What to look for Next week...
– All proposed workers’ compensation legislation will be given a preliminary hearing in the workers’ compensation advisory council on March 1
@ 1:30 PM CST prior to hearing in both House and Senate standing committees. To view the committee hearing via streaming please visit capitol.tn.gov and click streaming video. The Tennessee Chamber expects little activity in the area and has proposed legislation to help employers by repealing statute requiring that all TPA’s maintain an instate office.
– Expect spirited discussion around medical marijuana as a House subcommittee announced plans to hear the legislation next week. The issue brings strong divide among legislators on this issue. Through surveys and visits, Tennessee Chamber members have expressed mixed opinions about the measure noting varied impacts to Tennessee’s economy, reducing opioid dependency and negative workplace impacts.
Further Discussion on Opioids
– Last week a House subcommittee advanced competing opiod legislation ahead of Governor Haslam’s TN Together proposal. The Tennessee Medical Association has challenged Haslam’s plan as intervening too far with doctors and patient relationships. We expect the legislature will reach a compromise on the proposed legislation in the coming weeks. The Tennessee Chamber supports efforts to address the opioid abuse epidemic.
– Proposed legislation for the third year in a row seeks to make additional modifications to Tennessee statute governing requirements of disclosing data breech information. The Tennessee Chamber is working to modify this proposal and address concerns for all parties.
Environmental Permit Shield
– Legislation brought by the Tennessee Chamber is scheduled to be heard in the House Agriculture and Natural Resources subcommittee next week. The proposal clarifies and reestablishes a state water permit shield for activities authorized under a permit. The Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation has noted their concerns with the proposed bill establishing a permit shield for all water permits, TDEC prefers a shield only for NPDES permits. Negotiations are continuing on the bill with TDEC members of the Tennessee General Assembly and business and industry groups.