Every year, the legislature sets deadlines for all committees to finish looking at and discussing many small bills. Since this legislature’s first meeting in 2021, over 4,000 bills have been introduced in the House, with most bills also having a companion bill in the Senate, for a total of over 8,000 bills.

The committees review those bills and decide which ones will move forward. They must make those decisions by specific deadlines each year. This year, the last deadline was April 8. Once this work is done, legislators go on a one-week break.

Now that legislators have returned from break, the committees are working on merging all those small bills into larger “omnibus” bills. These omnibus bills usually group bills by broad topics, such as Health and Human Services, E-12 Education, and so forth. Some smaller omnibus bills get merged into even bigger ones.

We have several bills that were successfully merged into omnibus bills. We are carefully tracking each of these omnibus bills, to make sure the parts we want are not deleted.

This year, the House and Senate omnibus bills are very different. This means the next phase is even more important: when omnibus bills are brought to “conference” committees.
These conference committees have members from both the House and Senate, and for each omnibus bill, they spend many hours negotiating which parts to merge into a final joint omnibus for the House and Senate to vote on. This work must be completed before the legislative session ends, no later than May 23, 2022.

We will be urging these conference committee members to keep the parts we want. Please keep an eye out for possible action alerts in the coming weeks.

Alicia Lane-Outlaw, government relations director for MNCDHH, has been closely tracking the bills MNCDHH supports. Let’s discuss updates on each bill, as of April 27, 2022.

For the full transcript, go to: http://mn.gov/deaf-commission/news/index.jsp?id=1063-527171

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