Monday, January 18, 2010

Bills to watch this session

I've spent some time going through the bills that have been introduced this legislative session. Here is my current list of bills, both good and bad, to either support or oppose.

Bills to Support

HB207 The Michael Phillips Compassionate Care Act would protect doctors who prescribe and patients who use medical marijuana for debilitating medical conditions. The bill number will change later on when we introduce a slightly different bill that HB207. However, now is the time to begin calling and visiting your elected official about this bill.

HB142 The Ballot Access Bill would reduce by half the number of signatures a third party or independent candidate would have to collect in order to be placed on the ballot. We really need this bill in Alabama. The political system here is locked up by Democrats and Republicans and you see the mess we are in because of it. Fresh faces and new ideas are badly needed if Alabama is to ever move forward.

HB8 is a bill that would require the clerk to record and preserve all legislative sessions as well as committee meetings. Many people are not able to listen to the legislature in session via the internet because the time conflicts with their work/school and recording the sessions and committee meetings would enable them to listen to their tax dollars at work when they have time. Plus, with some of the crazy things said by our elected officials it makes for great comic relief. HB12 is the companion bill in the Senate.

HB17 would prevent someone who serves as an officer of the court from serving in the legislature.

HB54 would grant subpoena power to the Ethics Commission. They are pretty much neutered without it.

HB61Under existing law, the personal representative of a deceased person whose death was caused by a state employee or official may file a claim with the Board of Adjustment for damages resulting from the wrongful act, omission, or negligence which caused the death of the decedent. This bill would provide that the estate of a person whose death was caused by the wrongful act, omission, or negligence of a state employee or official would receive monetary compensation from the State of Alabama with no more than 25 percent of the compensation to be used to pay the attorney's fees for representing the decedent.

HB81 This is the court records expungement bill that would allow those arrested but never convicted to have their record expunged from the courts.

HB118This bill would require lobbyists to disclose all expenditures on public officials, and require those persons who lobby the Executive Branch to register with the Ethics Commission.

HB152 Under existing law, when the Board of Pardons and Paroles revokes parole, it may require the parolee to serve all or a portion of the original term to which the parolee was sentenced. This bill would give the board that authority only when the revocation is based on the commission of a new crime and would provide that if the revocation was not based on the commission of a new crime, including non-serious traffic offenses, the board could require the parolee to serve 90 days in prison, after which parole would automatically be reinstated.

HB194 This is a fascinating bill. It would give the Sheriff of any Alabama county the right to stand down the feds and deny them entry into said county. I thought this was already the case. It may sound scary to some but think about it like this. Say we pass medical marijuana legislation here in Alabama and later on there is an administration change in Washington DC and the new President wants to start sending the feds after medical marijuana patients again...this bill would enable the sheriff to deny the feds entry.

HB209 This is the term limits bill. It would mandate that a member of the Alabama House or Senate only be allowed to serve 3 terms. Currently a house or senate member can serve as long as they continue to be elected...which is sometimes for life. This is another reason Alabama is in such horrible shape. There are never any fresh ideas if the same people are elected time after time after time.

HB232 This bill would make the Board of Pardons and Paroles more diverse.

HB253 which is being sponsored by Rep. Steve Hurst would mandate that any public agency testing blood or urine samples to determine if an individual is in compliance with the terms of his or her parole or probation to retain the samples for a certain period of time to allow independent testing at the cost to the individual when the samples test positive.

HB201 Initiative and Referendum. This bill would make Alabama the 25th Initiative and Referendum state. That means instead of depending on our do nothing legislature and hug lobbying firms to direct said legislature we could gather signatures and put issues directly on the ballot bypassing the legislature altogether.

Bills to Oppose

HB39 would require that no abortion can be performed without voluntary and informed consent of the woman. Basically that means any woman going in to have an abortion would be subjected to images of aborted fetuses. It is being sponsored by Dr. Robert Bentley who is running for the Republican nomination for Governor.

HB40 This bill would outlaw abortion except in cases of rape, incest or the mothers life is in danger. It is also being sponsored by Robert Bentley of Tuscaloosa who is vying for the Republican nomination for Governor. He's also a dermatologist and not a gynecologist and since he can never give birth to a child he has no business dictating to women whether or not they have to continue with a pregnancy. Why do Republicans always want to stick their noses up the asses of women....literally?

HB41 Another bill by Bentley which would allow health care providers and pharmacists to refuse a medical procedure or medication based on their delusional religious beliefs. What that means is that is a condom fails or some other method of birth control fails a woman could be denied Plan B to prevent pregnancy or RU486 to abort very early in the pregnancy. Bentley is far too concerned with the female reproductive system. He should mind his own business.

HB45 would prevent publicly funded education institutions from providing same sex benefits to employees. It's a dumb, mean spirited bill based on homophobic stupidity. It reminds me of the military right after the second Iraq invasion. They had only a handful elite members of the military who could speak Arabic and the threw one (or more)of them out of the military because he/she was gay. Brilliant, huh? If an instructor does an excellent job at educating their students then we want to do everything we can to retain them in Alabama where we have some of the worst, if not the worst, education system in America.
SB247 is the companion bill in the Senate.

HB247 would allow other states to access your prescription information through the Alabama Prescription Monitoring Database. I oppose the database period and certainly oppose those outside the state to monitor what medications I might be taking. Whatever happened to medical privacy? SB151 is the Senate Companion Bill

SB57 would outlaw salvia. This bill is again being sponsored by Hank "God sent Katrina to kill the niggers and gamblers in New Orleans" Erwin. He is also running for Lt. Governor. I can't wait to see him get trounced and hopefully leave Alabama politics forever. He is such an embarrassing dinosaur.

These are just the bills I have had a chance to look at. There will be others as the session goes on and more bills are introduced.


sixstring said...

Looks like a couple of these might have unconstitutional provisions....hb194...hb40
But unconstituitional provisions don't seem to be a big stumbling block to legislation in AL.

Brandon said...

thanks for staying on top of these bills Loretta! please keep us updated on the status of medical mj and salvia criminalization, such as scheduled debates on these bills and the like.

they were pretty sneaky about the salvia bill last session I thought. put it up on the agenda the day before or something.

thanks again!

Don said...

I was hoping to see HB201 on this list of bills to support. This constitutional amendment would make Alabama the 25th Initiative and Referendum state and give voters a REAL voice in the government they own and pay for by allowing them to introduce REAL reform legislation that would bypass both the legislature and the governor and be put on a ballot for voters to accept or reject. A copy of this bill can be studied on my website @'s%20I&R%20bill.htm

Loretta Nall said...

It would have been Don but I didn't see it when I cruised through the bills on the ALISON site. Thanks for posting it. I will add it to the list.

sixstring said...

I second Don's comments!