Bob Clement would create the Office of Volunteerism. Howard Gentry would start the Office of Music and Entertainment. And David Briley wants an Office of Sustainability. Anybody for an Office of Offices?
Mayor Bill Purcell started the fad by creating the popular Office of Neighborhoods, and the men who want to follow Purcell are hoping their copycat ideas will catch on with voters too. (Buck Dozier doesn't want to start a new office, he just wants to change the name of the Office of Neighborhoods to the Office of Communities. Whatever.)
Karl Dean isn't joining in the fun. Why not? He says it isn't fiscally prudent. The candidates have been generally making nice with each other this whole campaign, but at a "neighborhood gathering" in West Nashville last night, Dean offered this rare criticism:
"You're going to hear all these guys talking about promising new offices within the mayor's office," he said. "I haven't proposed any of that stuff. Everyone wants to create a new office of this, an office of that, an office of that. What does that do? Those are further expenses. People want to hire this person and that person. And create all these new jobs [in Metro government]. That's fine. That's new expenses."