New state laws in effect for 2017

This article is not written by a lawyer, and this article is not legal advice. As citizens, we are all required to abide by the laws that govern us. Whether or not we know what they are, we are bound by them, and there can be consequences for not knowing them. This article is designed to inform you about many new Tennessee laws that are effective as of January 1, 2017 that either create new statutes or extend existing ones. Some may impact you directly, while some may not.

The laws are divided into Senate Bills (SB) and House Bills (HB). To fully understand the changes, first get the complete document online, free, at:

Then go to and enter the bill number in the box labeled “Type Bill Number to Look Up” for complete details, including a companion bill and the Chapter.

Here then are very brief summaries of the new laws and changes in the order they appear in the document:

SB2581 Hospitals and Health Care Facilities – As enacted, establishes requirements for central service technicians. – Amends TCA Title 68.

HB1776 Common Carriers – As enacted, revises provisions governing overweight and overdimensional loads that are permitted and nondivisible. – Amends TCA Title 55, Chapter 7.

SB0035 Probation and Parole – As enacted, makes a person who commits vehicular homicide where alcohol or drugs were involved ineligible for probation. – Amends TCA Title 40, Chapter 35, Part 3.

SB0593 Sentencing – As enacted, creates a new sentencing enhancement factor when the defendant committed the offense of robbery, aggravated robbery, or especially aggravated robbery on the premises of a licensed pharmacy in an effort to unlawfully obtain, sell, give, or exchange a controlled substance, controlled substance analogue, or other illegal drug. – Amends TCA Section 40-35-114.

1029 SB0899 Medical Occupations – As enacted, amends the provisions governing X-ray equipment operators. – Amends TCA Title 63, Chapter 6, Part 2.

SB1665 Handgun Permits – As enacted, imposes a reduced fee for a lifetime handgun carry permit for certain retired federal, state, and local law enforcement officers. – Amends TCA Section 39-17-1351.

SB2383 Nurses, Nursing – As enacted, changes terminology from “medication aides certified” to “medication aide”; revises training and other requirements for medication aide program. – Amends TCA Title 63, Chapter 7 and Title 68.

SB2539 Taxes, Exemption and Credits – As enacted, establishes a tax credit equal to 33 percent of the value of cash investments made in certain companies by an “angel investor” against the angel investor’s Hall income tax liability. – Amends TCA Title 67, Chapter 2.

HB2087 County Government – As enacted, revises certain budgeting procedures for county governments. – Amends TCA Title 5.

HB2119 Water Authorities – As enacted, prohibits an authority in Hamilton County from requiring a property owner who leases residential
property, the property owner’s agent, or a subsequent tenant of the property to pay or to guarantee the payment of charges, penalties, or other fees owed to the authority that were incurred by a former tenant of such property owner or agent; establishes other related requirements. – Amends TCA Title 7; Title 65; Title 66 and Title 68.

HB0010 Students – As enacted, requires a student, during the student’s high school career, to take a United States civics test. – Amends TCA Title 49, Chapter 1; Title 49, Chapter 2 and Title 49, Chapter 6.

HB1495 Driver Licenses – As enacted, deletes requirement that a person’s driver license be suspended for an additional like period if convicted of driving on a suspended or revoked license; allows a court to order issuance of a restricted driver license contingent on the person participating in a payment plan for any unpaid fines or costs. – Amends TCA Title 55.

SB2101 Election Laws – As enacted, allows Rutherford County to participate in a pilot project for establishing convenient voting centers for use on election day upon super majority vote of the county election commission. – Amends TCA Title 2, Chapter 3.

SB1980 Recreational Vehicles – As enacted, establishes licensing requirements specifically for recreational vehicle dealers and salespersons to be overseen by the Tennessee motor vehicle commission. – Amends TCA Title 55.

SB2255 Motor Vehicles, Titling and Registration – As enacted, authorizes certain off-highway vehicles that have top speeds over 35 mph and nonstraddle seating for up to four passengers, to be operated on county roads; authorizes issuance of off-highway license plates for each category; establishes equipment and safety requirements for the vehicles. – Amends TCA Title 55.

SB1880 Workers Compensation – As enacted, revises various provisions governing workers’ compensation in regard to the case management system and settlements. – Amends TCA Title 50 and Title 56.

SB2137 Emergency Communications Districts – As enacted, enacts “Kari’s Law,” which requires an entity that owns or controls a telephone system that is capable of outbound dialing or access to configure the telephone system to allow a person initiating a 911 call on the telephone system direct access to 911 service without an additional code, digit, prefix, postfix, or trunk access code; and an entity that
owns or operates a residential or business facility utilizing a telephone system so configured to configure the telephone system to provide notification to a central location on the site of the residential or business facility when a person within the facility dials 911. – Amends TCA Title 7; Title 9; Title 65 and Title 68.

SB2450 Water Pollution – As enacted, expands the notice requirement when lead is present in the drinking water supply. – Amends TCA Title 4; Title 7; Title 12; Title 45; Title 47; Title 50; Title 56; Title 62; Title 65; Title 66; Title 67 and Title 68.

HB1424 Handgun Permits – As enacted, reduces the fee for lifetime handgun carry permit, effective January 1, 2017, from $500 to be an amount equal to the regular carry permit fee plus $200, which under present law will equal $300 for the lifetime permit. – Amends TCA Section 39-17-1351.

HB2122 Tennessee Bureau of Investigation – As enacted, requires the TBI to provide to the commissioner of health and to the general assembly an annual report on all law enforcement-related deaths that occurred in the prior calendar year. – Amends TCA Title 38 and Title 68.

HB2425 Handgun Permits – As enacted, lowers the age for receiving a handgun carry permit from 21 years of age to 18 years of age for persons who are an honorably discharged or retired veteran of the U.S. armed forces or a service member on active duty status. – Amends TCA Section 39-17-1351.

HB2576 Sentencing – As enacted, enacts the “Public Safety Act of 2016.” – Amends TCA Title 36, Chapter 3, Part 6; Title 39, Chapter 13, Part 1; Title 39, Chapter 14, Part 1; Title 40, Chapter 28; Title 40, Chapter 35 and Title 41, Chapter 1, Part 4.

SB0621 Insurance Companies, Agents, Brokers, Policies – As enacted, defines funeral merchandise for prearrangement insurance policies; revises provisions governing funeral merchandise. – Amends TCA Title 46 and Title 62, Chapter 5.

SB0829 Hospitals and Health Care Facilities – As enacted, enacts provisions governing nonresidential office-based opioid treatment facilities and nonresidential opioid treatment programs. – Amends TCA Title 33, Chapter 2 and Title 68, Chapter 11.

SB1458 Governor – As enacted, creates the Tennessee Tri-Star General Award, to be awarded by the governor to distinguished individuals
who have a record of outstanding service to this state or a local subdivision of this state. – Amends TCA Title 4; Title 8 and Title 58.

SB1864 Education – As enacted, authorizes the state board of education to promulgate rules for the development of a program whereby
501(c)(3) nonprofit corporations may be recognized for the purpose of assisting LEAs through the selection and appointment of qualified volunteers; requires LEAs to establish a local appeal process through which a recognized 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation may appeal a decision of the LEA to reject the corporation’s offer of assistance. – Amends TCA Title 49.

SB2167 Professions and Occupations – As enacted, requires the state board of cosmetology and barber examiners to issue certificates of registration for mobile barber shops and licenses for mobile cosmetology, dual, manicure, skin care, or other category of shop licensed by the board. – Amends TCA Title 55; Title 62 and Title 68.

SB2303 Health Care – As enacted, enacts the “Maternal Mortality Review and Prevention Act of 2016”. – Amends TCA Title 68.

SB2373 Insurance, Health, Accident – As enacted, revises provisions governing coverage of telehealth services. – Amends TCA Section 56-7-1002.