Chattanooga Softball Gets Alabama Regional With Alabama, Stanford, Murray State

Appeals Court Upholds Equal Access To Interstate Commerce Law

Thursday, November 6, 2014

The Tennessee Court of Appeals on Thursday affirmed the constitutionality of a first-in-the-nation law, the Equal Access to Intrastate Commerce Act.

The appeals court said, "Plaintiffs allege that a 2011 act of the General Assembly adding a definition of “sex” to the Tennessee Human Rights Act and creating the Equal Access to Intrastate Commerce Act, now codified at Tennessee Code Annotated § 7-51-1801(1) & (2), violates the Equal Protection guarantees of the United States and Tennessee Constitutions.

"The trial court dismissed the action for lack of standing. We dismiss the claims of Plaintiffs Wesley Roberts and the Gay/Straight Alliance of Hume-Fogg Academic Magnet High School as moot where the Defendant Governor concedes that the Equal Access to Intrastate Commerce Act does
not apply to Local Education Agencies or Tennessee schools. We affirm dismissal of the remaining Plaintiffs for lack of standing where they have failed to allege a discrete, palpable, cognizable injury in fact."

David Fowler, President of FACT and Family Action, praised the court's decision.

He said, "Litigation against the law was organized by homosexual, lesbian, and transgendered organizations who claimed that the law "injured" them by precluding them from advocating for special legal protections based on their sexual practices.

"The plaintiffs claimed that they were precluded from exercising their political rights contrary to the United States Supreme Court's ruling in Evans v. Romer (1994). In rejecting the claim, the Court of Appeals rightly said:

Unlike Amendment 2 in Romer, the [Interstate Commerce Protection Act] does not render political activity for LGBT [lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, and transgender] rights futile or impossible. It does not single out or prevent an entire class of persons from seeking favorable governmental action or from participating in the political process with respect to an issue of mutual concern. It does not render advocacy meaningless regardless of the LGBT’s community’s success in summoning the support of others to prevail on the legislature to repeal subsection (a) of the [Act].

"In other words, the Court of Appeals refrained from making a public policy decision, recognizing that such decisions are to be made under our constitution by the legislative branch of government. 

"And the Court rightly noted that the inability of any particular special interest group to convince legislators to "vote their way" is not a denial of their constitutional rights. In other words, they have "equal access" to the political process."



Virnig Manufacturing’s New Facility Opens In Pikeville

Driver Services Offers At-Home Knowledge Testing

New Hamilton County Business Licenses


Virnig Manufacturing has opened its new 62,000-square-foot manufacturing facility in Pikeville. The Minnesota-based company held a grand opening at the facility, at 403 Allen P. Deakins Road, ... (click for more)

The Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security's Driver Services division is now offering a new online service, "At-Home Knowledge Testing," for Tennessee teenagers. Teenagers ... (click for more)

Here are the new business licenses from the County Clerk's office: 2 GIRLS AND A LASER KIMBERLY KOSAL 2130 N FORK DR SODDY DAISY TN 37379 ADH CONSTRUCTION AVERY HALLORAN 8460 JAY TRENT ... (click for more)



Business

Virnig Manufacturing’s New Facility Opens In Pikeville

Virnig Manufacturing has opened its new 62,000-square-foot manufacturing facility in Pikeville. The Minnesota-based company held a grand opening at the facility, at 403 Allen P. Deakins Road, on Monday. The project will allow the family-owned business to meet the growing demands for the various skid steer attachments it produces. “I am excited to welcome Virnig Manufacturing ... (click for more)

Driver Services Offers At-Home Knowledge Testing

The Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security's Driver Services division is now offering a new online service, "At-Home Knowledge Testing," for Tennessee teenagers. Teenagers between the ages of 15 to 17 may now take their written knowledge test online under a proctor's supervision (parent/legal guardian) via the Tennessee Proctor IDentification (PID) app. Those ... (click for more)

Breaking News

Woman Gets 6-Year Suspended Sentence In 2018 Stabbing Death Of George Deramus

A woman charged in the stabbing death of 60-year-old George Deramus pleaded guilty on Monday morning to the lesser charge of voluntary manslaughter. Tavowia Hinton, who was 49 at the time of the Dec. 2, 2018, incident, had been facing a charge of second-degree murder. She was given a six-year prison sentence, but it was suspended. Ms. Hinton was directed not to have any contact ... (click for more)

Florida Man Says Deal Should Go Through To Buy 6,161 Acres In Hamilton, Sequatchie Counties From Pattens

A Florida man has filed suit in Federal Court, saying he had a deal to buy 6,160 acres in Hamilton and Sequatchie counties from Bryan and Cartter Patten, but they are backing out of the deal. C. Lee Eggert, of Brandon, Fla., said the agreed purchase price was over $11.6 million. He acknowledged that he was being furnished the money by a logging company, Consolidated Timberlands. ... (click for more)

Opinion

Election Integrity

I find the complaints about the recent win by Weston Wamp in the Hamilton County mayor’s primary to be interesting and amusing. Interesting because of the attempt by some to portray his win as the result of some kind of nefarious manipulation by a group of clergy to get Black voters to crossover and vote for Wamp. Also interesting because for weeks it was assumed by the local political ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: "Miss Mary Frances"

I have written dozens of obituaries in my life and eulogized many people. I am not ashamed to admit I think I am good at it and I am flattered when a friend’s family approaches me to ask for my help. I have written a number of obituaries on those who are still alive who want to “proof-read” what will be turned into the funeral home and I have honored death-bed requests that this ... (click for more)