Boyd approved $1M grant to state Senate candidate’s company; Company PAC gave Boyd $5K

Shane Reeves, a Murfreesboro businessman seeking the GOP nomination in state Senate District 14, sent Randy Boyd’s gubernatorial campaign a $5,000 donation a year after Boyd as economic and community development commissioner signed off on a $1 million state grant to Reeves’ company, reports Tennessee Star.

The Star says this has unnamed “political observers” questioning whether Boyd “used his previous office as a platform to prepare a gubernatorial campaign by directing state grants to local officials and businesses who might, and in many cases have, support his run for governor.”

In July 2016 Randy Boyd, then-commissioner of TECD,  approved a $1 million “Fast Track Economic Development Fund” grant for Murfreesboro based TwelveStone Health Partners, whose founder and and CEO Shane Reeves is a candidate for the Republican nomination in the 14th District State Senate special election prompted by the resignation of State Senator Jim Tracy (R-Shelbyville).

Soon after Boyd left his state position to run for governor, the Reeves Family PAC, which lists Shane Reeves as the sole officer, donated $5,000 in April, 2017 to the Randy Boyd gubernatorial campaign. Reeves also personally endorsed Boyd during a campaign stop in Murfreesboro that same month.

Randy Boyd resigned as commissioner of TECD in January 2017 and announced his candidacy for the Republican nomination for governor in March.

(Reeves confirmed in an email that the grant was received from ECD, by way of the Rutherford County Industrial Development Board.”

 “As part of it, I committed to adding up to 200 jobs in Rutherford County and across the state of Tennessee over the next 5 to 7 years. All of these jobs combined would add around $8 million annually in payroll dollars. I am very thankful for economic development teams in both Rutherford county and the state of Tennessee that are so committed to recruiting new companies to our great state and to helping existing companies expand,” Reeves continued, adding:

“TwelveStone Health Partners is a pharmacy that specializes in providing pharmaceutical products and services to our regions sickest and most vulnerable patients. I am truly blessed to be the CEO of this company and to be surrounded by such an amazing team of clinicians and operators.

“As an aside, I’m fairly certain that if you study the business background of Donald Trump that you will find that he has worked with a number of cities, counties, and states (And their economic development department) to develop his real estate empire and provide thousands of jobs. I look forward to following in his footsteps as a public servant with significant business background.”

… According to the Tennessee Economic and Community Development Department (TECD) website, FastTrack Economic Development Fund grants should be “only used in exceptional cases where the impact of the company on a given community is significant.”

The Star asked the Boyd campaign how Mr. Boyd determined, while serving as the commissioner of the TECD in 2016 that giving the $1 million “Fast Track Economic Development Fund” grant fit the requirement of an “exceptional cases where the impact of the company on a given community is significant,” but did not receive a response.

Note: The staunchly conservative Star has otherwise been critical of Boyd in its reporting — dubbing him “La Raza Randy” and a “never-Trumper,” for example — and Joe Carr, who is opposing Reeves in the Senate District 14 Republican primary, has contributed commentary articles to the website.

3 Responses to Boyd approved $1M grant to state Senate candidate’s company; Company PAC gave Boyd $5K

  • Leslie Parsley says:

    Political corruption doesn’t seem to be limited to Texas, Alabama, and other states, but if it’s good enough for the president, it must be good for Tennessee. . . . or, at least for them that do the corrupting.

    • Linda says:

      As the daughter of a former Tennessee politician, $5,000 seems a very paltry sum to donate to a campaign as a political payback for $1,000,000!

  • bob timmerman says:

    Why should this sort of slimy back scratching surprise anyone? They swap their campaign lucre around like they’re greasing the wheels of democracy… and no one seems to notice the stench.

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