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VOL. 35 | NO. 25 | Friday, June 24, 2011




New Tennessee laws taking effect July 1

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New laws taking effect Friday in Tennessee will:

— Enact the state's $30.78 billion annual spending plan.

— Authorize a cyber-based public charter school that provides educational resources to students by way of the Internet in a "virtual" classroom setting.

— Allow employees to vote by secret ballot on whether or not they want to unionize.

— Allow an injured employee to collect unemployment where the employee loses his or her job due to a disability resulting from the work-related injury.

— Require anyone who claims to be a sports agent to register with the Secretary of State. Failure to do so could result in a penalty of as much as $25,000 and up to six years in prison.

— Prohibit an individual convicted of a felony for possession, use, or distribution of a controlled substance from being eligible to receive welfare benefits.

— Eliminate pretrial diversion for the most dangerous criminals in the state.

— Authorize judges to allow a district attorney to use a wiretap when the interception may provide evidence of criminal gang-related activities in aggravated burglaries.

— Add juveniles convicted of the most violent sexual offenses to the state's sex offender registry.

— Allow law enforcement to immediately put out information about suspects when a police officer is missing, injured or killed in the line of duty.

— Increase from three to five years the minimum time period a driver's license may be revoked for a third DUI offense.

— Measure allow companies to advertise on the state Department of Transportation's emergency trucks and 511 help phone line.

— Continue the hospital assessment adopted last year to prevent cuts to state hospitals.

— Add vehicles transporting certain organs for human transplantation to the current list of those authorized to display amber and white lights.

— Change the state's presidential preference primary date to the first Tuesday in March.

— Prohibit an operator from stripping rock from property without a permit from the state's commissioner of environment and conservation.

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