Posts Tagged ‘Pilot / Flying J Travel Centers’

God help us… Joplin, Mo.

May 23, 2011

Joplin Missouri took it on the chin in a very terrible way yesterday. The last that I heard eighty-nine people were killed, and that number is expected to rise. For the other drivers out there; We received notice that the Flying J got hammered. I hope and pray that everyone there is safe. Those are some of the best folks at any truck stop anywhere and go the extra mile to make a worn out driver feel welcome.

My prayers are with you this day.

Flying J truck stops had better NOT check their customers sleepers!

October 27, 2010

Pilot / Flying J Travel centers will be in for a shock if they find out just what is on their property. Company policies are in place to deny fundamental rights to their employees, but? Their customers are different…

NASHVILLE – Republican gubernatorial candidate Bill Haslam‘s support for requiring businesses to allow their workers to store guns in vehicles parked on company property conflicts with the policy in place for the 20,000 employees at a chain of truck stops his family owns.

But his position is in sync with the approach followed by the city of Knoxville, where he is mayor.

Pilot spokeswoman Cynthia Moxley told The Associated Press on Tuesday that Knoxville-based Pilot Flying J prohibits workers from storing firearms in their vehicles at both its travel centers and corporate offices.

Haslam said after a speech in Nashville on Tuesday that he was unaware of the policy.

“The leadership of that company made a decision on that,” he said. “I never had a role in even talking to them about it. I didn’t even know what the rule was.”

Haslam was president of Pilot until he was elected Knoxville mayor in 2003. The company was founded by his father Jim Haslam and is now run by his brother Jimmy Haslam. The candidate maintains an unspecified stake in the company.

Efforts to repeal a state law that lets companies decide whether to forbid employees from keeping guns in their cars while they work has pitted advocates like the National Rifle Association and Tennessee Firearms Association against business interests like the Tennessee Chamber of Commerce and Memphis-based Fedex Corp., whose lobbyists in committee hearings have argued that the gun ban is a workplace safety issue.

Haslam caused some confusion on the campaign trail Monday when he first said it should be up to employers to decide about gun policies on their property, but later clarified that business owners’ rights shouldn’t extend to firearms stored in locked cars.

On Tuesday, Randy Kenner, spokesman for Haslam, deferred the question of whether city workers are allowed to bring guns to work and store them in their cars to the Public Building Authority, the landlord of the City County Building.

Dale Smith, CEO of PBA, said there is not a policy on the issue for the city and county garages, including the City County Building.

“There has never been a policy against having a gun in your vehicle,” Smith. “It would be unenforceable.”

That means employees can store guns in their vehicles, he said.

At the same time, “Even people with carry permits are not allowed to bring firearms in the buildings,” Smith said.

Haslam’s gun positions have come under closer scrutiny since he told the Tennessee Firearms Association last week he would sign into law efforts to end a requirement for people to obtain state-issued permits in order to carry handguns in public.

The Republican said his personal preference is to maintain the current requirements for the state’s approximate 300,000 permit holders, but that he would defer to the will of the Legislature on the matter.

Haslam, who does not own a gun, said he also supports a new state law allowing handgun carry permit holders to be armed in bars and restaurants that serve alcohol. The measure has been the subject of two overrides of gubernatorial vetoes in the last two years.

Democrat Mike McWherter has seized on Haslam’s positions on guns, calling it “irresponsible” because it will encourage sympathetic lawmakers to pass a bill to do away with handgun carry permits. He also argues for restoring a ban on handguns at late-night bars.

McWherter said it is the policy at his Jackson beer distributorship to allow workers to keep guns in their cars on company premises, but he wants to leave it up to each business to decide for itself.

“Bill Haslam is for letting anyone bring a gun to work unless they work for his oil company, in which case they can’t,” McWherter spokesman Shelby White said in an e-mail message. “He’s all over the map on a fundamental public safety issue.”


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