executive orders

Now with twice the freeze: Lee issues 90-day moratorium on new regulations

Bill Lee delivers his inaugural address in Nashville on Jan. 19, 2019. (Erik Schelzig, Tennessee Journal)

Republican Gov. Bill Lee in his fifth executive order issued Friday declared a 90-day halt on new regulations. That’s double the length of a freeze imposed by his predecessor, Bill Haslam, when he took office in 2011.

Here’s the release from Lee administration:

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Today, Tennessee Governor Bill Lee issued an executive order to halt new regulations for the next 90 days across all state executive branch departments

“As part of our efforts to limit the size of state government, we are taking a close look at the regulations we are imposing on citizens and businesses in Tennessee,” said Lee. “Our goal is to make Tennessee the most job-friendly state in the country and we are working to promote job creation and a commonsense regulatory approach.” 

Executive Order 5 outlines a 90-day freeze in which no executive branch department will file a new rule or regulation with the Secretary of State. During the freeze, the executive branch will develop a framework to better assess the costs and benefits of imposing a new regulation.

The order also underscores creating a regulatory environment that encourages “self-improvement, entrepreneurship and investment.” Departments may receive an exception from the governor in the event a proposed rule benefits the health, safety or welfare of Tennesseans. Regulations approved by the previous administration that have not yet taken effect will be excluded from the executive order.

“I’ve encouraged each department to think about their respective roles in making our state the best place to live, work and play,” said Lee. “A more thoughtful approach to regulation is a key step in getting government out of the way and putting the citizens of Tennessee first.”   

More executive orders from Gov. Lee on ethics, transparency, and non-discrimination

Bill Lee is inaugurated as Tennessee’s 50th governor on Jan. 19, 2018. (Erik Schelzig, Tennessee Journal)

Gov. Bill Lee has issued three more executive orders. Here’s the full release:

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Today, Tennessee Governor Bill Lee issued three executive orders to underscore and improve state government’s approach to ethics, transparency and non-discrimination practices.

“Earlier this week, I signed my first executive order to address issues facing our rural communities, and the three orders I signed today reflect firm expectations for how state government conducts business,” said Lee. “I believe in limited and accountable government, which is why I have emphasized my administration’s approach to ethics, transparency and non-discrimination in hiring.”

Executive Order 2 fortifies the ethics policy applied to the governor, members of the governor’s staff, members of the governor’s cabinet and other executive branch employees. It expands the scope of employees required to file ethical disclosures and is designed to ensure that senior members of all departments and all employees regularly interacting with the General Assembly must file such disclosures.

Executive Order 3 mandates openness, transparency and accountability within the executive branch. Employees will be required to attend training within the next 120 days to ensure legal requirements relating to the following are met: open meetings, open records, and applicable ethics and disclosure rules. This order requires that training to happen on a specific timetable (within 120 days), while also mandating additional, recurring training.

Executive Order 4 directs the Commissioner of Human Resources to review all hiring and employment practices to ensure there is no discrimination based on race, color, national origin, age, sex, pregnancy, religion, creed, disability, veteran’s status, or any other category protected by state and federal law. The Department of Human Resources, in conjunction with the Department of Labor and Workforce Development, is directed to conduct training within 120 days to ensure the executive branch complies with this policy of non-discrimination and equal opportunity in hiring, firing, promoting and other management practices.

 

Lee’s first executive order seeks to focus attention on distressed counties

Bill Lee delivers his inaugural address in Nashville on Jan. 19, 2019. (Erik Schelzig, Tennessee Journal)

Gov. Bill Lee in his first executive order aims to focus state agencies on improving services for Tennessee’s 15 economically distressed counties.

Here’s the full release:

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Today, Tennessee Governor Bill Lee issued his first executive order, requiring all state executive departments to issue a statement of rural impact and provide recommendations for better serving rural Tennessee.

“My administration will place a high emphasis on the development and success of our rural areas,” said Lee. “Our first executive order sends a clear message that rural areas will be prioritized across all departments as we work to improve coordination in our efforts.”

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Haslam suspends health care, insurance, contracting laws in fire & storm areas

News release from the governor’s office

NASHVILLE – Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam today issued Executive Order No. 61 suspending certain state laws in order to ensure wildfire and severe weather disaster survivors have access to important health care services, consumer rights protections, and availability of state services as they recover.

“The citizens affected by the wildfires and severe storms have already been through so much, we want to make it easier for them to receive the care and services they need as they begin to pick up the pieces and rebuild their lives,” Haslam said. “The state is doing and will continue to do everything we can to support the victims and survivors of these devastating disasters.”

The executive order includes the following provisions:

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