LEGISLATIVE UPDATE: Plan 4 is on the listby Council 2 Deputy Director J. Pat Thompson on May 23, 2013
The Senate Majority produced a list of 33 bills that they say need to be passed in order to reach a deal and end the session. SB 5851 (Plan 4) is on this list.
This is a clear signal that the Senate “Majority Caucus”, lead by Rodney Tom (D), Tim Sheldon (D) and 23 Republican Senators, are digging in for the long haul. The efforts of a special session should be spent figuring out how to close the budget gap and prioritize spending and revenue, not leveraging ideological policy bills that have little or nothing to do with the budget. (Click here for details on what SB 5851 involves.)
Although the special session was called on May 13th, there’s not much else to report on. The activity, if any, is behind closed doors and involves only a handful of legislators. School Funding and Transportation are big ticket items that require attention for our State economy to recover. Closing tax loopholes is necessary to achieve both and right now it looks like a standoff and there’s little wonder that our citizens are turned off by the gridlock.