Weekly Update On The Legislature [AUDIO]
Senator Kit Jennings Joins us for our weekly update on legislative action including information on carry conceal, hb74, wyoming contractor bills and more.
|61st Wyoming Legislature-Weekly Report|
HB 127 School Finance Recalibration- This bill would mandate that all Wyoming school districts create a plan for all kindergarten through third grade classes to meet the 16-to-one student-to-teacher ratio. Implimenting the 2010 recalibration bill would be the result of a process intended to reassess the way the state funds Wyoming schools every five years.
HB 39 Health Litigation Fund- This bill would have created a fund to litigiate issues relating to federal health-care reforms. The senate voted 19-10 against the House bill that would have put up to $500,000 to fight the federal health care reform law Congress enacted in 2010.The bill originally allocated $2 million for potential litigation. Gov. Matt Mead added Wyoming to the growing list of states suing the federal government last month on the basis that the health insurance mandate is unconstitutional.
SJR 2 Health Care Freedom- Last weekend, Gov. Mead signed legislation that will put an amendment to the state Constitution concerning health-care on the ballot in November 2012. If approved, Wyoming would become the third state to change its constitution to resist the federal health care reform law. This law which is opposed by the majority of Wyoming residents would put Wyoming in a great position to make its own individual health care proposals.
SF 51 Safety Belt Violations- This bill would increase the fine for failure to use a seat belt when operating a motor vehicle from $25 to $75. This bill died with 21 legislators voting in support and 35 opposed.
HB 152 Very rare or uncommon area designation- This bill would strip the enviromental quality council of its authority to designate lands as “very rare” or “uncommon.” This bill would also allow the Enviromental Quality Council to go back and remove designations that it previously made. In 2009, former Gov. Freudenthal vetoed a weaker form of the same bill that would have required the state Loan and Investment Board to approve any new “very rare or uncommon” areas. This current bill passed House on 3rd reading. Senate passed 2nd Reading.
SF 47 Conceled Weapons- This bill would authorize the carrying of concealed weapons by persons without a concealed weapon permit. This legislation has already passed the Senate. If passed, Wyoming would become the fifth state, after Alaska, Vermont, West Virginiam and Arizona to allow conceal-carry without a permit. The bill which has passed the Senate, survived an initial reading in the Wyoming House on a 48-8 vote to support the bill. Senators will likely work to merge HB113 with a second concealed-weapons bill in the Senate that attempts to issue concealed-carry permits for reciprocity with other states.
HB 29 DUI-elimination of right to refuse test- this bill would eliminate the driver’s right to refuse to undergo a test to determine the alcohol or controlled substance concentration in ones body. Some Senators object to the Constitutionality of the police being able to force a person suspected of driving under the influence of giving a blood or breath test without a warrant. The bill has passed the House. The bill faces one more reading in the Senate. Similar legislation has found the Senate to be deadly in past sessions.
HB 74 Validity of Mariage- A proposed amendment to the Wyoming Constitution that would specify the state wouldn’t recognize same-sex marriages performed elsewhere died Friday when it missed a procedural deadline in the state Legislature.The Wyoming House adjourned without taking action on a same-sex marriage bill that had already passed the state Senate. Passing the measure would have required a two-thirds vote in both houses.
HB 251 Abortion-ultrasound information- This bill would have required physicians to offer an ultrasound to pregnant women who are planning an abortion. The bill was defeated in the Wyoming Senate on Friday on a 15-14 standing vote. The bill previously passed the House.
SJ1 Right to fish, hunt and trap- This bill would ask Wyoming voters whether the right to hunt, fish and trap should be constitutionally protected. The Senate has already approved the measure. The House gave preliminary approval on Thursday.