NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) - Metro Councilman At-Large Steve Glover will announce on Saturday details of a more fair and responsible approach of combined lower property tax adjustment and government accountability actions to balance Metro Nashville’s budget.
Glover will join numerous small business people and homeowners for a press conference at Peg Leg Porker.
Mayor John Cooper has proposed a 32% increase in property tax to balance the city’s budget. The tax increase comes after Nashville neighborhoods were devastated by the March 3 tornado followed by the shutdown of businesses because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Glover was vocal after Tuesday’s Metro Council public hearing that ended around 5 a.m. Wednesday. The Council voted to approve the Mayor’s budget on second reading after a public hearing.
During the public hearing, there was more sentiment from speakers to “defund” the Metro Police Department rather than the proposed tax increase.
“We got six people who were able to speak out about the 32% property tax increase, and we went ahead and passed it,” Glover said after the meeting. “There’ll be no more public hearings. The people of Nashville got cheated and the system failed them drastically tonight.”
Metro Council members can propose a different budget that can be considered on third reading. The third reading is scheduled for June 17. Metro Council must pass a budget by June 30 or the Mayor’s budget will automatically be adopted.
Carey Bringle, owner of Peg Leg Porker, has been one of the most outspoken small businessmen to speak out against Cooper’s plan.
“All those small business owners that got in there and invested in the neighborhood are now being penalized for the prosperity that we helped create,” Bringle told News4 in April. “You need to look at the nature of a business. We’re 100% family owned and operated. We’re 100% independent. We’re 100% local.”
Bringle said his property taxes have increased more than 800% in eight years, currently sitting at $55,000.
“The thought of the tax increase on top of what’s already happening, it’s a little frustrating,” Bringle said. “Where have all the increases in property taxes gone? Where was it spent?”
Glover and other small business owners are advocating for a fairer way to fix the city finances.