Friday Morning Update on Legislation and Other Things

October 23, 2020

The Governor is working his way through the bills that actually passed during the Special Session – a number have been signed, others await his signature (many due by midnight on 28 October).  One of the nuances of a “special session” is the assignment of an effective date for legislation that is not considered an emergency; legislation without an “Emergency” clause is effective on the first day of the fourth month following adjournment.  So if the Session does adjourn “sine dei” on the 31st or before, legislation will be effective on February 1st (which happens to be approximately two weeks into the 2021 Session).  Of course, if they wait until November to adjourn, the effective date will be March and following the next regular Session!

Legislation of Interest:

  • Establishing Juneteenth as a State holiday – passed and signed
  • Allowance for the State to bulk purchase PPE and “sell” it to private entities – passed and signed
  • Continuation of the telehealth flexibilities in the DMAS Memo of 19 March until July 1, 2021 – passed, and the Governor requested an Emergency clause to allow immediate implementation
  • Both the Budget bill and the MARCUS alert bill are awaiting final action

There are three follow-up items from the last Session –
  • House Bill 393 required that the Department of Housing and Community Development post a plain language description of “Tenant Rights and Responsibilities” – the document is here and might be a useful addition to the lease documents currently in use.
  • Senate Bill 585 prompted another review of the use/value of Supported Decision Making as a better (less restrictive) approach to providing support and guidance than the more commonly used “full guardianship” – the Report linked here should be considered a draft (but should be reposted soon)
  • And the report on the strategies to reduce the overcrowding at CCCA was released in June – any strategy, of course, complicated by the subsequent freeze on admissions and reduced census due to COVID.