Scandal raises new concerns for transit vote and Nashville’s future

(Photo: WKRN)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) –  Last year, Mayor Megan Barry unveiled a major transit plan that would cost the city billions of dollars. In the wake of her resignation and guilty plea to theft in office, there are new questions about the future of that plan and city business going forward.

New Mayor David Briley says, “The transit plan is the most important thing before our city.” He pledges to work to get it passed by the voters in May.

The CEO of the Nashville Chamber agrees. “I think the transit plan has always been a community plan and it’s going to have a community vote on May 1st.” said Ralph Schulz.

While there may have been some talk about postponing the transit vote, it is not likely, according to Jim Shulman, Metro Councilman-at-large. “As far as I know once we voted for it on third consideration a couple of weeks ago it goes on the ballot on May the first.”

Schulz said people were moving ahead with their plans to do business in Nashville, despite the investigation of Barry’s affair with her police bodyguard.

“They continued to have interest in Nashville, or expanding in Nashville. So I think Nashville’s brand is bigger than any one person.”

Similar words came from Nashville Visitors and Convention Bureau CEO Butch Spyridon.

“It’s a sad day for both Nashville and Mayor Barry. But Nashville is bigger than just one person. We’ll do what we’ve always done in challenging times – we’ll come together and continue to move the city forward. We anticipate a smooth transition and will work with Mayor Briley to keep our tourism industry strong. We have no reason to believe our momentum as a global destination won’t continue.”