Today is crossover day. It will be a hectic day, as legislators will work late into the night and lobbyists nervous about their bills and related retainers will be sweating getting their bills passed by either the House or Senate before adjournment tonight. A bill not passed by one side or the other is dead for the year. Unless, of course, it comes back as zombie legislation attached as an amendment to a bill that has already passed. MMM. Zombies.
Today in the House, assorted budget and a tax exemption bills will pass. Lobbyists bonus checks on the new tax exemptions should be available by close of business Friday.
HB861 by Michael Harden would require drug tests for people receiving TANF funds. This deals with State funded welfare funds only, no federal funds. Expect a bit of a debate on that one.
HB872, Jason Shaw’s metal theft bill, is on the calendar.
HB1114 is a response to the recent Supreme Court ruling throwing out Ga’s assisted suicide bill. Always a jovial topic, expect a vigorous debate if not some hilarity to ensue.
Want to talk dogs? We’ve also got 2 vicious dog bills. HB685 by Gene Maddox and HB717 which was voted down on Monday but will receive reconsideration.
Also, HB673 would require sports leagues to develop policies related to concussions. It was on the calendar for Monday but was sent back to Rules. Opposition is grounded in the fact that the High School sports association and several other governing bodies for sports leagues are developing their own policies. Some legislators argue that law is not needed as those governing bodies cna regulate themselves. The NFL is very much in favor of this bill, however, because they need to prove they are doing something positive other than diverting a half billion dollars needed for downtown infrastructure into an unneeded stadium for Arthur Blank’s ego.
The enabling legislation for charter schools to codify code after the constitutional amendment passes will round out the busy day. If you’re headed to the Cap today, bring your popcorn. It’s likely to be a fun day.