Rep. Eric Watson Says NRA Backing His School Safety Act Of 2013

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Rep. Eric Watson said the National Rifle Association is backing his School Safety Act of 2013.

He said, "Legislators have heard from countless constituents asking for more security in public schools. Since the drafting of this bill, four school shootings have taken place and more than nine states have inquired about his legislation for consideration in their states."

He said after the Virginia Tech shooting occurred in 2007, the Tennessee General Assembly began working on campus safety in 2008.



“Our community must continue to be vigilant in protecting our children. In Southeast Tennessee, we have a strong sense of responsibility that is the greatest safeguard (defense) against violence in our schools,” Rep. Watson said. “Schools choosing to adopt the policy will have the option to hire security or appoint highly trained staff, with training which is similar to a school resource officer which will be an additional safeguard (safety measure/defense) in protecting students.”

Current state law prohibits public schools from hiring armed security guards, he said.

Rep. Watson noted that not all schools across Tennessee have school resource officers, including several within his district. “School Resource Officers are an important part of the solution to the threats facing our students. However, SRO’s are often tasked with other responsibilities such as in-service training and court that prevent their presence at all times in our schools. This legislation will allow the local school system to fill in those gaps,” Rep. Watson stated.

“Since 2008, Campus safety has been studied by the General Assembly and it's time we take action and give our local schools more options to protect our kids.” he said.

Of the 132 members of the Tennessee General Assembly, only seven received an A+ rating from the National Rifle Association, he noted. Rep. Watson was one of those seven and he pointed out that he is the only member of the General Assembly who provides free handgun permit classes for the constituents of his district.


Multiple Arrests Made In Burglary In Progress On Sunnyside Drive

Chattanooga Police Department responded on Monday, at approximately   12 p.m. to 5208 Sunnyside Drive on a burglary in progress.   Upon arrival  officers were informed to be on the lookout for a brown SUV with several parties involved. The victim was identified as Lander Lewis. Officers located and stopped the vehicle at 28 th and 6 th   ... (click for more)

Collegedale Commission Approves New Zoning Designation For Collegedale Station Development

Collegedale is growing. Rezoning of a 100-acre tract and approval of a new zoning designation at the commission meeting Monday night will allow for the new development named Collegedale Station. Property along Apison Pike at Pattentown Road and in front of The Summit, a sports complex owned by Chattanooga, was rezoned to Planned Commercial Development Overlay. This will permit ... (click for more)

Dirt Decision At Camp Jordan May Come Back To Haunt East Ridge Councilmen

Wow. I thought the arrival of Bass Pro Shop would help bring East Ridge back to a position of prominence in the Chattanooga area, but the Council proved otherwise last night.  To the council - There is a reason that the developers want that dirt: It's valuable . You currently own it and the developer wants it. Bass Pro has already agreed to set up shop. They were going ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Goodbye To My Scooter

The month of August turned out to be unkind, with my dog, my favorite aunt and my magnificent mother all dying within three weeks’ time. As I finally begin to push out the three newest dents in my soul, my habit has been to write something akin to a goodbye note to those I have loved. I’m not ready for Aunt Martha and Mother yet – not by a stretch -- but I remembered Scooter with ... (click for more)

Baylor Ends Big Week With Win Over GPS

The Baylor volleyball team probably doesn't get many days off during the week in midseason, but they earned a day off on Tuesday following a long and successful stretch in the last eight days. The Lady Red Raiders, won 10 of 11 matches in the last eight days, including a big win over arch-rival GPS on the road Monday night.  As a result, coach Sarah Lail urged her girls ... (click for more)

UTC's Hudson Named Special Teams Player Of The Week

University of Tennessee at Chattanooga senior Tommy Hudson is the Southern Conference Special Teams Player of the Week, the league office announced today.  Hudson scored twice in the Mocs 42-6 win at Austin Peay on Saturday .  Hudson returned three punts for 65 yards, including a 58-yard touchdown in the third quarter.  That added to his 33-yard receiving ... (click for more)