Press Releases

Parkinson Sworn In, First Bill Targets Synthetic Drugs

Press Release from Rep. Antonio “2 Shay” Parkinson; March 31, 2011:

Passes first piece of legislation; will curb drug abuse

(Nashville) — Antonio “2 Shay” Parkinson officially joined the Tennessee House of Representatives Thursday morning and afterward passed his first piece of legislation.

Parkinson (D-Memphis) filled the 98th House District seat vacated by the late Rep. Ulysses Jones, Jr. Parkinson won the Democratic primary several months ago but has now assumed the position on a permanent basis after winning the March 8 general election certification.

“I am honored to serve the people of District 98, Memphis, and the state of Tennessee,” Parkinson said. “I’m also glad to share this day with my mother. She and I have been homeless together. But, we have overcome the hard times. And, I stand here today as a member of the Tennessee House of Representatives.”

Parkinson received the oath of office in the House Chamber located on the second floor of the state Capitol in Nashville.

Parkinson passed a bill creating a Class A misdemeanor offense for the production, manufacture, distribution or possession of additional synthetic cannabinoids.

“This is an important bill that will stop our young people from going down the wrong road of drug abuse,” Parkinson said.

Parkinson has been appointed by the House Speaker to serve on the Children and Family Affairs and State and Local Government committees.

News NewsTracker

10 Candidates Line Up for Two Empty Legislature Seats

Midterm elections were just last month, but special elections to fill vacancies in the Tennessee Legislature are just around the corner.

One of the two special elections will determine who will replace Washington-bound Diane Black, a former GOP state senator from Gallatin who was elected this fall to Congress. The 18th District candidates, all Republican, include:

  • Bryan Bondurant of Gallatin
  • Fred Congdon of Gallatin
  • Kerry Roberts of Springfield
  • William Slater of Gallatin
  • Jeff Stromatt of Goodlettsville
  • Joe Warren Jones of Gallatin

With the death of state Rep. Ulysses Jones, D-Memphis, voters will have to choose among a list of Democratic replacements. The 98th District candidates all reside in Memphis and include:

  • Jannie C. Foster
  • Stephanie Gatewood
  • Brenda Oats-Williams
  • Antonio ‘2 Shay’ Parkinson

The primary election is set for Jan. 20 and the general election will be held March 8.

Press Releases

Speaker Pro Tempore: Jones Never Let Politics Get to Him

Statement from Speaker Pro Tempore Lois DeBerry; Nov. 9, 2010:

“No words can truly express the sorrow I feel for the loss of such a loving and caring individual. Ulysses Jones, Jr. was a legislator that everyone liked on both sides of the aisle, and a man that all Tennesseans could love.

Too often our politics become personal and petty, but Ulysses never let it get to him. He was willing to call anyone friend, Republican or Democrat, if you would call him the same. As a firefighter and a paramedic, Ulysses was always thinking about people in need and what he could do to help those who were suffering. Ordinary Tennesseans today lost their champion in the legislature.

I remember the first day he arrived in the House of Representatives like it was yesterday, and that same man who started here nearly 25 years ago is the one who left us suddenly this morning. I will cherish his friendship, remember him every time I walk on the House chamber floor, and never forget the legacy he left on this great state.”

Press Releases

House GOP Offers Condolences to Jones Family

Statement from the House of Representatives Republican Caucus; Nov. 9, 2010:

The leadership of the House Republican Caucus today released the following statement regarding the passing of Representative Ulysses Jones:

“Today we learned the news of the untimely passing of our colleague, Representative Ulysses Jones, Jr. Our thoughts and prayers today are with the Jones family and his extended family during this difficult time.

Representative Jones was a member of this legislative body for 24 years and his absence will be felt by us all. We remember our fallen colleague, and our sympathies are with his family and his friends at this time of loss.”