Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Call to Action - Stop Red Light Camera Renewal

At Thursday's City Council meeting (Nov. 13, 2014), the Council will vote whether or not to renew the contract with Arizona based company American Traffic Solutions to operate the six red light photo-enforcement cameras in Murfreesboro for another year. 

As the Daily News Journal noted, during last week's Council meeting, multiple citizens were able to speak against the cameras including, Axl David, Keith Rae, Marnie Harris, Steve Lane, myself and others. However, more work needs to be done, and quickly

Please email, call, or personally meet with members of the City Council and tell them that you oppose these cameras and do not want the City to renew their contract with ATS. 

Council member contact information:

Shane McFarland, Mayor - 615-642-9244 or smcfarland@murfreesborotn.gov 
Doug Young, Vice Mayor - 615-893-7721 or dyoung@murfreesborotn.gov 
Ron Washington - 615-890-0097 or rwashington@murfreesborotn.gov 
Eddie Smotherman - 615-653-6103 or esmotherman@murfreesborotn.gov
Madelyn Scales Harris - 615-804-8955 or mscalesharris@murfreesborotn.gov
Rick LaLance - 615-631-6368 or rlalance@murfreesborotn.gov

For more information on the matter, please read this. Feel free to use it as a resource as well. This is based on a letter I gave to each council member.

On April, 30, 2013, Chief of Police Chris Chrisman provided the Council with a report on the City's red light camera system. It shows in black and white that these cameras are not as effective as claimed. It showed that since 2010, the number of total crashes at camera enforced intersections decreased 1.1% per year, whereas the number of crashes at all intersections decreased 11% per year. Furthermore, when it came to side-angle crashes (which are more dangerous than rear-end collisions), it showed that they decreased 32% since 2008 at the six photo-enforced intersections, yet, the overall decrease at all intersections was nearly 42%.

(Click for larger view.)

That literally means you are more likely to get into an accident at camera enforced intersections than at non-camera enforced intersections. 

In the same report, the new system that was installed in 2011 was referred to as an “improvement” and “reduced collisions overall”. However, in that handout, the data shows that collisions at photo enforced intersections had actually increased in the year following the new equipment installation. The City’s budget also shows that, contrary to the claim that these systems are working, the Police Dept. anticipates continued growth in the number of tickets – a growth that actually outpaces population growth. Again, evidence that these cameras aren't working. 

If the overall trend is for people to drive safer across all 140+ signalized intersections, then the differences between crash figures for photo-enforced intersections and non-enforced intersections support the conclusion that these cameras aren't doing their job.

(Click for larger view.)

On top of that, each year ATS receives the full $50 citation fee for the first 1,200 tickets, and then they get $25 for each ticket afterwards. That means over $2 million dollars has left our community to go to an out of state company to run this camera system.  Let’s also not forget, that because of how the law governing these cameras is written, the City has voluntarily accepted (no one's requiring they use them) a camera system that gives two very different punishments for the same crime when it comes to being ticketed by a camera vs. by being pulled over by a police officer; which may be a violation of the Equal Protection Clause.

According to the law, if you get a ticket via the cameras, the citation doesn't go on your driving record, you are not legally compelled to pay the fine, and if you don't pay the fine it can't affect your credit rating. Yet, if a police officer pulls you over and hands you a ticket for running a red light, it does go against your driving record, you are required to pay the fine, and if you don't it can go on your credit report.

In 2012, the State Legislature amended T.C.A 55-8-198 (Citations based on surveillance cameras) with TN Senate Bill 2872 by Sen. Southerland, which specifically states:

No person having charge, custody of or control over any records or information regarding a violation of this section, including payments made pursuant to receipt of a notice of violation or a citation, whether timely or delinquent, shall disclose these records or information to a consumer reporting agency. In addition, no information regarding a violation shall be disclosed or identified in any credit report.

However, the citations issued threaten that any failure of payment will be reported to consumer and credit bureaus, and that it may damage the person’s credit rating. This is completely wrong.

(Click for larger view.)

The group Murfreesboro Citizens Against Photo Enforcement, which I co-founded along with Axl David and Tim Meredith, has garnered significant media coverage about this issue including, WGNS Radio, News Channel 4, as well as national media outlets like BenSwann.com. Murfreesboro C.A.P.E. has also received the support of the Rutherford County Campaign for Liberty and the Rutherford County Young Republicans. The Rutherford County Young Republicans is the largest partisan organization in the county in terms of dues paying members. 

Murfreesboro C.A.P.E. also set up a petition through which hundreds of other local residents have all expressed support for ending the red light camera photo-enforcement program. Some of the people who signed the petition include: James Gann, Bruce Cavender, and Gabriel Fancher. The petition, which is now closed, can be found at https://www.change.org/p/murfreesboro-city-council-eliminate-red-light-photo-enforcement-in-murfreesboro

We have all asked the City Council unequivocally, to end the use of these cameras. These cameras have already been banned in 7 states (AR, ME, MS, MT, NV, NH, and WV), they have been removed in multiple communities across the country (including Mt. Juliet), and courts have ruled against this type of camera enforcement in 2 additional states (CA and MO).

I ask you, if the real reason to have these cameras is safety – and the City’s own data proves that they are not effective – then why have them? Why renew the contract for equipment which doesn't work, and may actually be decreasing the safety of drivers?

For more information, check out:

Red Light Camera Studies

Saturday, October 18, 2014

A Look at the 2014 Ballot Measures

Don't forget - Early voting Oct. 15-30, Election Day Nov. 4.

I'd like to give you a quick run down on the different proposed amendments to the State Constitution which will be on the ballot for the Nov. 4, 2014 election. 

Before that, here are the different races that will also be on the ballot:

Governor, US Senate, US House Rep. for the 4th District, TN State Senate for the 13th District, TN State House for districts 34, 37, 48, and 49, Eagleville town Mayor and 3 Council seats, LaVergne town Mayor and 2 Alderman seats, Smyrna town Mayor and 3 Council seats, and in Murfreesboro there is a special election for 1 City Council seat. There is also a Murfreesboro-only measure to allow or prevent wine from being sold in grocery stores. 

For a full sample ballot please check out the Rutherford County Election Commission.

There are four different proposed amendments to Tennessee's Constitution which we will be able to vote for or against.

Amdt. 1 – This would allow the legislature to enact, amend, or repeal regulations relating to abortion. There has been a good deal of controversy over this amendment, however, it is important to note that this amendment would only allow the State to pass reasonable regulations. It cannot outright ban abortion nor can those regulations violate Roe v. Wade. 

The text on the ballot is as follows:

Shall Article I, of the Constitution of Tennessee be amended by adding the following language as a new, appropriately designated section:

Nothing in this Constitution secures or protects a right to abortion or requires the funding of an abortion. The people retain the right through their elected state representatives and state senators to enact, amend, or repeal statutes regarding abortion, including, but not limited to, circumstances of pregnancy resulting from rape or incest or when necessary to save the life of the mother.

In short:
Voting YES simply gives the State an easier ability to pass reasonable regulations pertaining to abortion.

Voting NO would mean nothing changes, and the State would have to follow the current strict guidelines.

Check out the Yes On 1 campaign website.
Check out the No On 1 campaign website.

Here are some abortion stats from 2010:
  • 16,373 abortions were performed in Tennessee in 2010. This is a six percent decrease from a decade ago.
  • In 2010, 24.5 percent, or roughly one-in-four, abortions were sought by women from other states. This is a 30 percent increase from a decade ago.
  • The age group most likely to seek an abortion are 10-14. However, this does not mean that this age group has the most abortions, just that the group has the most abortions relative to live births.
  • The age group with the most abortions, though not the most relative to live births, is 20-24.

Amdt. 2 – This would empower the governor to appoint judges to the state supreme court or any other state appellate courts subject to confirmation by the General Assembly. The appointed judge would serve an eight-year term. Thereafter, the judge could serve another term via a retention election by voters.

The current Constitution says that voters have the right to elect state supreme court judges. Approving this amendment would take that right away. According to the State Constitution,“The judges of the Supreme Court shall be elected by the qualified voters of the state.

The text on the ballot is as follows: 

Shall Article VI, Section 3 of the Constitution of Tennessee be amended by deleting the first and second sentences and by substituting instead the following:

Judges of the Supreme Court or any intermediate appellate court shall be appointed for a full term or to fill a vacancy by and at the discretion of the governor; shall be confirmed by the Legislature; and thereafter, shall be elected in a retention election by the qualified voters of the state. Confirmation by default occurs if the Legislature fails to reject an appointee within sixty calendar days of either the date of appointment, if made during the annual legislative session, or the convening date of the next annual legislative session, if made out of session. The Legislature is authorized to prescribe such provisions as may be necessary to carry out Sections two and three of this article.

In short:
Voting YES means these judges would be appointed by the governor (subject to legislative approval). Then, citizens would be allowed to vote to retain or replace the judges every 8 years.

Voting NO means the people will retain their current right to elect judges. 

Amdt. 3 – This would permanently prevent the legislature from passing a state income or payroll tax.

The text on the ballot is as follows:

Shall Article II, Section 28 of the Constitution of Tennessee be amended by adding the following sentence at the end of the final substantive paragraph within the section:

Notwithstanding the authority to tax privileges or any other authority set forth in this Constitution, the Legislature shall not levy, authorize or otherwise permit any state or local tax upon payroll or earned personal income or any state or local tax measured by payroll or earned personal income; however, nothing contained herein shall be construed as prohibiting any tax in effect on January 1, 2011, or adjustment of the rate of such tax.

In short:
Voting YES will add a State constitutional amendment banning a state income tax.

Voting NO would keep things the way they are now. It would allow for the income tax issue to come up at a latter date.  

Amdt. 4 – This would allow the legislature to approve of annual lotteries (such as raffles, Bingo, etc.) for 501(c)(3) [non-profits] and 501(c)(19) [veterans] groups so that they can raise needed funds. Currently, only 501(c)(3) groups are allowed to have lotteries, but when the original lottery law was passed, 501(c)(9) groups were overlooked and thus left out. This amendment would not give a blanket legalization of gambling in the state.  

The text on the ballot is as follows: 

Shall Article XI, Section 5 of the Constitution of Tennessee be amended by deleting the following language:

All other forms of lottery not authorized herein are expressly prohibited unless authorized by a two-thirds vote of all members elected to each house of the general assembly for an annual event operated for the benefit of a 501(c)(3) organization located in this state, as defined by the 2000 United States Tax Code or as may be amended from time to time.
and by substituting instead the following language:

All other forms of lottery not authorized herein are expressly prohibited unless authorized by a two-thirds vote of all members elected to each house of the general assembly for an annual event operated for the benefit of a 501(c)(3) or a 501(c)(19) organization, as defined by the 2000 United States Tax Code, located in this state.

In short:
Voting YES gives veterans groups the right to raise money via annual raffles etc. They would still need the legislature to approve of each "lottery".

Voting NO means that only 501(c)(3) groups could have these events (as they are currently allowed).

The predominant local view on these amendments is "Yes, No, Yes, Yes." It is also important to note that because these amendments were "legislatively referred," the constitutional amendments must earn a majority of those voting on the amendment and "a majority of all the citizens of the state voting for governor.” This means that if you do not vote for governor (simply leave it blank), then your vote on the amendments will actually weigh more, making it more likely that they'll pass. 

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Guest Article - The 2nd Amendment in Parks and on Greenways

On August 21, 2014 the Murfreesboro City council debated a motion to instruct the City Attorney to create a resolution to allow Handgun Carry Permit Holders to legally carry on the Greenways System.  The Council voted 5-2 to deny the resolution from being written.  Toby Gilley and Eddie Smotherman were the only two Council members who voted to allow this resolution to be written. Keep in mind this vote was just to have a resolution written that could then be debated and brought to a vote on the merit of the resolution.

Mayor Shane McFarland, Vice Mayor Doug Young, and Council Member Rick LaLance all expressed concern that the input from the Greenway Projects Committee and the Parks and Recreation Commission was not solicited.  They used this as rational for voting against creating a resolution.  Neither Vice Mayor Young nor Councilman LaLance made any effort to offer a motion to instruct these groups to discuss this issue.  This was quite troubling because Councilman LaLance claimed to be a strong Second Amendment supporter during the last election.  The Mayor is not allowed to make a motion.  Council Member Madelyn Scales-Harris brought up concerns about safety to justify her no vote while Council Member Ron Washington used the excuse that he was not a “gun person” to vote no.

If Mayor McFarland, Vice Mayor Young and Councilman LaLance want to send this “through committee” before voting on the merit, let’s push them to instruct this commission and committee to formulate an opinion and deliver it to the City Council within 30 days. We should not let them hid behind a process to avoid voting on the merit of our Second Amendment Rights in our parks and greenways.  The council holds “open mic” for public comments at 6:30 PM in council chambers at the first meeting of each month. The next one is on September 4, 2014. (note: this meeting has been canceled)  If you are passionate about your Second Amendment rights, join me to demand the City Council proceed with restoring this right to the citizens.   We need to demand our rights not only on the Greenway System, but in our parks as well.  Yes, OUR parks.  If you do not want to speak, just show up to demonstrate your support of the Second Amendment.  Before then, please email and call all the Council members and let them know how you feel.  Let them know how important our rights are in this case.  The contact information is available at the city’s website, Murfreesborotn.gov

This is a unique opportunity to influence the restoration of our Second Amendment rights.  We need to stress to the Council that the Second Amendment has two parts.  We have the right to keep AND the right to bear arms.  It also states that these rights “shall not be infringed.”  We need to demand our local elected officers adhere to our Constitution.  To solidify this right, the Supreme Court handed down a landmark decision stating the Second Amendment is an individual right (DC v. Heller, 2008).  Many anti-gun cities and states ignored this ruling.  This lead the Supreme Court to clarify with McDonald v. Chicago (2010) that state and local government cannot infringe upon the rights in the Second Amendment.  Apparently, that word hasn't made its way to the Murfreesboro City Council Chambers.  Let us make sure they hear it loud and clear.

While it is well established that we should have the right to bear arms in a public place, the quickest way for us to stop the City of Murfreesboro from trampling on our rights is to speak out at a council meeting with many attendees.  We all know the safety issues are just fear mongering.  Let’s demand the City Council vote on whether they believe in the Second Amendment.  We also need to vote accordingly in the next election.

When we next vote for city council, the Second Amendment issue gives you a look into whether that Council Member believes in freedom.  Please use this as part of your voting decision.  When we vote in November to replace Councilman Gilley, I cannot stress how import due diligence is before voting.  Contact the candidate and get a statement about the Second Amendment.  If they try to ride the fence, vote for someone else.

Again please join me to speak to the City Council about our Second Amendment rights on September 4, 2014 at 6:30 PM in council chambers. (note: this meeting has been canceled If the meeting is postponed for any reason, the “open mic” will take place at the next meeting.  Council meetings are every Thursday.  Don’t forget to email and call all the members of the council.

Jeff Rainwater

Friday, August 29, 2014

A Review of the 2014-15 Murfreesboro City Budget

For previous reviews see here: FY 2012-2013, and FY 2013-2014

This year's budget is 318 pages. I have tried to distill the budget into a short and meaningful review to enable the general public to see the primary figures. Any perceived bias for or against any department is just that, perceived. Due to the fact that personnel costs are by far the largest single expenditure, I feel it’s important to focus more attention on those figures. The only sector of City government I personally take issue with is the “recreational” sector which spends tens of millions on public leisure while we continue to go deeper into debt and lack the ability to even build a school without substantial federal grants.

Opening thoughts

Page 2 of the budget describes the cover photo and gives the general philosophical aim of the City and budget (which I think is a bit odd). However, what concerns me is the apparent mindset that our City leaders have, that of thinking the relatively prosperous times we have enjoyed thus far will continue indefinitely. On the page it declares that Murfreesboro is a city with a progressive mindset and that we have "adopted [the] ideology" espoused by American City Planner Danial Burnham who said, "Make no little plans; they have no magic to stir men's blood and probably themselves will not be realized. Make big plans; aim high in hope and work."

While it's true we need to plan for the future and that we need to work very hard to accomplish our goals (or dreams), to me it underlines the disturbing trend I mentioned above. Cities hit hard times, and thankfully we have been lucky. What City planners seem to forget however, is that to achieve their big plans and high aims, it must be paid for. And to pay for it, they must tax us and/or borrow money which we will still be paying off up to a decade from now - including the 10 year old child alive today who had no say in whether or not we spent millions on new tennis courts and yet will be paying for them the moment he or she gets a job or buys property.

My continual refrain is priorities, and until we re-evaluate them I will continue to talk about the issue.

Specific projects
  •  Implementing the transition from First Responder to Basic Life Support medical service provided by  the Fire & Rescue Department
  •  Continuing to move forward the relocation of the Police Department to a new headquarters on Highland Avenue
  •  Opening Overall Creek, a new elementary school east of Veteran’s Parkway
  •  Beginning construction of the Stones River Greenway extension to Barfield Crescent Park
  •  Begin the transition to new Police and Fire & Rescue radio communications system
  •  Building a public safety training facility on the Coleman Farm
  •  Maintaining the existing level of effective property tax rate, which is the 16th consecutive year without a property tax increase. The tax rate after reappraisal will be $1.2015, down from $1.2703
  •  Contributing to Middle Tennessee State University’s Science Building
  •  Moving to a new health insurance provider that will save almost $800K without a change in benefits to employees, their families or the City’s retirees
  •  Building an indoor tennis complex in conjunction with Middle Tennessee State University
  •  Constructing Joe B. Jackson Parkway, Veterans Parkway & Middle Tennessee Boulevard
  •  Replacing the legacy system currently used for financials & human resources information systems
  •  Renovating Sports*Com and McKnight Park
  •  Fund step increases and longevity pay for full‐time personnel
  •  Begin project to construct new headquarters for Rover
  •  Repaving $2 million in City streets from State gasoline taxes

Quick facts

This year's budget contains $122,543,147 in spending, which is an increase of 4.5% over FY 2014. Expenditures are $127,397,620, an increase of 4.3%. This gives us yet another year of planned deficit spending. Thankfully, the true amount of revenues and spending each year has prevented us from actually adding $5 million in deficit related debt each year (revenues tend to come in higher and spending doesn't rise to the budgeted amount). However, with the official budgets, the City is saying as a matter of policy, that it plans on spending more than it brings in year after year.

Once again the City also approved a 3.5% pay increase for City employees which equals $1.1 million.[pg. 12] The City has given pay increases that total a 14% pay raise since 2011 and a cost of $5.1 million.  For comparison, per capita income for residents only grows 2.1% annually. The City also brags about giving higher raises than other cities, including Chattanooga and Memphis - both cities have larger populations and far larger budgets. Every municipality says their employees are "the best", but I have no doubt that Murfreesboro City employees really are doing a great job. The problem is the only way they get a pay increase is if the City takes money from you and I. I'm not aware of many private sector jobs that give an annual 3.5% raise and fund 97% of retirement packages as well.

The IT Dept. has created a 5-year computer replacement program, anticipating replacing 20% of City computers each year.[pg. 67]

The cost per capita of Parks & Recreation is 11% higher than the state-wide average.[pg. 269]


As mentioned, budgeted revenues are $122,543,147, an increase of 4.5% over the budgeted revenues for FY 2014.[pg. 45] The largest revenue sources are from property taxes (29.6%) and sales taxes (29.3%). State and federal grants make up around 4.4% of revenues which equals ~$5,392,000.[pg. 54]

(click for larger image)

Revenues from FY 2009 to FY 2014 have increased 28.6% while expenditures have increased 33.1%. For a more specific breakdown of revenues, see pages 42-44 of the budget.


(Click for larger image)

Department changes since FY 2014 budget. 
General & Administration   +6.5%                                       Parking Garage   -36.3%
Legal   +1.9%                                                                   Parks & Rec   +8.4%
Human Resources   +6.6%                                                Public Golf Courses   -4.2%
Planning & Engineering   +6.7%                                         Solid Waste   -1%
Engineering   +39%                                                          Senior Citizens Dept.   +2.8%
Street Aid   +/- no change                                                 Community Development   +45.7%
Transportation   -20%                                                        Drug Fund   +25%
Information Technology   +17.7%                                       City Schools   +/- no change
Communications   +0.6%                                                  Other Gov. Agencies   +3.3%
Building   +3%                                                                 Chamber of Commerce   +8.8% 
Judicial   +3.6%                                                               Other Tourism +/- no change
Police   +4.1%                                                                 Debt Service Fund   -2.4%
Fire   +5.3%                                                                  
Urban Environment   -0.1%                                           
Civic Plaza   +11.4%

Personnel costs equal 47% of expenditures ($59,876,881), while operating costs equal 23% ($29,301,452).[pg. 57] Murfreesboro has the lowest personnel costs per full-time employee than the other 8 benchmark cities used in various studies to determine compensation, benefits, etc.[pg. 256] 

Departmental Reviews

Some minor funds will not be described below, however, any departments and funds with employees will be described.
The average total personnel cost (salary plus benefits) per employee figure is derived by taking the total amount of employee payments and dividing it by the total number of employees (including part-time employees). For some departments, I'll try to divide the two groups. The figure is only meant to give a general idea of the amount each employee is getting, obviously some will make more and others much less than this average figure.

Benefits include, Social Security, medical & dental insurance, pension plan, retirement, life insurance, and workers’ compensation.

The list of "various expenses" is not an all inclusive list of department expenditures.

     General Administration [pgs. 59-66] - budget is $4,621,589, with $2,068,835 in personnel costs, $2,530,404 in operating costs, and $22,350 for capital expenses. For the department, $889,067 goes to medical & dental expenses and $425,000 goes to retirement administration. The department has 34 employees which gives an average of $60,848/employee (salaries & benefits). Personnel costs equal 44.7% of the budget. 

Various expenses: $93,710 for office supplies and postage, $190,000 for utilities and phone, $26,700 for mileage and meals, $80,000 for association dues, and $42,000 for Christmas gift cards (for all eligible employees, not just the 34 GA employees). 

     Information Technology [pgs. 67-72] - budget is $1,789,835, with $935,995 in personnel costs, $668,300 in operating costs, and $185,540 for capital expenses. The department has 13 employees which gives an average of $71,999/employee. Personnel costs equal 52.2% of the budget.

Various expenses: $135,640 for computer replacements, $75,400 for G.I.S, $30,000 for utilities, $16,000 for office supplies, and $293,400 for IT consulting.

     Communications Department [pgs. 73-78] - budget is $733,502, with $552,669 in personnel costs, $145,633 in operating costs, and $35,200 for capital expenses. The department has 8 employees which gives an average of $69,083/employee. Personnel costs equal 73.3% of the budget. 

Various expenses: $28,350 for supplies, $3,600 for utilities, $1,700 for travel & meals, and $19,000 for video streaming and archiving.  

Accomplishments: there were over 1 million visits to the City's website, and 68,000 views of live streamed or archived videos (council meetings etc.).

     Legal [pgs. 79-82] - budget is $825,663, with $755,083 in personnel costs, $69,550 in operating costs, and $1,000 in capital expenses. The department has 7 employees which gives an average of $107,869/employee. Personnel costs equal 91.4% of the budget.

     Human Resources [pgs. 83-87] - budget is $973,282, with $696,906 in personnel costs, $259,050 in operating costs, and $17,326 in capital expenses. The department has 9 employees which gives an average of $77,434/employee. Personnel costs equal 71.5% of the budget. 

Various expenses: $25,000 for office equipment & software, $23,750 for supplies, $2,550 for utilities, $7,500 for background checks, $50,000 for drug screenings, and $80,000 for various studies.

This department also oversees the administration of the City's employee wellness program, "Boro-Fit". In 2014, 741 employees and dependents participated and the program identified 12 "critical care" cases.

     Judicial [pgs. 88-91] - budget is $474,774, with $393,024 in personnel costs, $68,250 in operating costs, and $13,500 in capital expenses. The department has 6 employees which gives an average of $65,504/employee. Personnel costs equal 82.8% of the budget.

     Police [pgs. 92-99] - budget is $26,145,249, with $21,107,755 in personnel costs, $4,832,194 in operating costs, and $205,300 in capital expenses. The department has 322 employees (285 full-time, 37 part-time) which gives an average of $65,552/employee. Personnel costs equal 80.2% of the budget. The department has 232 sworn officers, an increase of 3 officers over last year. There are also 53 civilian employees (including 25 dispatchers).

Various expenses: $8,000 for radios, $6,000 for guns, $65,000 for ammunition, $199,000 for office equipment, $15,000 for K-9, $140,000 for mobile data terminals (dash computers), $689,364 for fuel, $261,603 for uniform cleaning, $382,437 for insurance costs, $545,800 in utilities, and $900,000 for the red light camera program (a 34% increase over FY 2012).

2013 Accomplishments: Part I crimes fell by 2%. Homicides, rapes, robberies, assaults, and motor vehicle crimes are also down; larcenies and arsons increased. They responded to 101,940 calls (280/day), completes 29,084 official police reports, initiated 11,965 criminal charges, and issued 37,749 citations (15,442 violations and 22,307 warnings. The Office of Professional Responsibility completed 26 internal affairs investigations, processed 98 off duty jobs, and provided 1,110 copies of in-car video to officers, defense attorneys, and citizens.

     Fire & Rescue [pgs. 100-107] - budget is $16,527,475, with $14,941,163 in personnel costs, $1,475,112 in operating costs, and $111,200 in capital expenses. The department has 190 employees which gives an average of $78,637/employee. The department has 188 full-time positions, 171 of them regularly fight fires, the rest being administration etc. Personnel costs equal 89.6% of the budget.

Various expenses: $266,110 for the fleet, $198,200 for uniforms & clothing, $136,620 for fuel, $274,900 for utilities, $83,652 for training, $51,500 for Hazmat testing, and $5,522 for medical equipment.

2013 Accomplishments: The Fire & Rescue Department has a Class 2 rating placing the department in the top 1% of fire protection agencies in the United States. In 2013, the department responded to 10,313 calls. Through "Project SAFE" the department installed 164 smoke alarms. Throughout 2013, the estimated property value saved by the department was $7.5 million.

     Building & Codes [pgs. 108-112] - budget is $1,863,256, with $1,720,095 in personnel costs, $129,961 in operating costs, and $13,200 in capital expenses. The department has 23 employees giving an average of $74,787/employee. Personnel costs equal 92.2% of the budget.

Accomplishments & notes: In FY 2014, the department reviewed 650 commercial plans and revisions for permit issue. There has been a 46% increase in residential single-family permits and a 40% increase in commercial construction permits between FY 2012-14. This rise is expected to continue and the department expects an increase in revenues of $465,108 for this year (giving a total revenue of $2,365,508).

     Planning [pgs. 113-118] - budget is $964,388, with $618,088 in personnel costs, $332,200 in operating costs, and $14,100 in capital expenses. The department has 7 regular employees giving an average of $88,298/employee. Personnel costs equal 64% of the budget.

Various expenses: $45,900 for supplies, $10,400 for travel & meals, and $250,000 for surveys and studies.

FY 2014 accomplishments: reviewed 154 site plans, 165 preliminary & final subdivision plats, and 48 rezoning applications. The department also completed 13 annexation studies, attended 12 neighborhood meetings, and published 43 agendas for the appropriate boards & commissions.

     Transportation [pgs. 119-126] - budget is $2,338,997, with $1,357,881 in personnel costs, $865,305 in operating costs, and $115,791 in capital expenses. The department has 28 employees (18 full-time and 10 part-time) which gives an average of $48,496/employee. Personnel costs equal $58% of the budget.

Various expenses: $155,185 for Rover bus fuel, $4,000 for advertising, $14,225 in utilities, $176,425 in contract expenses (Relax & Ride, MCHRA), $200,000 for traffic signals, and $45,000 for street lights.

Stats & Accomplishments: The City operates 138 signalized intersections and adds roughly 4 more each year. Of the 138, eighty are interconnected and accessible from the City's Traffic Operations Center. And, 32 are coupled with CCTV cameras. This department also oversees the City's Rover Bus system which consists of 7 fixed routes.

For FY 2014, the department continued expanding the Relax & Ride program from 16 to 31 daily trips, and began to retrofit traffic lights, replacing incandescent bulbs with LED's.

Public transportation operations funding is generally split on a 50% federal 25% state, and 25% local cost basis. Capital funding on the other hand is split 8-% federal, 10% state, and 10% local.

     Engineering Department (divided into Engineering Division & Street Division).[pgs. 127-137]
The total budget is $7,633,371, with $2,959,817 in personnel costs, $4,640,354 in operating costs, and $33,200 in capital expenses. The department has 51 employees (44 full-time, 7 part-time) which gives an average of $58,035/employee. The department added 12 positions for FY 2015, 6 full-time and 6 part-time. Personnel costs equal 38.8% of the budget.

  •   Engineering Division [pgs. 127-130] -  The total budget for the year is $3,200,646 and is detailed under the Street Division's budget. The grant funded portion of road projects is included in the Engineering Department’s budget below.

This division's budget break down is: $1,096,996 in personnel costs and $2,103,650 in operating expenses. The division has 13 employees which gives an average of $84,384/employee, with personnel costs equaling 52.1% of the budget.[pgs. 134-136]

Goals: make improvements to Middle Tennessee Blvd between Main St. and Greenland Ave. For FY 2015, the City budgeted $1.2 million in grant funded expenditures for the project. The City anticipates receiving 80% of the cost from federal dollars.

Extend Cherry Lane which will become a 5-lane connector between State Route 840 and Memorial Blvd. Total cost of the project over 5 years will be $29,915,000, of which $25,263,000 (83.4%) will come from borrowing or current funds. For FY 2015, $600,000 in federally funded expenditures is budgeted.

Widen 2.1 miles of Bradyville Pike to a three-lane section with sidewalks, bike lanes, and transit shelters. Total cost is expected to be $7,378,400, of which the City's contribution is $366,880. For FY 2015, $71,200 is included in the budget.

Various expenses: $27,300 for fuel, $17,400 for utilities, $40,800 for travel & meals, $40,000 for landfill gas management, and $1,871,200 for road projects.

Accomplishments: reviewed 160 site plans, 120 preliminary & final plats, and 8 annexation requests. The department also processed 320 fence applications and 100 pool & fence applications. They also reviewed permits for approx. 520 additions and reviewed 700 lots for new home construction.

  •    Street Division [pgs. 131-137] - budget is $4,432,725, with $1,862,821 in personnel costs and $2,569,904 in operating & capital costs. The department has 38 employees which gives an average of $49,022/employee. Personnel costs equal 41.9% of the budget.

Various expenses: $222,976 for the fleet, $142,237 for fuel, $25,600 for office supplies, $45,800 for utilities, and $1,845,800 for street lighting costs.

FY 2014 accomplishments: maintained 593 linear miles of City streets and State Routes; collected 877 tons of leaves & yard waste; completed 48 stormwater projects; and cleared 108 linear miles of roadway during each of five winter events.

     State Street Aid [pgs. 138-140] -budget is $2,800,350, all of which is under operating costs.

Various expenses: $85,000 for traffic signals, $185,000 for street markings, $2,050,000 for street paving & construction, and $75,000 for traffic lights.

The State Street Aid Department includes funding from the State's Fuel Tax Allocation to the City, which is based on population. The Engineering Department oversees maintenance projects funded by this department and covers expenditures to maintain state streets located within the City limits.

     Urban Environmental [pgs. 144-148] - budget is $1,111,133, with $882,405 in personnel costs, $201,453 in operating costs, and $27,275 in capital expenses. The department has 15 employees which gives an average of $58,827/employee. Personnel costs equal 79.3% of the budget.

Various expenses: $61,100 for agricultural services, $$12,785 for fleet maintenance, $26,367 for fuel, $47,000 for utilities, and $2,000 for a computer tablet.

This department is responsible for the overall beauty of the City which includes landscaping and other primarily arboricultural projects. It manages 50 City owned properties and 2.2 million square feet of turf and landscaped areas.

     Civic Plaza [pgs. 149-151] - budget is $76,781, with $41,512 in personnel costs, $33,769 in operating costs, and $1,500 in capital expenses. The department has one groundskeeper with personnel costs equaling 54% of the budget.

Since Rutherford County owns a portion of the plaza, the maintenance costs are shared: 58.5% City and 41.5% County. The Plaza is maintained by the Urban Environmental Dept.

     Parking Garage [pgs. 152-154] - budget is $117,490 with no employees.

Various expenses: $5,400 for sweeping and $106,000 for electricity.

The parking garage (under Civic Plaza, City Hall and the library) is also jointly funded, with 68.5% coming from the City and 31.5% County.

     Parks & Recreation [pgs. 155-166] - budget is $12,697,529, with $6,227,150 in personnel costs, $2,572,975 in operating costs, and $3,897,404 in capital expenses. The department has 341 employees (74 full-time and 267 part-time) The salaries (excluding benefits) for full-time employees average $40,138, and the wages for part-time employees average $6,643. The total salary & benefit average when divided by all employees comes to $18,264/employee. Personnel costs equal 48.6% of the budget.

Various revenues: $1,556,471 from recreation activity income and $1,638,474 from greenway grants.

Various expenses: $288,305 for lawn maintenance, $39,240 for advertising, $73,443 for fuel, $1,072,990 for utilities (nearly 65% is electricity costs), $7,300 for park movies, $36,720 for Sports*Com,  $39,145 for Patterson Community Center, $650 for an iPad, $400 for a TV, $200 for an Xbox 360 console, and $146,800 for various tennis facility expenses.

Stats & Accomplishments: Parks & Rec maintains approx. 1,115 acres worth of parks and greenways and $150 million in assets, which includes 28 sites and 74 buildings. According to the budget, the tournaments held in Murfreesboro which use public facilities have an estimated economic impact of $28 million/year. In FY 2013 there were an estimated 55,345 paid rounds of golf played.[pg. 285]

     Senior Citizens Dept. [pgs. 167-171] - budget is $955,660, with $631,246 in personnel costs, $309,414 in operating costs, and $15,000 in capital expenses. The department has 19 employees (9 full-time, and 10 part-time) which gives an average of $33,223/employee. Personnel costs equal 66% of the budget.

Notes & Accomplishments: The Senior Citizens Department operates the St. Clair Street Senior Center. In FY 2013, around 3,260 individual seniors visited the Center and in FY 2014, 223 volunteers put in 12,293 hours of service.

     Public Golf Course Dept. [pgs. 178-189] - the combined budget of all three golf courses (Old Fort, VA, and Bloomfield) is $1,974,268, with $1,288,649 in personnel costs, $664,919 in operating costs, and $20,700 in capital expenses. There are 55 employees (14 full-time, and 41 part-time). Full-time salaries are $683,981 (an avg. of $48,856/employee) and part-time wages are $267,646 (an avg. of $6,529/employee). Total salary & benefits for all employees averages out to $23,430/employee, with personnel costs equaling 65.2% of the budget.

The total budget breakdown for each golf course is: $1,606,594 for Old Fort, $309,831 for the VA course, and $57,843 for Bloomfield.

Various expenses: $62,535 for operations & maintenance, $91,000 for agricultural supplies, $10,000 for advertising, $73,600 for utilities, and $232,500 for purchases for resale.

     Solid Waste Dept. [pgs. 190-195] - budget is $4,532,159, with $2,392,130 in personnel costs, $2,128,029 in operating costs, and $12,000 in capital expenses. The department has 42 employees (41 full-time, 1 part-time) which gives an average of $56,955/employee. Personnel costs equal 52.6% of the budget.

Various expenses: $1,091,123 for fleet operation & maintenance, $511,471 for fuel, $133,360 for vehicle insurance, $66,000 for utilities, and $175,000 for disposal carts.

FY 2014 Accomplishments: The Department services 42,500 households and 6,000 businesses, with more than 50,000 trash cans being serviced weekly. The department logged 381,945 miles, and picked up 66,376 tons of garbage and yard waste, of that, 16,780 pounds (7.6 tons) was hazardous waste.

      Health, Education, and Welfare [pgs. 196-198] - budget is $2,227,919 with no listed employees. The key expenditure breakdown is: $1,356,287 for "other government", $239,750 for economic development, $518,992 for tourism, and $112,890 for outside agencies.

Various expenditures: 
  • Other government - $11,000 to the Health Dept, $51,000 to the TN Rehab. Center, $783,174 to Linebaugh Library, $106,780 to Myrtle Glanton Library, $68,500 to Animal Control, $2,500 for soil conservation, and $333,333 to MTSU. 
  • Tourism - $358,992 to the Chamber of Commerce, $25,000 for TSSAA, $20,000 to Discovery House, $37,500 to Main Street, $7,500 for the Murfreesboro Youth Orchestra, $10,000 for the Murfreesboro Symphony, $15,000 to the Oaklands Association, and $2,000 to the Area-16 Special Olympics.
  • Outside Agencies - $5,000 to Crime Stoppers, $10,000 to the Hope Clinic, $10,000 to Meals on Wheels, $2,500 to the Boys & Girls Club, $19,890 to the Child Advocacy Center, $10,000 to Special Kids, and $2,000 for Second Harvest.
Funding for the public library system is divided on a 44% City and 56% County basis.

     Fund Transfers [pgs.199-201] - These transfers are movements of funds between City departments. The total for this year is $31,307,698, with $26,397,595 going to Debt Service, $4,810,103 to City Schools, and $100,000 to the Drug Fund.

     Debt Service Fund [pgs. 206-214] - budget is $30,151,444 with $5,375,816 going to interest payments (up 6.4% over last year).

The City has a credit rating of AA from Standard & Poor's and Aa2 from Moody's, both of which are very good ratings.

In FY 2014, the City issued $29.35 million in fixed rate bonds at a rate of 2.67% interest. The bonds will mature in 15 years. For FY 2015, the City plans to issue $35 million in new debt, primarily to support the remodel of the new Police headquarters on Highland Ave.

The City currently has $264,480,057 in long-term debt, a net increase of $17,634,632 over last year. Of that, $207,604,585 is projected to be subject to the City's debt limit. The City's projected debt limit for this year is $453,646,832 (which is based on a fixed percentage of assets by law), which means the debt would be 54.24% of the debt limit.

Every time the issue of new debt arises, the discussion usually ends up like this, "we should go ahead and borrow more because 91% of our debt will paid off in 10 years." This has caused a fair amount of confusion among the average citizens of Murfreesboro. What the City means by that is, 91% of the debt we currently hold will be paid off in 10 years. Any new debt will be paid off 10-15 years from the day it is borrowed. Simply put, our City leaders plan on us always having debt and on always borrowing.

     Airport Fund [pgs. 215-221] - budget is $4,210,291, with $204,296 in personnel costs, $1,324,175 in operating costs, and $2,681,820 in capital expenses. The department has 7 employees (6 part-time, 1 full-time) which gives an average of $29,185/employee. Personnel costs equal 4.8% of the budget.

Various revenues: $376,243 from hangar rentals, $2,662,230 from state grants, and $1,086,258 from fuel sales & fees. The airport receives all of its funding from its own operations and grants, it does not come from other City funds.

Various expenses: $14,951 for supplies, $45,350 for utilities, $4,600 for travel & meals, $898,372 for purchases that will be resold, $2,362,840 for runway extension, and $318,980 for other improvements.

     Drug Fund [pgs. 222-224] - budget is $316,600, with $110,000 in personnel costs, $152,700 in operating costs, and $53,900 in capital expenses. There are no stand-alone employees as this fund is directed by the Police Dept.

Various revenues: $100,000 from court fines, $100,000 fund transfers, and $100,000 from seizures.

Various expenses: $20,000 for the fleet, $9,000 for a drug dog, $2,000 for office supplies, $19,800 for utilities, $70,000 for undercover operations, $10,000 for employee training, and $35,000 for a new truck.

The Drug Fund accounts for revenue from drug fines and confiscated property seized by the
Murfreesboro Police Department. The fund is used to support additional drug enforcement activities by the Police Department and to provide anti‐drug education programs in local schools.

     Risk Management Fund [pgs. 234-237] - budget is $3,607,863, with $295,609 in personnel costs, $3,310,754 in operating costs, and $1,500 in capital expenses. The department has 3 full-time employees which gives an average of $98,536/employee. Personnel costs equal 8.2% of the budget.

Various expenses: $9,100 for supplies, $2,109,802 for claims, $1,400 for utilities, $568,633 for fund transfers, $45,000 for legal services, and $80,000 for computer software.

Risk Management is responsible for maintaining the City’s self‐insured programs in property, liability and workers’ compensation insurance and for procuring special and excess risk insurance in key areas.

     Fleet Services [pgs. 238-342] - budget is $2,373,865, with $948,092 in personnel costs, $1,403,523 in operating costs, and $22,250 in capital expenses. The department has 13 full-time employees which gives an average of $72,930/employee. Personnel costs equal 39.9% of the budget.

Various expenses: $34,124 for supplies, $78,000 for utilities, $730,000 for parts, $60,000 for lubricants, $305,000 for vendor services, $150,000 for tires, and $12,000 for computer software.

The Department manages over 730 pieces of rolling stock.

Job Classification & Compensation Plan
From budget pages 311-316.

The City has 806 full-time employees, an increase of 15 from last year. Total personnel costs equal $59,876,881 which is an increase of 1.8% over last year. Simply using the number of employees and total personnel costs, the average pay per employee would be $74,289 (benefits included).
The City’s compensation plan is divided into nine steps, with Step 1 being the lowest. The top pay grade is the City Manager at $169,591/yr (at maximum level), and the lowest is $21,000/yr for the night watchman in the Solid Waste Dept. (entry level).

Additional reading:
To view the budget you can visit the City's webpage for it. The budget listed in the proposed budget, however it was passed with very few changes.

Monday, August 11, 2014

August 2014 Primary - State & Local

This is a review of the August 7, 2014 Primary & County General elections. For a review of the May 6, 2014 Rutherford County GOP Primary, see here.

Here is the review of the Aug. 7, 2014 Primary and County General elections. I have included some of the Primary results for the Democrat races as well. To make things easier, I've split the election in two. To read the review of the Aug. 7 U.S Senate and House primary, click here

Excluding the governor's race and federal offices which I dealt with in the previous post (along with several Democrat ticket positions*) there were 62 positions sought by 110 people. Of whom, 53 were declared Republicans, 37 were listed as "Independents" (several of these were for non-partisan races, others were actually Democrats and thought it would be wise to change their affiliation), and 20 declared Democrats. There were also 13 judicial positions for which we had the option of retaining or replacing the current judges.

General Vote Totals 

As noted before, 32,675 votes were cast (federal & state races). Early and absentee votes accounted for 53.7% (17,572) of all votes cast, leaving 15,103 votes cast on election day. This equates to a voter turnout of 21.3% based on the number of registered voters. 

Here's the number of votes & turnout percentages for each precinct. Since the official Election Commission report curiously did not provide the turnout figures, I have taken the time to compute them myself, however, they're based on the number of voters in 2013, so they may be slightly off the true 2014 percentage. 

Precinct #
1-1 = 563 votes (turnout 11.8%); 2-1 = 1,026 (28.2%); 2-2 = 817 (27%); 2-3 = 454 (78%) 
3-1 = 772 (27.2%); 3-2 = 711 (27.4%); 4-1 = 656 (23%); 4-2 = 348 (27.1%)
4-3 = 565 (31.4%); 4-4 = 424 (41%); 5-1 = 433 (18%); 5-2 = 299 (12.5%) 
6-1 = 1,129 (36.7%); 6-2 = 927 (26.3%); 7-1 = 630 (25.3%); 7-2 = 964 (26.7%) 
8-1 = 958 (34.2%); 8-2 = 309 (33.4%); 8-3 = 587 (34.4%); 8-4 = 424 (32.7%)
9-1= 843 (24.3%); 9-2 = 798 (23.3%); 10-1 = 689 (22%); 10-2 = 734 (24.5%) 
11-1 = 679 (25.8%); 11-2 = 606 (22.5%); 12-1 = 427 (18.6%); 12-2 = 445 (22.1%) 
13-1 = 699 (25%); 13-2 = 638 (22.2%); 14-1 = 1,572 (41.1%); 14-2 = 1,442 (38.3%) 
15-1 = 1,169 (39.4%); 15-2 = 1,034 (31%); 16-1 = 710 (22%); 16-2 = 203 (32%) 
16-3 = 420 (21%); 17-1 = 489 (16.2%); 17-2 = 61 (8.2%); 17-3 = 32 (7.6%)
18-1 = 653 (21.6%); 18-2 = 760 (33.3%); 19-1 = 635 (22.3%); 19-2 = 660 (23.8%) 
20-1 = 877 (24.7%); 20-2 = 781 (23.2%); 21-1 = 592 (20.5%); 21-2 = 1,031 (37.5%)

The precinct with the highest voter turnout was 2-3 (Milton Fire Hall) at 78%. The lowest voter turnout came from 17-3 (Buds Tire) at a mere 7.6%. Despite having an adult population of nearly 1,000 and at least 419 registered voters, the Buds Tire precinct generally has the lowest voter turnout of any precinct. 

Election Highlights

-----In the race for TN House Rep. District 37, Murfreesboro City Councilman Eddie Smotherman, challenged sitting State Rep. Dawn White. Rep. White won re-election 70.99% to 28.88% (6,139 votes cast).

-----One of the most contested races was for Rep. Joe Carr's seat in District 48. There were three candidates vying for the position: Adam Coggin, Rick Peppers, and Dr. Bryan Terry. In terms of view points and strategy, Coggin and Peppers were very similar, which in a 3-way race, made them vulnerable because they drew from identical voter blocks. Dr. Terry on the other hand, distinguished himself early on with his ideas and played a very hard - and fair - ground game. His team knocked on pretty much every door in the district at least once and his mailers were positive and message based. This worked very well.

Bryan Terry - 38.04% (2,669)
Adam Coggin - 31.57% (2,215)
Rick Peppers - 30.3% (2,126)
Write-in - 0.1% (7)
Total votes: 7,017

Out of the 17 precincts that make up the 48th District, Dr. Terry won 8 and tied with Adam Coggin in another. Dr. Terry's highest vote percentage came from precinct 4-1 where he won 48.16%. Adam Coggin won 5 precincts (plus the tie), and Rick Peppers won 3 precincts. 

-----Another contested Primary was for State House Dist. 49 between incumbent Mike Sparks and current County Commissioner, Robert Stevens. Rep. Sparks won with 54.16% (2,287 votes) while Commissioner Stevens garnered 45.82% (1,935 votes). 

-----For the Tennessee Republican Party's State Executive Committee's General Election, Rutherford County was split between two SEC districts, District 13 and District 14. Each SEC district is represented by a male and a female representative. For SEC Dist. 13, only one male candidate, incumbent Tim Rudd, qualified to appear on the ballot, while Walter Hill resident James Gann organized a write-in campaign. Mr. Rudd won with 98.39% (11,143 total votes cast). Considering the relatively obscure nature of SEC's and that write-ins almost never work, Mr. Gann's 179 votes were still a good showing. 

In the Dist. 13 GOP SEC committeewoman race, Kelsey Ketron won 67.23% (8,174 votes) over Mishelle Perkins' 32.58% (3,961). 
For the Dist. 14 committeemen race, Lance Frizzell won 55.75% (3,363) to Jim Sandman's 43.97% (2,652). And for Dist. 14 committeewoman, Lynne Davis won 60.39% (3,625) compared to Joanne Skidmore's 39.36% (2,363).   

-----The County Commission's General Election was also held on the 7th. Most of the Commission is comprised of Republicans, however Commission Dist. 21 has been held by Democrat Chantho Sourinho since 2010. The race between Commissioner Sourinho and Republican Patsy Briley was incredibly close. Sourinho barely maintained his seat, 49.9% to Briley's 49.69% - a minuscule 3 votes difference. There were 1,467 votes cast for Dist. 21, making 3 votes 0.2% of the total. There were 6 votes cast for a write-in candidate. 

-----Two Republican challengers for judge won their races. Barry Tidwell won 52.79% against David Loughry's (I) 47.16% for General Sessions Judge Part II. And, Councilmen Toby Gilley won 66.86% against Larry Brandon's (D) 47.16% for General Sessions Judge Part III. Gilley's win will open up a Murfreesboro City Council seat which will be filled later this year. 

-----As during the May 6th Primary, the General Election for Sheriff on Thursday was hotly contested. Despite Sheriff Robert Arnold's May Primary victory, he simply cannot seem to shake the fact that many citizens of Rutherford County do not support him and the marks against him continue to rise. So, since this election was indeed the County General, Dale Armour and Jim Tramel decided to run against Arnold as "Independents" (since they couldn't run as a Republicans), not to mention Democrat Bill Kennedy. Despite all this, Arnold managed to win re-election, and, with more than 50% of the vote overall. 

Robert Arnold (R) - 51.9% (16,333)
Dale Armour (I) - 28.33% (8,917)
Bill Kennedy (D) - 17.49% (5,503)
Jim Tramel (I) - 2.25% (708)
Write-in - 0.03% (9 votes)
Total votes: 31,470

-----Finally we come to the issue of retaining or replacing the judges of Tennessee's Supreme Court and the Courts of Appeals. There were 13 judges up for replacing.  Despite a grassroots campaign to replace them all - especially the Supreme Court judges - all judges were able to retain their seats. Even in Rutherford County, only one judge, Supreme Court Justice Connie Clark, was voted "out"; state-wide however, she was able to keep her seat. In fact, the votes to "retain" the judges were anywhere from 20-50% higher than those for "replace". 

Individual Races - County Results
Democrat Primary

Charles V. Brown - 35.44% (1,863)
Kennedy S. Johnson - 34.62% (1,820)
William "John" McKamey - 21.7% (1,141)
Ron Noonan - 7.55% (397)
Write-in - 0.68% (36)
Total: 5,257

U.S. Senate
Terry Adams - 39.09% (2,170)
Gordon Ball - 38.66% (2,146)
Larry Crim - 11.87% (659)
Gary G. Davis - 10.14% (563)
Write-in - 0.23% (13)
Total: 5,551

Democrat SEC Dist. 13
Tommy Bragg 74.64% (2,925)                               Mary Ann Eckles - 67.13% (2,583)                    
Darrell Bouldin 25.31% (992)                                  Kimberli R. Jensen - 32.8% (1,262)
Write-in 2 (0.05%)                                                 Write-in 3 (0.08%)

Democrat SEC Dist. 14
Mark Farrar - 99.82% (1,634)                                  Joan G. Hill - 50.27% (845)
Write-in 3 (0.18%)                                                   Brenda Ables - 49.43% (831)
                                                                              Write-in - 5 (0.3%)

Republican Primary

TN Senate Dist. 13 - Bill Ketron, unopposed, 99.31% out of 12,581 votes.
TN House Dist. 34 - Rick Womick, unopposed, 99.16% out of 5,500 votes.  

County General
Winners in bold.

County Mayor
Ernest G. Burgess (R) - 69.38% (20,493)
Heather A. Brown (I) - 20.82% (6,150)
Teresa St. Clair (I) - 9.65% (2,850)
Write-in - 0.15% (44)
Total: 29,537

Circuit Court Judge 16th Div I –  Jeff L. Peach (R) 45.24% | Mark Rogers (I) 54.69% out of 29,095 votes.
Circuit Court Judge 16th Div II – David Bragg (I) 54.91% | Nathan Nichols (R) 45.02% out of 28,332 votes.
Circuit Court Judge 16th Div III – Keith Siskin (R), unopposed, 99.25% out of 22,557 votes.
Circuit Court Judge 16th Div IV  – Royce Taylor (I), unopposed, 99.72% out of 22,597 votes.
Chancellor 16th Judicial District  – Howard W. Wilson (R), unopposed, 99.52% out of 21,914 votes.
Dist Atty Generl 16th Dist – Jennings H. Jones (R), unopposed, 99.35% out of 22,972 votes.
Public Defender 16th Dist – Gerald L. Melton (R), unopposed, 99.59% out of 22,361 votes.
County Commission Dist 01 – Doug Shafer (R), unopposed, 95.67% out of 416 votes.
County Commission Dist 02 – Steve Pearcy (R), unopposed, 98.54% out of 1,844 votes.
County Commission Dist 03 – Will Jordan (R), unopposed, 99.73% out of 1,09 votes.
County Commission Dist 04 – Jon Jaques (R) 39.34% | Jon Frazier (I) 19.27% | Robert Peay (I) 41.28% out of 1,749 votes.
County Commission Dist 05 – Carol Cook (R), unopposed, 98.87% out of 530 votes.
County Commission Dist 06 – Joe Frank Jernigan (R), unopposed 83.54% out of 1,634 votes (16.46% went to "write-in").
County Commission Dist 07 – Michael Kusch (R), unopposed, 98.74% out of 1,109 votes.
County Commission Dist 08 – Edward Phillips (R) 32.05% | Pettus L. Read (I) 37.98% | Steve Spence (I) 29.92% out of 2,122 votes.
County Commission Dist 09 – Joe A. Gourley (R), unopposed, 99.75% out of 1,186 votes.
County Commission Dist 10 – Brad Turner (R), unopposed, 99.3% out of 1,006 votes.
County Commission Dist 11 – Rhonda Allen (R), unopposed, 98.91% out of 915 votes.
County Commission Dist 12 – Robert Stevens (R), unopposed, 99.67% out of 612 votes.
County Commission Dist 13 – Paul Johnson (R) 68.62% | Chris Deal (I) 31.21% out of 1,144 votes.
County Commission Dist 14 – Charles Baum (R) 76.66% | Tony B. Gaines (I) 23.3% out of 2,558 votes.
County Commission Dist 15 – David Nipper (R) 62.09% | Tim Roediger (I) 37.69% out of 1,820 votes.
County Commission Dist 16 – Phillip Sugg Dodd (R), unopposed, 99.23% out of 904 votes.
County Commission Dist 17 – Jeff Phillips (R), unopposed, 99.04% out of 416 votes.
County Commission Dist 18 – Allen McAdoo (R), unopposed, 99.15% out of 942 votes.
County Commission Dist 19 – Shawn Kaplan (R), unopposed, 99.23% out of 908 votes.
County Commission Dist 20 – Trey Gooch (R), unopposed, 99.58% out of 1,186 votes.
County Commission Dist 21 – Patsy L. Briley (R) 49.69% | Chantho Sourinho (D) 49.9% out of 1,457 votes.
County Trustee – Teb Batey (R), unopposed, 99.64% out of 23,842 votes.
General Sessions Judge Part I – Kevin Hodges (R) 39.9% | Ben Hall McFarlin (I) 60.05% out of 28,927 votes.
General Sessions Judge Part II – 
David Loughry (I) 47.16% | Barry Tidwell (R) 52.79% out of 27,971 votes.
General Sessions Judge Part III – Larry D. Brandon (D) 33.1% | Toby Gilley (R) 66.86% out of 29,541 votes.
Juvenile Court Judge – Donna Scott Davenport (R), unopposed, 99.61% out of 24,590 votes.
Circuit Court Clerk – Melissa Harrell (R) 75.35% | Avent Lane (D) 24.58% out of 29,178 votes.
County Clerk – Lisa Duke Crowell (R), 75.76% | Pierrecia Lyons (D) 24.19% out of 29,278 votes.
Register of Deeds – Heather Dawbarn (R), unopposed, 99.64% out of 22,868 votes.

Smyrna Town Court Judge
Lynn E. Alexander (I) - 46.07%
Keta J. Barnes (I) - 24.58%
Jeremy Gourley (I) - 13.18%
Cherie W. Meece (I) - 8.69%
W. Alan Rose (I) - 7.36%
Write-in - 0.11%
Total votes: 3,694

Smyrna Town Court Clerk Terry D. Davenport (I) 55.71% | Lisa K. R. Wagner (I) 44.2% out of 3,468 votes.

Road and School Board positions are non-partisan. 

Road Board Zone 1 – David "Rabbit" Victory, unopposed, 99.66% out of 2,066 votes.
Road Board Zone 2 – Keith Bratcher, unopposed, 99.64% out of 3,089 votes.
Road Board Zone 4 – Dick Steagall, unopposed, 99.75% out of 3,616 votes.
School Board Zone 1 – Aaron B. Holladay, unopposed, 99.48% out of 1,934 votes.
School Board Zone 3 – Veronica Buchanan 32.91% | Howard Jones 32.87% | Lisa Moore 34.13% out of 4,533 votes.
School Board Zone 4 Wayne R. Blair 81.92% | Eric Tuttobene 17.78% out of 3,994 votes.

School Board Zone 7
Jim C. Estes 37.35% 
Patrick McCarthy 22.66%
Gabriel Fancher 18.72% 
Jody Lynn Bond 15.09% 
Paul L. Peavy 5.76% 
Write-in - 0.42%
Total votes: 4,493 votes

To see detailed county results, visit the Rutherford County Election Commission's report on the primary.
For state-wide results on all the other races, you can see their report here.

* I've decided not to review most of the Democrat Primary races, except for Governor and U.S. Senate, because they have almost no chance of winning the General Election. I excluded the State races because several lacked qualified candidates, and for those which did have a candidate they ran unopposed.