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Notes from Nashville

Published (Volume 76, No. 25)

On Monday, the General Assembly held a joint session to elect Dale Sims State Treasurer to fill the vacancy left by the retirement of Steve Adams.

Sims received his Bachelor of Science degree from Western Carolina University in 1978. 

He started his career in public service in 1980 as a Program Auditor with the Comptroller of the Treasury. He transferred to the Department of Treasury in 1982, where he served as Staff Assistant to then Treasurer Harlan Mathews. In 1987, Treasurer Adams promoted him to Executive Assistant to the Treasurer.

The accomplishments of Sims’ service with the Treasurer’s office include the development and implementation of the Bank Collateral Pool program which offers Tennessee financial institutions a more efficient method to secure state and local government deposits and currently houses over $4 billion of public funds. 

He coordinated development of a managed care network that provides 60,000 state employees with workers’ compensation medical benefits that result in annual savings to the state of approximately $1 million.

The week’s activities on the floor included denying Coffee County the ability to place a 5 percent sales tax on tickets to a major event in that county.  I was uncomfortable allowing this deviation from our sales tax law when all other avenues for taxation had not been explored by Coffee County.

They were not taxing concession sales or souvenir sales. The representative of that county will explore the bill further before bringing it to the floor again.

We will be discussing many issues in the next few weeks. 
The Finance Committee will wrap up their budget hearings next week and that bill will begin to take a final shape. A resolution to remove any constitutional right to an abortion will most likely move from the Senate to the House in the coming weeks. 

A bill setting up a system for non-profit organizations to hold raffles and other events involving chance is moving through the system.

Children and Family Affairs will be hearing debates on making the policy of the state presumption of joint custody for children of divorce instead of the best interest of the child.

Education heard testimony on the Tennessee Value Added Assessment System last week and will consider the bill soon.

If you have questions, concerns or comments on any of this legislation, please contact me at 1-800-449-8366, extension 17847; e-mail me at rep.mark.maddox@legislature.state.tn.us; or send me a letter at 17 Legislative Plaza; Nashville, TN 37243.