HELENA — The House passed three comprehensive recreational marijuana implementation bills this week. These bills take different approaches to the regulation of recreational marijuana but they all respect the will of voters and ensure proper safeguards are in place.
These bills will now go to the Senate as the Legislature debates the safest and most effective way to open the recreational marijuana market in Montana that voters approved.
The House sent a series of important House bills this week to the Governor now that they have passed the full Legislature.
• House Bill 43 expands telehealth
• House Bill 252 provides a Career & Technical Education employer tax credit
• House Bill 349 protects campus free speech
• House Bill 223 prevents Montana from becoming a sanctuary state
• House Bills 543 and 611 ensure that American flags, the Pledge of Allegiance and the U.S. Constitution are in schools.
The House also passed several important Senate bills.
• Senate Bill 233 moves the Environmental Review Board’s responsibilities to the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ)
• Senate Bill 306 requires at least two of the Fish, WildLife and Parks Commission members to be landowners
• Senate Bill 199 is the Local Food Choice Act giving Montanans more food freedom
• Senate Bill 108 requires locally elected officials to approve certain health orders
• Senate Bill 234 creates the Unemployment Insurance Integrity Act
• Senate Bill 212 creates property tax bills transparency
The Senate passed HB 2, the state budget, this week. It keeps state spending below inflation and population growth which is what free-market think tanks recommend. The budget now goes to a House and Senate conference committee. As the Legislature winds down to our final few weeks, Republicans remain committed to reining in state spending and growth.
I sponsored HB 651, a ballot initiative bill, which clarifies that the legislature is the body to appropriate money by law, and inserts an additional 14 days in the process to provide citizens and the legislative council or interim committee to ask questions and provide input on any proposed ballot measure. It does not stop an initiative from going forward.
Marta Bertoglio is the representative for House District 75. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 406-438-1772.