Our city budget should reflect our top priorities. We have to build a budget that continues to spend a majority on schools and public safety. But we must also support progress while preserving what makes Nashville a great place to live and work for all of us. Even as we invest in important infrastructure improvements and bringing good jobs to Nashville, we need to be focused on keeping school funding high and our debt manageable.

As a past chair of the Budget Committee, I have worked to bring fiscal responsibility and transparency to our budget process, setting up educational sessions and an early community budget hearing. Under my leadership, the council fully funded Metro Schools, increased funding to affordable housing, and added staff positions to Codes and NDOT to speed up constituent services.


It is vitally important that we listen to our teachers, parents, and students when working on our education system. We must ensure that every child, in every zip code, has access to a quality public education delivered by motivated, fairly paid teachers.


Nashville’s boom has brought has pushed housing prices out of reach for many residents. As a member of the Mayor’s Affordable Housing Task Force, I’ve worked with housing leaders to come up with specific recommendations to reverse the loss of affordably priced housing. We’ve created a Division of Housing, invested historic amounts in the Barnes Housing Trust Fund, and created tax incentives for affordably priced housing. There is still much work to do to ensure teachers, hospitality workers, and first responders can afford to live in the county. We can expand our reach by leveraging Metro’s investment with federal dollars and developing public private partnerships to provide a range of housing options for workers who are integral to our economy. Nashville has a road map, and we can solve this housing challenge.

Opportunity for All

There are still residents who struggle to access the economic opportunities in Nashville, despite unemployment and poverty levels in Nashville at a multiyear low. We must be deliberate as a city to connect people with jobs. Our schools need to provide the full range of options for college or career readiness. Our community colleges should align curriculum with the skills needed in the job market. Our workforce development programs should complement technical skills training with financial literacy and other soft skills. Economic incentives to bring jobs should continue to be coupled with key factors that prepare Nashvillians to tap into the growth – supporting schools, workforce development, and minority business participation.