Legislation paving the way for the Republican National Convention in 2024 will come back to the Metro Council at its next meeting.
Metro Councilmember Robert Swope, one of the body’s few Republicans, introduced another draft agreement between the RNC and Nashville after his first effort was stymied by widespread Council opposition to the prospect of bringing the national convention to town.
This time, The Tennessean reports, he has a sweetener.
The separate resolution “opens the dialogue between Metro and our state partners to begin to impose development impact fees in Nashville,” he told the newspaper. The state controls which local governments can levy impact fees, which could be used as a tax on new developments to be used for schools, infrastructure and other city costs.
Axios reported that other possible enticements on the table were allowing inclusionary zoning in Nashville, expanding Medicaid in Davidson County and increasing funding for Nashville schools.
Still, House Majority Leader William Lamberth told Axios that he does not see the RNC vote and the impact fee proposal as “joined together.”
“Nashville doesn’t need to let petty politics get in the way of economic success in our state,” Lamberth said.
The news sets a different tone than that of earlier this month when state officials were threatening to retaliate against Nashville for rebuffing the convention. Among the possible punishments, as reported by Tennessee Lookout, were cutting the size of the 40-member Metro Council, halting state support of a new boulevard in the East Bank and withdrawing the $500 million in support the state had pledged toward a new Tennessee Titans stadium — proposals that some who oppose the RNC would also support.
Metro Council will consider the impact fee resolution and the RNC ordinance (which requires three readings) at its Aug. 2 meeting. The other RNC finalist, Milwaukee, has already approve a similar resolution, and Republican leaders are set to decide on a host in the coming days.