19 Bills: Firearms to Cannabis
Updated: Apr 14, 2019
Good morning, Bedford!
Yesterday in the House, we took action on 19 bills. Though the number was small, the debate was long! Of particular note were:
*HB 564 relevant to firearms in safe school zones: this bill requires people to leave their firearms in their automobiles when picking up/dropping off, tightened the definition of what constitutes a school zone, and authorizes school boards to allow designated staff to be armed. Passed 213-159
*HB 696 relevant to establishing a protective order for vulnerable adults: this bill seeks to protect older or disabled adults from abuse, exploitation or neglect. There was much debate about the provision allowing a judge to issue an order to remove firearms from a home. The process is identical to the current domestic abuse law. Passed 219-156
*HB 120 relative to regulating body art and massage establishments: this bill requires businesses that offer body art or massage services to be licensed and inspected. It does not apply to individuals, only to businesses that employ multiple people. Hygiene requirements and human trafficking were cited as reasons why this has become necessary. Passed 218-155
*HB 481 relative to the legalization and regulation of cannabis: this bill legalizes marijuana and outlines the associated regulations and taxes. Passed 200-163
*HB 641 allowing municipalities to collect an optional occupancy fee up to $2 per night from operators of local room rental operations. Cities and towns are not required to do this, but they may if tourism/conferences/business travelers require increased services such as emergency medical personnel, police details, etc... Passed 209-106
As always, you can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any specific questions.
Next week we will be looking at the proposed House budget. At the moment, Bedford is slated for $1.9 million additional school dollars and $77,000 in revenue sharing, but the House needs to vote, then send it on to the Senate. All figures are preliminary until the Governor signals his approval, but you can count on an earnest effort to lower property taxes and meet the most critical needs across our state. Stay tuned for more news next week.
I am starting to believe that Spring is here. I saw crocuses in Concord yesterday! Hope you all have a great weekend. sm