NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Republican U.S. Rep. Mark Green says he's "thinking about" running for a Senate seat opening up in Tennessee but hasn't given much thought to when he'll decide.
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A national conservative group is attacking former Tennessee Republican Gov. Bill Haslam as he considers running for another open U.S. Senate seat.
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The defense lawyer for a woman convicted of conspiracy in a truck stop rebate scam says she deserves a new trial.
Closed primaries push dropped from Tennessee bill
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A Tennessee House panel has stripped a bill of a state GOP-backed push to allow only registered party members to vote in election primaries.
Tennessee governor proposes $40M to improve school safety
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Republican Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee says his upcoming budget proposal will include $40 million to improve school safety.
Lee gives some pay raises to cabinet members
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee's top paid Cabinet members won't be getting a pay bump under the Republican's administration, but a majority of the new agency heads will see slight salary increases.
Lee issues 90-day freeze on new rules, regulations
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Gov. Bill Lee has ordered a 90-day freeze in new state rules and regulations as the Republican's new administration begins to review how the state operates.
Lee announced Friday that the decision is part of his commitment to limit the size of state government.
The order does not apply to regulations already approved but have not yet taken effect. Departments may also receive an exception by the governor.
Lee signs 3 executive orders on ethics, transparency
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee's newly signed executive orders show that he will largely follow his Republican predecessor's footsteps when it comes to ethics disclosure, transparency and non-discrimination employment practices.
Lee announced Thursday that the executive orders both underscore the state's current approach to all three issues, but also expand state policies as well.
March oral arguments set in Tennessee lawmakers refugee case
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee lawmakers have a March court date in an appeal of their dismissed lawsuit against the federal government over the refugee resettlement program.
Court records show a 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals three-judge panel will hear oral arguments March 19 in Cincinnati.
The March 2017 lawsuit argued the refugee program is forcing Tennessee to spend money on additional services, including health care and education.
Ex-Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam says he’ll mull Senate options
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Former Tennessee Republican Gov. Bill Haslam says he'll take some time to consider his options before deciding whether to run for the U.S. Senate.
The Tennessean reports Haslam said Saturday at the inauguration of his successor, Bill Lee, that he will take several weeks to make up his mind.
Republican Bill Lee sworn in as Tennessee’s 50th governor
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Republican political newcomer Bill Lee on Saturday took the oath of office as the 50th governor of Tennessee, vowing not to solely look to government as the solution to the state's most pressing challenges.
"As honored as I am to be your next governor, no governor will solve the problems — in fact, no government will solve the greatest problems that we face," Lee said. "Government is not the answer to our challenges."
The Latest: Republican Lee sworn in as Tennessee governor
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The Latest on Bill Lee's inauguration as Tennessee's governor (all times local):
Republican businessman Bill Lee has been sworn in as the 50th Tennessee governor.
Lee took the oath Saturday at Nashville's War Memorial Auditorium. The Franklin-based businessman defeated former Democratic Nashville Mayor Karl Dean in November. It was the first time Lee had ever run for political office.
Tennessee governor grants parole in murder-for-hire case
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam is granting parole to a man serving a life sentence in a 1994 murder-for-hire, saying the inmate has "undergone a transformation" behind bars. But a woman he shot and partially blinded in the attack says she's terrified she might encounter him again once he's out.
Among his final 20 pardons and three commutations Friday, the outgoing Republican governor commuted Jeremy Michael Ingram's life sentence to parole supervision starting next January.
Tennessee gov-elect’s inauguration to move indoors
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee Gov.-elect Bill Lee is moving his inauguration to an indoor venue amid forecasts for weekend rain and thunderstorms.
The Republican's transition team says the event Saturday will take place at War Memorial Auditorium in downtown Nashville. The ceremony had been planned outdoors on the adjoining Legislative Plaza, where inaugurations have historically been held.
Lee: Capitol gun ban to remain in place
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Gov.-elect Bill Lee says he'll continue to keep guns banned in the Tennessee Capitol when he takes over the top office later this week.
Records: Trooper guarded Haslam on painkillers, slept on job
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Records show a Tennessee Highway Patrol trooper assigned to Gov. Bill Haslam's protective detail at the governor's residence was on painkillers and repeatedly fell asleep on duty.
Tennessee state library highlights inauguration, governors
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A Tennessee State Library and Archives exhibit is highlighting the 2019 gubernatorial inauguration and the 49 governors through the state's history.
A secretary of state news release says the "Governors of Tennessee" exhibit opened to the public Tuesday and will run through spring 2019.
Clemency decision sparks praise, political questions
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The Tennessee governor's decision to grant clemency to a woman who killed a man when she was 16 had the potential to pit political interests against widespread support for her cause. Yet the governor says the decision came down to doing the "right thing."
Correction: Teen-Life Sentence-Clemency story
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — In a story Jan. 7 about the clemency of Cyntoia Brown, The Associated Press reported erroneously that Brown was picked up at a drive-in theater. She was picked up at a Sonic Drive-In fast-food restaurant.
A corrected version of the story is below:
Woman sentenced to life as teen in killing wins clemency
A woman who says she was a victim of sex trafficking when she killed a man in 2004 was granted clemency Monday by Tennessee's governor and will be released from prison
Woman sentenced to life as teen in killing wins clemency
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Fifteen years after Cyntoia Brown was charged with murder, the woman who says she was a 16-year-old sex trafficking victim when she killed a man in 2004 is no longer under a life sentence.
Following years of national attention from criminal justice advocates, celebrities and politicians calling for mercy — and just days before he is to leave office — Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam on Monday granted clemency to the now 30-year-old Brown.
Tennessee governor renames state park after senator
FLAG POND, Tenn. (AP) — Gov. Bill Haslam has renamed a state park to honor Tennessee's senior U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander.
Haslam announced Monday he had signed an executive order renaming Rocky Fork State Park in Unicoi County as Lamar Alexander Rocky Fork State Park.
The outgoing governor says the Republican senator's commitment to preservation and record of service prompted him to make the change.
More than 30 new laws go into effect Jan. 1
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — There's something to "cheers" about in the latest round of new Tennessee laws going into effect at the beginning of the new year.
Wine sales in grocery stores become legal on Sundays, meaning people will be able to snag a bottle of wine at their local grocery on January 6 — the first Sunday of 2019.
Tennessee notes student protections amid anti-sanctuary law
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee's education department is advising local school officials that it's not their role to determine whether students and their families are in the country legally or not under a new state law against sanctuary cities.
The law, one of several taking effect Jan. 1, threatens local governments with the loss of future state economic and community development money if they have immigrant-protecting so-called "sanctuary policies."
Tennessee officials award $133M interchange project contract
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP) — State transportation officials have awarded a nearly $133 million contract for an interstate interchange project in eastern Tennessee.
The Tennessee Department of Transportation says C.W. Matthews Contracting Co. Inc. submitted the winning bid for the Interstate 75 and Interstate 24 project. The project is expected to be designed and completed in less than three years.
Tennessee Gov.-elect Bill Lee releases inauguration schedule
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Gov.-elect Bill Lee has released his schedule of events leading up to inauguration on Jan. 19.
Lee's transition team announced Friday that the newly elected Republican will hold events that include free tours of the Tennessee State Capitol and the governor's mansion.
The Latest: Letter urges no clemency woman convicted as teen
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The Latest on the high-profile teen life sentence in Tennessee (all times local):
Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam's office is being inundated with letters and pleas as he considers granting clemency to a woman convicted of murdering a man when she was a 16-year-old prostitute.
Detective: Woman convicted as teen shouldn’t get clemency
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam's office is being inundated with letters and pleas as he considers granting clemency to a woman convicted of murdering a man when she was a 16-year-old prostitute.
Tennessee governor grants 11 people executive clemency
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Gov. Bill Haslam has granted executive clemency to 11 people as he inches closer to the end of his final term in office.
Haslam announced Thursday he issued pardons to seven people and commutations to four people. Neither action resulted in the immediate release of anyone from prison.
Previously, Haslam had granted one commutation, eight pardons and one exoneration.
Tennessee unemployment rate drops 0.1 percentage points
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam says the state's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate has dropped by 0.1 percentage points in November to 3.6 percent.
A news release from the term-limited governor says employers added 3,400 nonfarm jobs between October and November. It says the biggest jumps were in retail; transportation and warehousing and utilities; and the accommodation and food services sectors. In the last year, Tennessee has added 60,700 nonfarm jobs.
First female head of Tennessee’s Veterans Services to retire
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The first woman to serve as commissioner for Tennessee's Department of Veterans Services says she will retire in January.
The department says Commissioner Many-Bears Grinder retired as a Colonel in the Tennessee National Guard in 2011 to accept Gov. Bill Haslam's appointment. Her accomplishments include expanding the department's focus to include veteran education, employment and Veteran Treatment Courts support.
Tennessee gov to decide on Senate bid after leaving office
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee Republican Gov. Bill Haslam said he will decide whether to run for an open U.S. Senate seat sometime after leaving office next month.
The two-term governor told The Associated Press late Tuesday that he's planning a short vacation with his wife after leaving office Jan. 19 to consider his decision. Haslam said he doesn't have a deadline but won't take six months.
GOP Sen. Alexander of Tennessee not seeking 2020 re-election
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Republican U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander of Tennessee announced Monday that he won't seek re-election in 2020, giving the red state its second open Senate contest in two years.
Alexander said in a news release that he was deeply grateful for being elected to more combined years as governor and senator than anyone else in Tennessee. But the 78-year-old politician said it's now time for someone else to have that privilege. He will serve out his final two years.
The Latest: Haslam giving Senate bid ‘serious consideration’
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The Latest on the 2020 U.S. Senate race in Tennessee (all times local):
Republican Gov. Bill Haslam says he will give a U.S. Senate bid "serious consideration" after GOP Sen. Lamar Alexander announced he wouldn't run again in 2020.
Haslam also told the Chattanooga Times Free Press on Monday that he will have a better answer in coming days about a possible bid. He says that for now, it's a great time to honor Alexander.
Outgoing Tennessee governor emotional as portrait unveiled
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee has unveiled the official portrait of Gov. Bill Haslam, a ceremony that made the term-limited Republican emotional at times.
Haslam was surrounded by former and current administration figures, family and others close to him during Monday's event. He became choked up when he talked about his family and others who helped him along the way as governor.
State lawmakers urge clemency for woman convicted as teen
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Several Democratic Tennessee lawmakers are urging Republican Gov. Bill Haslam to grant clemency to a woman convicted of murdering a man when she was a 16-year-old prostitute.
Newly elected Nashville Sen. Brenda Gilmore led a group Friday calling for 30-year-old Cyntoia Brown's freedom.
Indigo Ag expanding operations in downtown Memphis
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — Agriculture technology company Indigo Ag Inc. says it is establishing its North American commercial operations headquarters in Memphis, Tennessee.
Indigo Ag CEO David Perry and Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam said Wednesday that the fast-growing Boston startup plans to invest about $6.6 million and add 700 jobs over the next three years as it expands its operations in a downtown-Memphis building near the city's minor-league baseball stadium, hotels and historic Beale Street.
Protesters demanding clemency for woman, interrupt governor
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Gov. Bill Haslam told a group of protesters demanding clemency for a Tennessee woman serving life in prison that he's reviewing her case.
Cyntoia Brown was 16 when she killed a man who had picked her up for sex. She was tried as an adult and convicted of first-degree murder. Her lawyers say she was a sex-trafficking victim afraid for her life. Celebrities including Kim Kardashian and singer Rihanna have rallied support for her.
Remains of WWII Army private returning home to Tennessee
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Officials say the remains of an Army infantryman who went missing during World War II have been identified and they are being returned home to Tennessee.
Gov. Bill Haslam said in a news release that the remains of Pvt. 1st Class Lewis Price, of Rogersville, are arriving at the Blountsville airport Friday night. A ceremony is scheduled Dec. 14 at Highland Cemetery in Rogersville.
Frist-founded education group announces leadership changes
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A Tennessee education group founded by former Republican U.S. Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist is switching up its leadership.
The State Collaborative on Reforming Education, known as SCORE, announced Thursday that Executive Chair and CEO Jamie Woodson will take a senior adviser role effective Jan. 1. President David Mansouri will succeed Woodson as president and CEO.
Haslam appoints 20 members to university advisory boards
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam has appointed 20 members to the new advisory boards for each of the four campuses within the state's university system.
Haslam appointed the members after the advisory boards were created by Tennessee's General Assembly last session.
Death-row inmate awaits court rulings, clemency decision
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A Tennessee death row inmate was waiting Wednesday to see whether the U.S. Supreme Court or the governor would halt his Thursday execution in the electric chair.
David Earl Miller was sentenced to death for the 1981 murder of 23-year-old Lee Standifer in Knoxville. He has spent 36 years on death row, the longest of any Tennessee inmate.
Tennessee governor unveils statewide water availability plan
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam wants the public's input on a state plan for future water availability.
Tennessee governor to attend Bush funeral
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam will attend the funeral service for former President George H.W. Bush in Washington D.C.
Haslam's office announced Monday the Republican will attend the invitation-only funeral service on Wednesday at Washington National Cathedral.
Bush, who was president from 1989 to 1993, died Friday in Houston at age 94.
Nashville police union: Amazon getting ‘corporate welfare’
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Nashville's police union is blasting the city's plans to award up to $15 million in incentives for Amazon's new facility, calling it "corporate welfare."
A Nashville Fraternal Order of Police news release this week called for support of a resolution to block Amazon's incentives until city employees receive cost-of-living adjustments.
Nashville has proposed up to a $15 million cash grant based on each job Amazon creates within the next seven years.
Judge won’t drop ex-Pilot Flying J head’s house arrest
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A former president of the largest U.S. fuel retailer will remain on house arrest while appealing his fraud conviction, but he can sell his boat and private plane.
U.S. District Judge Curtis Collier made the decisions this week in former Pilot Flying J President Mark Hazelwood's case. Hazelwood wanted home confinement and monitoring requirements dropped or reduced.
Tennessee to hold special election for state Senate seat
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee will hold a special election to replace a former Republican state senator who was recently sworn in as a federal judge.
A news release by Gov. Bill Haslam's office says the special primary election to replace Mark Norris in Senate District 32 will take place on Jan. 24, with early voting to begin Jan. 4. The general election will follow on March 12, with early voting to start Feb. 20.
Tennessee education commissioner to lead national nonprofit
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Gov. Bill Haslam has announced that Tennessee Department of Education Commissioner Candice McQueen is leaving her post to become the head of a national education nonprofit.
Haslam's office said Thursday McQueen will be the CEO of the National Institute for Excellence in Teaching starting in January. The organization helps states and schools develop and retain educators.
New $1.7M Tennessee pet food facility to create 181 jobs
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — State officials say a fresh pet food company will invest $1.7 million in a new Tennessee production facility that's expected to create 181 new jobs.
A Department of Economic and Community Development news release says NomNomNow, inc. will build the facility in Nashville.
The company began about three years ago in the San Francisco Bay area. It specializes in customized, fresh, restaurant-quality meals for dogs and cats.
Ernst and Young to bring 600 jobs to Nashville
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam has announced that professional services firm Ernst and Young plans to bring up to 600 jobs to Nashville.
The $22 million project was announced Tuesday. That same day, Amazon revealed it would invest $230 million-plus to locate its Operations Center of Excellence in Nashville Yards, a 15-acre (6 hectare) mixed-use downtown development still under construction.