If you visit the Statehouse this time of year you won’t see many long debates in the House chamber.
Instead, House committees are deep in the work of developing and refining proposals, some of which will make it to stage where those bills are voted on by the full body.
About 1250 ideas in the form of individual bills have been introduced between the House and Senate, and only a fraction of these will become law. Some are duplicates. Multiple legislators will have a similar idea after seeing a news report, like limiting what DMV can do with your private information, or members of the House and Senate will work to have the same bill introduced in both chambers to give it better visibility and a better chance of passing.
Some are tiny technical corrections bills. Some are not detailed proposals, but rather are conversation starters. Some are requests for appropriations or tax breaks that will get incorporated into the larger budget bills.
Here are some of the highlights of conversations happening in committee around the statehouse to try to build an even better future for Vermont: expanding the number of apprenticeships to successfully move more people into the work force; modernizing Act 250 to make development easier and more predictable in areas appropriate for growth and better protect forests for water quality, carbon sequestration and habitat protection; understanding the “weighting study” that looks at whether the education funding formula treats pupil counts in rural and more “urban” schools fairly; digging into the reported abuses at the women’s correctional facility; tackling climate change and building our resiliency for the increasing storm and changing weather patterns; finding ways to address our growing nursing shortage; and, of course, building a budget that most effectively addressed Vermonters’ needs.
Please reach out to us with your questions or
concerns: Speaker Mitzi Johnson at
802-363-4448 or firstname.lastname@example.org
and Rep. Lee Morgan at 802-318-0227 or