Political news

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Republican Gov. Bill Haslam is thanking members of the Tennessee General Assembly for acting quickly in a special legislative session to prevent the loss of $60 million in federal road money.

The governor had hastily called this week's session after the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration warned that the state would lose 8 percent of its federal road funding if a new drunken driving law wasn't repealed by Oct. 1

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The House Ethics Committee has dismissed three complaints filed against House Speaker Beth Harwell for her handling of a sexual harassment investigation into former Rep. Jeremy Durham.

Republican state Rep. Rick Womick, who opposed Durham's ouster a day earlier, had filed five complaints against Harwell. He withdrew two of them on Wednesday, and the ethics panel later dismissed the remaining three.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee State Rep. Jeremy Durham was a rising Republican legislative star, but his increasingly erratic behavior and mounting sexual harassment allegations finally caught up with him.

Durham’s  fellow legislators voted 70-2 yesterday to expel him.

Durham faced a grilling prior to the vote. Rep. Bill Lamerth of Cottontown was visibly angry.

"For God's sake, I want to know, 'Did you do it?'  If you did that affects my vote today.  If you didn't, we all deserve to know."

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP/WMOT) — Following Tuesday’s vote to oust Franklin Rep. Jeremy Durham from his seat in the Tennessee House, lawmakers hope to move on to the reason they convened this week.

Gov. Bill Haslam called lawmakers into a special session to repeal a new state law on underage DUI. The law exceeds national standards, leading to a threat by Washington officials to withhold $60 million in federal road construction money.


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — An association representing state employees in Tennessee wants the state to stop using private prisons.

The Tennessean (http://tnne.ws/2bBeIKn ) reports that Tennessee State Employee Association President Bryan Merritt is calling on the Tennessee Department of Correction to end the use of private prisons because he says state employees already do a great job managing prisons. He says private prisons provide an inferior product, lower levels of safety and security and debatable savings.