Ramsey springs to Haslam’s aid on Tennessee outsourcing talk

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Gov. Bill Haslam’s examination of privatizing operations in state government has raised concerns among some Republican state senators attending a caucus retreat in Nashville.

But Senate Speaker Ron Ramsey quickly rallied to the Republican governor’s side and urged his colleagues not to be swayed by “squeaky wheels” in their districts.

The Haslam administration is mulling over outsourcing operations at state parks and facilities management at public colleges and state buildings.

Sen. Becky Massey of Knoxville said she understood the administration’s positon that public college and university systems would be allowed to opt out of the privatization push. But she said wants to ensure “arms don’t get twisted.”

Fellow Republican Sen. Janice Bowling of Tullahoma worried about the fate of workers if operations at rural state parks get privatized.