The 2019 #msleg ended on March 29, 2019. Here is a list of bills that survived and were signed by the Governor.

SCR 596 - Convention of the States

The ACLU of Mississippi joined several partners, including Common Cause Mississippi, Children's Defense Fund, Mississippi Center for Justice, Southern Poverty Law Center, Mississippi NAACP, Mississippi Health Advocacy Program, and the Mississippi Human Services to urge the state legislator to vote NO on SCR 50. The Senate Concurrent Resolution passed anyway, adding Mississippi to more than dozen states calling for a Convention of the States. A Convention of the States would allow for changes to the Constitution and put our entire form of government, freedoms, and liberties at risk.

Criminal Justice Reform

Support

HB 1352 - Criminal Justice Reform Act; create.

This comprehensive bill will help to reduce the state's mass incarceration crisis. Its benefits include: reorganizes drug courts to cover matters like mental health courts under the umbrella of "intervention" courts, expands advisory committee, data collection, clinical assessments, allows fee waiver, prevents driver's license suspensions for non-driving offenses, expands expungement of records, lifts automatic bans on occupational licenses, and sets up a "recidivism reduction" fund from savings in prison reduction for use in reentry programs.

HB 1352 is a good bill, but it does not include any sentencing reforms, and therefore will not reduce the state's prison population. It also includes a watered-down version of bail reform.

SB 2781 - Mississippi Fresh Start Act; create to require the revision of licensing restrictions based on criminal records.

This bill would remove any automatic bars to occupational licenses due to prior felony conviction.

Oppose

SB 2141 - Terroristic threat; create offense of. 

This bill would create a new crime of "terroristic threat" with an automatic 10-year sentence. Creating a new crime is unnecessary and creates a slippery slope likely to lead to costly litigation protecting a fundamental right to free speech. This bill is also unnecessary as laws already on the books address hurtful speech. Protecting crude and upsetting speech is an essential component of democracy. 


Equality

Support

SB 2328 - Forensic Mental Health Act of 2019; create.

This bill will align the law with the criminal rules of procedure, and provide constitutional protections for individuals charged with a felony and deemed incompetent to stand trial due to a mental health issue. It will help ensure that individuals suffering from a mental health illness are not sitting in jail while waiting to receive treatment.

Oppose

HB 732, SB 2116 - Abortion; prohibit when heart beat is detected. 

Abortion is health care that one in four American women will seek in her lifetime. This safe, standard medical procedure should be legal and accessible for all who need it. Patients must be able to make their own medical decisions privately with their doctors — not with politicians.

Status: HB 732 died on Senate floor. SB 2116 signed by governor.


Voting

Oppose

 
SB 2237 - Public office; persons convicted of certain crimes are ineligible to qualify as a candidate for or be appointed to.
 

This bill will automatically disenfranchise citizens who have already paid their debt to society and seek to engage in the our electoral process.

Neutral

SB 2030 - Elections; impose residency requirements to run for certain offices. 

 
This bill would codify residency requirements for city and county offices at two years, and five years for transportation and agriculture commissioners and district attorney.

Education

Support

HB 654 - County school board trustees; require runoff election if no candidate receives majority of votes cast.

Run-off elections provide an opportunity for voters to determine the candidate of their choice following general or special elections. School board elections should have the same process as other elections.

HB 1182 - Corporal punishment; prohibit use of in public schools to discipline a student with a disability. 

Corporal punishment should be prohibited inside the school system. There are positive, non-violent approaches to school discipline that have been proven to lead to safe environments in which children can learn.

 

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