Guest Opinion: Legislative Report
March 3, 2021 | View PDF
Greetings from Helena!
We are halfway through the legislative session. All the bills without money on them had to be transferred from the Senate to the House, and vice versa, so it has been kind of hectic this week.
In Fish and Game committee we had bills about wolves, bears and right of ways, which were all very emotional subjects. I think we need to eliminate some bears and some wolves and stand up for property rights. So that is how I voted.
In Health and Human Services, we saw some bills about vaccines and whether they should be mandatory or not. I trust that Montanans can figure this out for themselves without government mandates.
In Judiciary we again had a lot of bills to limit local, state, and federal government. It seems there is a lot of appetite in the legislature for that this year. It is hard to find people that want to be regulated more. One bill we heard, SB277, was to allow the Attorney General to put the President’s executive orders to the Constitutional test before allowing them to be enforced in Montana. The President has issued more executive orders in the first 30 days in office than any other President, including FDR. Another bill, SB215, the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, is a very important bill that we are hoping will get through the process. There were several in the LGBTQ community who testified against it.
I introduced a Senate Joint Resolution for the 67th Montana Legislature to send to the President and Congress to encourage them to allow the Keystone Pipeline to continue. With a projected $63 million in property tax to the state of Montana, and thousands of jobs on the line, it looks like a no brainer to me.
A bill that I carried, SB193, that has passed over to the house, makes it easier for counties to put property back into production. Another bill that I carried and has passed to the house, SB354, deals with easements and property owners.
If you are in Helena be sure to stop and see us. If you want to look up the text of a bill you can find it at https.leg.mt.gov.
Senator Steve Hinebauch