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Municipal Technical Advisory Service (MTAS)


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Knowledgebase is a database of templates, ordinances, resolutions, legal opinions, survey results, and job descriptions to help you lead your Tennessee municipality. 

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James "Dustin" Samples Act, Public Chapter 465, Report with Recommendations for Tennessee Municipalities
In collaboration with the Tennessee Fire Service Coalition and the Tennessee Professional Firefighters Association, the 113th Tennessee General Assembly passed HB0976/SB0856 on April 21, 2023. Governor Bill Lee signed the legislation on May 17, 2023. Known as the “James ‘Dustin’ Samples Act” (Act), this legislation became effective on May 17, 2023, for purposes and promulgating rules and will become effective on January 1, 2024, for all other purposes.

The Act establishes a rebuttable presumption that eligible firefighters that have been diagnosed with PTSD by a mental health provider because of responding to one or more incidents with at least one of the factors listed in the Act are presumed to have incurred PTSD in the line-of-duty, and such PTSD is compensable under the Workers’ Compensation Law compiled in Title 50, Chapter 6 of the Tennessee Code. The presumption is rebuttable if it is shown by a preponderance of the evidence that the cause of PTSD was non-service-connected risk factors or non-service-connected exposure.

The Act was named for Captain James “Dustin” Samples, who worked with the Cleveland, Tennessee Fire Department. Captain Samples suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Mobile Food Units and Fire Permits
An MTAS report summarizing Public Chapter 390, Acts of 2023, relative to fire safety requirements for mobile food units in Tennessee.
Summary of 2023 Public Acts
This document summarizes the year's public acts that have the most impact on municipal operations in Tennessee.
New Statutory Requirements for Meetings of Municipal Governing Bodies
The 113th General Assembly amended the Tennessee Open Meetings Act with two separate public chapters that will impact your municipality. Those public chapters are Public Chapter 213, Acts of 2023 (requires meeting agendas for meetings of the local legislative body to be made available 48 hours prior to the meeting), and Public Chapter 300, Acts of 2023 (requires a public comment period at each public meeting). The summary and comments on both are found in the attached document.
Resources for Developing a Municipal Cybersecurity Policy
MTAS recommends the following resources for developing your municipality's cybersecurity policy.
Change of Subcontractor Listed on Bid When Bid Exceeds $25,000
MTAS Legal Consultant Stephanie O'Hara responded to a request from a Tennessee city for information about how to make a change in the selected subcontractor when the bid exceeds $25,000.
Town Manager Interview Questions - Council
This set of questions was created for a Town Council to use when searching for a new Town Manager.
City Manager Evaluation
MTAS Management Consultant Honna Rogers created this performance review form for the members of the governing body to evaluate the city administrator.
City Manager Interview Questions
MTAS Management Consultant Honna Rogers created this list of interview questions for the Lakesite City Commission to use during their search for a City Manager.
A Resolution Adopting Minimum Training Standards for Firefighters
A sample resolution that can be used by a Tennessee municipal government to adopt minimum training standards for firefighters in their city or town.