On Monday, October 25, the committee of legislative leadership screened 330 new bill titles for potential admission to the Second Regular Session that begins in January 2022. The Legislative Council voted to accept 107 of the new bills. With literally only bill titles to go by, it is hard to tell what details the legislation will contain, but as a reminder, with this being the second year of a legislative session, the constitution says that the Legislature shall consider bills of emergency nature. Unfortunately, over time, that definition has become fluid, with “emergency” ultimately being in the eye of the beholder. As we move closer to the session in January, the Revisor’s Office will be working on drafting the actual language of these bills for release later in the year.
Highlighting the subject matters that were allowed in, there were two major topics that will have new legislation in January – the effects of the new federal lobster regulations and improving the state’s child welfare system. A couple of topic areas that were rejected by Legislative Council were several bills dealing with vaccine mandates, tax increase proposals, and increasing the minimum wage.
As for the rest of the 330 bill titles, four of them were tabled to be discussed at a later date, and 219 were rejected by Legislative Council. However, for those that were rejected, lawmakers who submitted the bill titles have until November 1 to appeal the council’s decision. The council will then take up the appeals at its next meeting, which is currently scheduled for November 18th, 2021
After the Legislative Council’s November 18 meeting, we should know more about what new issues we can look forward to in the upcoming for the Second Regular Session – in addition to the numerous carryovers from the First Regular Session and First Special Session. There are roughly 400 carryovers from the First Regular Session and First Special Session. The Second Regular Session of the 130th Maine Legislature begins on January 5, 2022. Statutory Adjournment for the Second Regular Session is April 20, 2022.
For more information, please contact Ben Lucas by calling (207) 623-4568, ext. 111, or by emailing email@example.com.