Mid-June Opportunities for Action
Elections & Voting:

Automatic Voter Registration: The Election Modernization Coalition issued a report indicating that implementing Automatic Voter Registration should have minimal costs, and most of that expense can be covered by funds the state has from the federal Help America Vote Act. It's time for the House to vote on this League priority for it to be in place for the 2020 election!

Please contact your state Representative again and ask that this bill,  H.4320, be brought to the floor for a vote. See the latest article here on a coalition letter to Speaker DeLeo. The Salem newspaper weighed in with an editorial commenting favorably on AVR compared to the Supreme Court decision on Ohio purging voters.

Energy & Environment:

Status of Energy Legislation: The good news is that a comprehensive clean energy bill ( S.2545 , formerly S.2302) made it through the Senate Ways & Means Committee and, at the deadline for this newsletter, was slated to be voted on by the Senate on Thursday, June 14, as a streamlined version of the original bill. Carbon pricing language and a 3% increase in the Renewable Portfolio Standard, both high priorities for the League, were expected to remain in the bill.

The challenge moving forward will be passage in the House. House leadership has indicated a strong preference for individual issue bills rather than a comprehensive, omnibus approach. Our work to change that perspective is cut out for us! Watch for an Action Alert in the coming week on our House campaign for clean energy based on the expected Senate action.
 
Education:

Civics Education:   The civics education bill , S.2375, to develop a K-12 curriculum on civics and civic engagement, has passed both chambers and is now in conference committee.

Foundation Budget:
The bill to update and modernize the Foundation Budget formula for state aid to school districts,  S.2525 , passed the Senate and is now in the House Rules Committee. Contact your state Representative and ask for support of this important school funding bill.

Sex Education: T
he Healthy Youth bill, H.3704 , to provide age-appropriate and medically-accurate sex education in schools, made it out of the joint committee and is now in the House Ways & Means Committee, so please let your Representative know you want to see this bill finally pass.

Progress Update:   Action on LWVMA bills since end of May
 
Bills that passed both chambers and are in conference committee:
  • H.4517 Extreme risk protection order or "red flag" bill to remove guns from people who pose a significant danger to themselves or others; chambers trying to reconcile differences so may go to conference committee
  • S.2375 To require a program of K-12 civics education and engagement
Bills that have passed one chamber and are awaiting a vote in the other:
  • S.2525 To update the foundation budget formula for state aid to school districts. Passed Senate; in House Rules Committee
  • S.2260 To repeal archaic laws on contraception, abortion and other issues. Passed Senate; in House Ways & Means Committee
Bills reported favorably from committee and awaiting a vote in the first chamber:
  • S.2545 Omnibus energy bill. In Senate
  • H.3704 To provide age-appropriate sexual health education. In House Ways & Means Committee
  • H.4454 To create an advanced level of dental therapist. In House Ways & Means Committee
Bills sent to "study" and killed for session:
  • S.610 To study the costs of a single-payer system versus the current system
  • S.619 To implement single-payer health care in Massachusetts
How to Contact Your Legislator:  
   
You can find phone numbers, email addresses and office addresses on the legislature's web page for your Senator and Representative. Go to www.malegislature.gov and click on the Legislators tab. If you don't know who your legislators are, click here.
 
The LWVMA Action Newsletter is distributed to all LWVMA members. Anyone can request the Action Newsletter by clicking here. Please review this Newsletter for articles of interest to your League and include them in your local Bulletin.

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