In This Issue


Changes to Statute

Overtime Final Rule

Excellence Award

EEOC Digital Charge System

Congratulations to Terri Evans


Tennessee Trivia

Q. How many states does Tennessee border?

Click Here for the Answer

Message from the President

Dawn Hello to all!

TML just concluded its 77th Annual Conference and Exhibition, held June 12-14 in Gatlinburg. It was great to see so many friends and partners!

Over the next few months, several new laws will go into effect that will impact local government. One such law has to do with the Tennessee Consumer Protection and Identity Theft Deterrence Statute. Requirements for notification of a data breach are specifically defined. In addition, it is important to recognize that the word “unencrypted” has been deleted from the statute. Please read the article that appears in this newsletter, “Tennessee Enacts Changes to Data Breach Statute,” for more information. You can also view our Loss Control Guideline on “Sensitive Information and Computer Security” by logging onto our portal at www.PEpartners.org.

Another law that will impact many organizations beginning Dec. 1, 2016, has to do with the Fair Labor Standards Act and the final rules for overtime. A document issued by the United States Department of Labor that is specifically for State and Local Governments, “Overtime Final Rule and State and Local Governments,” is included in this newsletter. The impact of some of the changes will take time to evaluate and implement.

As mentioned before, Public Entity Partners will hold its Risk & Insurance Symposium in August. Be sure to see our article on nominations for our Excellence in Risk Management Award and registration for the conference. We hope to see you there!

Best Regards,
signature
Dawn R. Crawford
President/CEO

Changes to Tennessee’s Consumer Protection

and Identity Theft Deterrence Statute

Data encryption offers the greatest protection available to local governments and businesses for safeguarding the personal identification information of ratepayers, employees and citizens. Encrypting data not only protects the data from being utilized by those unauthorized to view it, but also gives the owner of the data some protections under the State of Tennessee’s Consumer Protection and Identity Theft Deterrence statutes. Beginning July 1, 2016, several amendments have been made to this statute that could affect you.

Please read the attached article, Tennessee Enacts Changes to Data Breach Statute,” that outlines the various changes to the statute. The most noteworthy changes are the breaches related to encrypted data which now fall under the statute, and the notification time periods are immediate.

We recommend that you perform a thorough evaluation of the areas where personal information is collected within your entity. Any area where personal information is collected should have clear, written policies directing employees how to protect that information and what to do in the event of a breach.

Additionally, if you have Privacy & Network Liability Coverage with Public Entity Partners and you have a claim, you should immediately notify the Claims Department for assistance. Public Entity Partners’s Privacy & Network Liability Coverage includes a data breach fund sublimit of $250,000. This sublimit is utilized to notify affected individuals, provide credit monitoring, and cover expenses related to forensic investigation for determining the extent of the data breach.

To view our Loss Control Guideline about “Sensitive Information and Computer Security,” log onto our portal at www.PEpartners.org.

Return to the top

Overtime Final Rule and State and Local Governments

State and local governments: The Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) has long applied to state and local governments. The FLSA and the Department of Labor's regulations, however, contain some unique provisions applicable only to public sector workers, notably the permitted use of compensatory time off, under certain conditions. These provisions will help state and local governments adapt to the overtime final rule. Read more here.

Return to the top

Excellence in Risk Management Award

The deadline to nominate an individual or program for the first Excellence in Risk Management Award is fast approaching. All nomination forms are due by July 18. This award is designed to recognize members of all sizes for risk management programs and activities that serve to protect employees and taxpayer dollars. The nomination form is available here or on our website.

Awards will be presented during the Risk & Insurance Symposium, to be held Aug. 15-16 at the Cool Springs Embassy Suites in Franklin. If you have not registered for the Symposium, visit http://thepool.xmimeetings.com/ to view the agenda, register and reserve your hotel room.

If you have questions about the award or the Symposium, please contact Halie Gallik at hgallik@PEpartners.org or 800.624.9698.

Return to the top

EEOC Digital Charge System

Beginning in January 2016, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) began using a Digital Charge System to communicate with employers against whom a charge of employment discrimination has been filed.

This system allows the respondent to:

  • View and download the charge;
  • Review an invitation to mediate and respond to it;
  • Submit a Position Statement and attachments to the EEOC;
  • Submit a response to a Request for Information to the EEOC; and
  • Provide/verify respondent contact information, including the designation of a legal representative.

This system was created by the EEOC to improve efficiency and streamline the process of filing an EEOC complaint for employees. Employers should be aware that charges of discrimination are now sent electronically and should not be ignored. The EEOC will send any charges of discrimination to the contact they have on file or to the contact provided by the employee alleging discriminatory practices.

We recommend that you have a process in place so that every employee with an email address knows what to do if they receive electronic communication from the EEOC.

Please also keep in mind that charges of discrimination can be filed with the Tennessee Human Rights Commission (THRC). These complaints are not electronic and will continue to be sent to employers in paper format.

EEOC complaints and complaints from the THRC should be filed with Public Entity Partners’s Claims Department as soon as they are received by your entity. These complaints have time limits within which responses and statements must be sent back to the EEOC or THRC. It is vital that the Claims Department has enough time to evaluate the complaint in order to effectively respond to it.

For more information about the EEOC or for questions about the new Digital Charge System, visit https://www.eeoc.gov/.

Return to the top

Congratulations to Terri Evans!

Congratulations to Terri Evans, risk manager for the City of Kingsport, as she began her term as PRIMA’s 38th president on June 8! PRIMA, the Public Risk Management Association, is an international professional association comprised by more than 2,000 public entity risk professionals, and has been a resource for educational programming, risk resources and networking opportunities for public sector risk managers for more than three decades. The association’s mission is to promote effective risk management in the public interest as an essential component of public administration. Previously, Terri also served as president and longtime board member of the Tennessee chapter of PRIMA.

Effective risk management has been a core tenant of Public Entity Partners since its inception in 1979. Work performed by risk professionals and local government employees to safeguard public employees and resources is a vital component of effective local government. Terri has worked tirelessly for the City of Kingsport in risk management and the various roles in which she has served the city.

Judy Housley, East Tennessee loss control consultant, shared her congratulations on Terri’s selection as PRIMA’s new president.

“I have had the pleasure of working with Terri in her role as Kingsport’s risk manager since 2001. On initial appointment, her intelligence and commitment to professionalism were apparent. During the last 15 years, I have seen her tackle a broad range of issues in schools and city operations with an intellectual curiosity that incorporated standard approaches and outside-the-box ideas to protect the city, employees and taxpayers. PRIMA is lucky to have someone of Terri’s caliber and ability to lead the organization and to represent our state. Congratulations, Terri; congratulations, PRIMA; congratulations, Tennessee!”

We would like to commend Terri for her commitment to risk management and public service, and wish her all the best as she serves as the president of PRIMA. To learn more about PRIMA or the Tennessee chapter of PRIMA, please visit www.primacentral.org or www.tnprima.org.

Return to the top

Tennessee Trivia

Q. How many states does Tennessee border?

A. Eight: Kentucky, Virginia, North Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Arkansas and Missouri.