Dear Constituents –
This week in the House marked the end of crossover for all policy bills being reviewed by their respective money committees and brought to the House Floor. Bills passed by the House include: H.729, miscellaneous judiciary procedures; H.730, alcoholic beverages and Department of Liquor and Lottery; H.279, miscellaneous changes to Department of Vermont Health Access; H.244, Natural Organic Reduction; H.500, prohibiting sale of certain mercury lamps; H.523, reducing hydrofluorocarbon emissions; H.606, community resilience and biodiversity; H.655, telehealth licensure; H.255 incremental hearing aid converage; H.722, re-apportionment of the House of Representatives; H.287, medical debt protection; H.399, incarceration terms for primary caregivers of dependent children; H.475, classification of criminal offenses; H.548, miscellaneous cannabis establishment procedures; H.551 prohibiting racially and religiously restrictive covenants and deeds; H.482, Petroleum Cleanup Fund; H.715, Clean Heat Standard; H.629, access to adoption records; H.727, exploration, formation, and organization of school districts; H.731, technical corrections to Vermont State Statutes Annotated; H.465, boards and commissions; H.518 municipal fuel switching; S.4, procedures involving firearms; H.533, civil forfeiture; H.711, Opioid Settlement Advisory Committee and Opioid Abatement Fund; H.716, miscellaneous education law changes; H.487, secure facility for justice-involved youth; H.534, sealing criminal history records; H.505, reclassification of drug offenses; H.626, sale, use, or application of neonicotinoid pesticides; H.546, bureau of racial justice statistics; H.720, system of care for individuals with developmental disabilities. Despite voting with a block of my colleagues in opposition to some of these bills (including H.606, H.548, H.715, H.727, S.4, H.534, H.505, H.546), all of these bills are on their way to the Senate for further review. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to me for further information on any of the bills that remain alive.
The General, Housing, and Military Affairs Committee continues to work on H.329, a bill I consider to be an egregious expansion of discrimination and harassment statutes, and I will continue to insist that it be seen by both House Judiciary and House Education. We took testimony on H.638, direct to consumer spirits shipping licenses, H.640, tenant rights to purchase apartment buildings, and H.625, protection against eviction, foreclosure, and tax sales. We also started the long process of marking up the Senate affordable housing and rental safety bills, S. 226 and S.210, so you will be hearing more about those in the coming weeks.
On March 16, we had the pleasure of welcoming a contingent from the USS VT naval submarine to the Statehouse on their first-ever namesake State visit. I had the honor of escorting them to meet the Governor, the Lt Governor, the Senate Pro-Tem, and the Speaker of the House, as well as hearing a Resolution read in recognition of their visit and introducing them on the House Floor. Included in this visit were the Commanding Officer, the Chief of the Boat, ten Sailors, the Ship’s Sponsor, the President of the Support Group, and two midshipmen and a naval officer from the Norwich University submarine program. The group left Vermont after a three-day visit with several treasures (maple syrup for the entire crew of the submarine, part of a historic silver tea service from the original USS VT, and paintings of Vermont covered bridges, as well as other works by local artisans that will be installed on the boat). Heartfelt appreciation goes out to former Representative, the Honorable Albert Perry, who played an instrumental and tireless role in arranging this visit, long-delayed by the pandemic.
At the end of the week, Franklin County Reps played host to a local Boy Scout troop with members and leaders from St. Albans, Swanton, Sheldon, Highgate, and Franklin. A highlight of the visit was seeing these young people seated around a conference table in the Governor’s ceremonial office, taking in the awe-inspiring architecture and artwork, and listening in on a floor debate. It has been rewarding to welcome constituents back to the Statehouse after two years of silence in the chambers and corridors.
It is truly an honor to serve as your Representative. Please reach out to me with concerns and comments at [email protected]
Rep Lisa A Hango, Berkshire