Highlights from Week 11 of the Legislative Session and a Look at What’s Ahead for Week 12

Highlights from Week 11 of the Legislative Session and a Look at What’s Ahead for Week 12

The Legislature met for three days last week, marking the 22nd, 23rd, and 24th legislative days. The legislature normally meets only two days per week, so both Chambers were unusually busy, considering legislation all three days. The House adjourned at 9:03pm and the Senate adjourned at 8:33pm on Thursday. Only 6 legislative days remain in the Legislative Session. The legislature made progress last week and acted on major proposals that must be finalized by May 22, including the state’s two budgets and legislative redistricting.

Highlights from Last Week:
From the House

Education Trust Fund Budget

The Education Trust Fund budget passed the House last week with a vote of 100-0. The budget would provide funding to hire additional teachers. The House version of the budget has slight modifications from the Senate version that was passed by the full Senate last month. The bill now heads back to the Senate where the differences on the bills will be reconciled.

Pictured Above: Photo courtesy of Dionne Whetstone, House of Representatives Photographer

From the Senate

The General Fund Budget

The General Fund Budget passed the Senate last week with a vote of 23-4. Several amendments were offered and rejected on the Senate floor. One amendment would have transferred $63.5 million in road funds from the General Fund to the Department of Transportation. The amendment failed.

The budget would allocate $1.85 billion in spending for the 2018 fiscal year, nearly the same amount of spending as this year. The budget goes back to the House, which passed a slightly different version of the budget in March.

Legislative Redistricting

The Senate passed a redistricting plan that would redraw 25 of the 35 Senate Districts. The bill moves to the House, where it is expected to hear the Senate redistricting plans this week.  A separate plan for House legislative districts is pending in the House.

What’s Ahead:

On Tuesday, May 9, the House will convene at 1:00pm, and the Senate will convene at 2:00pm. The Legislature is expected to meet for the usual two days this week.

Bills on the House calendar Tuesday include: a House reapportionment bill and a bill related to the Economic Development Act. Prison Reform plans are expected to be heard in House Committee this week. 

The Senate will release their calendar Special Order Calendar when they convene on Tuesday.