This week marks the end of week 12 of the Legislative Session as well as the passing of the first major bill deadline. All first chamber bills had to move out of their originating policy committees by Tuesday, April 18th to stay alive. Many of the more controversial bills were simply moved to another Committee where the deadlines don’t apply (Rules, Revenue or the Ways and Means Committee). This deadline helps narrow down the 2600+ bills that have been introduced to-date to only those with a genuine chance at advancing.
Also this week we saw the first hints at a more public discussion on reaching a budget package that includes PERS reforms, cost containment and possible tax increases. Two PERS reform bills were moved down to the Ways and Means Committee to keep the reform discussions alive. In addition, the Co-Chairs and Vice Co-Chairs of the Ways and Means Committee released a