Press Releases

Ramsey: Senate Couldn’t Approve ‘Mere Verbal Agreement’ with Obama Administraion

Statement from Tennessee Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey, R-Blountville; February 4, 2015:

Lt. Governor Ramsey made the statement below following the defeat of SJR0001 in the Senate Select Health Committee:

“Governor Haslam’s hard work and passion on Insure Tennessee has been made clear this week. While many questions have been answered during this special session, several questions remain unanswered. Ultimately, the absence of a clear, written agreement between the federal government and the State of Tennessee made passage impossible. Tennessee has always been a well-run, fiscally-responsible state. We could not in good conscience put our stamp of approval on a mere verbal agreement with the Obama administration.”

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‘Insure TN’ Brouhaha Brewing Between House, Senate?

Disagreement appears to have developed between the Republican-dominated chambers of the General Assembly over how to handle Gov. Bill Haslam’s “Insure Tennessee” proposal scheduled for discussion in a special session beginning Feb. 2.

On Thursday, leaders of the Tennessee Senate’s GOP supermajority indicated the upper chamber will be holding off on committee votes on the issue until the House approves a resolution authorizing Tennessee to sign up for the Affordable Care Act’s Medicaid expansion funding.

But that doesn’t seem to sit well with some Republicans in the House.

“Apparently, there was a Senate Republican Caucus meeting yesterday where it was fantasized to the effect that we would go through this process on Insure Tennessee through several committees before they even considered it in the Senate, and I would like to dispel that silly notion that they had in that Senate Republican Caucus meeting,” Majority Leader Gerald McCormick said Friday morning on the House floor.

“That will not happen,” said the Republican from Chattanooga, who is expected to attempt to guide the governor’s Insure Tennessee plan to approval in the House.

Haslam’s Medicaid expansion plan — the centerpiece of which is a system of Affordable Care Act-financed vouchers to allow the purchase of private-sector health insurance by lower income Tennesseans — has been met with skepticism by many members of the Republican Legislature, even as GOP leaders have pledged to keep an open mind about the expansion.

According to an emailed statement Friday from the office of Speaker of the House Beth Harwell, the lower-chamber leadership was under the impression “that the House and Senate would each run the resolutions concurrently. “

Press Releases

Ramsey Congratulates Constitutional Officers on Re-election

Tennessee Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey posted the following two statements to his official Facebook page January 14, 2015:

In regard to the re-election of Justin P. Wilson as the Tennessee Comptroller of the Treasury: 

Congratulations to Justin Wilson on his re-election as Comptroller of the Treasury. Tennessee’s strong financial position is due in no small part to the work of Justin Wilson. As Tennessee’s money cop, Justin Wilson keeps watch every day to make sure Tennessee taxpayer dollars are being allocated efficiently and that any waste, fraud and abuse is identified and reported. I am extremely grateful that Tennessee will continue to benefit from his expertise, integrity and commitment to service.

In regard to the re-election of David H. Lillard, Jr., as the Tennessee Treasurer:

Congratulations to David Lillard on his re-election as Tennessee’s Treasurer. Tennessee’s retirement system is fully-funded and consistently ranked among the best in the nation. This isn’t just a matter of luck. It is due to the hard work and management skills of David Lillard. The state of Tennessee is extremely fortunate to have David at the helm at the Department of Treasury. I commend my colleagues for returning yet another resounding vote of confidence in his performance.

Press Releases

Ramsey Re-elected Speaker of the Senate

Press release from the office of Tennessee Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey; January 13, 2015:

(NASHVILLE, TN), January 13, 2014 — The State Senate re-elected Lt. Governor Ron Ramsey today as Tennessee’s 33 senators met at noon on the first organizational day of the 109th General Assembly. This will be Ramsey’s fifth two-year term as Tennessee’s Lieutenant Governor and Speaker of the Senate.

“Thank you for placing your trust in me,” Ramsey told senators and onlookers after being elected. “The people of Tennessee have placed great trust in all of us. They have called upon us in election after election to use our power wisely — and we have.”

“We made hard choices, just like any Tennessee family would have to, and balanced our budget. And when we have had to borrow money, we paid it back — promptly and in full,” Ramsey continued. “That is the Tennessee way.”

“This stands in stark contrast to the ways of Washington. As our federal government continues on a path into the economic abyss, Tennessee stands apart — committed to fiscal discipline and sanity,” Ramsey explained.

“Tennessee truly is the best state in the nation in which to live, work and raise a family,” Ramsey concluded. “As long as I am speaker, I will fight to preserve that reputation and continue our record of accomplishment.”

Tennessee’s conservative leader, Lt. Governor Ron Ramsey is the first GOP Senate Speaker in Tennessee in 140 years and the first from Sullivan County in over 100 years. In the 2008 elections, Ramsey led Tennessee’s Republicans to a gain of three Senate seats and a solid five seat majority. Under Ramsey’s leadership in 2010, Republicans both increased their majority in the Senate and elected a Republican Speaker of the House of Representatives for the first time since 1969.

After picking up an astounding 6 seats in 2012, the Ramsey Senate achieved an unprecedented 28 to 5 supermajority in the 2014 elections, a feat unmatched by either party in modern Tennessee history.

Press Releases

Ramsey Issues Statement on Syria, Obama Tweet

Statement from the office of Tennessee Lt. Gov Ron Ramsey; September 12, 2013:

Lt. Governor Ramsey issued the following statement to media outlets requesting further comment on yesterday’s social media posts seen on Facebook and Twitter.

“Every September 11 since that tragic Tuesday in 2001 has been a day of remembrance. We remember those who died, those who served and those who carry on. But we must also remember those who attacked us and why. The Syrian rebels connections to Al-Qaeda are well-established and well-known. I am proud to stand with leaders like Senator Ted Cruz and Senator Rand Paul against coming to the aid of our enemies, enemies who continue to hate our country from afar as they kill Christians in their own country.”

Links of interest:

Lt. Governor Ramsey’s social media posts

Press Releases

TNDP Chair, House Minority Ldr. Condemn Lt. Guv Tweet on Syria, 9/11

Statement from Roy Herron, Chairman of the Tennessee Democratic Party; September 11, 2013:

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Tennessee Democratic Party Chairman Roy Herron issued a statement Wednesday condemning a message broadcast from the Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey twitter page:

“Speaker Ramsey should fire whoever wrote such an outrageous, dishonest, misleading, incendiary, unpatriotic and dangerous attack on our nation’s president and on Republican leaders like Senators Corker and McCain and House Speaker Boehner and even the Military Leaders working with them. Many of us are unsure about how to proceed in Syria, but whoever wrote that Tweet dishonors the victims of 9/11 and our military men and women who are doing all they can to stop more children and parents from being gassed and killed.”

Statement from State Rep. Craig Fitzhugh, Tennessee House Minority Leader; September 11, 2013:

Nashville, Tenn. (September 10, 2013) – House Democratic Leader Craig Fitzhugh released the following statement in response from an offensive tweet from Lt. Governor Ron Ramsey on the anniversary of 9/11:

“September 11th is a day when all Americans come together to remember a solemn occasion in our history. Instead of honoring those who gave their lives 12 years ago, Lt. Governor Ron Ramsey decided to take the low-road and accuse our Commander-in-Chief of allying with the very terrorist who attacked our country.

“This divisive rhetoric dishonors the memory of those who died on this day. It is insulting to our President, to Senator Corker who shares the President’s position, to all Americans no matter their position on Syria and to the memory of those we’ve lost. Lt. Governor Ramsey is either grossly misinformed or he has decided to be a partisan, instead of a patriot. He should apologize immediately.”

Press Releases

Ramsey Names Sammons to Sports Hall of Fame Board

Press release from the Office of Tennessee Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey; July 10, 2013:

Lt. Governor Ron Ramsey (R-Blountville) today announced the appointment of Jack M. Sammons of Memphis to the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame Board of Directors.

“Tennessee has a long and hallowed sports tradition which continues to grow year after year. The Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame is an outstanding way to honor our heroes and remember our history,” said Lt. Governor Ron Ramsey. “Jack Sammons has often answered the call to serve his community and state. I’m pleased he has done so again.”

Jack Sammons currently serves as president of Ampro Industries, Inc. and as the sole general partner of The Sammons Company L.P., a Memphis-based employee benefits firm focused exclusively on marketing voluntary benefits.

Sammons’ public service includes four terms on the Memphis City Council, where he was chairman of the Operating Budget Committee. Sammons became the board chairman of the Memphis-Shelby County Airport Authority in January 2013.

Active in his community, Sammons is currently general chairman of Youth Programs, Inc., the governing body of the St. Jude Classic presented by Smith & Nephew – one of the longest running PGA TOUR events. He has also served on the boards of various other civic organizations including the Memphis Zoo, Memphis Fire Museum and Memphis Big Brothers Big Sisters.

The Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame promotes the virtues of competition, fair play, friendship, solidarity, mutual understanding and respect for human dignity. The Hall is a state of the art, 7,200 square foot, interactive facility honoring athletes, coaches, sportswriters, and sports administrators who have made an impact on the history of sports in Tennessee.

The Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame is a legislatively created non-profit corporation created in 1994. The Hall of Fame Board is composed of 25 Tennessee citizens, eight each appointed by the Governor, the Lieutenant Governor, and the Speaker of the House; the 25th member of the Board is the State Treasurer or his designee. No more than eight of the appointed members shall reside in a grand division of the state.

Press Releases

Tickle Named to State Museum Commission

Press release from the Office of Tennessee Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey; June 27, 2013:

(June 27, 2013, NASHVILLE) – Lt. Governor Ron Ramsey (R-Blountville) and Speaker Beth Harwell (R-Nashville) today announced the appointment of John D. “Spike” Tickle II to the Douglas Henry State Museum Commission.

“The Tennessee State Museum is an invaluable cultural and historical resource for the state of Tennessee,” said Lt. Governor Ramsey. “Capturing Tennessee’s rich and vibrant history for future generations is important work. Spike Tickle’s unique perspective and experience will aid this commission greatly as it continues to fulfill its mission year after year. I am grateful he has agreed to serve.”

“Our state museum is a true treasure. I’m grateful that an individual like Mr.Tickle has agreed to help strengthen our state’s curation of history,” said Speaker Harwell. “I am confident he will be a strong asset for the museum.”

A graduate of the University of Tennessee’s School of Engineering, Mr. Tickle is currently on the board of directors of the Strongwell Corporation and serves as the managing director of Three Horse Investments, LLC.

A strong believer in education, Spike and his wife, Lisa, established the Spike Tickle STEM Engineering Fellowship Endowment at the University of Tennessee. The endowment is intended to attract outstanding graduate students to both the College of Arts and Sciences and the College of Engineering.

The Douglas Henry State Museum Commission was created in 2009 to oversee operations and establish the strategic direction of the state museum, with an emphasis on the educational and cultural enrichment of the citizens of the state. The mission of the commission is to work to ensure that the citizens of this state have access and exposure to museum collections and to promote the educational and cultural enrichment of citizens of the state.

Press Releases

Social Studies Teacher Named to TN Retirement System Board

Press release from the Office of Tennessee Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey; June 24, 2013:

(June 24, 2013, NASHVILLE) – Lt. Governor Ramsey (R-Blountville) today announced the appointment of social studies teacher Kevin Fielden of Kingsport to the Tennessee Consolidated Retirement System (TCRS) Board of Trustees.

“Kevin Fielden is an outstanding educator and a credit to our city school system in Kingsport,” said Lt. Governor Ramsey. “I’m confident Mr. Fielden’s fresh perspective will serve well the interests of his fellow teachers and the state of Tennessee.”

A graduate of East Tennessee State University, Kevin Fielden has taught social studies in Northeast Tennessee for twenty years. Fielden was one of twelve Tennessee teachers selected for the prestigious Atlantik-Brücke fellowship fostering closer ties between Germany and the United States. In 2009, Fielden was presented with the Presidential Scholar recognition award by the U.S. Secretary of Education. Fielden currently teaches at Dobyns-Bennett High School in Kingsport.

The Tennessee Consolidated Retirement System Board of Trustees is responsible for the general administration and proper operation of TCRS overseeing a nearly $35 billion trust fund for state and local employee pensions. The 20-member Board consists of nine ex-officio members, nine representatives of the active TCRS membership, and two representatives for retirees.

Employee representation consists of three teachers, one from each grand division of the state, two state employees from departments other than those represented by ex-officio members, one public safety officer and three representatives of local governments. Retiree representation includes a retired teacher and a retired state employee.

The three teachers are appointed for three-year terms; the teacher representatives of the eastern and western grand divisions are appointed by the Speaker of the Senate, and the teacher representative of the middle grand division is appointed by the Speaker of the House of Representatives.

Press Releases

De Friece Reappointed to State Museum Commission

Press release from the Office of Tennessee Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey; June 18, 2013:

Lt. Gov. Ramsey today announced the reappointment of Nancy De Friece to the Douglas Henry State Museum Commission.

“Only through a passionate study of history can a free people really know themselves. Our Tennessee State Museum serves as an invaluable resource to generations of Tennesseans who wish to study history and honor those who came before us,” said Ramsey. “Nancy De Friece has done an outstanding job on this commission. I am very pleased she has agreed to continue this important work.”

The commission was created in 2009 to oversee operations and establish the strategic direction of the state museum, with an emphasis on the educational and cultural enrichment of the citizens of the state. The mission of the commission is to work to ensure that the citizens of this state have access and exposure to museum collections and to promote the educational and cultural enrichment of citizens of the state.

De Friece is a former chairman of the Tennessee Arts Commission and a charter member of the Hands On! Regional Museum and served on the museum’s Business Council. She has received numerous honors, including the “Arts in Tennessee Award” presented by International Storytelling Center and Bristol Regional Medical Center’s Citizen’s Hall of Fame.

De Friece currently serves as president of Landmark Realty, Inc and as a managing partner of Sikorski-De Friece Properties.