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Article Calendar

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Five Candidates Attended the Smith County Candidate Forum Held on October 14, 2020

On Wednesday, October 14, 2020, Smith County Insider hosted a Candidate Forum prior to the November 3 election. This event was co-sponsored by Smith County Insider and the Smith County Chamber of Commerce.

All candidates who are on the November ballot were invited to speak at the Candidate Forum. Candidates were invited and notified multiple times via letters and email.

See video below:

Early Voting began on October 14th and continues until October 29th. For more information about Early Voting, click here.

Election Day is November 3, 2020.

For more information about voting in Smith County, visit https://www.smithcountyelection.com or https://govotetn.com.

Click here to view a sample ballot.

See you at the polls!

October 2020 Meeting of the Gordonsville City Council

The Gordonsville City Council held its monthly meeting at 6:15 p.m. on Monday, October 12, 2020. 

In order to practice recommended social distancing, the meeting was held inside the Gordonsville Civic Center.

You can watch the full meeting below. 

Thanks to John Potts for Gordonsville Mayor for sponsoring the live broadcast of this meeting.

Subscribe to Smith County Insider’s YouTube channel to stay up-to-date on meeting coverage, business spotlights, video features, and more!

The Gordonsville City Council meets at 6:15 p.m. on the second Monday of each month at Gordonsville City Hall, located at 63 Main Street in Gordonsville.

All meetings are open to the public and streamed live at https://www.facebook.com/smithcountyinsider/. 

October 2020 Meeting of the Smith County Commission

The Smith County Commission held its October meeting on the evening of Monday, October 12, 2020.

You can watch the full meeting below.

Thanks to Powell & Meadows Insurance Agency for sponsoring the live broadcast of this meeting.

Subscribe to Smith County Insider’s YouTube channel to stay up-to-date on meeting coverage, business spotlights, video features, and more!

The Smith County Board of Commissioners meets on the second Monday of every month except December.

Typically, commission meetings are held in the General Sessions Courtroom of the Smith County Jail and Courts Facility, located at 322 Justice Drive in Carthage. During the July 2020 Meeting of the Smith County Commission, commissioners voted to hold all meetings at the Smith County Ag Center until the COVID-19 pandemic is over.

All meetings are open to the public and are streamed live at https://www.facebook.com/smithcountyinsider/.

Stephanie McCaleb Announces Candidacy for District 3 County Commissioner

I am officially announcing my candidacy for Smith Co. District 3 County Commissioner. I will work hard for the residents of my district with the desire to respect the fundamental principles of property owners and values maintained for generations. I was raised in a life of service to others, love for our land, and, most of all, family, which I am so lucky to have a village who has supported me! I will do my best to share a positive vision for our communities future. I would appreciate your vote this November.

Smith County Insider Candidate Forum Scheduled for October 14th

On Wednesday, October 14, 2020, Smith County Insider will host a Candidate Forum prior to the November 3rd election. This event is co-sponsored by Smith County Insider and the Smith County Chamber of Commerce.

The Candidate Forum will be live streamed on Smith County Insider’s Facebook page at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday evening.

All candidates who will appear on the November ballot have been invited to speak at the Candidate Forum. Candidates were invited and notified multiple times via letters and email.

Below is a list of confirmed candidates who plan to participate in the forum:

Gordonsville Mayor

  • Ronnie Burton
  • Milton Gibbs
  • John Potts

U.S. House – 6th District

  • Chris Finley
  • John Rose

Be sure to tune in to the live stream of Smith County Insider’s Candidate Forum! After the video airs, it will be uploaded to Smith County Insider’s FacebookInstagram, and YouTube channel.

For more information about the upcoming election on November 3, 2020, visit https://www.smithcountyelection.com. 

Click here to view a Sample Ballot for the November 2020 election. 

Early Voting for the November 3rd Election Starts October 14th

Early voting for the November 3rd election begins on Wednesday, October 14th. Voters will cast their votes in the State General Election including U.S. President, County Special Elections, Carthage Municipal Election, and Gordonsville Municipal Election.

Early voting runs Mondays through Saturdays and ends Thursday, October 29th. Election Day is Tuesday, November 3rd. The voter registration deadline ahead of this election was Monday, October 5th.

Early voting will be available at two locations: The Smith County Election Office and the Gordonsville Municipal Building.

Early voting at the Smith County Election office will be open from October 14th through October 29th from 8:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. on Saturday. Late-night early voting will be available on October 27th and 29th from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Voters may vote early at the Gordonsville Municipal Building on October 16th from 9:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m., October 17th from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., October 26th & 28th from 9:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m., and October 27th & October 29th (late-night voting) from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. There is no early voting in Gordonsville from October 19th through the 23rd.

Both early voting sites will be open to all Smith County voters, regardless of where in the county they live.

You can view a sample of the official ballot for the election here.

You may find more information about all elections and news at the Smith County Election Commissions website at https://www.smithcountyelection.com.

September 2020 Meeting of the Carthage City Council

The Carthage City Council held its monthly meeting on Thursday, September 1, 2020, at 6:00 p.m. 

The meeting was held at the Smith County Chamber of Commerce in order to practice social distancing.

You can watch the full meeting below.

Thanks to Smith County Animal Clinic for sponsoring Smith County Insider’s live broadcast of this meeting.

Subscribe to Smith County Insider’s YouTube channel to stay up-to-date on meeting coverage, business spotlights, video features, and more!

The Carthage City Council meets at 6:00 p.m. on the first Thursday of each month at Carthage City Hall, located at 314 Spring Street in Carthage, Tennessee – 37030.

All meetings are open to the public and streamed live at https://www.facebook.com/smithcountyinsider/. 

Today is the Last Day to Register to Vote for the Nov. 3 Election

Press release submitted by Tre Hargett, Tennessee Secretary of State.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Tennesseans must register to vote by 11:59 tonight, Oct. 5, to be able to cast a ballot in the Nov. 3 State and Federal General Election.

“I encourage all Tennesseans to register to vote or make sure their registration is up-to-date before the deadline tonight,” said Secretary of State Tre Hargett. “It is important for all of us to make our voice heard at the polls. Thankfully you can safely register in minutes with our online voter registration system.”

Registering to vote, updating your address or checking your registration status is fast, easy and secure with the Secretary of State’s online voter registration system. Any U.S. citizen with a driver’s license or a photo ID issued by the Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security can register online from any computer or mobile device at GoVoteTN.com.

Voters can also download a paper voter registration application at GoVoteTN.com. Completed paper voter registration applications must be submitted or postmarked today, Oct. 5, to your local county election commission office. You can find the mailing address for your county election commission on our website, https://tnsos.org/elections/election_commissions.php.

Early voting starts Wednesday, Oct. 14, and runs Monday to Saturday until Thursday, Oct. 29. Election Day is Nov. 3.

For the latest information on the upcoming election, follow the Secretary of State’s social media channels Twitter: @SecTreHargett, Facebook: Tennessee Secretary of State and Instagram: @tnsecofstate.
For more information about registering to vote, voter eligibility, photo IDs, and other Election Day details, visit GoVoteTN.com or call the Division of Elections toll-free 1-877-850-4959.

Ronnie Burton Announces Candidacy for Gordonsville Mayor

Release submitted by candidate.

My Name is Ronnie Burton and I would like to announce my candidacy for the position of Gordonsville City Mayor. I have lived in Gordonsville since 1966 with Shelby, my wife of 48 years. Our two children Chasity Wasmer, and Rusty Burton were raised and graduated in Gordonsville and we have four grandchildren, Caitlyn, Hannah, Samuel, and Lycity which all have attended Gordonsville High School.

I have forty three years experience in the Communications industry in management and operations. Before my retirement I was dealing with yearly budgets in excess of ten million dollars. I believe my forty three years of work experience more than qualifies me to manage the financial and operational duties required by the city of Gordonsville.

Gordonsville is a great community to live in and raise a family. I have seen a lot of improvements and developments in the city over the years. It is essential that our quality of life continues to improve. Recently city sewer service was installed but unfortunately the hookup expense has kept many of our citizens from being able to use this service. When elected I will move to decrease initial hookup fees, allow payment of the fees associated with sewer to be prorated over a 12 month period rather than a lump sum. I will also negotiate a flat rate connection cost with several contractors, approved by the city, in an effort to save residents money on the installation.

Also, In an effort to put the needs of our children first I would also like to announce that when elected I will donate $10,000.00 of the current salary raise recently passed by the city council, in the June meeting, to upgrading and replacing some of the playground equipment at the Gordonsville City Park.

I have several other ideas I would like to discuss with each of you personally and look forward to meeting and talking with each of you prior to the election.

Early voting starts Oct 14th thru Oct 29th. Your vote and support, in this upcoming election, will greatly be appreciated.

Vote Ronnie Burton on Nov 3rd, 2020 – Thank you for the opportunity to serve you and the city.

Want to Vote in the Nov. 3 Election? Oct. 5 is the Registration Deadline

Press release submitted by Tre Hargett, Tennessee Secretary of State.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Tennesseans who want to vote in the Nov. 3 State and Federal General Election only have one week until the voter registration deadline on Monday, Oct. 5.

“To make your voice heard at the polls on Election Day, you need to register to vote,” said Secretary of State Tre Hargett. “With the convenience of our online voter registration system, it’s never been easier or safer for Tennesseans to register to vote or update their registration.”

Registering to vote, updating your address or checking your registration status is fast, easy and secure with the Secretary of State’s online voter registration system. Any U.S. citizen with a driver’s license or a photo ID issued by the Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security can register online from any computer or mobile device at GoVoteTN.com.

Voters can also download a paper voter registration application at GoVoteTN.com. Completed paper voter registration applications must be submitted or postmarked to your local county election commission office by Oct. 5.

Election Day registration is not available.

Early voting for the Nov. 3 election starts Wednesday, Oct. 14, and runs Monday to Saturday until Thursday, Oct. 29.

Voters can find early voting and Election Day polling locations, view and mark sample ballots and much more at GoVoteTN.com or on the free GoVoteTN app available in the App Store and Google Play.

For the latest information on the Nov. 3 election, follow the Secretary of State’s social media channels Twitter: @SecTreHargett, Facebook: Tennessee Secretary of State and Instagram: @tnsecofstate.

For more information about registering to vote, voter eligibility, photo IDs, and other Election Day details visit GoVoteTN.com or call the Division of Elections toll-free at 1-877-850-4959.

September 2020 Meeting of the Smith County Commission

The Smith County Commission held its July meeting on the evening of Monday, September 14, 2020.

You can watch the full meeting below.

Thanks to Powell & Meadows Insurance Agency for sponsoring the live broadcast of this meeting.

Subscribe to Smith County Insider’s YouTube channel to stay up-to-date on meeting coverage, business spotlights, video features, and more!

The Smith County Board of Commissioners meets on the second Monday of every month except December.

Typically, commission meetings are held in the General Sessions Courtroom of the Smith County Jail and Courts Facility, located at 322 Justice Drive in Carthage. During the July 2020 Meeting of the Smith County Commission, commissioners voted to hold all meetings at the Smith County Ag Center until the COVID-19 pandemic is over.

All meetings are open to the public and are streamed live at https://www.facebook.com/smithcountyinsider/.

Absentee By-mail Voters Can Track Their Ballot Online

Press release submitted by Tennessee Secretary of State Tre Hargett

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Tennessee voters who request an absentee by-mail ballot for the Nov. 3 election can track the status of their ballot on the Secretary of State’s website using the Absentee By-Mail Ballot Status Tracker tool.

Through this tool, Tennessee voters can easily and securely track their absentee by-mail ballot’s status starting when the county election commission mails the ballot to the voter and ending when the completed ballot has been received by the county election commission. Visit the Absentee By-Mail Ballot Status Tracker at tnmap.tn.gov/voterlookup.

“We saw a record number of Tennesseans voting absentee by-mail in the August election and we expect to break that record in November,” said Secretary of State Tre Hargett. “Many of these voters are voting absentee by-mail for the first time. Our online tracking tool takes some of the uncertainty out of the process so voters can be confident about their ballot.”

Voters must have a legal reason to vote absentee by-mail.  A list of legal reasons to vote by-mail may be found at sos.tn.gov/products/elections/absentee-voting.

To receive an absentee by-mail ballot, you must submit a written request to your local election commission by mail, fax or email. Voters can find the contact information for their county election commission on our website, tnsos.org/elections/election_commissions.php.

Absentee by-mail ballot requests must be received by your election commission no later than seven (7) days before the election. The deadline to request a ballot for the Nov. 3 election is Tuesday, Oct. 27.

Completed absentee by-mail ballots must be returned by-mail to your local county election commission. Voters are encouraged to request and return their absentee by-mail ballots early in order to ensure deadlines are met.  Ballots must be received before the polls close on Election Day, Tuesday, Nov. 3. A first-class stamp is required to return a ballot through the U.S. Postal Service.

For the latest information on the Nov. 3 election, follow the Secretary of State’s social media channels Twitter: @SecTreHargett, Facebook: Tennessee Secretary of State and Instagram: @tnsecofstate.

For more information about voting absentee by-mail or tracking your ballot, go to GoVoteTN.com, contact your local county election commission or call the Division of Elections toll-free at 1-877-850-4959.

September 2020 Meeting of the Gordonsville City Council

The Gordonsville City Council held its monthly meeting at 6:15 p.m. on Monday, September 14, 2020. 

In order to practice recommended social distancing, the meeting was held inside the Gordonsville Civic Center.

You can watch the full meeting below.

Subscribe to Smith County Insider’s YouTube channel to stay up-to-date on meeting coverage, business spotlights, video features, and more!

The Gordonsville City Council meets at 6:15 p.m. on the second Monday of each month at Gordonsville City Hall, located at 63 Main Street in Gordonsville.

All meetings are open to the public and streamed live at https://www.facebook.com/smithcountyinsider/. 

Secretary of State Tre Hargett Encourages Voters to Prepare Now to Vote in November Election

Press release submitted by Tennessee Secretary of State Tre Hargett

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Secretary of State Tre Hargett is encouraging voters to prepare now to vote in the presidential election on Nov. 3. Tennesseans should make sure their voter registration is up-to-date and make decisions about whether they will vote in-person or absentee by-mail if eligible.

“We want every eligible Tennessean to be ready to vote in the November election,” said Secretary Hargett. “Whether voting in-person or by-mail we want your vote to count.”

Tennessee’s generous early voting period starts Oct. 14 and lasts until Oct. 29.

Voters who choose to vote in-person during early voting or on Election Day will see the same precautions used during the August election. Voters should expect to see signs with further safety instructions at their polling locations. Poll officials will be supplied with gowns, face shields, gloves and other PPE. All poll officials will be wearing face coverings and are trained in social distancing protocols. Voters will experience precautions taken such as single-use pens, disposable stylus to select their candidate and sanitizer at the polling location.

For voters, voting absentee by-mail county election commissions will start mailing out ballots in September. Election officials are currently taking steps to finalize the November ballot, including certifying August election results as well as waiting on both major parties to officially confirm their presidential nominees.

In Tennessee, voters must have a legal reason listed in the law to be eligible to vote absentee by-mail. Some of the most common legal reasons are voters who are 60 or older and voters who will be out of their counties during the election.

Eligible voters who have a special vulnerability to COVID-19 due to an underlying illness, physical disability, or other health condition and who cannot appear at the polling place on Election Day due to this condition may vote by absentee ballot under the “illness or physical disability” reason. Likewise, eligible voters who are caretakers to individuals with a special vulnerability may vote by absentee ballot under the “caretaker” reason.

Voters should consult trusted guidance from medical experts and use common sense in determining whether they have a special vulnerability. The CDC provides a website with helpful information that voters may wish to consult.

“If you make your request now to vote absentee by-mail, counties will be prepared to send you the ballot as soon as it is available,” said Coordinator of Elections Mark Goins. “Once you receive your ballot, vote it and mail it back in as soon as possible so it is ready to be counted on Election Day.”

Absentee by-mail ballots must be returned by-mail. This includes the U.S. Postal Service and services like FedEx and UPS. Each state is different when it comes to election law. Tennessee law does not permit voters to turn in their ballots in-person or for the use of drop boxes.For the latest information on the Nov. 3 election, follow our social media channels Twitter: @SecTreHargett, Facebook: Tennessee Secretary of State and Instagram: @tnsecofstate.

For more information on the voting process, go to GoVoteTN.com or call the Division of Elections toll-free at 1-877-850-4959.

Press Release: Defend Our Police and Defend Our Nation

by John Rose, U.S. Representative – Tennessee’s Sixth Congressional District

Low morale is permeating police departments across our nation as protesters repeatedly vilify, demonize, and verbally attack the thin blue line.

The death of George Floyd at the hands of police officers was a shameful and unacceptable crime that has stunned our nation. I grieve for the Floyd family and for the pain that Mr. Floyd’s death has caused all Americans.

I want Americans of all races, backgrounds, and circumstances to have equal opportunities and to be treated fairly and equally under the law. However, it is a mistake to conclude that the riots, looting, and widespread violence since George Floyd’s death are moving the conversation forward to remedy racial disparities within sectors of our society. Instead, the tragedy that is Mr. Floyd’s death has been hijacked by radicals who are working to destabilize America through bullying and choreographed chaos.
We must ask ourselves what kind of society are we becoming? I reject the idea that our local police forces or America as a whole are inherently or irredeemably racist. America is not a perfect nation, but no nation is. And, America has come a long way in its relatively short history—all the while leading the rest of the world on humanity’s long march toward freedom.

We recognize that two things can be true at once: that we have made progress, but that progress can still be made. That discrimination exists, but that our nation is not systemically discriminatory. Abolitionism, Women’s Suffrage, and the Civil Rights Movement all suggest we are a nation that learns and grows from the blights of our past. And, while the fight to stamp out racism everywhere it exists is ongoing, we have taken the critical steps, from a law and order perspective, to address that challenge.
The “defund the police” movement and calls for “cop free zones” are part of a dangerous plan to undermine civil society. Lawlessness without police equals crime, murder, and the destruction of our democracy. Defunding the police would make America less safe and is a dangerous and unworkable solution to a very serious problem.

I will not support the defunding of our police or the dismantling of our police. We will not turn our streets over to lawless criminals and gangs.

President Trump recently shed light on the fact that Executive Branch agencies have spent millions of taxpayer dollars on “training” where Federal employees are told that “virtually all White people contribute to racism” or where they are required to say that they “benefit from racism.” The founding of our nation is based on the principle of fair and equal treatment of all Americans, but that is not being reflected in our very own bureaucracy. State and local governments need to be focused on combatting issues in their specific communities and it is up to Legislative and Executive Branches to fix these issues plaguing our federal agencies. As your representative, I have the responsibility to understand problems facing our country and determine if a legislative solution is the right direction, and if so, take action.

I support open, fair, and rational public debates about how to minimize opportunities for discrimination, maximize accountability, and do our best to keep Americans safe from all threats of harm. But if we do not support our police and stand up to this unprecedented violence, we will lose our democracy. We must use our freedom to defend our freedom or we will lose our freedom.

Congressman John Rose represents the Sixth Congressional District of Tennessee.

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