News

Rep. John Ragan, R-Oak Ridge, center, with Sen. Kerry Roberts, R-Springfield, at right. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Facing GOP pressure, Tennessee medical board votes to take down COVID misinformation policy

BY: - December 7, 2021

The Tennessee Board of Medical Examiners voted Tuesday to delete from a government website the text of a policy that warns doctors they could face discipline for spreading COVID misinformation — but the policy itself remains in effect.  In a 30-minute emergency meeting on Tuesday — called in response to a demand from Rep. John […]

Congress was alerted last year to the problems at the detention center by a whistleblower, Dawn Wooten, a nurse who worked at the Irwin County Detention Cente

Investigation urged of doctor who operated on immigrant women in detention

BY: - December 7, 2021

WASHINGTON — Two congressional panels are calling for Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas to investigate a doctor who was accused of performing gynecological procedures on immigrant women in a Georgia detention center without their consent or full understanding of the treatment being performed. In a Dec. 3 letter, Democrats on the House Homeland Security […]

The Tennessee State Capitol with gates locked.

Democrats cry foul on redistricting

BY: - December 7, 2021

Redistricting maps haven’t been released, but some House Democrats are already complaining that supermajority Republicans are trying to draw them out of existence. “It’s a huge power play in Middle Tennessee,” says House Democratic Caucus Chairman Vincent Dixie. Because of population loss, Upper East Tennessee as well as urban Memphis and rural West Tennessee are […]

Armando Arzate speaks out about how workers are abused as Cecilla Prado of Workers Dignity translates. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Immigrant groups address abuse of undocumented workers

BY: - December 7, 2021

Armando Arzate has lived and worked in Nashville for 22 years but said his documentation status allowed his employers to take advantage of him, and Tennessee law offered him few protections from retaliation if he complained.  Since then he’s joined Worker’s Dignity, an organization that supports low wage workers and working class residents, to represent […]

Shelby County Commission. (Photo: Shelby County Government)

Shelby commission approves funds for refugee legal aid

BY: - December 6, 2021

The 25 Afghan refugees now living in Memphis need protection from deportation and the sooner they get legal protection, the better, said lawyers with a non profit legal organization. On Monday, the Shelby County Commission awarded $250,000 to the Community Legal Center to assist Afghan refugees in applying for permanent residence in the U.S. As […]

Tennessee State Capitol (Photo: John Partipilo)

Medical board meets to review COVID misinformation policy

BY: - December 6, 2021

The state’s doctor discipline board has called a special meeting on Tuesday to discuss their policy on holding physicians accountable for spreading COVID misinformation, after Republican lawmakers took action to curb the board’s powers to do so in late October. The 12-member Tennessee Board of Medical Examiners in September enacted a policy that warns “physicians […]

Clearcutting plans in state wilderness area gets legal approval despite local opposition

BY: - December 6, 2021

A controversial plan by the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency officials to clearcut forest in a popular hunting, hiking and recreation area in order to create habitat for Northern bobwhite quail has gotten a legal go-ahead, despite opposition from residents and local leaders in White County, a bipartisan group of lawmakers and environmental groups. The 16,000-acre […]

A long line of cars waits at a COVID-19 testing center at Nashville's Nissan Stadium. (John Partipilo)

At-home COVID tests to be covered by insurance—but details still to come

BY: - December 4, 2021

WASHINGTON — State health officials on Thursday welcomed the Biden administration’s plan to require private health insurers to reimburse Americans for the cost of rapid, at-home COVID-19 tests—though the officials also raised questions about whether the process will be burdensome. Making those tests more accessible will allow Americans to get results quickly and in the privacy […]

Gov. Bill Lee said Wednesday he will sign the COVID-19 omnibus bill passed in a recent special legislative session. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Governor backs Comptroller decision despite business trepidation

BY: - December 3, 2021

Gov. Bill Lee said Friday he agrees with the Tennessee Comptroller’s decision to suspend exemptions from the state’s new COVID-19 law in spite of concerns raised by the business community. Lee also said he doesn’t believe any confusion exists for Tennessee’s companies because no vaccine mandate is in effect. “The mandates have been temporarily shut […]

(Getty Images)

Bridgestone sues Tennessee for $11.7M in tax incentives dispute

BY: - December 3, 2021

With great fanfare, state and local leaders announced in 2014 they had secured a deal with tire giant Bridgestone Americas to bring its U.S. headquarters — and hundreds of new jobs — to downtown Nashville. On Wednesday, Bridgestone filed suit against Tennessee to compel state officials to make good on the promised tax breaks that […]

A proposed map of Fayette County's commission districts. (Map: Tennessee Comptroller)

Ground zero for voting rights: Fayette County redistricting restricts Black representation

BY: - December 2, 2021

The Fayette County Board of Commissioners could face litigation from civil-rights advocates  after a controversial decision restricting the county’s large Black population from representation.  Located in West Tennessee, Fayette County’s population experienced significant growth at a rate of more than 9% over the last decade. Specifically, families moved away from the rural east corner of […]

Sen. Heidi Campbell, D-Nashville, and Sen. Todd Gardenhire, R-Chattanooga question a recent special legislative session after the Tennessee comptroller suspended COVID-19 exemptions. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Lawmakers question special session after Comptroller suspends COVID-19 exemptions

BY: - December 1, 2021

Comptroller Jason Mumpower office suspended exemptions Wednesday from the state’s new COVID-19 law after two federal judges issued preliminary injunctions against President Joe Biden’s vaccine requirement. While the decision satisfied legislative leaders opposed to the president’s mandate, the move also raised questions among some legislators about whether the General Assembly was hasty in holding a […]