State Senator Mark Pody said the $100 million towards broadband expansion highlights legislative accomplishments.
Pody said he was pleased to see fiscally conservative work done during this period. Pody said that serving a rural area put infrastructure at the forefront during the pandemic.
“It’s disappointing that some of our students, that they were forced to stay home and they didn’t have the broadband width to do some classes online,” Pody said. “I want to see that we can get that across the state where it’s a little bit more equitable.”
Pody said that when the legislators return to the capitol his focus will be on pro-life legislation for married couples and the Governor’s emergency powers. Pody said that this legislation would ask the governor to return to the legislature for another vote to extend his powers after a 60 to 90 day period.
“In hindsight looking at it, not that the Governor did anything wrong, however I believe that if we would have had an opportunity to say that authority needed to be limited to more of a 60-90 day process,” Pody said. “And then have to come back to the state legislature where it would be voted on if we want those emergency powers to continue.”
Pody said another accomplishment he is touting during this session is for elections. He said the legislation addresses absentee ballots.
“It’s going to say that when our absentee ballots go out for any kind of election process, that it’s going to have to have a watermark on these absentee ballots,” Pody said. “What that’s going to do is make it much, much harder for any kind of ballots to be copied for fraud and such.”
Pody said that with the surplus of money Tennessee saw he would have liked to see more money go into the state’s rainy day fund. He would have liked to see $200 million go into that fund, as opposed to the $100 million that did.