Legislative Update, May 1, 2021
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).
FOR YOUR PRAYER LIST:
Well, as the old song says: "The days dwindle down to a precious few..." and prayer is really needed as the final few bills are taken up by the House and the Senate. The ONLY action the TN Constitution requires the General Assembly to accomplish each session it to pass a budget. Having done that Thursday, they could just go home. However, there are still some very important issues that need attention, so please prayer that they will get the attention they deserve. Of course, you will continue to pray for Rep. Mike Carter and his precious wife, Joan as they deal with his pancreatic cancer and Rep. David Byrd and his precious wife, Sherry as they continue the fight against the consequences of Covid.
Well THE HOT TOPIC is STILL CRITICAL RACE THEORY!!
And as I mentioned above, this is the last week of the legislature and we either get the job done or we (and our children) will have to wait until 2022 for the Legislature to do their duty.
I won't get into the details, but I will say that there is a plan and YOUR HELP is needed. If you click on this graphic, and put your name and address into the form, the form will populate with your Senator's and House member's information. Politely (always) let them know that you support legislation designed to STOP this indoctrination. You can use the message contained in the form, or you can change, add to, etc. JUST DO IT AND DO IT TODAY.
1. Williamson County Parents Alarm Community About Dark, Inappropriate Reading Material for Elementary Students .
2. Commentary: Cowardice and Critical Race Theory at the State House .
3. Local Williamson County Group Describes Required Elementary School Readings That Allegedly Push Critical Race Theory .
FORCING INSURANCE COMPANIES TO COVER ELECTIVE SERVICES:
SB 0425 by *Massey , Watson, Akbari, Swann, Briggs, Haile, Walley, Bowling, Reeves
HB 1379 by *Kumar , JERNIGAN, WHITSON, LAMAR, HAWK, HELTON, GILLESPIE, THOMPSON, HICKS G, LYNN, MITCHELL, HODGES, WINDLE, GARRETT, VAUGHAN, RAMSEY, WARNER, ALEXANDER, WHITE, BAUM, POWELL, RUSSELL, FREEMAN
Insurance, Health, Accident - As introduced, increases from 21 days to 30 days the time within which a health insurance entity must pay on or notify a provider regarding a claim received by electronic submission
STATUS: SB425 action deferred in Senate Commerce and Labor Committee to January 1, 2022; HB1379 was taken off notice for in Finance, Ways, and Means Subcommittee. So we will have this to deal with next year.
SB 0667 by *Massey , Robinson, Swann, Gardenhire, Jackson - HB 0880 by *Terry , HARDAWAY, HODGES, RAMSEY, LAMAR, CHISM, HARRIS, POWELL, JERNIGAN, SMITH
Health, Dept. of - As introduced, requests the department and its division of health related boards to perform a study on the licensure and regulation of cannabis for medical use by departments of health and medical professional licensing boards in states contiguous to Tennessee and report findings to the general assembly's health committees by December 15, 2021
STATUS: As amended, on April 27th, after extensive debate and testimony, thankfully, HB880 failed in the House Criminal Justice Committee 8-9: Representatives voting aye were: Beck, Curcio, Dixie, Doggett, Farmer, Hardaway, Lamar, Sexton J ; Representatives voting no were: Campbell S, Griffey, Hawk, Howell, Hulsey, Lamberth, Moody, Russell, Sherrell.
PERSON HOOD BEGINS AT CONCEPTION:
SB 1370 by *Bell - HB 1252 by *Faison , MOODY, HICKS T, LAMBERTH, GRIFFEY, RUDD, LITTLETON, SMITH, LYNN, WEAVER
Tort Liability and Reform - As introduced, states that there is no cause of action for wrongful birth based on a claim that a person would not or should not have been born or for wrongful life based on a claim that a person would or should have been aborted
STATUS: As amended, on April 29, 2021, SB1370 passed the Senate 25-6; HB1252 passed the House 69-20.
Bill Declaring Personhood Begins at Conception Passes Tennessee General Assembly .
APPROVED WATERMARK ON ABSENTEE BALLOTS:
SB 1315 by *Hensley , Bowling, Bailey, Haile, Pody, Reeves, Rose, Stevens, White
HB1276 by *Griffey , SEXTON C, DOGGETT, WHITE, HULSEY, CARRINGER, RAGAN, ZACHARY, PARKINSON, POWERS, SHERRELL, OGLES, SMITH, MOODY, WILLIAMS, TODD, TERRY, ALEXANDER, CURCIO, HELTON, GARRETT, CEPICKY, WARNER, BOYD
STATUS: As amended, on April 26, 2021, SB1315 passed the Senate 27-0; on April 27, HB 1276 passed the House 92-1,
FORCED VACCINATION PROTECTION:
SB 0187 by *Bowling - HB 0013 by *Hulsey , GRIFFEY, CEPICKY, REEDY, WEAVER, SMITH, CALFEE, HALL, RUDD
Public Health - As introduced, prohibits state and local authorities from forcing, requiring, or coercing a person to receive an immunization or vaccination for COVID-19 against the person's will.
STATUS: As amended, on April 21, 2021 HB0013 passed the House 72-16; on April 29, 2021, SB187 passed the Senate 21-8.
DISTRIBUTION OF CONTRACEPTION ON SCHOOL PROPERTY:
SB 1392 by *Bowling- HB 0577 by *Ragan , HASTON, SMITH, MOODY, TODD, ALEXANDER, HOWELL
Birth Control - As introduced, limits certain children's access to contraceptives; requires the textbook and instructional materials quality commission approve contraceptive information available in schools; requires parental consent for a child referred to a physician by a school to receive contraceptives
STATUS: As amended, on April 19, 2021, HB577 passed the Senate 27-6; on April 28, 2021, SB1392 passed the Senate 27-6.
Key highlights from the Budget passed this week include:
- $100 million for cities and counties with funds available in July for any non-recurring needs;
- $931 million for capital improvements to keep the state’s infrastructure strong without incurring debt for such needs;
- $30 million for deferred maintenance for Tennessee’s state parks which had a record number of visitors in 2020;
- $9.5 million to improve salaries for probation and parole officers to offer competitive pay with other states and to keep Tennessee safe;
- $4.4 million for new agents in the Tennessee Bureau of Investigations (TBI) to meet increased investigative needs;
- $17 million for a new radio communication system, $2.3 million for body cameras and full funding of the salary plan and survey for state troopers;
- $18 million to improve Tennessee’s statewide disaster communications system;
- $24 million to provide additional funding for rural projects as part of the Rural Economic Opportunity Fund;
- $8 million to expand marketing and tourism initiatives;
- $145 million for air and rail transportation infrastructure;
- $5.3 million to fight human trafficking and support victims;
- $50 million for a sales tax holiday on grocery sales, restaurants and all prepared foods on July 30 – Aug. 5
- $400,000 for senior citizens centers to be distributed through the Tennessee Commission on Aging;
- $450,000 for Big Brothers and Big Sisters organizations
- $250,000 for child advocacy centers to be distributed through the Department of Children’s Services.
The FY21-22 budget takes effect July 1, 2021.
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