Follow-up on the Haslam Tea Party story from Yesterday
Jonathon Baloga with the Knoxville Tea Party responded to my queries with this explanation: they scheduled the space at the City/County building with the Public Building Authority, and were cleared there, but then the request must go to either the City or County Mayor’s office for final approval. A member of the Knoxville Tea Party went to Mayor Haslam’s office to obtain this, and was there told, by the Mayor’s staff, that “the facility couldn’t be used for a one-sided political party.” County Mayor Ragsdale’s office never responded to their requests.
So, the question now: is there a policy that would prevent a group like the Tea Party from using the facility? Or were they singled out? I’ve called the PBA to verify that the Mayor’s office is involved in the process, and to clarify what policies dictate who can use the space.
Update: The PBA representative says the Mayor’s office is not involved in approving use of the space. I have no idea what to think now.
Follow up here