Gordon endorsing greenway expansion

Friday, July 31, 2009
Sean Gilliland listens to a question from a Lewisburg resident in City Hall on Thursday morning.

U.S. Rep Bart Gordon is endorsing continued funding for the expansion of the Lewisburg Greenway, a pedestrian park that would be extended from downtown to the Columbia State Community College campus here.

That's according to Sean Gilliland, a field representative for Gordon who sent Gilliland to Lewisburg on Thursday to meet with the public in City Hall. Extension of the greenway, a linear park that passes through Rock Creek Park, behind City Hall and to Southside Park.

"It's going to the House Transportation Committee," Gilliland said of funding proposed for the greenway here. "They haven't begun the authorization yet."

Gordon "has submitted a request for funding" of the park expansion in Lewisburg, the field representative said.

In another funding issue, Gordon is a member of the Blue Dog caucus, a group of fiscally conservative Democrats who've sought to slow the consideration of health insurance reform to allow closer examination of details and write amendments to the White House plan.

On Wednesday, the house agreed to delay action on the health insurance legislation until after the August recess of Congress, Gilliland said. There is concern that the public option might run private insurers out of business.

As chairman of he Science and Technology Committee, Tennessee's 6th District congressman continues to promote new laws in those fields, but a great deal of his time has been consumed by the health care plan and his work with the Commerce Committee.

First elected in 1984, Gordon's been this area's congressman since January of 1985. He's the first Tennessean to chair a congressional committee since Rep. Joe L. Evans was in Congress in 1979.

During his discussion in City Hall yesterday, Gilliland was asked how early should someone apply for Social Security retirement benefits before they become eligible at age 62. "Two months early could be plenty," Gilliland said. That way no monthly payments would be lost because of processing time after an application is received.