The Tri-Star State | Nashville Public Radio

The Tri-Star State

What’s happening in Tennessee politics? Nashville Public Radio reporters break down what you need to know at the state capitol and beyond — in just a few minutes. 

Nashville Mayor David Briley
Tony Gonzalez / WPLN

In a busy year for elections in Tennessee, from governor to Senate to numerous state seats. Nashville mayor was not supposed to be one of them. But last week, the city elected David Briley to replace Megan Barry on a long-term basis.

Julieta Martinelli / WPLN

During this year's session, the Tennessee legislature passed a bill that seeks to punish "sanctuary cities," but Gov. Bill Haslam has yet to sign it. And some hope this could be the rare time he chooses to veto.

 

He’s facing pressure from those who are opposed to the measure and — from within his own party — by those who have seen anti-immigration issues be effectively used in political campaigns.

In this edition of The Tri-Star State, Nashville Public Radio's Jason Moon Wilkins and Chas Sisk sort through why Haslam might just issue a veto.

TN Photo Services

The Tennessee legislative session came to a late-night end last week, but some of the bills approved in the final hours might not make it all the way to becoming law.

In this week's edition of The Tri-Star State, Nashville Public Radio's Jason Moon Wilkins and statehouse reporter Chas Sisk discuss what legislation could miss the governor’s signature, as well as other lingering issues.

Chas Sisk / WPLN

The big debates appeared to be behind the Tennessee Legislature, which has been in a wrap-up phase for the last week or two. Then a move to "punish" Memphis and a cyberattack on standardized tests injected high drama into the final days of the session.

In this week's edition of The Tri-Star State, WPLN's Jason Moon Wilkins and statehouse reporter Chas Sisk look at why a budget decision stirred a national debate on race and how lawmakers addressed more trouble with TNReady.

University of Tennessee

Last week state lawmakers rejected nearly half the candidates for the University of Tennessee’s newly revamped Board of Trustees.

Chas Sisk / WPLN

Over the past week, there's been a flurry of bills passing or failing or simply being shelved for review by the Tennessee General Assembly. Lawmakers are rushing toward the end of the legislative session as most are preparing for campaign season.

It can be confusing to keep up with the fate of the would-be laws that have been making headlines this year.

Nashville Public Radio's Jason Moon Wilkins and statehouse reporter Chas Sisk sort it out in this week's edition of The Tri-Star State.

Stephen Jerkins / WPLN

Tennessee lawmakers are starting to wind up business for the year, but there are still several big debates left to resolve.

School security. Medical marijuana. And marriage laws, to name a few.

WPLN's Emily Siner talked to our statehouse reporter Chas Sisk about what’s at stake in those debates.

Beth Harwell
Stephen Jerkins / WPLN (File photo)

A state law that would demand a work requirement for certain people on TennCare appeared to be on track last week before it hit a snag.

The proposal had passed the state House and Governor Bill Haslam said he was ready to sign it. But a final vote in the state Senate was delayed at the very last minute.

Now it's unclear whether it will pass.

Blake Farmer / WPLN

Governor Bill Haslam is headed into the final months of his time in office, and he’s decided that combating the opioid epidemic will be his last big legislative push. Haslam started the session by endorsing a proposal that would impose stricter rules on prescribing the painkillers. Not until last week did that measure begin moving forward. It was a tougher fight than some expected.

Stephen Jerkins / WPLN (File photo)

There were high hopes among state lawmakers at the start of this year’s legislative session that they could get done early and without much controversy as many have elections looming this fall.

But as bills have moved forward, some emotional debates have brought an unwanted spotlight. This past week saw fights over a bill banning bump stocks, a resolution honoring a Memphis community activist and whether autopsy records should be kept open.

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