We Are All Invested In Volkswagen

Thursday, February 13, 2014

I have chosen to stay out of the fray about the UAW as there are many elected Republican officials making statements, and I honestly didn’t need to add my voice.  However, this opinion has changed as my counterpart with the Democratic Party has decided to get into the discussion. 

There seems to be one critical point missing in all of the rhetoric against the Republican elected officials who decided to speak out against the UAW.  I, as a citizen of Hamilton County and the state of Tennessee, have a vested interest in VW and its success.  The reason I say that is because I, along with every other taxpaying citizen of this county and state, have invested more than $600 million in VW and the Chattanooga manufacturing plant. The difference is that unless you are one of the more than 2,000 employees working at VW, we have no say in the final vote on allowing UAW to organize workers at the plant.

Our state and county have invested a lot of time and money to ensure Hamilton County and VW have a bright future. Despite what some may believe, the UAW coming into VW will not be good or positive step for our community and its business outlook.  Just look towards Detroit and the shuttered VW plant in Pennsylvania to see how the UAW and their actions have affected these communities. 

Senators Watson and Gardenhire and Reps. McCormick, Carter and Floyd did not threaten anyone over the vote at VW.  They just told the truth to the voters.  The result of the UAW vote does matter, and it will have consequences.  I believe the employees at VW need to hear this information so they can make an informed vote.  If I’m not mistaken, that is what most people learn as they are growing up – there are consequences for the actions we take in life.

While I, any of our elected Republican leaders, and most of the Hamilton County area will have no say in this election, we will know the results this Friday when the votes are tabulated.  At that point, we will all know which way our community will be going in the future – for better or worse.  

I believe we can all agree that everyone has a vested interest in that.

Tony Sanders
Chairman, Hamilton County Republican Party

No More Money For Schools

Re: County Commission Told To Fully Fund County Schools Improvement Request Would Take 28 1/2-Cent Property Tax Increase; 78 School Personnel Would Be Added No. No way. Really, NO! is not a big enough word to express my sentiments here. Even the exclamation point doesn’t add enough to do the job properly.  Mr. Coppinger said, “They are saying if you do this, we’re ... (click for more)

Collegedale's Wreck Problem

Re: Speed Limits Being Lowered On Main Collegedale Thoroughfare  I just read your story on Collegedale lowers speed limit for main thoroughfare.  It's funny the city claims they will have TDOT put up dangerous intersection signs, because last summer when it was stated in a story (possibly not by your company) that they were dropping the speed limit from 55 to 50 on ... (click for more)

Kevin Muhammad Says City Programs Failing; More Attention And Funding Needed For Impoverished Inner City Youths

Nation of Islam leader Kevin Muhammad told a packed house at City Council on Tuesday night that a large segment of Chattanooga is impoverished, while parts of the city are enjoying a Renaissance. Given 20 minutes for a "State of the People" address, he said many city programs are failing, including the Violence Reduction Initiative and a Youth and Family Services reading program. ... (click for more)

County Commission Told To Fully Fund County Schools Improvement Request Would Take 28 1/2-Cent Property Tax Increase; 78 School Personnel Would Be Added

County Mayor Jim Coppinger told members of the County Commission at a budget workshop on Tuesday that it would take a 28 1/2-cent property tax increase to fully fund the county school budget request. The county schools are asking for $24,218,919 in new money for a focus on workforce readiness, literacy and low-performing schools. County Mayor Coppinger did not say whether ... (click for more)

Johnson Homers Twice As Baylor Beats Silverdale, 4-2

There’s nothing more fun than covering a softball game featuring two outstanding teams, ones who can get clutch hits, pitch through tough situations and even make spectacular defensive plays when the game is on the line. That was the case at Silverdale Tuesday afternoon where the Lady Seahawks were hosting the Baylor Lady Red Raiders. Silverdale had gone to Baylor on April ... (click for more)

Bradley Beats West, 8-1, To Wrap Up Impressive Regular Season

CLEVELAND, Tenn. – Bradley Central wrapped up its regular season on Tuesday with an 8-1 non-district baseball victory over Knoxville West at Toby McKenzie Baseball Complex. In their final tune-up for the District 5-3A tournament that starts on Wednesday at Cleveland High School, the Bears improved to 23-6 and rode the five-hit pitching of Jacob Moses (3-2) to the impressive win ... (click for more)