A Message From THA
In this week's edition, we have moved the COVID-19 resources, along with the state's activity and major business announcements, to the lower section of this member update.

Scroll down to ensure you review an announcement for the Tennessee Business Relief Program !

( The Tennessee Business Relief Program will direct approx. $200 million in federal Coronavirus Relief Funds through @TNDeptofRevenue to small businesses.)
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TENNESSEE!
On June 1, 1796, Tennessee became the 16th state admitted to the Union.
Proclamation on National
Homeownership Month, 2020
"For generations, homeownership has sustained and empowered Americans. Recently, we have been reminded that our homes are central to our health, our independence, and the well-being of our families. In response to the coronavirus outbreak, millions of Americans have transformed their homes into safe havens, virtual workplaces, classrooms, and, most importantly, places to nurture hopes and dreams for the future. During National Homeownership Month, we acknowledge the many benefits of secure and affordable homeownership."

** THA has pending MH transportation legislation which is in jeopardy of being set aside, as it falls in to a category which some view as non-critical.
Tennessee's General Assembly Reconvened This Week
The General Assembly gaveled back into session this week. The House and Senate continued to close committees this week, and they hope to close the remainder of their committees next week.

The House and Senate do not agree on taking up all remaining legislative actions, with the Senate suggesting legislative initiatives which are not deemed crucial, should not be taken up this year. **

The Governor proposed his revised budget to the legislature on Thursday. It accounts for a $1.5 billion shortfall over fiscal years 2020 & 2021. However, the administration's proposal plans to balance it over a three-year period. The budget will be the Legislature's primary focus next week, as they look to wind down session.
HUD “Evidence Matters” Dedicates
Spring 2020 Issue to Manufactured Housing
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has dedicated its Spring 2020 edition of “Evidence Matters” magazine to factory-built housing. Containing useful research and commentary sourced from third parties and HUD, the issue affirms the resilience, quality and affordability of manufactured homes. 

We can thank MHI for all of their hard work in bringing much needed national attention to our industry. Great job!
New “Hours of Service of Drivers” Regulations
Effective September 29, 2020


The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) announced final amendments to its “hours of service” regulations. These updates create a more reasonable compliance standard for short and long-haul drivers, including those who deliver manufactured homes and their parts and accessories .

Several updates to the hours of service (HOS) requirements will benefit our industry and its drivers. The revisions, which go into effect September 29, 2020, include:

  • Expansion of the existing short-haul distance restriction from 100 to 150 air-miles and extension of the maximum allowable workday from a 12- to a 14-hour period requirement. These changes expand the window of operations for short-haul operators who also hold a Commercial Driver’s License, which should result in an increased number of deliveries and less time spent managing administrative overhead resulting from unnecessary delays. Those companies who are parts and equipment suppliers and have drivers who operate as short-haul operators will also likely benefit from this expanded operating window.
  • More options available to drivers who encounter adverse driving conditions by allowing up to a 16-hour driving window for property carriers to complete up to 13 hours of driving. The final rule also amends the definition of ‘‘adverse driving conditions’’ to clarify the driver’s role in determining when such conditions are identified. These updates strike a balance between providing the necessary flexibility to manage frequent but unpredictable delays in response to adverse conditions, while also preserving and continuing to promote road safety.
  • The mandatory 30-minute break requirement will now be linked to cumulative driving time, rather than on-duty time. Going forward, an on-duty/not driving period can qualify as the required break, as long as the break is at least 30 continuous minutes. Manufactured home deliveries necessitate multiple breaks, including periodic stops to check tire pressure and safety equipment. Drivers also stop to coordinate with the pilot car or police escort before navigating certain structures or obstructions. These stops naturally help to relieve driver fatigue and, as long as the break is 30 minutes in duration, would likely satisfy the updated break requirement. 
  • Provide drivers with additional flexibility to meet the minimum off-duty requirement by spending at least seven consecutive hours in the sleeper berth coupled with a minimum period of at least two hours in the berth or otherwise off-duty, as long as the two periods total at least 10 hours. When paired, neither qualifying period will count against the 14-hour driving window. Prior to this final rule, the shorter two-hour period counted against the window. The new rule should give drivers the flexibility to use sleeper time for shorter breaks, such as “power naps,” so they can effectively “pause” the on-duty clock.
Currency and Monetary Instrument Report (CMIR)
Now Available for Electronic Filing
Persons entering or exiting the United States, and physically transporting $10,000 or more in currency or other monetary instruments at one time must file the Currency and Monetary Instrument Report (CMIR) (FinCEN Form 105). The obligation to report falls on each person who physically transports, mails, or ships the currency or other monetary instruments. The obligation to report also falls on each person who receives currency or other monetary instruments in the United States which have been transported, mailed, or shipped from any place outside the United States. Previously, the CMIR was only available for paper filing.
 
FinCEN and the Department of Homeland Security’s U.S. Customs and Border Protection have developed a version that can be filed electronically. Travelers may still file a paper version of the CMIR.
 
The Electronic version of the CMIR is available at:
Price-Gouging Law
Under  Tennessee Code, § 47.18.5103 , it is unlawful to charge any person for a consumer good or service, including housing , until a declaration of emergency has concluded, a price that is in gross excess of its price prior to declaration. An increase in price will be shown to be not in excess if a seller can attribute such an increase to additional costs imposed by the supplier of that good or service.


Manufactured Homes
More Choices with Less Cost


MHI Joins Coalition of Businesses Urging Congress to Pass
Temporary and Targeted Liability Relief Legislation
MHI, along with a coalition of business organizations, are urging Congress to enact timely, temporary and targeted liability relief legislation to provide businesses a safe harbor pass from unwarranted lawsuits from the Coronavirus emergency as companies begin to reopen. The letter argues that during the stay-at-home orders, essential businesses remained open to provide critical services and supplies to the economy while adhering to public health guidance. Now, as the stay-at-home orders are lifted, more businesses are reopening and making their best efforts to comply with public health guidance to protect their employees and customers. However, there is concern amongst businesses that they will have to defend themselves against a wave of frivolous lawsuits related to the Coronavirus emergency. The letter specifically asks that Congress grant a safe harbor for the duration of the pandemic crisis and response that covers those businesses that work to follow government guidelines against COVID-19 exposure claims.  
' Developing with Manufactured Housing ' Webinar

June 17, 2020 from 2:30 PM - 4:30 PM EST
MHI is launching a series of interactive webinars designed to provide high-quality industry education and training you can access from the comfort of your own home or office. Leading off the series is the Developing with Manufactured Housing webinar on June 17, 2020 from 2:30 PM – 4:30 PM Eastern time.
 
This is a condensed version of the annual full-day, in-person developer event, presented in conjunction with Congress & Expo. The webinar will educate and provide industry knowledge for builders and developers considering factory-built housing to save time and money on their projects.
 
Presented by Donald Westphal , Donald C. Westphal Associates, LLC, Nadi Design, Roderick Knoll , Manufactured Housing Resources Group and Emeka Nnadi , Nadi Design and Donald C. Westphal Associates


Topics Include:
  1. Manufactured Housing Industry Overview
  2. The Development Process – Site Selection
  3. Pro Forma Cash Flow Statements for Manufactured Housing Projects
  4. Land-Lease Case Study (Including Rental Homes)
  5. Impacts of and Responses to COVID-19


The webinar cost is $35 per person.
Tennessee Housing Market

An overview of Tennessee's housing trends: sales prices, foreclosure activity, delinquency rates, housing affordability, vacancy rates, and homeownership rates.
Flooding is the most common and costly natural disaster in the United States.

Property owners can protect themselves from these financial losses by having a flood insurance policy through the National Flood Insurance Program.

To buy a policy, contact your insurance company or agent. For an agent referral, call 800-427-4661 or visit www.FloodSmart.gov .
Tennessee State Fire Marshal
Fire Prevention Messages for June

The SFMO's Monthly Fire Prevention & Public Fire Education Planning Guide is a great resource for messaging.

Marina/Boating Electrical Safety :
Stay safe on the water this summer by referring to NFPA's Marina & Boating Safety Tip Sheet .

Outdoor Grilling :
Learn how to safely fire up the grill HERE .

Campfire Safety :
NFPA offers a Campfire Safety Tip Sheet to promote safe camping.

Fireworks Safety :
Refer to the NFPA website to learn how to safely interact with fireworks. 
RETAIL SALES
COVID-19 Recovery
How to Emerge & Thrive
Free Webinar Series
6 Easy Ways To Boost Sales in 2020

Powered/Sponsored by: ManufacturedHomes.com
As a nation and an industry, we are currently facing tough economic hardships.
When the recovery comes -- and it will come --
will you and your business be ready to emerge and thrive?

  1. 2020 Annual Meeting - UPDATE
  2. Initial Licensing/Certification Education - 15 Hour Class
  3. C & I Inspector Map - Effective May 26, 2020
  4. Required Continuing Education - 05 Hour Class
  5. Foundation Assistance - Tornado and Storm Related Gifting ($500)
  6. MHInsider Access Links
  7. State News & COVID-19 Resources
THA's Annual Meeting and 65th
Anniversary Celebration - Update
The THA Board of Directors announced several weeks ago, the June 7 - 9, 2020 event would be postponed until October 18 - 20, 2020. For more information and future participation deadline dates, please visit the Annual Meeting Page , via the THA Website.
 
As a note, if you had already made hotel reservations with Dollywood's DreamMore Resort & Spa in Pigeon Forge for June, those reservations were automatically cancelled, when the Resort closed under the COVID-19 safety protocols.

You may begin calling the Resort in early July, to book your October reservations! (800) 365-5996.
 
We are excited to get this re-scheduled!
15 Hour Online Class for Initial Licensing
In cooperation with the Department of Commerce & Insurance, THA has developed a series of educational online videos (13) and content review exams (11), for the State of Tennessee's required 15 Hour initial licensing educational class for manufactured housing retailer and installer candidates.

Candidates should understand the developed online training will only be Phase I of the required State statutory requirements needed to pursue a Tennessee manufactured housing license; with the State’s mandated written test to be considered as Phase II.

To understand how this initial licensing educational process works, please read the below information.
To complete Phase I of this educational online program, candidates will utilize provided links to access a series of educational resources, videos and content examinations. These modules/videos and exams meet the educational statutory requirements required by Tennessee, in order to pursue a license in manufactured housing retail sales or home installations. 

Candidates must complete each module of the training, in order, and must complete each module exam, scoring 70% or better. As candidates complete a module and take the respective exam, the Association will be automatically notified, via a candidates online module exam score. Once a candidate has satisfactorily completed all sections/exams, a certificate of education will be e-mailed to the candidate. Candidates must retain the educational certificate, as proof of completing the required statutory education.

Additional information on this entire process is contained within the online training modules, and the provided resources.
Test Sheet
Phase II of education will require passing a state issued exam, given by Morris & McDaniel, Inc. The Association will notify candidates who have completed their education, when the State resumes in-person testing, or provides additional guidance on remote testing, through Morris & McDaniel, Inc. 

Exam fees are included in the pre-payment amount of this class, so candidates will not pay a separate testing fee. Should a candidate fail the state issued exam, an additional $125 will be charged by the testing company, to re-administer the exam. 

The testing company will only administer exams to individuals who have been verified as satisfactorily registering, pre-paying and passing all module exams.

As a note:  If candidates do not have easy access to a printer and need a copy of resources before beginning the online study, an educational package will be shipped to the requesting candidate.



05 Hour Online Class for Continuing Education
To meet the continuing education requirements of our licensed industry members and affiliates, THA has developed a modified online continuing education class for manufactured home retailers and installers, for the 2020 renewal of licensing or certification. 
 
Please note, this online training access will be offered for a limited time only.  Once federal and state travel restrictions have been lifted and approval for gatherings has been waived, the State of Tennessee will resume the requirement for ‘in-person’ class attendance. 

Take this opportunity now, to complete your 2020 education online! .... CLICK HERE for a registration form.

Remember Our Tornado Victims...
We are Still Recovering!
NOTE: Some of the MH industry's financial partners have approved the use of this 'gifted' money as down payment assistance. Please check with your financial representative to see if these funds will qualify for that use. If not, the funds may be directed toward other sales contract items relative to the home replacement. Funds will be available at closing.  
THA Retailers...
 
The Tennessee Manufactured Housing Foundation ( The Industry's Helping Hand ) is offering $500 in assistance to any of your purchasing customers who were affected by the March 3rd Tornado Disaster.
 
If your customer owned (or was financing) a manufactured home and the home was their primary residence for at least one year, please take a moment to review the minimum requirements, to see if your customer qualifies for this gifted assistance. (This applies to purchasing customers who must replace their damaged or destroyed manufactured home.)
 
Restrictions do apply , so please download the linked one-page document below, to see how you can offer this assistance to your customer.
 
The Foundation has set aside $20,000. Once the funds have been depleted, no additional assistance will be processed under this offering, unless additional monetary donations are received by TMHF for this effort.
STATE NEWS AND COVID-19 RESOURCES

BY MEMBER REQUEST, WE WILL CONTINUE TO MAINTAIN THIS
RESOURCE SECTION FOR AN EXTENDED TIME
State-wide Press Conference
Tuesday - June 2nd, 3:00 pm cst
Tennessee Business Relief Program



On Tuesday, Governor Bill Lee, Lt. Gov. Randy McNally, House Speaker Cameron Sexton, and the Financial Stimulus Accountability Group, in conjunction with the Tennessee Department of Revenue, announced a $200M small business economic relief payment program entitled Tennessee Business Relief Program. The relief is aimed at businesses which incurred additional costs as a result of the statewide safer at home order, as well as businesses which experienced a significant drop in revenue in April.

  • Roughly 28,000 Tennessee businesses are expected to qualify, with more than 73% of those businesses earning annual gross sales of $500,000 or less.
  • More than 94% of Tennessee's private sector have fewer than 50 employees.
  • As a note, these funds are part of the state's distribution from the CARES Act. While Congress gives guidance to states on where the CARES funds should be directed, it is ultimately the State's decision to decide how best to utilize those federal resources, to meet the needs of their respective states.
  • In lieu of an application process, the Department of Revenue will use historical data to identify qualifying businesses through NAICS code.
  • Businesses will be divided into categories based on their total gross sales for purposes of assigning a payment amount. Payments will be distributed by check or direct deposit depending on the information the Department of Revenue has in its system. The payments are expected to range from $2,500 to $30,000.
  • More details will be posted on the Department of Revenue’s website in the coming days.
Other General State News

  • Tennessee’s Economic Recovery Group continues to advance the state’s reopening plan, issuing updated guidelines this week for close contact service businesses, exercise facilities and recreation activities under the Tennessee Pledge. In addition, the ERG added recommendations for large community events to the previously issued guidance for attractions and large venues. Events like fairs, festivals, expos and parades may be held in accordance with social distancing guidelines, and the ERG has provided additional recommendations to mitigate COVID-19 transmission.
  • Governor Lee outlines budget cuts due to economic impact of coronavirus: Gov. Bill Lee's office says $500 million in cuts will be needed for the current budget year and $1 billion for the fiscal year beginning July 1. Finance Commissioner Butch Eley said the administration plans to balance the budget using reserves over three years.
  • With long-term care residents comprising nearly 40 percent of all COVID-19-related deaths in Tennessee, Gov. Lee and the Unified Command have implemented a robust response to require all long-term care residents and staff to receive COVID-19 testing. Under new rules from the Department of Health, each nursing home must complete an “intent to test” survey as provided for by the Department prior to June 1, 2020, and all nursing home residents and staff must be tested by June 30, 2020.
  • The Department of Human Services has expanded its COVID-19 childcare payment assistance program to cover all essential workers, as outlined in previous Executive Orders, through mid-August.
  • The partnership between the Department of Education and PBS to provide educational learning on television every day has been extended through the end of the summer.

TN Pledge:
General Guidelines for Businesses
The State recommends safeguarding protocols for all businesses in Tennessee, including those that are reopening and those essential businesses that remained open during the Safer at Home order . These safeguarding protocols are based on the recommendations of the CDC and OSHA. To support the Tennessee Pledge, all employers and employees should take steps to reopen safely, help other industries be able to open more quickly, and allow Tennessee to remain healthy and open for business.
When in doubt, get a test! ... TN.GOV/GetATest
Visit your local county health department today to pick up a free, washable face mask. All 95 locations across the state also offer free #COVID19 testing 5 days a week, regardless of traditional symptoms. Click the icon to view locations.
ESSENTIAL EMPLOYEES -
Child Care Payment Assistance
Tennessee is trying to assist essential workers who are serving the state during this pandemic.

@TNHumanServices has partnered with @BGCMidTN to support these workers and their families through child care payment assistance.

For more information ... click HERE .
If you know of someone who is out of work and looking for work....
The Tennessee Talent Exchange, powered by @Jobs4_TN , is matching Tennesseans with immediate job openings in our state's grocery, retail, and logistics industries.

Apply HERE or visit https://www.tn.gov/workforce for more information.
Do you need a resource to purchase
Personal Protection Equipment (PPE)
for your Employees or Customers?
Many vendors have expressed their interest in serving Tennessee businesses as they get back to work in a safe environment and reboot our state’s economy. Below is a link to the state's list of personal protective equipment (PPE) vendors which offer products to assist in following CDC or Tennessee Pledge guidelines.

Companies are encouraged to maximize securing PPE through normal distribution channels, and the listed vendors may be able to supplement such normal channels. Please note product and pricing details listed are subject to change based on availability and are provided for comparison purposes only. Contact vendors directly for a quote.