Legislative update from Rep. Mandeville

Thursday, March 7, 2019

The 66th legislative session has reached the halfway mark. After a long week we have reached the transmittal break, which means all general bills must be passed through the House by the end of last week in order to be transmitted to the Senate.

I am excited that several of my bills are still working their way through the process. HB-55 would continue my work to streamline Department of Environmental Quality’s (DEQ) subdivision review process. I am working closely with DEQ on this bill. HB-124 has already been signed by the governor and would allow another option for lifting agricultural covenants.

HB-124 was requested by the Montana Association of Counties. HB-228 is a bill that was brought up by a constituent and revises some privacy laws to reflect recent court decisions. HB228 is on the governor’s desk awaiting signature.

I also have two bills requesting interim studies, HJ-3 and HJ-11. HJ-3 would study voting accessibility for disabled electors, while HJ-11 would take a more comprehensive look at voting processes and methods. I am also sponsoring HJ-26, which recently passed the House, and would request a citizenship question be included on the 2020 census.

There are a couple of hot topic items you may be interested in hearing about. This session the Republican majority in the House made it an early priority to pass the local school funding bill. We wanted to make sure this important bill did not get tied up in the politics of late in the session and passed it within the first couple of weeks.

Republicans have also made it a priority to kill many of the bad tax increase bills. We have already killed a fireworks tax, a carbon tax, a tobacco vapor product tax and disposable carry-out bag fee. There is no doubt these bills would have hurt our local businesses. We are dedicated to voting down as many of these tax increases as we see.

We have also made defending Second Amendment rights a priority. Both the House and Senate have passed a bill to allow those with concealed carry permits to move to a different city or county without having to notify law enforcement. We have passed a bill so Montanans applying for concealed weapons permits do not have to provide a social security number. Others passed include prohibiting local governments from regulating private sales and carrying a concealed weapon.

As your representative, I am looking forward to serving you in the second half of the session. I am dedicated to continuing to kill any new taxes, reduce the size of the government, demand accountability in government agencies, create new jobs, and create a new framework for essential infrastructure.

Please feel free to contact me about any issues important to you. You can contact me at (406)690-1933, or by email at forrest.mandeville@mtleg.gov.

Rep/ Forrest J. Mandeville HD 57