With very few people around, the legislature adjourned Sine Die on Sunday, April 23rd. And also, with few folks present, the special session began on Monday, April 24th! So, what can we expect from this point forward?
It is expected that the House will convene on Tuesday, May 2nd to pass bills that reverted to Rules, perhaps including their budget bill. Beyond Tuesday, it is unclear what the House will be doing.
On April 26th, the Senate held a hearing on a revenue package (SB 5929, which is basically the same as the house revenue bill), sponsored by Sen. Rossi. Rumor has it that the Senate will likely convene on the 2nd, but there is no confirmation of that. It is also being rumored that the Ways and Means committee will not take a vote on SB 5929; however, they may move it into Rules ‘without recommendation’.
While many bills are technically alive, it is not the case that they will automatically come up for a vote to get them back to the opposite chamber. We anticipate that HB 1661, the bill establishing the Department of Children, Youth, and Families, will be sent back to the Senate, and that SB 5890, the Foster Care and Adoption Support bill, will be sent back to the House… but where they go in the opposite house and when subsequent action will be taken is not yet known! New bills can also be introduced and acted upon; however, there often isn’t a big appetite for taking up bills that weren’t part of the regular session.
Just a reminder, the special session can only last 30 days. There can, however, be a second special session… Or third… etc.!!!!
Budget negotiations have not really begun, but again, according to the rumor mill, budget writers are talking. Here’s hoping!
We will not be doing an updated Bill Tracker this week but will do one next week. We will send brief updates weekly during the special session, even if it’s just to say that there isn’t anything new to report!
Bill signings are becoming more frequent, and the Governor has until around May 9th to take action on bills. If you are curious about a bill, information can be obtained on the Governor’s website. Also: Did you know? Bill signings are open to the public!
Have a good weekend!
Public Policy Director