On February 28th, the first of many “Meet Your Reps” meetings kicked off with approximately 40 in attendance over the 90-minute duration of the meeting. I want to thank 4th District County Commissioner Hugh NystroIMG_0401m and 4th District School Board Representative Lynne Fugate for joining me for this meeting, as well as West Hills Flats and Taps for providing space for us. “Meet Your Reps” was designed as a way for those representing the Bearden/West Knoxville area on City Council, County Commission, and School Board to get together in a casual setting to hear from their common constituents and find opportunities to work together for the good of those they represent. Especially in today’s political climate, this is more important than ever. By fostering relationships with our local representatives and providing an accessible way for constituents to express themselves, I believe we can find ways to work together for the betterment of our community as a whole. The overall success of our community is dependent on continued positive economic development and access to good economic opportunities, a great public-school system that attracts talented students and growing businesses to locate in our community, and vibrant neighborhoods. To achieve this, we will need all our local representatives working together and this meeting was a good start towards building upon and maintaining the relationships necessary for community-wide success.

Lynne, Hugh, and I are already planning to have another “Meet Your Reps” later in the spring. It was great that so many of my colleagues on City Council joined in the discussion, including Vice Mayor Finbarr Saunders, Beer Board Chairman George Wallace, Seema Singh-Perez, and Lauren Rider. Several candidates for Knox County and State office were in attendance as well. Most of the discussion focused on a proposed development on Broome Road in West Hills as well as the need for a sidewalk on Sheffield Drive.

I am looking forward to our next Council meeting on Tuesday, March 13th.

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