Tennessee lawmaker pulls school bus seatbelt bill for year

(Photo: WKRN)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – A bill that would require school buses to have seatbelts in Tennessee has been withdrawn for the year.

The Times Free Press reports that Democratic Rep. JoAnne Favors of Chattanooga late last week pulled her bill, which was inspired by a deadly school bus crash in her city in November.

The legislation would have mandated seat belts in new school buses bought after July 2019.

Fiscal estimates say the proposal would add $12.9 million in annual costs to school districts and $2.2 million in yearly state costs. The bill was changed to make the state pay the whole cost, but the money isn’t currently in the state budget.

Favors believed the cost would be much cheaper.

The Chattanooga bus crash in November killed six elementary school children.