Growth before and ahead: Governor Bill Lee swears in to serve another 4 years in Tennessee office

Inauguration speech Gov Lee
Posted at 5:37 PM, Jan 21, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-21 19:29:01-05

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Governor Bill Lee's second term as the leader of the Volunteer state is officially underway. Saturday's theme of the Inauguration Day festivities was "Tennessee: Leading the Nation."

During Lee’s Inaugural address, he talked about some of the lows we have faced as a state. He mentioned the natural disasters we've been through and the COVID-19 pandemic.

He also took some time to talk about a lot of the highs, like the fact that Tennessee has the fastest-growing economy in all 50 states.

“We overhauled the way we fund public schools for the first time in 30 years. Instead of an old and broken system, a million Tennessee children are now funded based on their own individual needs," Lee said.

The governor also highlighted his work in health care.

"More Tennesseans now have access to dental care and maternal care. Tennesseans with disabilities can live with the dignity they deserve; with this Medicaid waiver we found a way to serve the unseen," Lee explained.

While Lee said he is proud of what he's done so far, he also thinks there’s more work to do.

"We need a transportation strategy and energy strategy designed for one of the fastest growing states in America. We need to enhance our efforts to preserve our natural resources and to protect the environment in what I believe is the most beautiful place in the world," Lee said.

Tennesseans in attendance at the inauguration ceremony are also hopeful the future of the state will be bright.

"There are problems we face with such amazing growth. I think he worded those very clearly, and I think there are many others," Bart Huddleston said.

"He has a plan, and I feel like he’s going to stand firm on it," Jamese Brandon said.

Inauguration Day events will wrap up Saturday night with the First Couple's Inaugural Dinner at the Grand Hyatt on Broadway, and the Inaugural Ball at the Fisher Center on Belmont Boulevard.

Get NewsChannel 5 Now, wherever, whenever, always free.

Watch the live stream below, and download our apps on Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV and more. Click here to learn more.