Back from the August break, the Legislature resumed work on legislation for the current session. Various conference committees resumed meetings to resolve differences and act on large omnibus bills such as tax relief (see article, p. 1).
The standing committees, such as the Joint Committee on Public Service, also advanced the public hearing schedule. As we had reported in the September edition, 14 out of the 20 bills the Association filed for the current session have had a public hearing before the Public Service Committee. Public Service is planning hearings throughout the month of October, at which time, the remaining bills in the Association’s legislative package should be heard. We anticipate that once the public hearing process is completed the Committee will move forward with Executive Sessions, taking further action on legislation before the Committee.
On the horizon is what is commonly known as Joint Rule 10 day. This is the date, the first Wednesday of February of the second year of a legislative session, that all committees need to make final reports on legislation that has been filed in a timely manner. For this session that date is February 7th. The only exception is the Joint Committee on Healthcare Finance, which is the last Wednesday of March. Any of the legislation that is part of the Association’s package that has not been acted on prior to February 7th will receive a report of either favorable to pass,