Rematch: Davis vs. Zachary – Jason Zachary – Republican

Local Democrat again challenges GOP incumbent for Dist. 14 state House seat

What are some things you are most proud of while serving District 14?

“It is the honor of my life to serve our community in the State House. I’m most proud of the opportunity to daily serve the needs of those who live in West Knoxville. The daily acts of service don’t receive attention but matter a great deal to every person that calls me or our office needing help from our great state.

“The impact we have on the daily lives of the people in West Knoxville is the best part of serving. Additionally, the relationships with the other elected leaders in Knox County is invaluable to the community. We all work so well together and are eager to help with needs that arise. This has a significant impact on all of Knox County. I’m proud of the work we all do to better our community. That only happens with great relationships, which have been built over the last few years. Not all communities are so blessed.

“Finally, in my three terms I’ve worked to keep taxes low, limit regulation, keep Tennessee the lowest debt state, fight for life, support law enforcement and strengthen our 2nd Amendment rights. I’m proud of the fact that we, as Tennesseans, have not become complacent with the incredible growth in our state, over the last 10 years, under Republican leadership. I pledge to continue working daily to ensure Tennessee stays the best place in the country to work, live and raise a family.

• What are a few of the state’s most pressing needs, which can be solved within the General Assembly, and why should you be re-elected to carry on the fight to help accomplish those needs?

“The most pressing need in our community, based on your tremendous feedback, is our challenge with the (Knox County) Health Board.

“As many of you know, the Health Board is currently functioning as a legislative and executive body with no accountability to We the People or to our elected County Mayor (Glenn Jacobs). The Health Board can issue orders and mandates at its discretion. TCA 68 provides the board this authority. This power has never been exercised until now. This section of code was passed decades ago and is broken. No legislative body could have foreseen this kind of pandemic in our nation.

“While the health board plays an important role, they should not be issuing and enforcing what is effectively law with a criminal penalty. I have legislation that will be filed in January, if you choose to send me back to the Capitol, to move the Health Board back to an advisory role. The Health Board would serve as an advisor to the Mayor, which is needed and a valuable resource.

“We also continue to struggle with substance abuse. During the last six months of this pandemic, we have seen overdose deaths increase by 82 percent in Knox County.

“I worked with the mayor to pull together churches and non-profits to assist in addressing this issue. I’ve also been working with the Metro Drug Coalition as they prepare to open The Gateway downtown to assist those recovering.

“Additionally, we must keep our schools open. Our kids were out of school for six months, and I know after talking to hundreds of parents it is critically important to the future of students that they be in school, learning.

“I’m working with (Knox Board of Education chair) Susan Horn, and (Farragut principals) Dr. John Bartlett, Gina Byrd and Weston Edmonds, and our many leaders in education to do all we can from the state level to create an environment for our students to thrive.

“Finally, many of you have asked me about what we have done as a state to protect our cities and neighborhoods as we see riots across America.

“The Legislature took swift action in June to increase penalties for those who riot, assault first responders and deface/destroy public property. The anarchy we have seen in Seattle and Portland will not be tolerated in Tennessee. I will continue to support law enforcement by providing them the resources needed.”