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No. 663: Phoning In
Photo by Pawel Czerwinski / Unsplash

No. 663: Phoning In

🗓️ Today, Davis phones in, Megan talks transit referendum, AG’s case against NCAA, and a new mayoral appointee.

Good afternoon, everyone.

Happy Valentines Day from just North of the border. We’ll be back in full swing tomorrow. Until then, get the missus something nice.




From Megan Podsiedlik

Tomorrow morning, Mayor O’Connell will hold a press conference to make a “special announcement”— of course, all suspect he will unveil his long-awaited transit referendum. Last week, Freddie visited the Nashville Business Breakfast, where he spoke about the logistics of his plan.

Though the mayor conceded that it would call for slightly higher taxes, he seemed confident in his ability to provide the people with what they want. "Demand for transit in Nashville far outpaces most of our peer cities," O'Connell said, answering one attendee’s question. "It is incredibly popular. If you try to cut a transit route, you will hear from a Metro Council member, the wails and laments of their constituents."

We will know more after the mayor’s announcement tomorrow at 9:30 a.m.


On Monday, Mayor O’Connell appointed Dr. Leah A. Dundon, an environmental attorney and assistant professor at Vanderbilt School of Engineering, as his designee to the Metro Planning Commission.

According to the mayor’s office, Dundon’s main areas of expertise include “sustainability, climate education with a focus on international treaties, and infrastructure resilience.” She also serves as the director of Vanderbilt’s Climate Change initiative.  

“I am excited that Leah Dundon will serve the city of Nashville on the planning commission as she will lend a unique perspective to the body,” O’Connell said in a press release on Monday. “As a graduate of Metro Schools and with a PhD from Vanderbilt University, Dundon knows the community well. Further, her legal background and engineering expertise mean she’s extremely qualified to review technical matters, and we want to take a long view of planning activities as we build trust in our planning processes.” 


“It’s a wonderful day to fight on behalf of our student-athletes in Tennessee,” Skrmetti’s office posted as the attorney general took part in yesterday’s preliminary injunction hearing against the NCAA. The latest of the AG’s antitrust suits is challenging the nonprofit’s NIL (Name, Image, Likeness) recruitment ban. “Due to the NCAA’s arbitrary and illegal rules, student-athletes are being harmed and prevented from making important decisions concerning their name, image, and likeness rights — which may have a big impact on their academic and financial futures,” said the AG in prepared remarks released after the hearing. “Meanwhile, everybody else involved in college sports is getting rich at those student-athletes’ expense.”

From the steps of the Greenville courthouse, Skrmetti told reporters that the hearing was both educational and confusing. “The lack of clarity is hurting athletes,” he said. “The lack of opportunity to make informed decisions is hurting student-athletes. It's not fair and it’s not legal.” 


The Music City Grand Prix won't happen in downtown Nashville this year (Channel 5) A location change is happening as a result of the upcoming construction of the Tennessee Titans' new stadium. The last IndyCar race at Nashville Superspeedway took place in 2008.

Tennessee AG doubts legality of bill limiting President’s ability to federalize National Guard (Lookout) Tennessee’s Attorney General issued a rare opinion, questioning the legality of a bill sponsored by 13 Republicans to limit the President’s ability to federalize the state national guard.

Nashville party bus to participate in Kansas City Chiefs Super Bowl parade (Tennessean) Grey Lion Tours, a Nashville-owned luxury transportation company, will provide a bus for the Super Bowl-winning team for the second consecutive year.


  • 25-Acre Mixed-Use Development Proposed In Nolensville (Now Next)
  • Stalled downtown hotel project could see work resume (Post)
  • Dave & Buster's reveals Clarksville location (NBJ)


View our calendar for the week here and our weekly film rundown here.

📅 Visit our On The Radar list to find upcoming events around Nashville.

🎧 On Spotify: Pamphleteer's Picks, a playlist of our favorite bands in town this week.

👨🏻‍🌾 Check out our Nashville farmer's market guide.


🎸 Band of Horses @ Ryman Auditorium, 8p, $46+, Info

🎻 Romance at the Symphony: Cinema's Iconic Themes @ Schermerhorn Symphony Center, 7:30p, $25+, Info

🪕 Bluegrass & 2-4-1's Featuring Sheriff Scott & The Deputies @ Tennessee Brew Works, 6p, Free, Info
+ bluegrass 6-8pm and 2-for-1 craft beer specials all day

🪕 Bluegrass Night @ The American Legion Post 82, 7p, Free, Info

In case you missed it...

📰 Check out the full newsletter archive here.

No. 662: The Looming Transit Referendum
📅 Today, Davis looks ahead briefly, and Megan reviews some bills flying through the state legislature that stick out for different reasons.
No. 661: Testing the Water
📅 Today, Davis takes the cultural temperature, and Megan reviews the mayor’s first capital spending plan.
No. 660: You’re forgetting something, mayor
📅 Today, Davis talks priorities, Jerod reviews American Fiction, Megan reviews a hospital visitation bill and recaps today’s mayoral roundtable, and we furnish our weekly film rundown.
No. 659: Fighting the Law
📅 Today, Davis debunks a talking point about gun laws, and Megan wonders if Justin Jones is good or bad at his job.
No. 658: What is a housing crisis?
📅 Today, we download last night’s council meeting. Davis talks about the zoning bills, and Megan, the rest.


  • 🇸🇻 President Nayib Bukele’s historic transformation of El Salvador (Read)
  • 🤼 The Iron Claw is a Heartland epic. Of course it isn’t an Oscar contender. (Read)
  • ☢️ A small Tennessee town's forgotten history as a nuclear leader (Read)
  • 🤡 Metro Arts launches initiative to 'return land, money, and resources' to 'Indigenous, African, and Asian peoples' (Read)
  • And check out our podcast, YouTube, and article archive for more.