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Metro Council members are reeling from the heft of Mayor Bill Purcell’s proposed $237 million capital improvements budget—a fourth of which would pay for school expansions and new construction. Included were myriad other projects, including $5 million for the Nashville Zoo, $2.6 million in improvements to the train Gulch area, and $500,000 to remove the Red Grooms Foxtrot Carousel from Riverfront Park. “There is so much stuff in there that I don’t even know where to begin to look,” says at-large Metro Council member Leo Waters.

Memphis model

Top politicos, music label heads and tourism officials gathered for sausage and biscuits at the governor’s mansion one morning this week to discuss a big, new music event for Nashville. With everyone pointing to Memphis in May—the huge barbecue and music celebration—as a role model, Gov. Don Sundquist committed the state to doing “anything we can to promote and support the dream you have for this.” The idea is to explore combining several of Nashville’s ongoing music events—Tin Pan South, Chet Atkins Musician Days, Fan Fair and various other jazz and bluegrass festivals—into one massive week of music.

A belly punch

A Saturday New York Times story by writer Richard L. Berke—who, admittedly, has been recently critical of Al Gore—quotes high-profile Democrats and Gore supporters as saying they’re glad George W. Bush is president. “Perhaps out of a desire to rally around Mr. Bush, not one of more than 15 prominent Gore loyalists interviewed said their candidate would have done a better job,” Berke wrote.


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