Tennessee senator wants Nashville DA to investigate Lee’s no-bid contracts

Bill Lee
Posted at 3:26 PM, Dec 08, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-08 16:26:29-05

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Sen. Heidi Campbell (D – Nashville) wants Nashville District Attorney General Glenn Funk to investigate no-bid contracts that were approved by Gov. Bill Lee’s administration during the state of emergency prompted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a letter sent to DA Funk, Sen. Campbell said the Lee administration’s preference for no-bid contracts were part of an “alarming, multi-department pattern.”

Last year, a NewsChannel 5 investigation found that Gov. Lee's team wasted millions of dollars on COVID-19 testing promised by a politically connected company — and taxpayers got nothing for their money.

Calling for a full investigation, Sen. Campbell highlighted several “controversial” contracts, including a no-bid contract to a Utah company for testing and personal protective equipment, even though the company had no health care experience. That deal eventually collapsed — and the Lee administration paid the company almost $6 million to get out of the contract.

“There are likely many honest and reputable business owners and nonprofit organizations in Tennessee wondering why the administration passed them over for emergency work,” Sen. Campbell said. “Every taxpayer deserves to know why vendors were awarded no-bid contracts.”

NewsChannel 5 has reached out to the governor's office for comment.

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