Just a quick reminder that next Tuesday, October 4th, Metro City Council is voting on a resolution to grant taxpayer dollars to Planned Parenthood to fund out-of-state abortions.
THE ABORTION LEGISLATION
For the first time in Metro history, tax dollars might directly fund abortion. During the September 6th meeting, council members Porterfield and others introduced a resolution that would grant a half million dollars to pay Planned Parenthood.
Where are the funds coming from?
- $300K is coming from Traffic Signal Maintenance Regular Pay
- $100K is from Mayor’s Office - Regular Pay
- $100K is from Metro Council - Regular Pay
This money can be used for distributing safer sex supply kits, distributing information about abortion and reproductive health care, and services related to abortion navigation for individuals seeking abortion care in states outside of Tennessee.
WSMV reported that $150K is earmarked for the out-of-state abortion accomodations. The legislation itself does not point out any specific allotment of money for out-of-state abortions. Instead, it creates a “Family Planning Services” account available as a grant to Planned Parenthood of Tennessee and North Mississippi with no actual parameters on how much of the funds are used towards the previously mentioned services.
THE POLITICS OF IT
During the introduction of the legislation, Council Member O’Connell took the floor and explained that discussions concerning the source of the funds are still in the works. Going into next week's meeting, O’Connell’s statements seem more like lip service given that the proposed legislation on the docket for October 4th reflects no changes. The fund sourcing and the use of the funds remain exactly the same with no filed amendments.
WILL STATE LEGISLATORS TAKE ACTION?
Earlier this year, Rep. Tom Leatherwood (R-Arlington) sponsored a bill that would prohibit local governments from sending funds to any “elective abortion provider” that performs more than 50 abortions in the previous year. The bill was reported by the Tennessean as “a direct response to a $25,000 Shelby County Commission grant for a playground at a Memphis health clinic.”
“We're talking about taxpayer dollars here and taking money from people who do not support abortion, and spending their tax dollars on something they disagree with," Leatherwood said during an early March subcommittee meeting on the bill as reported by the Tennessean.
The bill passed on first reading in the House but did not become law. Given the fact that Leatherwood and others proposed the legislation to protect the First Amendment freedoms of tax-paying Tennesseans, it wouldn’t be surprising if a similar bill appeared during this year’s General Assembly in response to Nashville Metro City Council’s resolution.
Planned Parenthood listed Leatherwood’s legislation on their “Forced Birth Agenda” list.
YOU STILL HAVE TIME TO CONTACT METRO COUNCIL
The proposed resolution will be voted on during the October 4th meeting at 6:30p.m. in the Metropolitan Courthouse. This is a resolution, not an ordinance. If passed next meeting, it will go into effect.
Council members sponsoring the resolution: Delishia Porterfield, Sandra Sepulveda, Emily Benedict, Ginny Welsch, Freddie O'Connell, Bob Mendes, Sean Parker, Tom Cash
You can contact your legislator by finding them on the Nashville government registry or by emailing the full council. [email protected]