It Isn’t Over Till It’s Over

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We’ve come to that a part of our legislative session the place all the general public hearings are accomplished.  From right here on out, lawmakers within the Home will probably be chatting with their counterparts within the Senate to hash out any variations between their respective variations of payments. Most of that will probably be accomplished behind closed doorways. Then, when a deal has been struck, lawmakers will dutifully file right into a convention room to vote on and move out remaining variations of payments known as Convention Drafts. 

Within the meantime, lawmakers have been determining easy methods to bypass standard studying about when a invoice is useless. Right here is one instance. 


Home Invoice 1327, as launched, proposed giving lecturers a tax credit score to primarily pay them again for classroom bills that they paid out of their very own pockets.

The invoice sailed by the Home, crossed over to the Senate, and was there referred to the Schooling and Methods & Means Committees, in that order.  A few weeks glided by, and the deadline for payments to advance by their first committees got here and went. Senate Schooling didn’t hear the invoice.  So, it regarded just like the invoice was useless. 

On April 4th, nevertheless, the Senate President’s workplace re-referred the invoice solely to Methods & Means, which instantly scheduled the invoice for a listening to on April fifth (giving the general public fewer than the traditional 48 hours’ discover) and handed the invoice out on the fifth, at some point earlier than the deadline for submitting remaining committee reviews on payments. 

We’re not saying that something improper was accomplished right here. There’s a process for re-referring payments and for approving hearings with quick discover. All these procedures had been correctly adopted, we assume.  Nor do we now have any explicit objections to the trainer tax credit score invoice. 

We’re utilizing this invoice as an example that payments that appear to be useless aren’t essentially so. 

There are additionally different strategies to advance the concepts in “useless” payments.  Their content material could be spliced into different payments which might be nonetheless alive, for instance, if the recipient invoice has a broad sufficient title and the opposite contents of the recipient invoice are related sufficient to the “useless” invoice in order that it may possibly’t be termed a “intestine and change.”

“Intestine and change” could also be harder to drag off as of late, however there are nonetheless strategies obtainable to do attention-grabbing issues. On the Legislature, then, it’s not over till it’s over.