Factor for TN job development funding tied to children's health
NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) -
Counties across Middle Tennessee always seem to be searching for ways to attract new jobs, but one state program designed to help is asking for something that may seem hard to believe.
The state now wants to consider the number of overweight eighth grade students when deciding who to help the most.
It's just one of several factors, but it has at least one county mayor warning that it goes too far in the push to win valuable grant money to boost job growth.
Cheatham County has a plan for new business, and just like every county mayor, its top executive David McCullough seems cautiously optimistic.
"We're doing everything we can, because we've got to have infrastructure," he said.
The state provides support and a yearly challenge through its ThreeStar program. It recently revised the rules to help counties improve and win much-needed grant money.
To be the most eligible for grants, counties must meet benchmarks in five categories. And in one of them, counties must reduce the body mass indexes of its eighth graders - a change McCullough said he worries goes too far.
"I don't see how it really fits in with economic development," McCullough said. "I'm all for being a part of the team and being a part of ThreeStar, but I think it has to be reasonable and it has to fit within the context of a rural area."
The state revised its program to better fit the governor's five priorities for growth. It also wrote it tried to cut complications, confusion, time commitment and paperwork.
But at least one mayor said the changes did just the opposite and missed the mark for what really matters to would-be developers.
"They want to know about taxes. They want to know about available land. They want to know about prices. They want to know about infrastructure. They want to know about zoning. They want to know about those types of issues, but they never once ask, 'what is the BMI score of an eighth grader?'" McCullough said.
The Cheatham County mayor also said he worries about a public safety requirement that scrutinizes the crime rate. As he put it, that's up to the sheriff and not necessarily something he can directly influence.
In response, the agency in charge - the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development - said in a statement:
"The intent of the ThreeStar program is to build and support sustainable communities in Tennessee. The Body Mass Index (BMI) metric will be indicative of a community's efforts to provide for a strong workforce in the future."
Copyright 2013 WSMV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
Wednesday, April 16 2014 10:54 AM EDT2014-04-16 14:54:13 GMT
An ailing Miley Cyrus has canceled her concert Tuesday night at Sprint Center.The notice came a matter of hours before she was scheduled to go on stage.A concert promoter tells KCTV5 that Cyrus is in theMore >>
An ailing Miley Cyrus remains in a Kansas City hospital and says she must cancel her St. Louis concert slated for Wednesday night. This comes after she unexpectedly canceled her Tuesday night concert in Kansas City. More >>
Tuesday, April 15 2014 6:32 PM EDT2014-04-15 22:32:39 GMT
LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - A Male High School student took her life shortly after posting a video online. The video remained online for a lot of the day Tuesday, even though the school system, law enforcementMore >>
A Male High School student took her life shortly after posting a video online. Unfortunately, teenage suicides are more common than you might think. Seven Counties Services, a behavioral health agency, said there were three times more suicides than homicides in Louisville in 2012 and Kentucky ranks number two in teenage suicide.More >>
Monday, April 14 2014 9:37 PM EDT2014-04-15 01:37:12 GMT
Sanitation workers in Dickson County made a shocking discovery Friday when they found an injured puppy in a landfill. Officials believe the dog was intentionally thrown away. "Anybody would've done theMore >>
Sanitation workers in Dickson County made a shocking discovery Friday when they found an injured puppy in a landfill. Officials believe the dog was intentionally thrown away.More >>
Wednesday, April 16 2014 11:33 AM EDT2014-04-16 15:33:14 GMT
Traffic is completely stopped in Henderson due to an overturned semi. A semi has overturned on the U.S. 41 North strip near Long John Silver's. Officials were called to the scene around 3:15 WednesdayMore >>
It happened on the U.S. 41 North strip near Long John Silver's. Officials were called to the scene around 3:15 Wednesday morning.
Saturday, April 12 2014 6:07 AM EDT2014-04-12 10:07:09 GMT
An incredible photo snapped Saturday at the iconic Pipeline on Oahu's North Shore is going viral. A mother humpback whale and her calf were cruising just offshore when a set rolled in. J.T. Gray of NorthMore >>
An incredible photo snapped Saturday at the iconic Pipeline on Oahu's North Shore is going viral.More >>
Tuesday, April 15 2014 6:28 AM EDT2014-04-15 10:28:24 GMT
ESTILL COUNTY, KY (WAVE) – After losing both his parents in a short amount of time, a community is rallying around an Estill County teen. Joe Snowden lost his mother in a car crash on April 10, just twoMore >>
Joe Snowden lost his mother in a car crash on April 10, just two weeks after laying his father to rest. Now Snowden is faced with covering all the funeral costs himself. More >>
1115 Mt. Auburn Road
Evansville, IN 47720