On Monday’s Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 am to 8:00 am – hosts Leahy and Glover discussed what it’s like to be a metro council member as it pertains to answering your constituents. Glover also went on to describe the swearing-in process for himself and the offices where metro council members could work if they wanted to.
Near the end of the second segment, the men calculated the new members that were currently elected to council and tallied up how many were conservative, moderate, and progressive. ‘I think we need to start building unity in the city and we need to start working collectively because you’ve said it in the first segment, I represent everyone, stated Glover.’
Leahy: Our special guest in studio Metro Council member at large Steve Glover. Welcome, Steve.
Glover: Good morning and welcome to you. Take a week off and you forget what to do.
Leahy: Notice if you’re paying careful attention I said, metro council member at large. I did not say metro council member-elect. Because you now are officially a metro council member at large right?
Glover: Right, I was sworn in last Friday.
Leahy: Tell us about that process. How were you sworn in? By whom? And how does that go about?
Glover: Judge Turner actually administered my first oath of office when I first got elected as a district councilperson and then I asked her if she would administer this one. She’s a friend of mine and a good friend. And so we did it Friday my wife Sandy and I and then my daughter McCalley and my three daughters were there. It was a very low key thing. Took a whopping minute and six seconds. If you really want to hear what it is then it’s on my Facebook page.
Leahy: So you now are authorized and can vote. When’s the next metro council meeting?
Glover: October 1st will be the first official meeting yes.
Leahy: Just a couple of dumb questions here. Do council members have offices?
Leahy: No physical office?
Glover: No. there are cubicles up in the council office but it’s a large space. There’scubicles if you wanted to use it but they are not assigned to you. And frankly I have an office in Hermitage and I just work out of there.
Leahy: Typically if somebody wants to meet with their new metro council member at large, one of five now and representing all of Nashville Davidson county. That’s a lot of folks you represent. That’s a lot of responsibility. Literally, any resident of Davidson county could come up to you and say, ‘Steve, I’ve got a problem. Can you listen to me?’
Glover: Sure. And I’m going to listen to you and if I need to direct you to your district councilperson I’m going to do that. A lot of the times that’s what it is. So frequently it’s a district issue versus a city issue.
Leahy: To me, I’ve always been interested in politics and for a period of time, I thought I’d run for something. The problem with that is if you have constituents every single one of them has a claim on you in terms of, ‘I got a problem.’ And it’s your job to help solve that problem.
You served two terms as a district member. When you were a district representative, how often would people interact with you and ask you for some kind of constituent service issue?
Glover: It literally could be daily. I always tell everybody, for a part-time job it requires full-time hours. And so I really have two full-time jobs. I own my own business. I do retirement income planning and now I’m a metro council at large representative.
And really in order to do this job, the council job properly, you start at whatever time you get up in the morning until you go to bed at night. That doesn’t mean it stops because people may still send you emails, messages, etc. voicemails. Because they call you or they email you when it’s affecting them.
Leahy: How many emails? Is there an official website where people can get your official email address?
Leahy: What is that email if people are listening and want to talk to you.
Glover: I’m pretty certain mine is still active. It’s firstname.lastname@example.org
Leahy: How many emails a day did you get when you were just a district representative and how many have you started to get so far now?
Glover: Depending upon what issues are coming up you can get anywhere from 14 to 20 a day all the way up to 1,000’s a day.
Leahy: You’ve had a thousand emails?
Glover: Oh yeah. You can do that easily. Especially if you’re in a really hot topic.
Leahy: Just your day to day…How do you manage that?
Glover: Well, what I did as a district council member is I filtered through and if your zip code did not hit my district I would move on. Not trying to be rude. Now it’s going to be a little bit different.
Leahy: Did you check your email over the weekend?
Leahy: How many emails have come in?
Glover: Maybe over the weekend 50-75. Not that many.
Leahy: OK. Are they all from constituents?
Glover: No. You get them from department heads. You get them from the police department. You get a lot of information.
Leahy: And so how do you process all that information?
Leahy: Do you know when the Mayor’s going to be sworn in?
Glover: This coming Saturday at 10 am.
Leahy: 10 am.
Glover: And most council members will be there as well and there will be a ceremonial swearing-in for the council members as well.
Leahy: So you’ll participate in the ceremonial swearing-in as well?
Glover: Well I’m going to go because first of all, I think we need to start building unity in the city and we need to start working collectively because you’ve said it in the first segment, I represent everyone. And I’m grateful for that opportunity and I’m honored. But we as working for everyone, now we need to work together and we need to come up with some solutions.
Leahy: Really? Do you really think the left wants to work together?
Glover: With me?
Glover: No. But I don’t care. (Leahy laughs) I’m stubborn you know?
Leahy: I think it’s all great and we’ve talked about this at the national level…
Glover: I think the moderates do though. See, there’s a lot of moderates.
Leahy: So, let’s talk about that. There are five at large members of the city council and a couple of them I think you know and probably could do something with. But there are 35 district representatives. The scale of that is…
Leahy: It’s unmanageable but nonetheless it’s what we have.
Glover: It is what it is.
Leahy: It is legal. And so of those 40, there’s what? Maybe four or five conservatives?
Glover: Yeah, true conservatives about five.
Leahy: Five. Ok, so that leaves 35. Now, I don’t know, are there like 10 moderates and 25 left-wing lunatics or left-wingers let’s say.
Glover: First of all there’s a lot of the new folks that got elected that I do not know at all.
Leahy: So you don’t know who they are.
Glover: And I will never ever speak on someone else’s behalf.
Leahy: Well not only that, when you get into these details it seems to me somebody may start off with a particular ideological perspective but…
Glover: Then they get into the job…
Leahy: Then you look at the job and get into the issues and then you start to see people’s reasoning ability to come in and their ability to solve problems. So I guess what you’re saying is if you start off with the 40 members of the metro council, five are conservative. How many would you say are moderate?
Glover: You know I’ve already done an inventory. I know this will shock you but I’ve already analyzed the people I do know. And I feel like we probably got 13 to 15.
Leahy: Let’s say 15 moderates?
Glover: Yeah. I think so.
Leahy: Five conservatives. 15 moderates.We’re at 20 right? And that would leave…
Glover: That leaves 20
Leahy: That leaves 20 that are “progressive.”
Listen to the full hour:
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