2016 Legislative Session Wrap-Up

  Where to begin? It was a very hectic few months, but we made it! To start off, we would be remiss if we did not thank all of our brothers and sisters for their hard work this session. Whether it was speaking to your locals about pending legislation or joining us at the Capitol, every action made a difference in stopping some very detrimental bills. As we really noticed this year, while some right-wing groups may have significant financial backing, we have something that's hard for them to match: numbers. When we all come together in solidarity, that's when we truly get things done. 

  From our perspective, this was one of the best legislative sessions that we've had in quite a few years. There were multiple bills floating around that could have essentially wiped out Labor in one fell swoop. Thanks to a combination of lobbying efforts, the help of Republican and Democratic legislators, and a little bit of luck, we were able to stop nearly every bad bill that we faced in its tracks. While no session is without a few disappointments, we're ready to build off of this year's momentum for the 110th General Assembly!

  Last session, over 1,600 bills were filed. This year, roughly 1,000 new pieces of legislation were filed that we read through back in January. Once again, we narrowed it down to about 200 bills that we felt were most important to our members, and then cut the amount down even more to approximately 30 bills. We also monitored other issues, including deannexation, the Hall Tax repeal, and the possible resurrection of Insure Tennessee. As we've done in the past, the top "good" and "bad" bills from this session are listed below. You'll probably recognize some of them from last year as well. Simply click on the bill number (House or Senate) to read more about the legislation, watch video clips, see votes, and much more. Please let us know if you have any questions. We'll be discussing this in much more depth at our Leadership Conference in June as well.  

  Once again, thanks to all of you for your hard work this session. If you haven't done so already,"like" us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter to keep up with all of our work. See you on the Hill in 2017!
Top "Good" Bills

HB 2442 by Gilmore/SB 2440 by Kyle: Passed 64-24 in the House, Passed 25-7 in the Senate

HB 1947 by Clemmons/SB 2298 by Kyle: Failed/Sent to General Subcommittee

HB 2090 by Hardaway/ SB 2322 by Kyle: Failed/Sent to General Subcommittee
Note: There were two additional minimum wage bills filed this year that were sponsored by Representative Barbara Cooper and Senator Sara Kyle and Representative Johnnie Turner and Senator Lee Harris. The first bill was taken off notice in the House and sent to General Subcommittee in the Senate. The second one failed in the House Consumer & Human Resources Subcommittee and was sent to General Subcommittee in the Senate Commerce & Labor Committee.

HJR 585 by Windle: Passed 97-0 in the House, Passed 32-0 in the Senate

HB 1742 by McCormick/SB 1626 by Yager: Passed 93-0-1 in the House, Passed 31-0 in the Senate

Honorable Mention

HB 1797 by Clemmons/SB 1926 by Harris: Sent to Summer Study/Re-referred to Senate Calendar Committee
Top "Bad" Bills

HB 2229 by Spivey/SB 1707 by Gresham: Failed/Re-referred to Senate Calendar Committee

HB 2416 by Lynn/SB 2582 by Norris: Passed 65-26-1 in the House, Passed 31-0 in the Senate

HB 997 by Durham/SB 721 by Green: Taken Off Notice/Sent to General Subcommittee
Note: President Billy Dycus played a major role in helping to kill this bill through conversations with various members of the Workers' Compensation Advisory Council and his presence at their meetings.

HB 603 by Durham/SB 123 by Kelsey: Never Heard/Never Heard

HB 1674 by Marsh/SB 1621 by Johnson: Passed 73-20 in the House, Passed 27-5 in the Senate

Dishonorable Mention

HB 2512 by Holt/SB 2481 by Green: Passed 70-19-1 in the House (Conference Committee Report Adopted on a 64-19 vote), Passed 29-3 in the Senate (Conference Committee Report Adopted on a 28-2 vote)
Note: Through our lobbying efforts, this bill now simply clarifies what is already law. While it's still not a good piece of legislation, it's no longer an attack on vulnerable groups, including pregnant women.
Alyssa Hansen, Communications Director
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