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Tennessee State Licensure Renewal Bill aiding Military Personnel Clears Two House Committees

 

Tennessee Housing Development Agency announces Emergency Solutions Grant for the City of Clarksville

Tennessee State Representative - District 67Nashville, TN – Tennessee State Representative Joe Pitts (D-Clarksville) is the sponsor of House Bill 0422 (Senate Bill 493), which would expedite issuance of certain professional licenses and temporarily extend certain licenses for active duty personnel that were deployed when their licenses came due for renewal cleared two committees this week.

“The bill provides a clear process for professional license renewal when our active duty military personnel are deployed at the time of that renewal,” Pitts said.  The bill will be heard on the House Floor on Monday, March 11th.

Tennessee State Representative Joe Pitts

Tennessee State Representative Joe Pitts

Parents’ Day Out Bill passes House

House Bill 172/Senate Bill 178 passed the House of Representatives unanimously this week.  This legislation was proposed because an Attorney General’s opinion issued this past year stated that the Tennessee Department of Human Services had been operating out of compliance with state law for several years.  The resulting effect was the Department permitting by policy and practice Parents’ Day Out (PDO) facilities to operate without following state law.

The legislation now allows Parents’ Day Out (PDO) or similar programs operated by a religious institution or religious organizations that provide custodial care and services for children of less than school age to attend the program for no more than 2 days per week and not more than 6 hours per day.  A PDO will now be allowed to operate multiple facilities 7 days a week as long as no child attends more than twice a week.  Senate Bill 178 will start moving in the Senate next week.

Legislation requiring persons under 18 to successfully complete a state approved motorcycle rider training course before being licensed

House Bill 428/Senate Bill 253 is scheduled for the Transportation Sub Committee on Wednesday, March 13th.  “The rising number of accidents and fatalities among motorcycle operators in our state is alarming,” stated Pitts.

“We are moving this legislation forward to address that disturbing trend. This issue was first brought to my attention last year by Appleton Harley-Davidson of Clarksville. We sponsored legislation last year to cause a motorcycle safety study by the Tennessee Department of Safety (Public Chapter 617),” said Pitts. “After reviewing the eighty-three page report, seeing countless news reports on the number of people being killed and/or seriously injured, the time has come for this type of legislation,” Pitts said.

Identification required for persons seeking delivery of a controlled substance

House Bill 429 (Senate Bill 252), sponsored by Rep. Pitts will be heard in the Criminal Justice Subcommittee next Tuesday, March 12th.  “This legislation was originally drafted to address a situation that happened in our community regarding a pharmacist that self-dispensed a controlled substance using forged prescriptions.

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) now supports this proposal based on their research showing Tennessee ranked number 1 in the nation by the RADARS (Researched Abuse, Diversion and Addition-Related Surveillance System) among states at greatest risk for abuse, misuse and/or diversion based on prescription and/or exposure trends.

When this bill becomes law, it will help the TBI investigate and prosecute the “pill pushers” and also protect patients that legitimately need this medication,” Pitts said.

Tennessee Housing Development Agency announces Emergency Solutions Grant Recipients

We were notified today that the Tennessee Housing Development Agency (THDA) has recently awarded a grant in the amount of $194,440 to the City of Clarksville to be used for street outreach, shelter activities, and rapid re-housing.  The grant begins March 1st, 2013 and runs through February 28th, 2014.

According to the THDA’s 2012 Housing Needs Assessment, over 9000 people are homeless on any given night in Tennessee.  About one-half of those who were homeless suffered from mental illness or substance abuse issues and another quarter were considered chronically homeless.  Veterans comprise 14 percent of the total homeless population.

“I am grateful to the THDA for providing this funding to Clarksville and am hopeful it will help some of our most desperate homeless citizens, especially our veterans,” Pitts said.

If you are or know of someone who is facing homelessness issues, contact Jean Adcock at jean.adcock@cityofclarksville.com or 931.648.6133.

If you have questions about any item above or other issues of concern, please call me at 615.741.2043, or email me at rep.joe.pitts@capitol.tn.gov


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