MTLeg Weekly Debrief: Week Of Feb 13-17
The Frontier Institute has identified five new Key Bills, 20 Red Tape Relief Bills being sent to the Governor and seven Key Bill Updates for the week of February 13th-17th
SB 287 strengthens protections for Montana property owners by clearly defining property interests specifically protected from being damaged or taken for public use without just compensation. Importantly, the bill also clarifies that a property owner’s rights are protected even if the property is associated with a highly regulated industry, directly addressing the concerning precedent set by the Montana Supreme Court in the 2008 decision Kafka v. Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife, & Park
Current Status: Senate Judiciary Committee hearing held on February 10th
SB 302 requires judges and justices to designate their party affiliation only for the general election. This bill allows political parties to endorse and support the judicial officers they believe will best serve Montana. By requiring judges and justices to identify their party affiliation during the general election, SB 302 aims to increase transparency and better inform voters of judicial candidates’ political leanings.
Current Status: Referred to Senate State Administration Committee
SB 313 requires the Judicial Standards Commission (JSC) to publicly disclose certain proceedings. After investigating judicial misconduct complaints, SB 313 requires the JSC to publicly and in writing disclose whether the complaint will be dismissed or move forward. If the complaint is moved forward, and the charges are true, the JSC must publicly recommend the necessary course of action to the Supreme Court. This bill aims to ensure transparent oversight of the judiciary.
Current Status: Senate Judiciary Committee hearing scheduled for February 17th at 9:00AM
SB 323 follows Frontier Institute’s recommendations to eliminate California-style zoning in Montana cities by implementing recommendation 3B from the Montana Housing Task Force, which would broadly restore landowners’ right to build affordable starter homes like duplexes and triplexes. Frontier Institute has detailed extensive research showing how middle density starter homes are outright prohibited in vast portions of Montana cities. By returning decision making to Montanans, SB 323 restores property rights and will enable landowners to choose the home types that best suit their needs.
Current Status: Senate Local Government Committee hearing scheduled for February 20th at 3:00PM
HB 464 allows judicial candidates to indicate their party affiliation or endorsement. Their party affiliation will appear next to the candidate’s name on the general election ballot. HB 464 aims to improve transparency about the political leanings of judicial candidates in Montana, helping to ensure the judiciary is accountable to the people.
Current Status: House Judiciary Committee hearing scheduled for January 17th at 8:00AM
- 9 Bill hearings scheduled
- 2 Bill drafts in assembly
- 3 Bills Passed Senate Committee
- 1 Bills Passed House Committee
- 14 Bills Passed House Floor
- 14 Bills Passed Senate Floor
- 20 Bills Transmitted to Governor
To track the status of all of these Red Tape Relief Bills CLICK HERE.
Key Bill Updates:
SB 201: Passed 3rd Senate reading. Transmitted to the House.
SB 200: Tabled in Committee.
SB 178: Passed Senate Committee
SB 214: Passed 3rd Senate reading. Transmitted to the House.
SB 227: Passed 2nd Senate reading as amended. Rereferred to Finance and Claims Committee.
HB 408: Passed House Taxation Committee as amended.
HB 409: Committee hearing held on February 14th.