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Mental health, school safety bills filed | #schoolsaftey


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — The Tennessee General Assembly is set to convene in less than a week for a special session to tackle issues related to public safety. Gov. Bill Lee issued the official proclamation a week ago, calling on lawmakers to address juvenile justice issues and school safety bills, among others.

The first bill introduced for the special session came from Memphis-area Democrat Rep. Dwayne Thompson. He filed a bill that would require all firearm safety training classes used as part of gun permitting to include information on gun locks.


Another firearm-related bill filed so far includes making harsher penalties for and adult “coercing a minor under 18 to commit theft of a firearm or a robbery or burglary offense involving a firearm.” That bill was filed by Memphis Democratic Rep. Antonio Parkinson.

So far there have been 10 bills filed for the special session, with more expected in the coming days.

HB7001: Specifies that classes that qualify as training for issuance of an enhanced handgun carry permit or concealed handgun carry permit must include training on the use of gun locks.

HB7002: Requires each LEA, public charter school, private school, and church-related school to develop a policy to direct how students, teachers, substitute teachers, and staff are to respond when a fire alarm is activated on school premises outside of a scheduled fire drill to protect students, teachers, substitute teachers, and staff in the event the fire alarm was activated due to the presence of an active shooter on school premises.

HB7003: Expands the eligibility for filing a petition to obtain a lifetime order of protection to include victims of aggravated stalking and especially aggravated stalking.

HB7004: Require the court or chief officer of a mental health facility that orders the release of a person from the mental health facility to notify the law enforcement agency that transported the person to the mental health facility of the person’s release.

HB7005: Clarifies that a private school serving students in any of the grades pre-kindergarten through twelve is authorized to adopt a handgun carry policy for the private school’s property.

HB7006: Authorizes the department to direct available state funds to contract with additional private service providers across the state to provide inpatient psychiatric services for uninsured individuals in this state; requires the department to report to the speakers of both houses on whether additional inpatient psychiatric services are needed in the City of Knoxville and whether additional state funds should be expended for the construction of a state-owned and -operated inpatient psychiatric facility in the City of Knoxville.

HB7007: Specifies that reports of county medical examiners and autopsy reports of victims of violent crime who are minors are not public documents; allows a parent or legal guardian of a minor victim of a violent crime to consent to the release of the report of the county medical examiner or autopsy report of the minor victim if the parent or legal guardian is not a suspect in the circumstances of the minor’s death.

HB7008: Requires a qualified mental health professional or behavior analyst to take certain steps to warn or protect an identified victim or group of people when the professional determines that a service recipient has made an actual threat of bodily harm or has an intention to commit such harm; provides immunity from civil, criminal, and regulatory liability for a professional who takes reasonable action to provide such warning or protection.

HB7009: Establishes a mental healthcare professionals student loan repayment grant program to incentivize certain mental healthcare providers to provide services in this state.

HB7010: Creates the Class D felony of knowingly inducing or coercing a minor under 18 to commit theft of a firearm or a robbery or burglary offense involving theft of a firearm.

HB7011: Makes a person who illegally transfers a firearm to a minor criminally responsible for any resulting act of mass violence in which the minor threatens to use the firearm.

HB7012: Directs the department of safety to provide free firearm locks to Tennessee residents upon request; requires department-approved handgun safety courses to contain instruction on the safe storage of firearms; exempts the retail sale of firearm safes and firearm safety devices from sales and use taxes beginning November 1, 2023; defines firearm safes and firearm safety devices.

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HB7013: Changes from 30 days to 72 hours the time frame within which a clerk of the circuit or general sessions court must notify the TBI of the final disposition of criminal proceedings against a person after final disposition of such proceedings; requires the clerk to notify the TBI of the final disposition of such proceedings by electronic submission; requires the clerk of the municipal court, when exercising concurrent general sessions court jurisdiction, to notify the TBI by electronic submission of the final disposition of such proceedings against a person no later than 72 hours after final disposition of such proceedings.

HB7014: Requires the commissioner of finance and administration to obtain a TennCare new demonstration waiver or amendment to provide medical assistance to members who are receiving care in an institution for mental diseases.

HB7015: Expands, from certain violent offenses to any felony offense, the offenses for which a person who has been arrested is required to have a biological specimen taken for the purpose of DNA analysis to determine identification characteristics specific to the person if probable cause exists for the arrest.



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