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Editorial Results (free)

1. Enthusiasm Not Enough to Turn Tennessee Blue -

Tennessee’s legislative Democrats are eternally optimistic. They don’t have much choice but to look on the bright side with 75-24 and 28-5 deficits in the House and Senate.

So when they put a nearly full slate of candidates on the ticket for November’s general election – about 110 districts – and say they’ve got a good chance of picking up seats, they almost have to be taken with the proverbial grain of salt.

2. Last Word: County Budget Compromise, MEM After 5 Years and Elvis -

There is nothing like the end of a term for those holding elected office. That’s what gets most of the credit for the Shelby County commission’s smooth ending to its budget season Monday. A final reading of the revised county property tax rate of $4.05 still awaits. But the commission went a long way toward locking that in with the approval of everything else at the Monday session.

3. What Do Statewide Candidates Say About Health Care in Tennessee? -

According to Think Tennessee’s State of Our State dashboard, the state ranks near the bottom in the number of adults with heart disease, obesity and diabetes. It also ranks near the bottom of all states for the health of senior citizens, infant mortality, number of adults who smoke, and at the absolute bottom in childhood obesity. Tennesseans are, on the whole, not healthy. What can and should our next political leaders do about it?

4. Last Word: Bird Is The Word, Governors Quartet and Charlie Morris's Secret -

Former Vice President Joe Biden plays the Orpheum Friday evening. Maybe that isn't the right way to put it -- unless there's a drum solo no one is talking about. Free Bird?

I'll take it as further evidence of the new American politics that is evolving and is far from settled at this point. Politicians do paid speaking gigs all the time. And at times it is controversial. But the gigs are usually some kind of speaking fee to make remarks at a corporate function -- not selling individual tickets on line. This is ostensibly to promote Biden's new book and book deals and politicians go way back. But in a lot of cases, those are free events in a book store. When Biden was last here, it was as vice president at the Norfolk Southern intermodal rail yard in Rossville.

5. TBA Gubernatorial Forum Focuses on Criminal Justice Reform -

Four of the major contenders for Tennessee governor told the annual convention of the Tennessee Bar Association Thursday, June 14, that they each favor keeping the state attorney general a position appointed by the Tennessee Supreme Court.

6. Fitzhugh Seeks Opinion On Tyson Foods Complex -

The same day that local elected officials and others broke ground on a new Tyson Foods complex in Humboldt, Tennessee, state House Democratic leader Rep. Craig Fitzhugh sought a legal opinion from the Tennessee attorney general on the regulation of such plants.

7. Fitzhugh Seeks Legal Opinion on Tyson Foods Complex -

The same day that local elected officials and others broke ground on a new Tyson Foods complex in Humboldt, Tennessee, state House Democratic leader Rep. Craig Fitzhugh sought a legal opinion from the Tennessee attorney general on the regulation of such plants.

8. If Only Legislators Could Focus on Important Issues -

A year-old law enabling Tennessee colleges and universities to keep secret the “proprietary” fees they pay money managers for handling risky investments is likely to be reviewed this year.

9. Tennessee Candidate: Florida Students Used as Anti-Gun Props -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Republican candidate for Tennessee governor Bill Lee is claiming that the "liberal media," teachers unions and the "far-left lobby" have used students who survived the deadly Florida school shooting as "props to push their anti-gun agenda," saying he's sickened by it.

10. Two Shots Didn’t Phase Lawmakers in Jack Daniel’s Case -

When Van Halen front man David Lee Roth opened a bottle of Jack Daniel’s on stage back in the ’80s, the last thing he thought about was taxes and court appeals when he took a big swig of whiskey.

11. What Do Statewide Candidates Say About Rural Tennessee? -

Like most of America, Tennessee’s metropolitan areas have prospered during the last eight years, while the rural areas have lagged in almost every measure. The state has 19 of its 95 counties classified as “distressed.” What can and should we do to give every Tennessean a chance to succeed?

12. Tenn. Legislature Breaks TNReady Gridlock, Adjourns Session -

NASHVILLE – The House and Senate broke gridlock Wednesday night on problems stemming from the results of troubled TNReady testing by passing legislation saying no “adverse action” would be taken against teachers, students or schools for poor test scores.

13. Lawmakers Honor Man Hailed as Hero in Waffle House Attack -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – The man who snatched an AR-15 rifle away from a gunman at a Tennessee restaurant told Tennessee lawmakers Tuesday he faced "the true test of a man," drawing a standing ovation during his brief address.

14. Early Vote in Shelby County Primaries Tops 20,000 So Far -

More than 20,000 voters cast ballots early through Saturday, April 21, in advance of the May 1 election, more than half in the Democratic county primaries.

According to the Shelby County Election Commission numbers, 12,001 of the 20,717 early voters cast their ballots in the Democratic primaries and 8,716 voted early in the Republican primaries through the last weekend of the period.

15. Local, State and Federal Election Cycles Blend On Last Weekend of Early Voting -

Candidates in the August and November elections were out on the last weekend of early voting in Shelby County in advance of the May 1 election day for county primaries.

The events were a mix of candidates from all three elections on the calendar in 2018.

16. Effort to Expand Medicaid in Tennessee Fails -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Another effort to expand Tennessee's Medicaid program has failed after the state's Republican-dominated House refused to support an amendment on a bill on insurance coverage for certain cancer patients.

17. What Statewide Candidates Say About Opioid Crisis, Public Safety -

The spread of opioid abuse claimed over 1,600 lives in Tennessee in 2016, and it is getting worse. Methamphetamine abuse, while not getting the headlines, has increased. Gun violence and murder is increasing. What proposals do our candidates have to help Tennesseans address these public safety issues?

18. Candidates for Governor Give Millions to Their Own Campaigns -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Tennessee candidates for governor are raising millions of dollars in contributions, but the big money is coming from the contenders themselves.

A state campaign finance disclosure report filed this week shows that Republicans Diane Black and Bill Lee had the most in contributions this quarter – each around $3.3 million.

19. Three Incumbents Unopposed at August Primary Ballot Deadline -

Three incumbent Democratic state House members in the Shelby County delegation to the Tennessee Legislature were effectively re-elected Thursday, April 5, at the noon deadline for candidates in the Aug. 2 state and federal primaries to file their qualifying petitions.

20. Three Incumbents Unopposed at August Primary Ballot Filing Deadline -

Three incumbent Democratic state House members in the Shelby County delegation to the Tennessee Legislature were effectively re-elected Thursday, April 5, at the noon deadline for candidates in the Aug. 2 state and federal primaries to file their qualifying petitions.

21. Lawmakers See Conspiracy In UT Board Alterations -

It’s not that hard to light a fire under some state lawmakers, but the University of Tennessee FOCUS Act raised blood pressure considerably in the House of Representatives before barely passing with 51 votes.

22. What Do Statewide Candidates Say About Infrastructure Investment? -

Is investment in public infrastructure important? And should Tennessee have more dedicated revenue sources to pay for construction and maintenance of infrastructure across the state, or is the existing tax structure – primarily the state tax on fuel, and wheel taxes – sufficient to pay for what Tennessee needs to sustain and grow its economy?

23. Dems Need Viable Candidates to Catch Blue Wave -

Republicans called it the “kickoff” to what they hope will be a great election season.

Democrats are downplaying a lopsided loss in the 14th Senate District special election, saying it won’t represent results later this year in President Donald Trump’s midterm.

24. Dean: ‘It’s Kind of Our Turn’ in Governor’s Race -

Democratic contender for governor Karl Dean is pushing hard the idea that Democrats can win one of the two statewide races on the Tennessee ballot this year.

25. Civil War Re-Enactor Outflanked On Statues, Medicaid Expansion -

When state Rep. Steve McDaniel was a youngster he often read the historical marker at the intersection of Highway 22 and Wildersville Road detailing Confederate Lt. Gen. Nathan Bedford Forrest’s first West Tennessee raid in the Battle of Parker’s Crossroads.

26. Governor Hopefuls Largely OK With TennCare Work Requirements -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Tennessee's candidates for governor said Tuesday that they are largely supportive of proposed TennCare work requirements, but some of them expressed concerns about possible costs and bureaucracy.

27. Governor Hopeful's Group to Manage Minor League Ballclub -

GREENEVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – A company owned by Tennessee candidate for governor Randy Boyd will manage day-to-day operations of another minor league baseball team.

28. Pre-K Expansion Faces Resistance in Push for Sunday Wine Sales -

NASHVILLE – Legislation sending revenue from Sunday wine sales to prekindergarten expansion faces a battle on several fronts when it reaches a committee in early March.

The bill sponsored by state Sen. Lee Harris is designed to take the state tax dollars from the sale of wine on Sundays, if that separate bill passes this session, and divert it to a fund designed to increase access for low-income children to prekindergarten classrooms in Tennessee. The bill is set to be heard March 6 in the Senate State and Local Government Committee.

29. Bredesen: U.S. Senate Win Possible For Democrats -

The last Democrat to win statewide elected office in Tennessee eight years ago acknowledges times have changed.

“The Democratic brand is damaged in Tennessee,” former Tennessee Gov. Phil Bredesen said last week in Memphis. “The Republican percentage has stayed the same over the last decade. What’s changed is people have abandoned the Democrats and started calling themselves independents.”

30. Last Word: Closing the Loophole, Skeleton Hotel Update and Jubilee Conversion -

The state legislator who sponsored the most recent version of the law making it much more difficult to remove Confederate monuments acknowledges that the city of Memphis found a legitimate loophole in the 2016 law he crafted. Republican Steve McDaniel, of Parkers Crossroads, tells our Nashville correspondent Sam Stockard that he has a bill in the House to close the loophole. But it won't undo what happened here. Although there is still a court fight over that taking shape.

31. Tenn. Governor Candidates Talk Transparency, Medicaid and Megasite -

Five of the seven major contenders in the 2018 Tennessee governor’s race called for more transparency in government but said there are questions about when to disclose information about companies seeking to locate or expand in Tennessee.

32. 9:30 a.m.: Live-Stream the Tennessee Gubernatorial Forum -

The Tennessee Press Association holds a forum Thursday, Feb. 1, in Nashville featuring the announced candidates for Tennessee governor. The live stream – moderated by Eric Barnes, publisher of The Daily News and TPA president – starts at 8:30 a.m., and the forum is scheduled to begin at 9:30 a.m.

33. MEGA HYPE -

In physics the larger an atom is, the more polarizing it can become. The same can be said of real estate development. So it’s not surprising that something referred to as a megasite can incite a range of opinions that are as vast as the site itself.

34. Last Word: Risks by Race, ASD Changes in Frayser and Binghampton Style -

African-American children are more likely to die after surgery than white children, according to a new study by researchers at UTHSC and Le Bonheur. The researchers found that in every category that goes into determining the chance of dying, the risk for white children was overestimated and underestimated for black children. And the dynamics of the risk work differently by race. The conclusion is race-specific models on the issue work better than non race specific models.

35. Immigrant Tuition Splits Tennessee Governor's Field in Forum -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Candidates for governor in Tennessee largely agreed on broad issues facing education during the race's first televised forum Tuesday, except for a partisan split on in-state tuition for immigrants whose parents brought or kept them in the country illegally.

36. Medicaid Expansion Splits Tenn. Governor Hopefuls in Health Forum -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – A health care forum Friday illustrated the partisan split in the Tennessee governor's race over Medicaid expansion, with Democrats ranking it their top priority and Republicans opposing it or espousing other priorities.

37. Despite Need, Expanding Health Care Not in Cards -

Springfield resident Felicity Palma struggled mightily when she moved to Tennessee from Florida two years ago after suffering health problems and losing her job.

The 47-year-old former social worker became homeless for a period when she came here, and now she finds herself in a health insurance coverage gap as she tries to get treatment for ulcers, sciatica, fibroids and thyroid disease. Debt is piling up on her, too, for the care she does receive.

38. Tennessee House Speaker Proposes Medicaid Work Requirements -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Tennessee House Speaker Beth Harwell has filed legislation to pursue TennCare work requirements for able-bodied adults without young children.

39. Getting Shovel Ready -

Candidates for various state-level offices up for grabs in the 2018 elections used the Southwest Tennessee Development District’s annual legislative luncheon in Jackson, Tennessee, last week to share their West Tennessee-centric campaign promises.

40. Black Steps Down as US House Budget Chair Amid Governor Bid -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – U.S. Rep. Diane Black announced Wednesday that she is stepping down as House Budget Committee chairwoman, but will remain in Congress as she runs for governor of Tennessee.

41. Democrats Look to Cooperate on Key Issues -

With the state’s budget projected to be tight and lawmakers lining up to run for re-election in 2018, the coming legislative session isn’t expected to yield many surprises.

But the 110th General Assembly still has a long row to hoe as the session starts Jan. 9 with new legislative offices and committee rooms in the renovated Cordell Hull Building in downtown Nashville.

42. Haslam Considering Changes to UT Board of Trustees -

Gov. Bill Haslam is considering reducing the number University of Tennessee Board of Trustees members and trimming the number of finalists presented for top leadership positions in the UT system, Lt. Gov. Randy McNally has confirmed.

43. Poll: Tennessee Voters More Moderate Than Some Think -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Tennesseans are more moderate than their neighbors think they are, and their views of Congress and President Donald Trump have soured some in the past few months, according to a Vanderbilt University poll released Thursday.

44. 4 Governor Candidates Won’t Release Tax Returns -

Four of the seven major candidates for Tennessee governor are declining to release details of their federal income tax returns.

The Tennessean newspaper asked the five Republicans and two Democrats in the race for copies of their federal tax filings. U.S. Rep. Diane Black and fellow Republican state House Speaker Beth Harwell provided financial summaries, and Democrat Craig Fitzhugh released his 2016 tax return.

45. 4 Tennessee Governor Candidates Won't Release Tax Returns -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Four of the seven major candidates for Tennessee governor are declining to release details of their federal income tax returns.

The Tennessean newspaper asked the five Republicans and two Democrats in the race for copies of their federal tax filings. U.S. Rep. Diane Black and fellow Republican state House Speaker Beth Harwell provided financial summaries, and Democrat Craig Fitzhugh released his 2016 tax return.

46. Despite Massive Turnover, GOP Owns Legislature -

2018 will be a year of change for the Tennessee General Assembly, and 2019 will bring even more, especially in leadership – much depending on the popularity of President Donald Trump.

Not only is the Legislature moving to the Cordell Hull Building, vacating the Legislative Plaza after 45 years or so, a number of legislative faces are changing, too, even before next year’s election.

47. Black Launches Latest Broadside in Tennessee Governor's Race -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – U.S. Rep. Diane Black's gubernatorial campaign is taking aim at Republican rival Randy Boyd, launching a broadside Tuesday at the former member of Gov. Bill Haslam's Cabinet for everything from his running attire to what the congresswoman decries as his moderate record.

48. Democrats Hope Bredesen Run Will Reinvigorate Party -

Tennessee Democrats are canvassing the state to find candidates at every political level, but their next star is a well-known veteran who has people of all political stripes holding their breath.

Phil Bredesen, the former mayor of Nashville and a two-term governor, could alter the landscape of Tennessee politics if he enters the race for U.S. Senate to fill the void by departing Republican Sen. Bob Corker in 2018.

49. Last Word: Bonus For the Head Tiger, Brooks Downtown? and Harris Runs -

A $100,000 bonus from the University of Memphis board of trustees for U of M president David Rudd at Wednesday’s trustees meeting. The bonus is from private funds raised by the university foundation. The board also approved a paid parental leave policy – specifically the funding for that policy. And it reviewed scaled-back plans for the $30 million new rec center for students that will incorporate some of the existing rec center.

50. State Politicians in No Hurry to Fix Health Insurance -

We don’t need no stinkin’ special session on Medicaid expansion.

That’s pretty much the Republican response to House Democratic Leader Craig Fitzhugh’s call for Gov. Bill Haslam to bring lawmakers back to Nashville after the Graham-Cassidy bill failed in Congress.

51. Dean: Economic Development More Difficult in Memphis -

It’s a story that former Nashville Mayor Karl Dean tells just about every place in the state he goes in his campaign to be the state’s next governor.

52. GOP Candidates for Tennessee Governor Uneasy About Gas Tax -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – The ink may be dry on a new state law that boosts funding for road projects through Tennessee's first gas tax hike in 28 years, but that doesn't mean all Republicans running for governor are happy with it.

53. ‘Divisive Symbols’: Mississippi Case Offers Hope for Forrest Bust Removal -

State Sen. Lee Harris is encouraged by the U.S. Supreme Court’s request for the state of Mississippi to respond to a lawsuit seeking to remove the Confederate battle flag from its state flag.

54. GOP's Bill Lee Calls for More School Choice in Tennessee -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Republican gubernatorial candidate Bill Lee is voicing support for more school choice in Tennessee, an issue that has divided lawmakers within his own party.

Debate over the introduction of vouchers to provide parents with public money to pay for private school tuition has roiled the Tennessee General Assembly in recent years. Even limited proposals have been defeated by a bipartisan coalition of urban and rural lawmakers who fear they would siphon money away from public schools.

55. A Million Reasons Not to Jump Into the Tennessee Governor’s Race -

Republican gubernatorial candidate Mae Beavers is banking on the idea wealthy candidates won’t be able to buy voters in 2018.

56. Last Word: The Orange Mound Way, Midtown Apartments and 'I Am A Man' Plaza -

First day of school redux on Tuesday for students in Memphis Catholic Schools and it is a half-day. The first day of classes in most of the county’s other schools Monday went smoothly. Shelby County Schools reports more than 6,000 students registered on the first day of school despite another concerted effort at numerous events to register students in advance. That’s in a school system of approximately 96,000 students.

57. Democrat Craig Fitzhugh Joins Race for Tennessee Governor -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Democrat Craig Fitzhugh is joining the race for Tennessee governor.

58. Last Word: School Days, MLGW Moves Off Beale and Room For Peter Pan To Fly -

The K-12 school year begins Monday for most of Shelby County including the state’s largest public school system right here. Some schools have started earlier and some start later. So remember that in your daily travels going forward even if you don’t have school age children.

59. Boyd Says Luttrell Endorsement is ‘Partnership’ -

Republican contender for Tennessee governor Randy Boyd says his endorsement this week by Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell is more like a partnership.

60. Luttrell to Join Boyd At Campaign Appearance -

Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell makes a campaign appearance Wednesday, July 26, with Republican candidate for Tennessee governor Randy Boyd.

61. Dean Touts ‘Middle Of the Road’ Focus For Democrats -

Former Nashville Mayor Karl Dean is making exactly the same observation in his bid for the Democratic nomination for Tennessee governor that Republicans are making on their side of the 2018 race.

62. Legislature Losing Some Powerful, Familiar Members -

A shakeup in leadership is looming for the state Legislature, though it may portend more of a change in personalities than party strength.

In the House, longtime Rep. Craig Fitzhugh, the affable Democrat from Ripley in West Tennessee, is preparing for a 2018 gubernatorial run, a move that would knock him out of his House seat, at least temporarily, and the position as Democratic Caucus leader.

63. Democrat Karl Dean Raises $1.2M for Tennessee Gov's Campaign -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Former Nashville Mayor Karl Dean raised $1.2 million through the first half of the year for his bid for Tennessee governor, the Democrat's campaign announced Thursday.

64. Medicaid Cuts Could Hit Rural Children Hardest -

As Congress fiddles with an Obamacare replacement, one likely to cut billions in Medicaid spending, health care experts warn a decrease in funding could be hard on Tennessee.

During a recent forum in Jackson, Andy Schneider of the Georgetown Center on Children and Families reported that 50 percent of Tennessee’s children in small towns and rural areas are covered by Medicaid, a higher percentage than the rest of the nation, and more than in Tennessee’s urban areas where 39 percent have Medicaid.

65. Green Drops Gubernatorial Bid After Failed Trump Nomination -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Republican state Sen. Mark Green announced Friday that he will not resume his bid for Tennessee governor after withdrawing from consideration as President Donald Trump's pick for Army secretary.

66. Green Puts Off Public Announcement of Gubernatorial Plans -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Republican state Sen. Mark Green has made up his mind about whether to rejoin the governor's race in Tennessee, but he doesn't want to make his decision public until later this week.

67. Tennessee House Democrat Announces He Will Retire in 2018 -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – A Tennessee House Democratic lawmaker has announced he will retire next year at the end of this Republican-led General Assembly.

In a letter to supporters Friday, Rep. Joe Pitts of Clarksville said he's retiring to allow another citizen legislator experience the excitement of helping constituents.

68. Haslam Credits Republican Leadership for Budget, Economic Accomplishments -

With the legislative session finished, Gov. Bill Haslam is touting budget accomplishments and a strong economy as the result of Republican leadership.

In a Capitol Hill press conference shortly after the General Assembly adjourned for the year, the governor called passage of a $37 billion budget, the second consecutive one with no new debt, as the Legislature’s most important act.

69. Last Word: Deeper on Beale, End of Session and Johnny Mathis -

Beale Street keeps its cover charge on Saturday nights during its Memphis In May peak. But the district has some complex questions to resolve about its future and who controls that future. If that wasn’t evident before, it became apparent at City Hall Tuesday. It wasn’t the council action on the Beale Street Bucks program that was significant as much as it was the council’s discussion.

70. View From the Hill: Gas Tax Rancor Lingers as Session Coasts to Close -

Remnants of rancor over Republican leadership roiled the House, a reminder of outrage over roguish behavior as representatives reached the finish line.

Alliteration is probably better suited for poetry. But in a case of what could be considered poetic justice, at least for some, this literary device – goofiness maybe – is suitable for legislative action requiring a score card to keep up with the characters and a bit of history to put it all together.

71. House Approves Education Fund Concept, But Senate Action Put on Hold -

House Minority Leader Craig Fitzhugh pushed his K-12 education fund to passage Tuesday, May 9, but the possibility of funding and Senate approval will have to wait until 2018.

Dubbed the “K-12 Block Grant Act,” the measure calls for setting aside $250 million in excess state revenue for interest-generating investment to provide grant money for school systems statewide. Each system could use the funds for state-approved programs such as reading coaches or dual enrollment, items not funded through Tennessee’s Basic Education Program.

72. Tennessee House Abandons Amendments Before Approving State Budget -

Putting a day of acrimony behind it, the House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed a $37 billion budget plan on Friday, May 5, stripping away nearly $320 million in amendments placed on it the previous day.

73. Republican In-fighting in Tenn. House Stirs Up Budget Mess -

The House of Representatives adjourned in apparent disarray Thursday, May 4, after arguing over amendments to a $37 billion budget plan, some saying discord stemmed from votes on the governor’s IMPROVE Act.

74. $250M K-12 Education Fund Hits Legislative Hurdle -

NASHVILLE – Legislation by Tennessee House Minority Leader Craig Fitzhugh seeking to create a $250 million education fund may have to fit through the eye of a needle to get into Gov. Bill Haslam’s $37 billion budget plan.

75. Last Word: Election Day, Game 6 and School Vouchers Get Rolled -

Intermission in the NBA playoffs as tipoff of Game 6 approaches Thursday evening at the Forum. Look at all of the clouds as the lights dimming and letting you know it’s time to take your seats for the show that is reigniting the local passion for basketball.

76. Proposed $250M K-12 Education Fund Hits Legislative Hurdle -

Legislation by Tennessee House Minority Leader Craig Fitzhugh seeking to create a $250 million education fund may have to fit through the eye of a needle to get into Gov. Bill Haslam’s $37 billion budget plan.

77. View From the Hill: IMPROVE Act an Insight Into Testy Election Ahead -

In case anyone’s keeping stats, Senate leadership soundly defeated House leadership this session in the gas tax/tax cut battle.

Whether this is a forerunner to a Republican gubernatorial primary remains to be seen as Senate Majority Leader Mark Norris and House Speaker Beth Harwell weigh decisions. It’s not as if they’d be facing off against each other, though, since businessman Bill Lee and former Economic and Community Development Commissioner Randy Boyd are definitely in the race and not hurting for money.

78. Bill Approved to Open Officer-Involved Shooting Death Cases to the Public -

The House overwhelmingly approved legislation Monday, April 24, requiring records about officer-involved shooting deaths be open to the public.

Sponsored by Rep. G.A. Hardaway and Sen. Lee Harris, both Memphis Democrats, the move opens the curtain on Tennessee Bureau of Investigation records, which are exempt from the Tennessee Open Records Act and confidential. Generally they are disclosed to the public only through a court order.

79. University of Memphis, UTHSC May Soon Face Outsourcing Decisions -

Forty-one state lawmakers signed a letter requesting the state put a hold on its outsourcing plans until the General Assembly can scrutinize its effect on state workers and services.

The state is set to sign a contract April 28 with Chicago-based JLL for facilities management work that could be used by universities and departments statewide. Even local government jobs could be doled out to the contractor.

80. Memphis, Nashville Mayors Praise Passage of Haslam’s Road Funding Bill -

Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland lauded the Tennessee Legislature for passing the IMPROVE Act, including a combination of fuel tax and fee increases designed to improve transportation funding.

81. Fuel-Tax Bill Short of Votes in the House -

NASHVILLE – Votes aren’t adding up in the House of Representatives for passage of the governor’s gas tax/tax cut legislation.

With floor debate scheduled Wednesday morning, not only is a Republican head count showing lack of support, Democrats aren’t exactly lining up behind the measure. The minority party says it wants concessions on other items from the governor before it can vote for the IMPROVE Act, and some Democrats say they won’t go for a combination of tax cuts for wealthy investors tied to a higher gas tax.

82. Gas Tax, Health Care Complicate Tennessee Governor's Race -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – The repeal of former President Barack Obama's health care law was supposed to provide a springboard for U.S. Rep. Diane Black's entry into the Tennessee governor's race.

83. IMPROVE Act Could be Renamed; Alternative Plan in the Works -

Legislation containing a gas-tax increase moved out of a key committee Wednesday, April 5, with proponents saying it could be called the IMPROVE Act or the 2017 Tax Cut Act because of several tax reductions designed to make it easier for Tennesseans to swallow.

84. Bill to Expand Medicaid Shelved for the Year -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A plan by Democrats to expand the Medicaid program in Tennessee has died after the sponsor of the measure pulled the bill for the year.

Rep. Craig Fitzhugh, a Democrat from Ripley, told the House Insurance and Banking Subcommittee on Wednesday that he was withdrawing his bill.

85. GOP Happy to ‘Wait and See’ on Medicaid -

Republicans say ho, Democrats say go. In the wake of Trumpcare’s congressional crash, states such as Kansas and North Carolina are joining the majority of the nation in expanding Medicaid rolls.

86. Democrats Put Squeeze on Republicans To Defeat Outsourcing of State Assets -

Legislative Democrats are calling on Republicans to join them in passing a slate of bills to combat Gov. Bill Haslam’s outsourcing plans for everything from state parks to facilities management at universities.

87. Democrats Put Squeeze on Republicans to Defeat Outsourcing -

Legislative Democrats are calling on Republicans to join them in passing a slate of bills to combat Gov. Bill Haslam’s outsourcing plans for everything from state parks to facilities management at universities.

88. Bill to Ban Outsourcing Sails Through Committee -

A Senate panel approved legislation Monday prohibiting the outsourcing of jobs at state parks less than a week after the State Building Commission renewed plans for rebuilding and privatizing the inn at Fall Creek Falls.

89. State House Votes to Block Memphis, Nashville Pot Ordinances -

Setting up a Senate debate on state pre-emption of Nashville and Memphis marijuana laws, the state House has approved legislation striking down local ordinances giving police discretion to hand out citations for small amounts of pot.

90. Shelby County Schools Voucher Bill Advances in House -

NASHVILLE – Despite a packed room of Memphis-area people opposed to vouchers for public school students, a House Education Committee advanced a pilot program targeting low-income children in Shelby County Schools system’s low-performing schools.

91. Shelby County Schools Voucher Bill Advances in House -

NASHVILLE – Despite a packed room of Memphis-area people opposed to vouchers for public school students, a House Education Committee advanced a pilot program targeting low-income children in Shelby County Schools system’s low-performing schools.

92. Tennessee Lawmakers Weigh In on Trump Visit -

NASHVILLE – While state lawmakers recognized the historical significance of President Donald Trump visiting the home of President Andrew Jackson in Hermitage Wednesday, March 15, the review is mixed on comparisons between the two as well as the Jackson legacy.

93. Boyd Opens Memphis Campaign for Governor -

Former Tennessee Economic and Community Development commissioner Randy Boyd brought his newly launched campaign for governor to Memphis Wednesday, March 15, with a pledge to continue the economic development policies of Gov. Bill Haslam – policies, particularly in workforce training, that Boyd played a key role in shaping.

94. View From the Hill: Outsourcing Win More About Turf Than Trends -

As Fall Creek Falls folks celebrate a state decision to postpone park privatization, the question is whether public opposition or failure to follow long-standing state protocol led to the plug-pulling.

95. Tennessee Leaders Weigh In on Death of Longtime Lawmaker -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Former Sen. Douglas Henry, a lawmaker with the longest tenure in the history of the Tennessee General Assembly, died at 90 years old on Sunday.

96. Boyd Officially in Race For Governor in 2018 -

Former Tennessee Commissioner of Economic and Community Development Randy Boyd officially launched his candidacy for Tennessee Governor Monday, March 6, with an announcement of his campaign team.

97. Last Word: Arnold's in the Alley, Haslam's Gas Tax Bill Wins A Round and Hershey -

A busy day in the City Hall list saga. The list is a lot shorter, but there is a second lawsuit over this in Memphis Federal Court. And the list itself seems to be giving way to a controversy that is all about whether police were unlawfully following and tracking protesters who broke no laws.

98. Fitzhugh Talks About Race for Governor Without Formally Committing -

NASHVILLE – House Minority Leader Craig Fitzhugh hasn’t officially entered the 2018 race for governor, but he has a “gut feeling” it’s a step he should take.

99. Last Word: Building a Bigger Police Force, Old Desk Calendars and Summer School -

Since the Memphis Mayor’s race of 2015 became about how best to build a larger Memphis Police Department, the discussion has always had an element of controversy to it on a larger scale than a head count of who has a badge.

100. State Democrats Introduce Bill of Rights, Looking For Every Win They Can Get -

NASHVILLE – House Democrats introduced a People’s Bill of Rights in the State Capitol Monday, Feb. 27, a comprehensive legislative package to ensure rights of Tennesseans affecting everything from jobs to criminal justice to education.