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Tennessee State Representative Joe Pitts provides Legislative Update

 

Tennessee State Representative - House District 67Nashville, TN – Tennessee State Representative Joe Pitts from House District 67 generously takes the time to provides the readers of Clarksville Online with updates on issues which are currently on the legislative agenda for the Tennessee House of Representatives which may be of interest to the residents of Clarksville-Montgomery County.

Fifth graders from Sumner County testified before the House Education Committee on Tuesday.  They promoted the use of Apple iPads in the classroom and treated committee members and the audience to a very compelling presentation about the role and effectiveness of technology in public education.

Fifth graders from Sumner County testified before the House Education Committee on Tuesday. They promoted the use of Apple iPads in the classroom and treated committee members and the audience to a very compelling presentation about the role and effectiveness of technology in public education.

In this article he discusses the following topics:

  • 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
  • House Bill 428/Senate Bill 253 – Which would require those under 18 years old to successfully complete a state approved motorcycle rider training program
  • House Bill 1117/Senate Bill 1200 – Which adds 5 additional offenses to the Victims Compensation Fund
  • “Healthcare Navigator” - A provision of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act

House Bill 0422/Senate Bill 493

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 passed unanimously in the State Senate on Thursday, March 21.

State Rep. Joe Pitts (D-Clarksville), sponsor of the House bill said “the legislation sets a clear process for professional license renewal when our active duty military personnel are deployed at the time of that renewal.” Rep Pitts said, “I would like to thank Senator Mark Green for sponsoring this legislation in the Senate.”

The bill now goes to the Governor for his signature and will take effect on July 1st, 2013.

House Bill 428/Senate Bill 253

House Bill 428/Senate 253 requiring those under 18 years old to successfully complete a state approved motorcycle rider training program fails in subcommittee

The House Transportation Subcommittee on a voice vote rejected House Bill 428. “I am very disappointed a majority of the members of the sub-committee ignored the facts and stood in the way of this potentially life saving measure,” said Pitts.

“This legislation was introduced this year after an exhaustive study by the Tennessee Department of Safety clearly indicated an alarming increase in accidents and deaths by motorcycle operators on our roads and highways.” John Milliken, State Coordinator for the Tennessee Department of Safety Motorcycle Rider Education Program, as he testified before the committee the need for this legislation.

To view the entire discussion in sub-committee click here .

“The message of rider training to save lives on motorcycles is an important one for our state,” Pitts said. “I will not give up on this issue and will rework the plan but not the message of safety first.”

House Bill 1117/Senate Bill 1200

House Bill 1117/Senate Bill 1200adds 5 additional offenses to the Victims Compensation Fund clears its first hurdle

House Bill 1117 as introduced, adds victims of vehicular assault, criminally negligent homicide, vehicular homicide, reckless homicide, and aggravated vehicular homicide who injury or death was inflicted through the use of a motor vehicle or watercraft to those eligible for criminal injuries compensation cleared the Criminal Justice Sub-Committee this week and will be heard in the Criminal Justice Full committee next Wednesday, March 27th.

“This legislation was brought to me by District Attorney John Carney after an accident in 2012 caused the death of an APSU student,” Pitts stated. “If the legislation becomes law, it will give victims and their families’ compensation for their loss caused by the recklessness of others,”

“Navigator” legislation advances

When Congress enacted the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, it approved an important new provision in the law that creates the role of a “navigator” in helping consumers find the right health insurance policy.

The National Association of Health Underwriters asked Rep Pitts to sponsor HB0881 which will grant the Commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance rule making authority in providing proper oversight of these entities.

“The risk of consumer fraud is high if a navigator, who will have access to sensitive and personal information of the consumer, is left unchecked in our state,” said Pitts. “This measure will prohibit navigators from selling policies and will provide the state sufficient leverage if they overstep their bounds.”

HB0881 passed the House Insurance & Banking subcommittee on Wednesday, and is set to be heard by the full committee next week.

The navigator role is extremely critical to successful implementation of the new federal law. Consumer groups like the AARP and other interested community organizations will provide a valuable service to our citizens.

“We are confident most everyone will follow the rules, set forth by the state of Tennessee,” stated Pitts. “Consumers do need a place to turn if they come in contact with a predator who takes advantage of a citizen.”

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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