The Tennessee chapter of the National Federation of Independent Business has outlined all the bills the Tennessee State Legislature will review this session and that could potentially impact small businesses. It's a lengthy list worth perusing. Check it here.
We're catching up a bit to this note but thought it was interesting to pass along. Remember two years ago when we were all talking about Amazon's is-it-or-isn't-it nexus and rifling through the fine points of Quill v. North Dakota? The tax team at Baker Donelson Bearman Caldwell & Berkowitz says Department of Revenue officials could be moving to clear up some of the confusion: Part of a recent Court of Appeals ruling cites a New Jersey case that links the licensing of intellectual property to the creation of a nexus.
Speaker Harwell wants some of the House rules changed.
Speaker Beth Harwell (R-Nashville) today announced she is recommending changes to the Tennessee House of Representatives internal rules that will make the governmental process more efficient and save taxpayer money. The changes follow an effort two years ago to streamline operations.
"Tennessee taxpayers have entrusted us with the task of governing--something I take very seriously," Harwell stated. "These changes reflect the will of Tennesseans: that state government operates efficiently and effectively while saving money. These changes also reflect the will of the body. After surveying the members of the last General Assembly, we have incorporated some of their suggestions as well. While Congress remains mired in partisan gridlock and continues to waste time, the state legislature is working toward better government."
The changes include:
- Restructuring the committee system to balance the workload of each;
- Adopting the annual ethics resolution into the House Rules which will ensure the body is abiding by an ethics policy from the first day;
- Limiting the number of bills filed to 10 per member annually which will encourage members to prioritize;
- Reaffirming that each member vote for only him or herself;
- And deleting the requirement that every document be printed to reduce the amount of paper used in committee and for floor sessions.
Harwell noted the committee restructuring, bill limits, and paperless measures are among those that will, in the long run, save the Tennessee taxpayer money.
"The new committee system will balance the workloads of each committee, ensuring that they are as efficient as possible. Bill limits will reduce duplication and ensure each member prioritizes their issues. I am seeking to eliminate the requirement that every document we produce as a body be printed in effort for us to adapt to the technology available and reduce the enormous amount of paper used each year. Each of these measures together ensure a more efficient, effective, and accessible government. This will also give us more time for thoughtful, deliberate analysis on each piece of legislation—which is something Tennesseans expect and deserve."
The proposed recommendations will be taken up by the House Rules Committee, which will be appointed by the Speaker in January.
The House Judiciary Committee is today hosting a hearing on the Marketplace Equity Act, legislation that seeks to compel online retailers to collect sales taxes regardless of whether they have brick-and-mortar stores in the buyer's state. Among those scheduled to testify is Bill Haslam.
Joe White looks ahead to the "really, really crazy" last week of the state legislature, where "a lot of stuff is passed just basically because the sponsor says, 'Hey, this is what the bill does' and nobody has time to read it." Among this year's surprise bills is a proposal to significantly change the state's unemployment benefits.
Wanna draw a line from Greece to big chunks of Nashville's health care scene? Stifel Nicolaus analyst Jerry Doctrow says "the spectacle playing out in Europe and a strong desire by members of Congress to avoid the 'do nothing' label in upcoming elections both create some real pressure to act." And that means there's a good chance of serious changes to Medicare and Medicaid criteria and/or reimbursements — despite the best efforts of the industry's lobbyists.