Written by Rep. Don Schroeder Tuesday, 26 February 2013 11:51The legislative session keeps grinding on. Many relatively minor issues are being worked on but the main issues, taxes and budget, are making slow progress.
The budget process actually shows more promise than the tax issues. The budget is so complex that hearings and work has to continue to make the 80, or even the 90-day, deadline.
Budget sub-committees are nearly finished with hearings. The sub-committees are assigned various departments and agencies to take a close look at proposals for...
Written by Rep. Don Schroeder Tuesday, 19 February 2013 13:40As we finish the fifth week of the 2013 legislative session, the time to introduce bills has come to an end. We still have another week to work bills in committees before turn-around.
Turn-around is the half-way point in the session when the House and Senate exchange bills. House committees will primarily work Senate bills from this point until the end of session.
We are having some interesting and unusual bills introduced. Bills creating term limits, protecting Second Amendment rights, addressing abortion and bills restricting the use of public funds for lobbying efforts are now in the hopper for possible consideration. While it is improbable that all of these will have a committee hearing, some are already on the committee...
Written by Rep. Don Schroeder Tuesday, 12 February 2013 11:50As the session wears on into the fourth week, we are seeing some action in committees and on the floor of the House and Senate. The hope is the session this year can be brought to an end in 80 days. Resolution of the tax and budget issues will determine whether 80 days is sufficient, or if more time will be needed.
The governor is working hard to promote running the income taxes to zero. The secretary of revenue and the governor’s staff are out every day working to convince us that we need to keep the sales tax that passed three years ago—you know, the sales tax the Legislature promised to end.
They also are trying to convince us that ending the mortgage-interest deduction and property-tax deductions are something we need to do...
Written by Rep. Don Schroeder Tuesday, 05 February 2013 14:01
We are in Week 3 already and things are picking up. Most of the committees have been working and a few bills are already up for House floor action.
The Utilities and Telecommunications Committee has been learning about Universal Service Funds that are used to subsidize high cost areas, which are primarily rural areas. In 2009 the federal government passed laws that allow using the USF for broadband services, but I was surprised to learn that implementation of most of that policy has not yet occurred.
As we dig deeper into the use of service funds, I hope to find out when some action can be expected to improve Internet service to rural areas. Many areas, especially in Marion and eastern Harvey counties, are seriously...
Written by Hillsboro Free Press Tuesday, 29 January 2013 13:44Although we had a short week with Dr. Martin Luther King Day Monday and a scheduled day off Friday, things are beginning to heat up and take shape as to what issues will come to the top.
Committees are meeting and beginning to work on issues. A couple of issues that seem to be making quick progress are a bill in Judiciary Committee to change the appointment process for judges and a bill in Commerce Committee that no longer allows paycheck deductions from public employees for political purposes. The Commerce bill would stop the state from doing the accounting for public employee union political action committees.
Other committees are not acting as quickly, but will start churning out bills soon.
An issue that has caught the attention...
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