The decision to run again came from the onset of a pandemic in the middle of his term.
“For the past four years, we have been short-circuited by this virus. And a number of projects that interested me
haven’t been put on hold, but they’ve been slowed down a lot,” he said. “I think a number of these projects that we’ve been able to kick off, I’d love to see a little more of that towards completion.”
One of these projects is the completion of a new school for the county.
“Jonesborough School is a perfect example. It’s a
very important project for me personally, a very important project for our community and we are off to a great start and we have a great plan,” Grandy said. “There has been a lot of progress on this project, even with the challenges of Covid. The design team met remotely; I was part of it. And we started the preparatory work at the right time and the construction is well advanced. I can’t wait to see this project come to fruition. »
Grandy added that the desire to expand educational opportunities in the county is also what drives the decision to carry out the projects.
“It’s hard to believe that three years ago, in March, we took a team to Nashville to meet with the governor to pitch the idea of a Tennessee College of Applied Technology (TCAT) satellite in the county. of Washington using the former Boones Creek Elementary School site,” he said. “This property has now been made available to the Tennessee Board and will become a satellite of Elizabethton’s TCAT.
“It’s good. It provides an exceptional opportunity for our Washington County youth as well as adult learners. The plan is to start construction-related courses there, whether it’s carpentry, masonry , electrical, plumbing or HVAC Thanks to the middle college concept, we will be able to offer courses to our
high school juniors and seniors so that when they graduate from high school, if they choose, they can have two years of experience and training and are ready to enter the labor market immediately. That’s an incredible head start for these kids.
Grandy said the TCAT site is ready and ready to
go and is ready for classes to hopefully begin summer or fall 2022.
“It will help so many children. In Washington County, we graduate 200 or more students each year. They graduate, they graduate, but they don’t pursue additional post-secondary education,” he explained. “If we can give a percentage of these students a career opportunity right out of school where they can go out and earn a meaningful living, then that’s just a tremendous opportunity.”
Throughout his tenure as mayor and his business career, Grandy said he has been richly blessed with the support of the community.
“I just really wanted to give back. I’ve been president of Rotary, I’ve been responsible for other community organizations, boards, and a number of things, but there’s nothing like being part of the leadership in the community, setting the course and creating a vision and planning for the future,” he said. “Creating a long-term vision and plan, that’s what I’ve done throughout my career. And what I thought I could bring to local government as well, so that we’re not just looking in small, short bursts, we’re looking down the road. So we’ve created capital project plans, so we’re planning for future spending.
“We plan in a forward-looking and future-oriented way so that we can
to accomplish the mission
and complete the mission without having to borrow a lot of money.
Leadership is a goal that Grandy says is very important to the Washington County mayoral slate.
“Management is important. Stewardship is important. And so, I put them together. Leadership means stewardship. This is a slogan that I used during my tenure,” he said. “Growth is important. Growth at a controlled rate is perhaps even more important.
COVID is a sensitive issue and a tragic thing, but I have some issues with how our government has responded to COVID. I think our executive orders are for executive branch employees, not the general population. And the executive branch is not supposed to make laws in America, the legislative branch does.
If I am elected to this position, you will not see such a stay-at-home order from me.
“Another thing I talked about is efficient services. I want our government to provide the kind of services citizens expect, in the most efficient and fiscally prudent way possible. But I think we need to be a little more careful
limit our spending and try to live within our means. I feel like there’s a lot of focus on revenue and how to get more revenue and we don’t focus so much on spending which I think allows us to have more control. My record is very consistent and conservative about having less long-term debt.
In addition to orders and long-term debt, Tester also believes that communication must be addressed at all levels.
“We had some communication issues this quarter. That’s actually one of the objectives of our commission, to improve communication objectives internally and externally. With citizens but also internally between department heads, office holders and employees,” he said. “Nobody really makes all the decisions, so the communication and the relationship between the mayor and the county commission is very important.”
Tester also promises that if elected, he will personally contact each county commissioner at least once a month to check in with them. All 15 of them, regardless of party, personality or vote, will have an open line of communication for everyone to work together to serve the people and strive to work well with all other county officials.
“I love Washington County. The church we go to, my great-grandfather helped start it over 70 years ago, both sides of my family are here. It’s just at the home,” he said. “I think I’m a smart, hardworking person who cares about people. I have a service heart and I’m a concerned citizen trying to make a positive difference. What if anyone want to know more about me or can campaign they can visit my website at testerformayor.com.
“At the end of the day, true leadership is what
I will offer. We do not have
had someone currently through the Covid mess who was ahead of anything or even anything. They waited for Sullivan County and then followed their lead,” he said. “They have to provide some leadership, real leadership. You have to stay one step ahead, especially if you are in charge, admitting you are making a mistake is part of leadership.
Reeves also added that the lack of leadership in the county is one of the reasons he wants to run for mayor.
“I see that’s not the case, and I know that we don’t treat all citizens equally, and trying to do that is a huge responsibility,” he said.
“So with taxes, I don’t run the sheriff’s department, I don’t (run) the clerk’s office; they come to see me and they must have money for something, I must find it; It’s my job. And if I can’t, I have to raise taxes a little. I’ve seen where you sometimes have to raise taxes. Do I want? No. Am I going to give you all the reasons why I am? You’re damn right, I will.
In addition to leadership, Reeves believes the compassion he has for his county and the people will also benefit the office of mayor.
“I’m compassionate and generally down to earth, but I’m not afraid to take on a challenge,” he said. “And I hope the people of Washington County see that I can be the leader they need.”