Gas taxes, wine sales, education, and more, TN lawmakers kick off 2015

Gas taxes, wine sales, education, and more, TN lawmakers kick off 2015

NASHVILLE, TN (WMC) - Tuesday, January 13 marked the start of the 2015 legislative session in Tennessee, and state lawmakers are already busy trying to get their agenda turned into law.

There are five major issues state lawmakers are trying to tackle this year. If they succeed, you might see major changes in the coming months.

1 - Abortion Restrictions.

Voters passed Amendment One during the November election. The amendment allows state lawmakers to place restrictions on abortions and abortion facilities.

Some lawmakers have already proposed restrictions like mandatory waiting periods and regular inspections of all abortion clinics.

2 - Wine in Grocery Stores

We're not supposed to see wine sold in our grocery stores until 2016, but some lawmakers are trying to put this legal change into hyper speed. At least one proposal would make wine sales legal as early as July of 2015.

3 - Insure Tennessee

Governor Bill Haslam's health insurance plan is an alternative to Medicaid expansion. The governor says it will insure 200,000 Tennesseans who are currently uninsured, including 67,000 people in Shelby County.

However, Republicans are split on the proposal. Expect a long an drawn out debate before this plan moves ahead in Nashville.

4 - Vouchers and Common Core

Education is always a part of the yearly debate, and 2015 is no different. Some lawmakers are trying to get rid of Common Core curriculum, and others are trying to add school vouchers which would allow some public school students to pay for and attend private school.

5 - Gas Tax

We're seeing the lowest gas prices in nearly a decade, but some Tennessee lawmakers want to raise those prices by adding a fee to the state gas tax. The idea is that the fee will help pay for state highway improvements.

These are just a few of the most heated debates happening in the state capital. We expect the talk to get louder throughout the next month.

Stay with WMC Action News 5 for updates on how these proposals change and what they will mean for you and your family.

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