Governor-signs-a-bill Briefs: Taxes, School Security, Etc

Tax Cuts
Gov. Bill Haslam signed two tax cuts into law this week, including a reduction in the state sales tax on groceries from 5.25 percent to 5 percent as well as a cut to the state’s Hall Income Tax for seniors ages 65 and older.
The bills are among more than 50 measures the governor signed as he continues to plow through measures passed by state lawmakers that ended April 19.
Full story, HERE.
School Security
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Gov. Bill Haslam has signed a bill that allows school districts to let people with police training be armed in schools.
The measure passed the House 82-15 and was approved 27-6 in the Senate.
It allows schools to hire retired law enforcement officers after they meet certain requirements, such as completing a 40-hour school security course.
The measure makes information about which teachers are armed or which schools allow the guns confidential to anyone but law enforcement.
Haslam included $34 million in his budget for local government officials to use on their priorities, which could include security measures.
Ignition Interlock
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee’s ignition interlock law will apply to more drunken drivers under legislation signed by Gov. Bill Haslam.
Currently, ignition-locking devices, which force drivers to pass breath tests to start vehicles and keep them running, are required for DUI offenders whose blood alcohol level topped 0.15 percent.
This bill drops the level to the intoxication threshold of 0.08 percent and would require first-time offenders to get the devices. In turn, those convicted of DUI won’t get a restricted driver’s license and will be allowed to drive anywhere.
The measure was unanimously approved 95-0 in the House and 31-0 in the Senate.
It was sponsored by Republican Sen. Mae Beavers of Mt. Juliet and Republican Rep. Tony Shipley of Kingsport.

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