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TN State House District 89

Under the Tennessee Constitution, legislative authority of the State is vested in the General Assembly, which consists of a Senate and a House of Representatives, both dependent on the people (that is, popularly elected). The name of the legislative authority may vary from state to state, but usually it is called the Legislature or the General Assembly. The official title in our state is the "General Assembly of the State of Tennessee," but may also be properly referred to as the Legislature. The House of Representatives is composed of 99 members who are elected to two-year terms of office. They are elected by the voters of their House legislative district. A representative must be a citizen of the United States, at least 21 years old, a citizen of Tennessee for at least three years and a resident of the county he represents for at least one year before the election.

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    Kari Keeling

  • Justin Lafferty

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    Greg Mills

Biographical Information

In your view, what are the 3 biggest issues facing Tennessee?

What, if anything, do you think the state of Tennessee should do to mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic?

Why are you running?

Campaign Phone (931) 303-3064
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1) We must expand Medicaid. "Blue" and "red" states alike have done this to great success, and Vanderbilt polls have shown that most Tennesseans want it. This is an easy way to extend much-needed health care to working Tennesseans who make too much money for Tenncare but who do not receive health care benefits from their employers.

2) Fully fund public education. Instead of investing more money into an unpopular and potentially-illegal voucher program, we need to make sure ALL of our students have a quality education and that our teachers have enough resources to provide that education. Take back the money set aside for the voucher program and re-invest in public schools.

3) Hold legislators more accountable to their constituents. Require at least one town hall held in each district per session (usually one per year, unless there's a special session.) Re-evaluate our vague and often-unenforced ethics laws. Identify conflicts of interest between a legislator's donors and their votes.
During the recent special session, legislators should have been addressing several pertinent issues that are affecting the lives of regular Tennesseans during this pandemic: unemployment checks that people who have been laid off due to COVID still aren't receiving, despite the end of the eviction moratorium; covering COVID-related health treatments and visits; giving more assistance to public schools to better prepare them for virtual learning; mask mandates for public areas; listening to health officials and experts' guidance on how to decrease transmission rates; and supplying hospitals and schools with more tests, cleaning equipment, and PPE. The special session didn't address any of this--instead they gave a pass to companies who weren't following COVID policies to protect their employees. The economy will only get better if people feel safe and secure enough to go out--so we have to prioritize people's financial and physical health.
We need a representative who is willing to be transparent and hold themselves accountable to their voters. As a political activist, I understand intimately how difficult it is to get in touch with those who are supposed to be representing us, and how often our politicians are more inclined to listen to their big donors rather than regular people. Incumbents tend to fly under the radar and take their voters for granted. I would make sure I was available, present, and actively soliciting the concerns of voters. I will not take money from big corporations looking to buy votes. I will ensure that I am representing everyone in my district, not just those who agree with me, and take those concerns to the table. I am running to be a voice and option for those who want better, more honest, and more available representation.
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Campaign Phone (812) 361-5788
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1. The Covid-19 pandemic. Gov. Lee still has extended our State of Emergency through at least October 30th, 2020.

2. Managing the growth of our state due to increased interstate migration. Many Americans are moving out of large states that are currently experiencing political ineptitude (California's lack of reliable electricity is an example) and are arriving in states like Tennessee. The Nashville area did not properly manage this growth and the result was a 34% property tax increase enacted during the current pandemic.

3. The government's current philosophy of privatizing gains and socializing losses. We need to get away from this approach. Things like the bank bailouts in 2009 are causing a lot of distrust in government. Distrust in government makes solving problems like the pandemic even more difficult.
It would be helpful if Gov. Lee and the Tennessee Department of Health would state to the public what criteria they currently have for ending the State of Emergency related to Covid-19. It may encourage more people to follow the health guidelines if we can see the light at the end of the tunnel.

The state can do a better job of explaining who is currently eligible for sick leave and unemployment benefits if they become subject to a quarantine notice due to contact tracing or if they actually contract the virus themselves. This communication may encourage more people to comply with these notices.

I would also like to see the state become more involved with mental health, including the mental health aspects of Covid-19. The state made a mistake closing Lakeshore Hospital without having an alternative location readily available to provide those services.

My main priority is to repeal or fix the telecommunications law that makes it too easy for companies to install cellphone towers in residential areas.

Here are four big problems with these towers:

1. It is going to lead to a huge hit to our property values. I have seen a published estimate that just building this network in West Knox would lead to a decrease in property values in the hundreds of millions of dollars.

2. It is likely to lead to a proliferation of drones in neighborhoods.

3. The long-term health effects of living so close to a tower are not fully understood. Dr. Moskowitz of UC-Berkeley does a good job of collating the latest research in this area in his blog (

4. A few of these towers were recently damaged in the Memphis area. As a result, is reporting that the DHS is recommending that these towers come installed with CCTV. Do we really want some weirdo in D.C. being able to peek into our neighborhoods whenever they want?