Archive for January 20th, 2009

by jhwygirl

106 hearings, folks, between the Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday.

On Wednesday we have Rep. Ray Hawk of Florence with HB174, which would alter term limits to 16 years,total, in the legislature. Currently no legislator can serve more than 8 years out of 16 as either a senator or a representative – so if they term out as a senator, they can then run in the house. It’s a little ridiculous, and we saw some of the negative repercussions of these term limits last legislative session as legislators claw their way to make a name. I can get behind this bill. There’s also some stuff in there limiting terms for U.S. representative and U.S. senator, which isn’t enforceable. This one is in the House State Administration committee – Sheri Heffelfinger the staffer, sheffelfinger@mt.gov.

In Natural Resources, Rep. Jill Cohenour has her proposal to revise the water permitting process. HB40 generally revises provisions in the water permitting process, but importantly, it allows for objections to be heard in informal hearings.The fiscal note is out on this, and there is no impact. Joe Kolman is the staffer, jkolman@mt.gov

In Human Services, Rep. Julie French, a rock star legislator, has a proposal to revise medical marijuana laws with HB73. This bill places a term on registrations to 3 years, and expands the types of caregiver professionals that are able to issue qualifying registrations. Very supportable. Great Falls Tribune reporter John S. Adams has done two articles on the medical marijuana bills before the legislature, this one, which includes video, and this one, which provides some facts and statistics, and attempts to kick of a forum of discussion. I’ve commented over there. Sue O’Connell is the staffer for Human Services – soconnell@mt.gov

In the Senate Taxation, Sen. Ron Erickson has SB179 which would adjust the tax credit for elderly homeowners and rentors, for inflation. Lee Heiman the staffer, lheiman@mt.gov

Sen. Carol Williams carries forth for the Fire Suppression Committes HB131, which would require the DNRC to designate the wildland urban interface. This one is an off-shoot of the 2007 legislative session and subsequent interim committees. Hopefully it gets support, as it deserves it. Costs are increasing for fire, despite our favorable fire season in 2008 – and designating the wildland urban interface will have effects on the range and type and management of development in these areas. This is in Senate Natural Resources, Sonja Nowakowski the staffer = snowakowski@mt.gov

Another very supportable one is Sen. Gary Perry’s proposal in SB17, which would require public water and sewer systems for certain subdivisions. I LOVE this one. It’s in Senate Local Government, Leanne Heisel the staffer, lheisel@mt.gov

On Thursday, Rep. Bob Ebinger has a proposal, HB196, which would make creating a rural improvement district easier. Another good one that helps local government. This is in the House’s Local Government, Joe Kolman the staffer, jkolman@mt.gov

Sen. Carol Juneau (representing Missoula, Flathead, Lake, Toole, Pondera and Glacier) brings forth SB223, that would revise hate crime laws to include enhanced penalties for harassment and crimes based on sexual orientation and expression. This one is in the Senate Judiciary, Valencia Lane the staffer – vlane@mt.gov

On Friday, Rep. Jon Sesso, of Butte would like to see a southwestern Montana veteran’s home in HB210. This is in House Appropriations, Jon Moe the staffer, jmoe@mt.gov

Rep. Diane Sands has two important bills up, also, in House Appropriations – HB66 and HB65. Both are related to addressing the mental health needs of Montana’s youth. Again – very supportable and I’ll remind – an ounce of prevention goes a long, long way. Jon Moe the staffer, jmoe@mt.gov

As I’ve said – there are 106 hearings between Wednesday and Friday – these are, obviously, only a few. Please take the time to involve yourself – write a letter, shoot an email. These guys and gals work for you and me. You gotta let them know what you want and what you support – or don’t.

i’ll fly away…

our20doves

by problembear

liberty and justice for all…




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