We concluded a very busy few weeks in the General Assembly by reviewing and debating dozens of bills over the past few days. We spent hours in committee meetings and on the floor considering these proposed laws in hopes of getting them approved (or rejected) before the “crossover” deadline Thursday. Bills that wouldn’t require money to be spent or that wouldn’t result in money being raised have to be approved in their originating chamber by the deadline or there is little chance of getting them heard for the rest of the two-year session. The bills we have approved in the past few days pave the way for great improvements in our state. We agreed to reform our death penalty and medical malpractice laws, reaffirmed our commitment to strong ethics, proposed tougher penalties for driver’s license fraud, moved to protect bullied children, and made a step toward expanded insurance benefits for people who suffer from mental illness.
We will now move on to consideration of bills sent to us by the Senate and to the consideration of bills with a financial impact. I hope to build on the strong body of work we have already built this session.