Montana Legislature Update – April 5, 2021

1) HB 112 would prevent transgender youth from participating in school sports was approved by the Senate with an amendment that would make the legislation void if the federal Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights promises enforcement action. It now goes back to the House for approval of the amendment. Contact your House member to pass the amendment.

2) HB 427 would prevent trans youth under 18 from getting gender-affirming surgery could have a Senate floor vote this week. Contact your senator. 

3) SB 215 would establish the Religious Freedom Restoration Act and allows the use of religion as an excuse to discriminate against and harm others is headed to the governor’s desk. 

4) SB 280 would require surgery and a court order to change the gender marker on a birth certificate passed the House Judiciary Committee and should be scheduled for a House floor hearing soon. Contact your representative.

Other alerts:

1) HB 279 would increase the allowable tax credit for individuals and corporations for donations to private and for-profit schools from $150 to $200,000, a tax break for the wealthy at the expense of funds available for public schools. It passed the (H) Appropriations Committee and will go to the House floor. Contact your representative. If passed, it will still need to go to the Senate.

2) HB 273 would ease restrictions on nuclear energy development by removing a voter approval process and pulling nuclear energy plants from the purview of the Major Facility Siting Act.  It had a hearing in the (S) Energy and Telecommunications Committee and, if passed there will go to the Senate floor.  Contact committee members and your senator.

3) HB 337 would give constitutional rights to a fertilized egg in order to ban access to abortion and possibly some birth control. This bill passed the House and is in the (S) Judiciary Committee. Contact committee members and your senator.

4) SB 100 would make it more difficult for Montanans to qualify for public assistance programs.  The bill is still in the House Human Services Committee. Contact the committee members.

5) SB 220 would broaden the definition of felony assault on a peace officer or judicial officer to include the use of what “reasonably appears to be” a weapon. This bill would open up all sorts of interpretation. Contact the House Judiciary Committee.

Indigenous Justice:

1) HB 35 would establish a missing persons review committee was passed by the legislature.

2) HB 36 would establish missing persons response team training grants to combat the epidemic of Missing and Murdered Indigenous People who passed second reading in the Senate and were referred to the Senate Finance and Claims committee. Contact that committee and your senator to support this bill.

3) HB 613 would revise tribal voting requirements to remove some hardships, was unanimously approved by the House committee but failed on the house floor due to compromises made in an attempt to bring the bill’s sponsor, county clerks, and Tribal governments together.

Phone 406-444-4800 to leave a message for a legislator or a committee.  Go to

https://leg.mt.gov to leave a web message for a legislator or committee or to sign up to testify.
For updates on other bills, go to Key Issues and Bills at www.gallatinvalleymethodists.com or Look Up Bill Information at https://leg.mt.gov.

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