Legislators to gather next Friday for annual community breakfast

Legislators and other public officials from all levels of government will gather at the Tennessee College of Applied Technology next Friday, March 1, at 7:30 a.m. to meet with members of the Carter County community, all while enjoying a locally-made breakfast.

Tonya Stevens, Executive Director of the Elizabethton Chamber of Commerce, said they host the event once a year for citizens to meet with their government representatives.

“They come to talk about upcoming bills or laws they are working on, and they often stick around for one-on-one conversation afterward,” Stevens said.

Among those planning to attend are Elizabethton and Carter County mayors Curt Alexander and Russell Barnett, respectively, state representatives John Holsclaw Jr. and Timothy Hill, state Senators Rusty Crowe and Jon Lundberg and U.S. Representative Phil Roe.

Stevens said this breakfast is important because of the transparency it provides to voters.

“It is important to be aware of various levels of government, because what they do will affect us,” she said. “Keeping informed helps you know how you might need to become involved in the community.”

The breakfast itself is not a continental breakfast.

“It has all the things we love in a country breakfast,” Stevens said.

She said citizens are always able to contact their state and federal representatives over the phone or by email and said the opportunity for in-person contact is something people should not miss.

“Meeting us in-person shows support for the community,” Stevens said. “It also shows you are concerned enough to make the effort to reach out to them.”

She said their willingness to meet with the public like this is something she enjoys.

“I appreciate how our representatives are taking the time to break away from their busy schedules to come and share with us,” Stevens said. “This is our opportunity to hear in greater detail what they are working on.”

The event does require pre-registration, which those interested can do either in-person at the Chamber or online. Tickets are $25 each and cover the full price of the breakfast.

There is currently no set cutoff date for registration, and Stevens said they sometimes sell tickets at the door, but she described that possibility as “unlikely” and encouraged those interested to sign up beforehand.

“Come ready to hear what is going on,” Stevens said. “This is definitely an informative event. We do not always hear everything about what is going on, and this is a chance to hear the details.”

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