Wine on Sundays, sanctuary policy prohibition among state laws taking effect Jan. 1

Zach Vance • Updated Dec 29, 2018 at 12:00 AM

More than two dozen laws will go into effect in Tennessee on Jan. 1, but some might impact you more than others.

For one, Tennesseans will be able to purchase wine and alcoholic beverages on Sundays, except on Easter, Christmas and Thanksgiving.

Another law, House Bill 2315, will prohibit state and local governments and officials from adopting sanctuary policies to protect undocumented immigrants.

In regard to abortions, if an ultrasound is performed prior to an abortion, a law crafted by Jonesborough Rep. Micah Van Huss would require the results of the ultrasound be offered to the woman seeking the abortion. The person performing the ultrasound will also be required to report whether or not a heartbeat was detected.

Below is a brief summary of the other state laws taking effect on Jan. 1:


•  SB0437: Revises provisions regarding when a health insurance company can make or is required to notify a provider of changes in the providers’ fee schedule.

•  HB1808: Enacts the “Corporate Governance Annual Disclosure Act” and revises various provisions of insurance laws.

Forfeiture of Assets

•  SB1001: As enacted, revises various provisions regarding forfeiture.

•  HB2021: Revises laws governing civil asset forfeiture.


•  HB2106: Revises law concerning safekeeping of prisoners in nearby jails.

•  HB1786: Requires a state control number on R-84 Disposition Cards that are attached to arresting documents.

•  HB1038: Exempts from the firing range and classroom hours requirement to obtain a handgun carry permit anyone who in the five years preceding the date of application has successfully completed a department of correction firearms qualification.


•  HB1993: Requires health care prescribers to issue prescriptions for Schedule II controlled substances electronically by July 1, 2020, with certain exceptions. 

•  HB0664: Enacts the “Interstate Medical Licensure Compact.”

•  HB2004: Requires Dept. of Health to accept all allegations of opioid abuse or diversion and to publicize a means of reporting allegations of such; prohibits civil liability for or firing of a person who reports suspected abuse or diversion.

•  SB2025: Authorizes a partial fill of a prescription of a controlled substance.

•  SB1949: Enacts the “Suicide Mortality Review and Prevention Act of 2018.”

•  SB2165: Revises requirements regarding coverage for mental health, mental illness and alcohol or drug dependency and requires certain reports.


•  SB1782: Changes the term of the chair of the state board of education from four years to two years.

•  HB1198: Returns the appointment of the executive director of the Tennessee Higher Education Commission from the governor to the commission.

•  SB0619: Requires each local board of education to develop a policy to implement a program to reduce the potential sources of lead contamination in drinking water in public schools that incorporates periodic, not to exceed biennial, testing of lead levels in drinking water sources at school facilities that were constructed prior to Jan. 1, 1998.

•  HB1694: Adds and revises various provisions governing teacher training programs.

Motor Vehicles

•  HB1515: As enacted, increases from $400 to $1,500 the minimum property damage threshold for which a motor vehicle accident requires a written report to be filed with the department of safety, except in cases of damage to state or local government property; increases from $500 to $1,500 the property damage threshold differentiating a Class B misdemeanor from a Class A misdemeanor for the offense of leaving the scene of an accident.

•  SB2253: Permits the department to toll the mandatory 365-consecutive-day period during which certain motor vehicles are required to be equipped with a functioning ignition interlock device if the motor vehicle is inoperable based on specified reasons.

•  SB1281: Requires the department to establish a state vehicle abuse hotline and website; requires that vehicles leased and owned by the state have decals providing a telephone number or website information for complaints.

•  SB1783: Increases the tax on unregistered or improperly registered freight motor vehicles.


•  SB2497: Reduces from 90 days to 60 days the period before a qualifying deadline for elective office during which nominating petitions may be issued by an administrator, deputy, county election commissioner or employee of the coordinator’s office, other than nominating petitions for the offices of the President of United States and delegates to the national conventions of all statewide political parties.

•  HB1344: If the county election commission has arranged for the use of a public school or a public charter school as a polling place for a regular November election, that the LEA or the public charter school be closed for instruction on the Election Day; authorizes an LEA or public charter school to choose to be open or closed for instruction on election days other than days on which a regular November election occurs.


•  SB2306: Gives licensing authorities discretion whether or not to suspend, deny or revoke a license based on the applicant or licensee having defaulted or become delinquent on student loan repayment, if the licensing authority determines that the default or delinquency is the result of a medical hardship that prevented the person from working in the person’s licensed field and the medical hardship significantly contributed to the default or delinquency.

•  HB2321: Requires compliance with certain requirements by a person practicing ultrasound sonography in a nonclinical 3D/4D ultrasound boutique setting.

•  HB1805: Exempts certain low-income persons from initial licensure fees imposed by certain health-related boards and professional regulatory boards.

Children’s Services

• HB2444: Extends from 30 days to 40 days the period of advance notice that licensed child-placing agencies and licensed clinical social workers must provide the department before increasing fees charged to prospective adoptive parents.

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