NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — The ink is barely dry on the new law that slashes Metro Council from 40 members to 20.
Councilmembers are already worried about the consequences.
District 18 Councilman Thomas Cash represents a small, but dense district; this includes neighborhoods near Vanderbilt University and Belmont University. Cash is very disappointed in the new law and thinks it’s important for councilmembers to have a relationship with their communities.
“Small districts make it easier to have that personal connection,” Cash said. “There are some benefits with reducing the number of council members as it might be easier to work on legislation.”
He also mentioned that despite all the work they do in their communities, he doesn’t see any upside in the new law.
Councilmember Delishia Porterfield represents a large population of African Americans and other minorities within the Nashboro Village and Smith Springs areas. She said the council is working on a plan if the courts dismiss Metro’s lawsuit challenging the new law.
“If the courts don’t agree with us, then a couple options would be if the council can agree on the number of districts versus at-large council members,” Porterfield said. “If the council can agree on the maps drawn up by planning, and if all is voted on and agreed upon by mid May, then you will see an election for 20 seats.”
If there’s no agreement on the maps, councilmembers would serve an additional year and the election would be held next year instead.