Legislative Update: 1-24-2020

TSEA January 24, 2020 Comments Off on Legislative Update: 1-24-2020
Legislative Update: 1-24-2020

Health Insurance Premium Holiday
The State Group Insurance Committee today approved an insurance premium holiday for May 2020 for active state and higher education employees.

What this means for State Employees:
Active state and higher education employees in the State Group Insurance Plan will not have a health insurance premium deduction in their May 2020 paycheck. The premium holiday is for health insurance premiums only.

TSEA Executive Director Randy Stamps, during today’s committee meeting, made the motion to approve the premium holiday. We appreciate the Chairman of Senate Finance Committee Bo Watson and House Finance Chairman Susan Lynn, as well as state employee elected representative Michelle Consiglio Young, for voting to approve the holiday. The last health insurance premium holiday was November 2018.

Legislative Update
Your TSEA Lobbying Team continued our quick start this legislative session by securing more sponsors for bills that advance our legislative agenda.

Our lobbying team also attended several hearings, including the House Appropriations subcommittee hearing reviewing the Comptroller’s audit of the Department of Correction.

During the extensive hearing, there was discussion about the TDOC’s appropriated budget and the need for continuing to adjust salaries and update computer programs. The committee voiced concern about the department’s contract partners (Core Civic, Centurion of Tennessee, LLC, and Corizon Health) and the number of findings concerning them.

On Episode 5 of TSEA’s #AskTSEA podcast, TSEA Executive Director Randy Stamps offered support for TDOC Commissioner Parker. “A lot of damage was done during the Haslam Schofield years, and I feel like it’s unfair to hold Commissioner Parker completely accountable for everything that’s happening there today” Stamps said. “And again, because he has shown that he’s willing to find the problems and solve them, right now, I would ask that our folks stand with Commissioner Parker and give him the chance to correct these problems that have been exposed by the audit.”

TSEA Executive Director Randy Stamps and Government Affairs Director Terry Carroll also met with Chief Operating Officer Butch Eley and Deputy to the Governor and Chief Legal Counsel Lang Wiseman about some important state employees issues and concerns. “It was a quality, substantive conversation and a good step toward working with the Lee administration on solutions important to state employee issues and concerns,” TSEA Executive Randy Stamps said.

Next Week
The Burden of Proof bill (HB 644) is scheduled before the Calendar and Rules committee on Thursday, January 30, 2020.

We will also continue to work on securing sponsors for the other bills in our 2020 legislative agenda.

TSEA Middle TN Legislative Dinner is scheduled for Thursday, January 30, 2020 at 5:30 p.m. Today, Jan 24, is the RSVP deadline. To RSVP, visit: bit.ly/TSEA_RSVP.

We hope everyone has a great weekend!