Tennessee takes huge step in slashing red tape that strangles innovation


April 20, 2021 12:51PM

A monumental bill just passed the Tennessee legislature this week that would stop local governments from regulating online marketplaces like Uber, Turo, Etsy, Handy, and other online platforms.

As I noted in a previous blog post on the topic, services like these have become increasingly popular, especially among younger generations who embrace the convenience of technology to find places to stay on vacation, hail a ride, and get food delivered to their doorstep. In addition, many Americans have relied on these platforms to supplement their income and even earn a living full-time.

Cities in other states have attempted to impose minimum wage laws on ridesharing services at the behest of taxi cartels, place limits on fees charged by delivery services, and meddle in the independent contractor relationship that has significantly benefited self-employed individuals using these platforms to earn a living. None of these regulatory attempts would be allowed under the new Tennessee law. 

This is one of the most significant broad-based innovation freedom developments in Tennessee, which becomes one of the first states to pass such a law in the country. Preempting local governments from imposing a hodgepodge of local regulations on online marketplaces will allow innovation to flourish. It could also make Tennessee a magnet for the next big innovation and all the jobs that could follow.