Top Metro lawyer discusses court victory fallout
Metro's top lawyer hopes the city's victory Monday in its legal battle over a state law to shrink the council helps improve relations with the legislature.
State of play: A three-judge panel temporarily blocked the law, which cuts the Metro Council from 40 members to 20, from taking effect prior to the August election.
- Metro legal director Wally Dietz conducted a press conference Tuesday to discuss the next steps in the wake of the court ruling.
Why it matters: Dietz says the ruling serves as a reminder that the legislature doesn't have "carte blanche" to target Metro.
What he's saying: Dietz told reporters he sensed people all over Nashville were feeling "hopeless and powerless" that nothing could be done to combat the state laws targeting the city.
- "So in the broader scheme of things, it's really important that the state of Tennessee and Metropolitan Nashville have a good, healthy relationship. We actually believe this ruling can help improve that relationship and rebalance the powers."
What's next: Metro and the state will continue duking it out over whether the entire law that shrinks the council is constitutional.
- Dietz said the city has suspended its efforts to implement the law.
- The state could file an appeal and ask the Tennessee Supreme Court to take up the case immediately.
Although the city earned a temporary win in the lawsuit over the council's size, an array of legislation singling out Nashville is still on the table.
Those proposals would:
- Take over operations of the Nashville airport.
- Divide control of the city's Sports Authority, which is the landlord for Nashville's sports arenas.
- Attach strings to how the city spends revenue generated by tourism taxes for the Music City Center convention hall.
- Abolish the civilian board that serves as a watchdog for the police department.
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