Chambers clash over other legislation
Beyond the fight over TNReady, the House and Senate clashed in recent days on two of Haslam’s top priorities for the year, as well as reauthorization of the Department of Correction and smoking in vehicles with minors present.
One of the governor’s bills related to opioids hit a snag when there was disagreement over efforts to make an herb known as kratom illegal.
The Senate wanted to make it illegal. But the House had mixed views, with one lawmaker saying earlier in the week that kratom had helped him pass several kidney stones. The final version of the bill allowed kratom to remain legal in Tennessee.
Another Haslam-led bill related to reforming the state’s juvenile justice system faced uncertainty Wednesday as House members argued the Senate was attempting to water down the legislation.
The bill originally sought to limit a judge’s ability to put a child into state custody for low-level or nonviolent offenses.
The last-minute uncertainty over Haslam’s signature bills for the year comes nearly three months after the governor delivered his final State of the State speech, in which called for action on both opioids and juvenile justice.