NASHVILLE - Secretary of State Riley Darnell was asked Wednesday if state legislators will influence his decisions on distributing $20 million in "community-enhancement grants" as authorized in the new state budget.
"Is the pope Catholic?" he replied. "Well, of course."
House Majority Leader Gary Odom, D-Nashville, said that he expects the grants he proposed under the $100,000-per-representative plan to all be funded by Darnell after they file the appropriate application and he gives Darnell the list.
"I'm going to tell Riley, 'You've got the list. What do I need to do to get a check in the amount I was requested by the organizations?' "
Asked what he would do if Darnell turned down his requests, Odom replied: "I don't think that's going to happen. We have a wonderful secretary of state."