens again. By the way, this happened in Calif in 1976. They say, as Calif. goes the nation goes. Ahhh…We Just Say No!

  6. william r. delzell

    Ooh| I’m so scared!

    1. Wolf Woman

      If you live in Metro Nashville, you should be scared. Especially if you’re on a fixed income.