AARP AARP States Advocacy

Talking Points for Action

March 14, 2014

 This week, the transportation subcommittee in the House, amended HB2156 to something that is more desirable than the original amendment. The original amendment calls for approval of rapid bus transit by the metropolitan government, the TN Department of Transportation and the General Assembly.

The new amendment, offered by Representative Bill Dunn, adds a few words to the original amendment, but these few words make the bill much better than the original. Rep. Dunn's amendment changes it to this (paraphrased): by the metropolitan government, the TN Department of Transportation and the General Assembly, by approval of the Transportation Department's budget.

Please call or email your Representative and ask that they support the HB2156 as amended by Rep. Bill Dunn.

His amendment gives local control and state oversight without penalizing local governments.AARP wants for local governments to have the ability to have the conversation about transportation options and this amended version of the bill will give them the ability to continue to do just that.

The full transportation committee will meet on Tuesday at 1:30 p.m. CST. It is imperative that they hear from you before this committee.  We want for them to hear LOUDLY and CLEARLY of your support of this ONLY as amended by Rep. Dunn.

Please call or email your Representative today to support HB2156 as amended by Rep. Dunn.

Below are a few sample emails that you may use in your email. You may copy and paste or create your own.  Remember, the email is from YOU, so make it YOUR OWN.

SAMPLE EMAILS

I support HB2156 as amended by Rep. Dunn because it preserves a local government's ability to work with its citizens to determine the best policies for them.

***

HB2156 as amended still gives the local community the ability to determine the best transportation options, especially as people age. We need MORE transportation discussions, not fewer.

***

Supporting HB2156 as amended gives us the reassurance that counties can still discuss and weigh transportation options and that the counties can move forward with them, as best fits with their citizens. Please don't remove this right from them!

***

We have an onslaught of aging individuals and an extremely high dependency on cars. We need for counties to be able to explore transportation options to meet the needs of their constituents. Supporting HB2156 as amended still gives oversight, but does not stifle the conversation.

***

To learn who your legislator is, please visit www.capitol.tn.gov/legislators and plug in your address.

If you'd like to call your Representative too, please dial 1-800-449-8366, then enter the five digits listed below.

HOUSE TRANSPORTATION COMMITTEE

  • Rep. Vince Dean: 11934
  • Rep. Mike Sparks: 16829
  • Rep. David Alexander: 18695
  • Rep. Joe Armstrong: 10768
  • Rep. Karen Camper: 11898
  • Rep. Dale Carr: 15981
  • Rep. Barbara Cooper: 14295
  • Rep. Bill Dunn: 11721 * Tell him THANK YOU for his amendment!*
  • Rep. Tilman Goins: 16877
  • Rep. Kelly Keisling: 16852
  • Rep. Mary Littleton: 17477
  • Rep. Jimmy Matlock: 13736
  • Rep. Bo Mitchell: 14317
  • Rep. Dennis Roach: 12534
  • Rep. Courtney Rogers: 13893
  • Rep. Bill Sanderson: 10718
  • Rep. Terry Lynn Weaver:12192
  • Rep. John Mark Windle: 11260

Thank you so much for making this a PRIORITY and for taking action! Our voices do matter and we thank you for your support!

 

Other issues we've been working on and you may have received a phone call or email about:

March 10, 2014

Issue 1: Access to Care

Background: Currently, there is a bill that will be heard in the Senate Health committee that will allow Optometrists to treat patients more comfortably than they are allowed to now, under Tennessee law. Under current law, optometrists can treat the eyelid, remove stys and other "lumps and bumps" from the eyelid, and they can use an injection to treat these conditions. However, if they need to remove a sty or other tissue on the eyelid only, they may only use a topical anesthetic cream instead of an injectable one.

TALKING POINTS

  • Please vote YES to SB 220.
  • Senate Bill 220 will allow optometrists to use an injectable local anesthetic to remove lesions from the eyelid - a procedure they do now with a topical anesthetic.
  • Optometrists have been able to inject other substances (such as steroids) in the eyelid and SB220 also does not enable optometrists to do injections for the first time. They have been doing so for over 20 years.
  • Optometric Physicians outnumber ophthalmologists in Tennessee (and the country) two to one and provide the majority of primary eye health and vision care to the 50+.
  • Optometric Physicians in Tennessee are duly authorized, certified and licensed to diagnose AND manage, "lump and bumps" of the lids by means of primary care procedures including: topical medications and injections.
  • Senate Bill 220 ONLY provides the use of injections, for which we have been authorized for 20 years, as another means of anesthesia for these primary care procedures;
  • Senate Bill 220 will make these primary care procedures much more convenient for Tennessee's 50+ and allow them to continue their care.
  • SB220 will give the patient access to the closest, most cost-effective care in their community. Please support this bill.

Call  800-449-8366 and then punch in the extension below for  YOUR Senator.

  • Senate Health committee:
  • Sen. Rusty Crowe: 12468
  • Sen. Joey Hensley: 13100
  • Sen. Steven Dickerson: 16679
  • Sen. Lowe Finney: 11810
  • Sen. Doug Henry: 13291
  • Sen. Becky Massey: 11648
  • Sen. Randy McNally: 16806

 

Issue 2: Transportation Legislation

Background: HB2156/SB2243 would  prohibit counties like Nashville from expanding rapid bus transit options. In fact, the amendment added this week says only metropolitan forms of government will be effected. Currently, that is Davidson County (Nashville) and Moore County (Lynchburg). Currently, only Davidson County is  considering alternative transit options.

And, outside of whether or not you agree or disagree about whether this option or others like it should come to a county, shouldn't it be that county's decision on whether or not they want the transportation options?

For political reasons, legislators  outside of Davidson County have introduced this bill. Many times in the past, legislators have argued that local governments are closest to the people. If so, why prevent them from working with their local constituents to determine what is best for them?

If your legislator is one of the officials listed below, please call them at 800-449-8366 and enter the extension listed beside their name. Your phone call can stop this bill!

Senate Transportation Committee:

  • Senator Jim Tracy: 11066
  • Senator Mae Beavers: 12421
  • Senator Frank Niceley: 12061
  • Senator Janice Bowling: 16694
  • Senator Stacey Campfield: 11766
  • Senator Ophelia Ford: 11767
  • Senator Thelma Harper: 12453
  • Senator Becky Massey: 11648
  • Senator Steve Southerland: 13851

House subcommittee on Transportation:

  • Rep. Terri Lynn Weaver: 12192
  • Rep. Barbara Cooper: 14295
  • Rep. Vince Dean: 11934
  • Rep. Bill Dunn: 11721
  • Rep. Tilman Goins: 16877
  • Rep. Bo Mitchell: 14317
  • Rep. Courtney Rogers: 13893
  • Rep. Mike Sparks: 16829
  • Rep. John Mark Windle: 11260

 

Issue 3: Pseudoephedrine

Background: The General Assembly has many issues up for debate this year and whether or not to require a prescription for over-the-counter medications containing pseudoephedrine is on the table.

We can ALL agree that meth is a serious problem in Tennessee and the families, children and communities that are destroyed by it are serious.

However, taking the final step and requiring prescriptions for drugs that can be purchased now over-the-counter is a step that puts the burden on every day, law-abiding citizens  instead of on criminals.

PLEASE CALL YOUR SENATOR ABOUT THIS ISSUE

If your Senator is on the Senate Judiciary committee (to find out your Senator, check here: http://capitol.tn.gov/legislators/ ), please call your Senator about this issue!

IMPORTANT: When leaving a message or talking to the legislative assistant:

1. state your name

2. state that you live in the Senator's district

3. state your position. (Choose one of the options below in "talking points", or create your own.)

TALKING POINTS:


  1. Please vote no to the prescription only bills before you in the Judiciary committee. I would like tougher penalties on criminals, including longer jail time instead moving to prescription only first.
  2. I urge you to vote no to prescription only. Doing so would raise my healthcare costs and I live on a fixed income.
  3. I no longer drive and have to coordinate my transportation through family and friends. This would be another burden for me. Can we do this another way?

Please call only YOUR Senator.  (To find your senator, click here.)

Call  800-449-8366 and then punch in the extension below for  YOUR Senator.

Senate Judiciary committee:

  • Senator Brian Kelsey: 13036
  • Senator Doug Overbey: 10981
  • Senator Stacey Campfield: 11766
  • Senator Mike Bell: 11946
  • Senator Lowe Finney: 11810
  • Senator Ophelia Ford: 11767
  • Senator Todd Gardenhire: 16682
  • Senator Mark Green: 12374
  • Senator John Stevens: 14576

 

IMPORTANT: When leaving a message or talking to the legislative assistant:

1. state your name

2. state that you live in the Senator's district

3. state your position. (Choose one of the options below in "talking points", or create your own.)

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