As week eight dawned on the legislature, a calm decorum continued being the procedure of the day. Very little in the way of contentious bills have come across the floor and those that had the potential to be such were debated with respect and dignity. This is quite a departure from the last two sessions and is a welcome change. I am sure there will be some that don’t live up to this level, but, that is a story for a later date.
My sub-committee finished our work on Wednesday and has closed for the session. It was an honor to head up the very experienced group in the committee, as all but one has had a great deal of experience in natural resource or transportation work.
I still have several bills in the works as transmittal arrives on us. We must have all our general bills sent to the Senate by Saturday at the latest. As a result of the impending deadline, we have been loaded with bills on the floor. We have 14 bills to consider tomorrow on second reading with a total of 24 bills on Wednesday and Thursday. On average this many bills will take 2.5 to 3.0 hours, depending on discussion.
Tuesday I take HB 3 to the Senate. It is the supplemental bill and will probably stir several questions and maybe an amendment or two a well. Last week I took my definition of wild bison bill to the Senate and it took over an hour to answer all the questions from the Senators.
The next bill I will be taking is my sanctuary cities bill. This bill would require cities and counties to comply with a federal detainer request from ICE if they stop a suspected illegal alien or criminal with an arrest warrant on them. Granted, Montana doesn’t have any sanctuary city yet, but it could quickly, because at least two cities have in place wording that could easily implement one.
Regardless of what you may have read, this bill is not a hate bill or one pushed by a “white supremacist” group. I understand some oppose my efforts and that is their right but they are not entitled to their own facts. This is a proactive bill to prevent the establishment of a sanctuary city in Montana since I believe a state cannot supersede federal law.
As mentioned last week, there will be a town hall meeting on Tuesday, March 5th in MCC room 106 beginning at 7. All three local legislators have committed to being there and I will ask Representative Custer and Senator Ankney if they would like to participate.