1/16/23 -1/27/23 Weekly Sessions Recap
Week of January 16, 2023
This is the third week of the 2023 Legislative Session. The deadline for introducing general bills and constitutional amendments was on Monday night, and committees will now begin discussing these bills in meetings. Although most work is still happening in committees, several pieces of legislation reached the House floor this week.
House Bill 1125, or the Regulate Experimental Adolescent Procedures (REAP) Act, would regulate transgender procedures and surgeries on children under 18. The bill does not apply to individuals born intersex. Proponents of the bill said that this would prevent children from making permanent decisions they could regret later, while opponents argued that this was a step back for transgender rights. After lengthy debate, the bill passed by a vote of 78-28 and has been sent to the Senate for consideration.
Other bills discussed this week include a bill that would exclude fentanyl testing materials from definition of “paraphernalia” under controlled substances (HB 722); a bill that would decrease the minimum number of years of law enforcement experience required to be a conservation officer (HB 516); a bill that would authorize the Department of Finance and Administration to purchase the old First Christian Church building in the Capitol Complex Improvement District (HB 423); and a bill that would designate the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks Central Office as the Sam G. Polles State Office Building (HB 366).
On Thursday, the House was visited by the Louisville High School Football Team. Coach Tyrone Shorter and the team were honored with House Resolution 16, which commends them upon winning the 2022 MHSAA Class 4A State Championship.
Next week, committees will meet even more frequently as the Legislature approaches the next deadline. After Tuesday, Jan. 31, no additional bills will be added to the House calendar for consideration, and members will meet in session for longer periods to discuss the bills that have made it out of committees.
Week of January 23, 2023
Committees met frequently during the fourth week of the legislative session, as next Tuesday’s deadline to have House Bills out of their corresponding committees quickly approaches.
After Tuesday, Jan. 31, no additional general bills will be added to the House calendar for consideration. Members will also meet in session for longer periods to discuss the bills that make it out of their respective committees. More than 150 general bills have made it out of committee thus far, and this number should increase before the deadline.
House Bill 1029 would provide that reference to the “Armed Forces” or “Uniformed Services” in the Mississippi Code will also include the United States Space Force. HB 1029 was introduced by Representative Jeffrey Hulum, III (D – Gulfport), marking his first time at the well to present a bill. The bill passed unanimously and has been sent to the Senate for consideration.
House Bill 626 would authorize county boards of supervisors to expend certain funds in the last six months of their term in office if the county has a project funded by the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) to meet the federal spending deadline in 2026. The bill passed 107-5 before being held on a motion to reconsider.
The Mississippi Regional Preneed Disaster Clean Up Act (House Bill 858) would authorize county boards or governing bodies of municipalities to enter into joint bid agreements for disaster clean-up to prepare for disaster-related events. The bill passed 114-5.
Several appropriations bills were passed including House Bill 603 and House Bill 1088 which are both related to the state budget. This was done so that work can begin on the budget which will be finalized towards the end of session.
House Concurrent Resolution 10 was introduced and passed on Wednesday. The concurrent resolution honors the late Representative Noal Akins who passed away in October. He served in the Mississippi House of Representatives from 2004 to 2012. Representative Akins is the father of Senator Nicole Akins Boyd (R – Oxford).
The House passed House Concurrent Resolution 31 which authorizes a joint session of the Legislature to next Monday evening to hear Governor Tate Reeves’s annual State of the State address. The address will take place on the south steps of the Capitol, or in the case of inclement weather, in the House Chamber.