State Senator Ken Yager Weekly Legislative Update

Election integrity and supporting the 12th Senatorial District highlight this week

The sixth week of the 113th General Assembly is now complete. Some highlights of the week include an update from the Secretary of State on Tennessee’s election integrity ranking, and some of my bills that will bring jobs and economic development to my district are being passed by committees.

Tennessee is #1 in Election Integrity – The Senate Finance, Ways and Means Committee heard from Secretary of State, Tre Hargett, regarding the Department’s budget proposals as well as an update on election integrity. I am pleased to live in a state that is ranked the highest in the country for election integrity two years in a row. In Tennessee, it is easy to vote, but it is hard to cheat.

Support for development districts – Legislation I sponsored would increase funding to the nine development districts across Tennessee. These development districts have many responsibilities, some of which include planning functions for rural counties, promoting economic development and job creation. Senate Bill 2341 passed out of the Senate State and Local Government Committee unanimously.

Extending the Ground Ambulance Service Provider Assessment Act – Similar to bills I have passed in previous years, I am sponsoring Senate Bill 2330 which extends the Ground Ambulance Service Provider Assessment until June 30, 2025. The legislation will generate $20 million to be shared among rural ambulance services in Tennessee. This Assessment will help the ambulance services continue to provide emergency services to my constituents in rural counties. It is important legislation, and I am so proud to sponsor it to help my district. The bill passed out of the Senate Commerce and Labor Committee unanimously.

Updates to Length of Service Reward Program: Another bill I am sponsoring, Senate Bill 2331, makes changes to the Length of Service Reward Program (LOSAP). LOSAP allows participating local governments to receive state matching funds to provide financial rewards to volunteer firefighters and EMS workers as a way to encourage, recognize and retain their service. The bill removed the directive to administer the LOSAP grant on a first come, first serve basis. This change will allow employers to receive a prorated amount of grant funding. The bill also allows Treasury to use the LOSAP grant funds to pay for the administrative expenses associated with the program to ensure that the program costs are covered without raising participant fees. The bill passed out of the Senate State and Local Government Committee unanimously and is expected to be on the Senate floor next week.

I invite everyone to visit the State Capitol. If you have children in grades 5-12, they can even serve as a page in the Senate. If your child would like to be a part of state government and would like to learn how laws are made, you can contact my office. I will do my best to accommodate all senate page requests.It is an honor to serve as the State Senator for nine of the finest counties in the state of Tennessee. If I can ever be of assistance to you, please contact me at 615-741-1449 or sen.ken.yager@capitol.tn.gov.

About Brad Jones

Brad is the Owner/Operator of BBB TV 12, and has been with the company since August of 1996. Brad is a 1987 graduate of Coalfield High School and a 1995 graduate of the University of Tennessee College of Communications. He won the 1995 broadcast production student of the year award. Brad worked at Shop at Home, Inc. a home shopping network that was located in Knoxville, TN from 1993 - 1995 and then at Via TV (RSTV, Inc.) from 1995 - 1996. After some freelance work in Nashville, Brad joined the BBB Communications staff in August of 1996. A short stint at WVLT TV as a news photographer was in 2001, but he continued to work at BBB TV as well. Brad is married to Nicole Jenkins Jones, a 1990 graduate of Oak Ridge High School, who works at Oak Ridge Gastroenterology and Associates in Oak Ridge. They have 3 kids, Trevor Bogard, 27, Chandler 22, and Naomi 13. On December 12, 2013 they welcomed their first grandchild, Carter Ryan Bogard. Brad is also the assistant boys basketball coach at Coalfield High School for the past 11 years. In 2013-14 the Yellow Jackets won their first district title since 1991 and just the 4th in school history.

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