Hutto highlighted successes in several areas, including education, public safety, quality of life, economic development, finances and transportation.
“We have a great director in Donna Wright. She does a tremendous job. She has to make some tough calls, but she has improved our school system tremendously,” said Hutto, who also praised the Wilson County Board of Education.
Hutto highlighted the district’s rising state and ACT scores, Wright’s recognition as Sueprintendent of the Year by the Professional Educators of Tennessee and Mt. Juliet principal Mel Brown’s recognition as Principal of the Year by the Tennessee Association of Secondary School Principals.
“Those are things that don’t just happen by accident,” Hutto said.
“When you talk about public safety, I believe we’re the best here because we cross-train our people. They can ride an ambulance and ride a fire truck. To me, that saves us money, but it also saves lives because they can react at either time,” Hutto said.
Hutto also highlighted the county’s emergency response agencies’ move toward co-location for dispatchers. The move will house all emergency and law enforcement agency dispatchers and call takers under one roof.
Hutto highlighted the recently opened Wilson County Emergency Management Agency fire station on Greenvale Road in Statesville and the WEMA station under construction on Cainsville Road in Watertown.
Hutto also discussed the area’s quality of life and attractions, which include the Music City Star, Wilson County James E. Ward Ag Center, Wilson County Fair, Wilson County Veteran’s Plaza and Museum, along with several greenways and parks throughout the county.
Hutto also noted discussions that have taken place regarding recreation in the area and the desire of many people to bring more multi-sport complexes to the area.
“It would really set us up to have parents come here with their children to play ball Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. It increases our sales tax and hotel-motel tax. I don’t have to build schools, roads and jails because those folks will go home,” Hutto said.
The Wilson County Joint Economic and Community Development Board and its work also received praise from Hutto, along with local legislators who worked to inform citizens about Gov. Bill Haslam’s IMPROVE Act, which includes about $13.5 million for Wilson County in the next 15 years for project and local funding.