Legislative Update, February 17, 2018

Tennessee General Assembly information, click HERE. For information on State Senators, including phone numbers and email addresses, click HERE; for House members, click HERE. For information on legislation, click HERE.
Don't forget that you can now watch the Senate committee meetings and floor sessions online by going HERE; House committee meetings and floor sessions online HERE.
Phone calls can go to the legislative Switchboard at 615-741-3011 or to the Toll Free number 1-800-449-8366+1 last four digits of office phone number (available online).


"Every child in America should be acquainted with his own country.  He should read books that furnish him with ideas that will be useful to him in life and practice.  As soon as he opens his lips, he should rehearse the history of his own country." Daniel Webster, On the Education of Youth in American, 1788

Many things to pray about this week:  Rep. Roger Kane drove to Texas Tuesday evening to be with his sister Sandy.  She passed away not too long after he arrived.  Please pray for him and his entire family.  Difficult days. Please remember Sen. Sara Kyle, she has the flu and bronchitis. Rep. Mke Sparks' sister is very ill, so you will want to remember them. Do continue to remember Rep. Mary Littleton as she awaits her hip replacement on March 2nd.   You know the session is finally REALLY underway when the House Subcommittee Calendar is 46 pages long and the Senate Calendar is 40 pages long.  Pray for wisdom, clarity and focus.

According to everyone we spoke to this week, the session has finally begun in full swing. This week was certainly the busiest as far as people. It wasn't as easy to talk to the Legislators since they all were covered up in appointments or committee meetings. That being said, Mrs. Patray was able to meet with several people. We collected signatures for co-sponsorship, and we also talked about several bills that shouldn't be passed. It was another enjoyable week! 

This week with the internship was interesting: we made several people aware of our bills we went to a couple of different meatings in The House and The Senate. We found that many people are very busy this week. We also talked more about the bills Mrs Bobbie has and exactly what they will do. 

LAURABETH'S CORNER: Laurabeth works at a florist and was needed to meet all the Valentine's Day floral orders so she didn't get to join me on Wednesday, but I am sure she helped to make a lots of folks very happy.


SB 1908 by *Niceley, HB 2109 by *Tillis , TRAVIS, CALFEE, MARSH
Business and Commerce - As introduced, establishes the Tennessee horse racing commission to regulate horse racing and pari-mutuel wagering in Tennessee.
NOTE:  I am truly disappointed that this proposal has appeared once again. The 'Sport of Kings' isn't so much any longer.  We think about the Kentucky Derby and the other famous annual races, but in general, interest in horse racing is nothing like it used to be, especially among young people. It isn't fast enough, glitzy enough, etc., UNLESS the track becomes a BETTING PARLOR to bet on simulcast races from other states (which this bill puts in place) or it becomes a casino with lots of games to gamble on.

STATUS:  SB1908 was postponed last week, but is scheduled in the Senate Government Operations committee on Wednesday.  That committee cannot 'kill' a bill, only send it out with a 'positive' recommendation; a 'negative' recommendation or no recommendation.  From there it will go to the Senate State and Local Committee. It is not too early to begin contacting committee members urging them to vote AGAINST SB1908.

For more information: Say No to Horse Racing and pari-mutuel gambling

SB 1800 by *Ketron, HB 2240  by *Faison
Health, Dept. of - As introduced, requires healthcare practitioners to report incidents of female genital mutilation to the department; requires the department to issue an annual report on the incidence of female genital mutilation in the state.
NOTE:  This is a very important step in the right direction to make sure that FGM ultimately does not happen in Tennessee.
STATUS:   SB 1800 is on Senate Health and Welfare Committee calendar for 2/21/2018
HB2240 was postponed last week and is scheduled in House Health Subcommittee  for 2/21/2018
ACTION:  Please click on the Committees' links, then the member's picture and let the members of these committees know that you support this important bill.

For more information: The EVIL of Female Genital Mutilation

SB 2148 by *Bell, Gardenhire, Bowling, Hensley, Haile, Bailey, Southerland, Jackson, Pody, Niceley, Yager, Ketron, Stevens, Swann, Watson, Gresham, Crowe, Green, Johnson, Kelsey, Roberts, Briggs, Lundberg, Massey
HB 2251 by *Matlock, Harwell, Gant, Hill T, Moody, Crawford, Byrd, Carr , Rogers, Keisling, Sexton J, Boyd, Tillis, Zachary, Lynn, Eldridge, Rudd, Terry, Weaver, Whitson, Vaughan, White D, Lamberth
TennCare - As introduced, establishes that it is the policy of the state to avoid the use of state funds to promote or support elective abortions; instructs the commissioner of finance and administration to seek a waiver from the federal centers for medicare and medicaid services to require the exclusion of a provider from the TennCare program if inclusion of the provider in the program would result in the direct or indirect use of state funds to promote or support abortion.
STATUS: HB2251 is on the Health Subcommittee Calendar for 2/21/2018. 
ACTION: While this bill emjoys wide support, it is always important to let legislators know that constituents are supporting this important bill. 

SB 0244 by *Pody

AS AMENDED: The bill is now more of a reporting/data collection bill.  It requires that if a ultrasound was performed, the Dept of Health shall report the type of abortion done, note that the mother was offered the opportunity to view the ultrasound and inform the mother of the presence or absence of a fetal heartbeat and document that the patient has been informed.
STATUS:  SB244 has not yet been scheduled in the Senate Committee. HB108 passed the House floor on February 12, 74-20:
Representatives voting aye were: Alexander, Boyd, Brooks H., Brooks K., Butt, Byrd, Calfee, Carr, Carter, Casada, Coley, Crawford, Curcio, Daniel, DeBerry, Doss, Dunn, Eldridge, Faison, Farmer, Forgety, Gant, Goins, Gravitt, Halford, Hawk, Hazlewood, Hicks, Hill M., Hill T., Holsclaw, Holt, Howell, Hulsey, Johnson, Kane, Keisling, Kumar, Lamberth, Lollar, Lynn, Marsh, Matheny, McCormick, McDaniel, Moody, Moon, Powers, Ragan, Ramsey, Reedy, Rogers, Rudd, Sanderson, Sargent, Sexton C., Sexton J., Sherrell, Smith, Sparks, Terry, Tillis, Travis, Van Huss, Vaughan, Weaver, White D., White M., Whitson, Williams, Windle, Wirgau, Zachary, Madame Speaker Harwell -- 74.
          Representatives voting no were: Akbari, Beck, Camper, Clemmons, Cooper, Favors, Fitzhugh, Gilmore, Hardaway, Jones, Miller, Mitchell, Parkinson, Pitts, Powell, Shaw, Staples, Stewart, Thompson, Turner -- 20. 

Walgreens follows Target in allowing men who say they are ‘women’ into women’s bathrooms 
    DEERFIELD, Illinois, February 13, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) – Walgreens has adopted a transgender bathroom policy that allows men in the women’s toilets and vice versa, despite that same policy creating a public relations disaster and financial free fall for Target Corporation.
    As of November 2017, Walgreens’ 8,100 stores welcome “all individuals...to use restroom facilities that correspond to the individual’s gender identity, regardless of the individual’s sex assigned at birth.”
    The second-largest pharmacy store chain in the U.S. (CVS is largest) calls its policy “Transgender Inclusion.”  It defines “gender identity” as one’s “deeply-felt sense” of one’s gender, regardless of that person’s “sex assigned at birth.”
    The American Family Association (AFA) reports that the new Walgreens pro-transgender policy is the result of pressure from the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Southern California after a customer was not allowed to use a Walgreens women’s bathroom.      
       The individual later discovered an ACLU SoCal booth at a Gay Pride festival. An ACLU SoCal lawyer advised Walgreens to issue the policy, citing California law which “protects every person’s right to access restrooms based on their gender identity in workplaces, schools and business establishments,” the AFA reported
The AFA urges concerned citizens to call Walgreens and voice their objection (1-800-925-4733), and/or call their local Walgreens store