Tennessee

Regional
12:27 pm
Mon December 15, 2014

Gov. Haslam Reaches Medicaid Deal in Tennessee

Gov. Bill Haslam

Gov. Bill Haslam announced Monday that he has reached a deal with federal officials to expand Medicaid in Tennessee after months of discussions.

The Republican's administration is touting it as an alternative deal with federal officials. The program, dubbed Insure Tennessee, would provide coverage for the state's uninsured without creating new taxes for Tennesseans.

Haslam announced at a news conference at the state Capitol that the state would offer a voucher to purchase insurance in the private market, according to statement from the governor's office and a news conference.

Health care advocates had heavily criticized the Republican governor for refusing last year to agree to $1.4 billion in federal funds to cover about 180,000 uninsured Tennesseans under the terms the money was offered.

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Regional
12:45 pm
Wed December 10, 2014

Tennessee Awarded $17.5 Million To Expand Pre-School Services

Tennessee is one of 13 states around the nation that’s receiving a federal grant to expand preschool services. 

U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan announced Wednesday that Tennessee will get $17 ½ million and will help serve as a model for expanding access to pre-school to low and moderate income families.  

Five other states are also receiving grants for pre-school development. The grants total $226 million.

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Education
5:25 am
Fri December 5, 2014

Report: More Investment in Early Childhood Education Needed in Tennessee

A recent report from the Tennessee Commission on Children and Youth says the state needs to invest more in early childhood education.

The study released this week recommends expanding the state's voluntary pre-K program to all at-risk Tennessee children.

The program has not been expanded since 2008. Established in 1999, the program has 935 classrooms serving about 18,500 children.

The commission says research shows pre-K programs help children develop the cognitive, social and emotional skills they need to learn.

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Politics
5:24 am
Mon November 24, 2014

Hargett Not Running for Tennessee Governor in '18

Sec. Tre Hargett
Credit State of Tennessee

Tennessee Secretary of State Tre Hargett does not plan to run for governor in 2018.

Hargett was among several Republicans included in early speculation after the Nov. 4 election about potential candidates to succeed Gov. Bill Haslam, who can't run for a third consecutive term.

Hargett recently issued a statement saying he's focusing on his current job as secretary of state.

The former House Republican leader from Bartlett raised some eyebrows before the general election when his office issued new "I Voted" stickers emblazoned with Hargett's name and looking a lot like campaign bumper stickers.

Business
5:51 pm
Wed November 5, 2014

Nearly 80 Tennessee Municipalities Approve Wine Sales in Groceries

Seventy-eight Tennessee communities OK'd a referendum this week to allow supermarkets to begin selling wine.

Seventy-eight Tennessee municipalities have passed a referendum for wine to be sold in supermarkets.

They collected enough signatures to place the referendum on the Tennessee ballot Tuesday. Final voting results show all the communities passed the measure.

Currently, wine can be sold only in liquor stores. Because of a state law passed earlier this year, wine can be sold by grocery and convenience stores starting in July 2016 in the communities where citizens vote for the change.

Supermarkets and convenience stores can sell beer containing up to 6.5 percent alcohol by volume. Anything stronger can be sold only in package stores, which, as of July 1, are able to sell items other than booze, such as beer, mixers, glasses, corkscrews, food and cigarettes.

Education
12:46 pm
Thu October 9, 2014

Robertson County Reveals Redistricting Plan For Schools

A month after federal investigators determined that Robertson County Schools have not desegregated, officials have released a proposed redistricting plan.

Robertson County Director of Schools Mike Davis told The Tennessean on Monday that the new attendance zones were developed by the federal government, not the local school board.

The district in Middle Tennessee was notified in early September that federal investigators had finished their review of its schools and found them to be in non-compliance. A letter posted on the school system's website says it is required to enter into a settlement agreement or it could lose all federal funding.

Public forums over the changes proposed by the Department of Justice will be held at schools in the district throughout October.

Arts & Culture
12:37 pm
Thu October 9, 2014

Homeless In Nashville, Huge In Sweden

"I was slapping myself in the face," singer Doug Seegers says of his recent success. "I kept saying, 'Am I dreaming? When am I going to wake up and go back to living under the bridge?' "
Gregg Roth Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu October 9, 2014 9:01 am

Country music fans were introduced to a new face at last month's Americana Music Awards in Nashville, when 62-year-old Doug Seegers opened the show with a song from his debut album, Going Down to the River.

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Regional
2:47 pm
Mon October 6, 2014

Tennessee Voters To Decide On Abortion Amendment

The Tennessee Supreme Court rejected increased restrictions on abortions 14 years ago, citing the state constitution's privacy rights for women.
Credit Tennessee Supreme Court

Tennessee voters will have a chance this November to decide whether they want to give the state Legislature more power to regulate abortions.

In 2000, the Tennessee Supreme Court struck down laws requiring a two-day waiting period and mandatory physician-only counseling and preventing second-trimester abortions from taking place anywhere but in a hospital.

In its ruling, the court wrote that because the provisions weren't narrowly tailored to promote maternal health, they violated a woman's fundamental right to privacy as guaranteed in the Tennessee Constitution.

Abortion opponents immediately began planning to change the Constitution. The result is an amendment that reads, in part, "Nothing in this Constitution secures or protects a right to abortion or requires the funding of an abortion," that will be before voters on Nov. 4.

Regional
3:24 am
Mon September 15, 2014

Creating Your Baby's Last Name? Tennessee Says No

Carl Abramson, Kim Sarubbi and their three children.
Courtesy of the Sabr family

Originally published on Mon September 15, 2014 8:03 am

When naming a child, some parents opt for one of the parents' last names, some hyphenate the two. Still others invent a hybrid surname for their kids — though one Tennessee family discovered that state law bars them from doing that.

Kim Sarubbi runs a digital consulting firm. Her husband, Carl Abramson, is a chiropractor. The couple moved to Nashville from Santa Monica, Calif. Their first two kids were born outside Tennessee, and their last names are a blend of their parents' surnames, Sarubbi and Abramson.

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Regional
6:13 am
Wed September 3, 2014

Juvenile Jail Escape Latest for Troubled Facility

The Nashville juvenile detention center where 30 teens escaped under a fence Monday night has a long history of violence, sexual abuse and previous attempts to break out.

All but seven of the teens from the Woodland Hills Youth Development Center in Nashville were taken back into custody on Tuesday, a day after they escaped. Officials said they had kicked out metal panels under the windows in common areas of their dorms to reach the courtyard and slipped out under a weak spot in the perimeter fence.

The facility was the site of a 2004 breakout attempt in which more than a dozen teens injured 16 staffers before they were dispersed by police. In 2010, the Department of Justice ranked the facility as 13th in the country for reports of sexual abuse by staffers.

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