Session Updates
Keep on top of the latest session developments.

California
September 02, 2014
Floor Sessions End
Lawmakers ended regular floor sessions for the 2013-14 regular session early Saturday, after approving a ban on plastic grocery bags, a measure to restrict firearms from persons deemed to be potentially violent, a campaign finance reform bill, and legislation to address the state’s continuing drought.

Legislators also approved several bonding ballot measures, enhanced ethics requirements for themselves, a shorter timeframe for processing rape kits in criminal investigations, and a measure requiring railroad companies to report crude oil freight schedules to emergency officials. Governor Pat Brown (D) -- who does not possess a pocket veto -- has until September 30 to sign or veto legislation that reaches his desk. Sine die adjournment is scheduled for November 30.

Find out more:
North
Carolina

August 21, 2014
Short Session Adjourns
Lawmakers concluded the short session late Wednesday after approving the Coal Ash Management Act to prevent accidents and to clean up groundwater contamination locations owned by Duke Energy and its subsidiary, Duke Energy Progress. As the session ended, legislators could not reach an agreement on creating a new job incentive program to combat unemployment or a budget correction to provide funding for teacher assistants.

Governor Pat McCrory (R) -- who does not possess a pocket veto -- has until September 19 to sign or veto legislation that reaches his desk.

Find out more:
Florida
August 14, 2014
Special Session Adjourns
Lawmakers concluded their special session Monday after approving a new congressional redistricting plan to meet an August 15 deadline. The new plan was supported by the majority Republicans, while most Democrats voted against it. Governor Rick Scott (R) signed the legislation into law on Wednesday. The voter groups who had challenged the original plan in the courts indicated they will challenge the new lines due to the same perceived flaws.

Find out more:
New
Jersey

August 05, 2014
Special Session Update
Governor Chris Christie (R) called the legislature into special session last Thursday to consider bail reform legislation. The measures included a constitutional amendment to allow judges to deny bail to defendants deemed dangerous and a companion bill to create bail alternatives for certain defendants charged with nonviolent offenses.

UPDATE (08/05/14): The special session was completed Monday with the approval of the measures.

Find out more:
Florida
August 04, 2014
Special Session Called
Lawmakers will return to the capitol Thursday to convene a one-week session to make adjustments to the redistricting plan. The current structure (for the congressional districts) was declared unconstitutional by a federal judge, who then ordered a new plan that meets constitutional muster, to be approved by August 15. The state House and Senate redistricting plan is unaffected by the ruling.

Find out more:
Massachusetts
August 01, 2014
Formal Sessions End
Lawmakers ended formal sessions of the General Court late yesterday after approving a campaign finance bill to increase individual donor thresholds and enhance reporting requirements for super PACs (i.e. corporations, labor unions, and political committees). Legislators also approved a measure to increase scrutiny of public housing authorities.

The General Court usually meets on an informal basis (to consider routine or non-controversial measures) between now and final adjournment in January, 2015. Governor Deval Patrick (D) has 10 days upon transmittal to sign or veto legislation that reaches his desk.

Find out more:
Arkansas
July 02, 2014
Special Session Completed
Lawmakers completed the special session early Wednesday with bipartisan approval for three measures: a package to avoid a large increase in school employees’ health insurance premiums and a $36.6 million insurance fund deficit; a measure to temporarily prohibit fast-paced lottery monitor games until March 13, 2015; and $6.3 million in approximate funding for a maximum of 604 additional prison beds.

Find out more:
Delaware
July 01, 2014
Regular Session Ends
Lawmakers concluded the 2014 regular session early today after approving a $9.9 million bailout of the state's three casinos, a $3.8 billion state budget that raises salaries for state workers and shuffles highway improvement funds, and a $421 million capital budget plan. Legislators also approved ignition interlock devices for DUI offenders, the establishment of a Fort DuPont Redevelopment and Preservation Corporation, and a measure to allow law enforcement to carry the anti-overdose drug naloxone.

As the session ended, lawmakers could not reach an agreement on Governor Jack Markell's (D) proposal to increase the gas tax by ten cents per gallon, a new property tax to finance a water improvement program, and marijuana decriminalization. Governor Markell -- who possesses a pocket veto -- has until July 30 to sign or veto legislation that reaches his desk.

Find out more:
Arkansas
June 27, 2014
Special Session Called
Lawmakers will meet in a special session Monday to consider a plan to alleviate rising teacher insurance premiums and address overcrowding in county jails. Legislators will be meeting in the old capitol while the current chambers undergo renovation. The special session is expected to last three days.

Find out more:
Virginia
June 24, 2014
Special Session Update
Lawmakers finished consideration of a new two-year, $96 billion state budget late Monday. In doing so, the General Assembly avoided a government shutdown and stopped (in the House) an attempt by Governor Terry McAuliffe (D) to unilaterally impose expanded health care coverage without legislative approval. The new Republican majority in the Senate also took the opportunity to reorganize the chamber due to the recent resignation of Senator Phillip Puckett (D).

Find out more:
Rhode
Island

June 23, 2014
Regular Session Adjourns
Lawmakers adjourned the regular session Saturday after approving a new casino ballot measure for the Newport Grand slot parlor, delayed usage of certain standardized tests for high school graduation, relieving certain "effective-rated" teachers from annual evaluations, and a $4.8 million bailout for Central Falls retirees. Legislators also approved enhanced information reporting for mental health patients for firearms purposes, as well as a measure to make "Rhode Island-style calamari" as the official state appetizer.

As the session ended, lawmakers could not reach an agreement on allowing the Ethics Commission to investigate and prosecute legislators for wrongdoing. Governor Lincoln Chafee (D) -- who does not possess a pocket veto -- has until July 1 to sign or veto legislation that reaches his desk.

Find out more:
New
York

June 23, 2014
Regular Floor Sessions End
Lawmakers ended regular floor sessions Friday after approving a $138 billion state budget, increased education spending, property tax credits to restrain municipal spending, income tax cuts for manufacturers, and enhanced penalties for heroin distribution. Legislators also approved a limited medical marijuana program and a bill to legalize sparklers.

As the session ended, lawmakers could not reach an agreement on raising the minimum wage, financial aid for illegal immigrants, a measure to combat human trafficking, and public campaign financing. The regular session officially adjourns sine die in January, 2015.

Find out more:
South
Carolina

June 19, 2014
Lieutenant Governor McConnell Resigns
Lieutenant Governor Glenn McConnell (R) resigned Wednesday to assume the presidency of the College of Charleston. Senator Yancey McGill (D) was elected without opposition to replace McConnell. Senator Hugh Leatherman (R) was elected president pro tempore of the Senate.

Find out more:
Virginia
June 09, 2014
Senator Puckett Resigns; GOP Takes Control of Senate
Citing personal reasons, Senator Phillip Puckett (D) has resigned from the chamber, effective today. The resignation gives the GOP a temporary 20-19 majority (with the one vacancy) until Governor Terry McAuliffe (D) can set a special election for the seat.

Find out more:
South
Carolina

June 06, 2014
Regular Session Ends
Lawmakers adjourned the 2014 regular session after approving a statewide ban on texting while driving, increased penalties for driving while intoxicated, and additional K-12 education funding. Legislators also approved some extra funding for infrastructure improvements, and a one-year prohibition against powdered alcohol.

As the session ended, lawmakers could not reach an agreement on ObamaCare nullification and an ethics reform proposal. Senator John Courson (R) resigned this week as the Senate president pro tempore, in a procedural move to avoid becoming lieutenant governor upon the potential resignation of Lieutenant Governor Glenn McConnell (R).

Governor Nikki Haley (R) -- who does not possess a pocket veto -- has five days upon transmittal (excluding Sundays) to sign or veto legislation that reaches her desk. Lawmakers return June 17 for a veto session.

Find out more:
New
Hampshire

June 05, 2014
Regular Session Ends
Lawmakers ended the 2014 regular session Wednesday after approving Medicaid expansion, a four-cent per gallon increase in the gas tax to pay for infrastructure improvements, enhanced penalties for human trafficking, and a ban on handheld cell phones while driving. Legislators also approved paycheck equity and the creation of the crime of domestic violence.

As the session ended, lawmakers could not reach an agreement on establishing a death penalty, decriminalization of marijuana, background checks for firearm purchases, raising the minimum wage, and casino gambling. Governor Maggie Hassan (D) -- who does not possess a pocket veto -- has five days upon transmittal (excluding Sundays) to sign or veto legislation that reaches her desk.

Find out more:
Louisiana
June 03, 2014
Regular Session Adjourns
Lawmakers adjourned the 2014 regular session after approving a $24.6 billion state budget, a state worker salary increase, and a measure to block a lawsuit by the New Orleans area levee board against oil and gas companies. Legislators also approved legislation to combat human trafficking, additional abortion restrictions, and a measure to allow married couples to establish surrogacy birth contracts (subsequently vetoed by the governor).

As the session ended, lawmakers could not reach an agreement on repealing the Common Core education standards. Governor Bobby Jindal (R) -- who does not possess a pocket veto -- has 20 days from transmittal to sign or veto legislation that reaches his desk.

Find out more:
Illinois
June 02, 2014
Floor Sessions Conclude
Lawmakers completed the spring session early Saturday after approving a $35.7 billion state budget, a $1.1 billion borrowing plan for infrastructure improvements, and a measure to allow Chicago Mayor Rahm Emmanuel to ask the city aldermen to raise the 911 phone fee. Legislators also approved measures to deprive the governor of the ability to withhold their paychecks (as well as block spending on capitol renovations), make a 2011 income tax hike permanent, and allow minors access to medical marijuana under certain circumstances.

As the floor sessions concluded, lawmakers did not reach an agreement on state worker pension reform and a measure to make the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum an entity independent of the governor's administration. The veto session convenes November 19.

Find out more:
Arizona
May 30, 2014
Special Session Adjourns
Lawmakers completed this week's special session after approving two bills: a measure to create a new Department of Child Safety and $834 million in total funding for the new entity. Governor Jan Brewer (R) has signed both bills into law.

Find out more:
Oklahoma
May 26, 2014
Regular Session Adjourns
Lawmakers adjourned the 2014 regular session Friday (one week early), after approving a 10-year, $120 million bond to repair the capitol building, a new $7.1 billion state budget, funding for other infrastructure improvements, and production tax reductions for oil and gas. Legislators also approved a measure to repeal Common Core education standards and legislation to require the Department of Human Services to improve its investigation efforts in certain cases.

As the session ended, lawmakers could not reach agreement on a one-time bond increase to finance storm shelters for school districts. Governor Mary Fallin (R) -- who possesses a pocket veto -- has until June 7 to sign or veto legislation that reaches her desk.

Find out more:
Horizontal rule
RSS feed Subscribe to the
RSS feed for this page

If you already have a favorite feed reader, subscribe by clicking on the reader of your choice:

Add to Google
Add to My Yahoo
Add to My MSN
Add to Windows Live
Add to My AOL
Add to Bloglines
Add to Netvibes
Add to NewsGator
Add to Pageflakes
Horizontal rule