Legislative Update - March 23

Our legislature is out-of-control with its attacks on workers' rights and our economy. Check out what's happening this week in Nashville with workers' comp, bargaining, wages, and more.

Monday, March 23: Contact Your Legislators re Voting Against Bills Allowing Tennessee Employers to Opt Out of Workers' Comp!

From the Tennessee AFL-CIO Labor Council:

After this past week's House Consumer & Human Resources Subcommittee meeting was cancelled, no time was wasted in getting HB 603 (Durham)/SB 123 (Kelsey) on the agenda for this upcoming week. The Senate Commerce & Labor Committee will also take up Kelsey's version of the bill on Tuesday, March 24th at 1:30 p.m. The following day (March 25th), the House Consumer & Human Resources Subcommittee will take up Durham's version of this crippling piece of legislation at 3 p.m. Once again, whether it's by phone, e-mail, or in person, please contact any of these legislators on either committee ( Senate Commerce & Labor, House Consumer & Human Resources Subcommittee) , and ask them to vote "no" on this bill!

Unfortunately, these same two committees will also take up HB 997 (Durham)/SB 721 (Green) this week. This BAD piece of legislation would create the "Tennessee Employee Injury Benefit Alternative" and allows employers to opt out of Workers' Compensation. Once again, please contact your state representative or senator, and ask them to vote "no" on this bill !

What's on our Radar?
As always, the bills are broken down by the day (Tuesday or Wednesday) on which they'll be heard. By clicking on the bill number (which will be highlighted like this), you'll be able to access the entire piece of legislation, its current status, and much more. As always, please contact our office if you have any questions or need more information.

Tuesday, March 24th

House Business & Utilities Subcommittee, 1:30 p.m., LP 29
- House Bill 766 (SB 1199): This bill would remove the ban on local governments regulating contractors.

Senate Commerce & Labor Committee, 1:30 p.m., LP 12
- Senate Bill 721 (HB 997): This piece of legislation (mentioned above) enacts the "Tennessee Employee Injury Benefit Alternative."
This bill will also be heard in the House Consumer & Human Resources Subcommittee on Wednesday at 3 p.m. in LP 29.
-Senate Bill 1066 (HB 768): This bill requires that employee handbooks include "the leave statute for adoption and pregnancy."
This bill will also be heard in the House State Government Subcommittee on Wednesday at noon in LP 29.
-Senate Bill 123 (HB 603): This VERY BAD bill (mentioned above) would ban collective bargaining agreements between public employees and local governments, utility districts, and other entities.
This bill will also be heard in the House Consumer & Human Resources Subcommittee on Wednesday at 3 p.m. in LP 29.
- Senate Bill 127 (HB 24): This piece of legislation establishes the "Go Build Tennessee Act. "
This bill will also be heard in the House Business & Utilities Committee on Wednesday at 3 p.m. in LP 16.

Wednesday, March 25th

House State Government Subcommittee, 9:00 a.m., LP 29
-House Bill 1145 (SB 890): This bill deals with dues deductions to state employee organizations.
-House Bill 967 (SB 1081): This bill would enact the "Tennessee First Act," which gives a preference for Tennessee contractors for certain contracts.

Senate Education Committee, 9:30 a.m., LP 12
- Senate Bill 183 (HB 158): This piece of legislation would make the "Little Hatch Act" applicable to teachers.

House Transportation Subcommittee, noon, LP 16
-House Bill 1027 (SB 1370): This bill creates the "Public Construction Contractor Safety Act."
This bill will also be heard in the Senate Transportation & Safety Committee at 11:30 a.m. in LP 12.

House Consumer & Human Resources Subcommittee, 3 p.m., LP 29
-House Bill 557 (SB663): This piece of legislation calls for a study on the development of a paid family and medical leave program.
-House Bill 579 (SB 659): This bill enacts the "Tennessee Minimum Wage Act."
-House Bill 903 (SB 864): This piece of legislation enacts the "Tennessee Pay Equality Act," which prohibits an employer from discriminating on the basis of sex in regards to wages.
- House Bill 603 (SB 123): This VERY BAD bill (mentioned above) would ban collective bargaining agreements between public employees and local governments, utility districts, and other entities.
- House Bill 997 (SB 721): This piece of legislation (mentioned above) enacts the "Tennessee Employee Injury Benefit Alternative."
- House Bill 555 (SB 1067): This bill would enact the "Making Work Pay Act."
- House Bill 483 (SB 653): This piece of legislation would increase penalties for OSHA violations.
- House Bill 1257 (SB 1063): This bill requires that the state's minimum hourly wage rate be set at $10.10
- House Bill 974 (SB 1159): This bill would enact the "Tennessee Pregnant Workers Fairness Act."

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