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Happenings on the Hill


Update: SB 105, Revise interim zoning laws - Transmitted to House

Posted Date: 
February 7, 2013

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Senate Bill 105, a MACo-requested bill based on MACo Resolution 2010-09, passed third reading today on the Senate floor 27-23.  It passed second reading yesterday by a 27-23 margin as well. 

! URGENT ! - 3rd Reading Today - SB 105, Revise interim zoning laws

Posted Date: 
February 7, 2013

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Senate Bill 105, a MACo requested bill from MACo Resolution 2010-09, is on third reading today on the Senate floor.  It passed second reading yesterday by a 27-23 margin.  There is a very concerted effort by opponents to kill the bill on third reading, and it will only take two Senators to switch their vote to kill the bill.

Update: HB 206, Increase Justice Court Filing Fees - Transmitted to Senate

Posted Date: 
February 5, 2013

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House Bill 206, a MACo-requested bill based on MACo Resolution 2012-09, was transmitted to the Senate.  It passed second reading 87-10 and third reading 88-10.  During second reading, it was amended twice, and both amendments passed. The amendments are available here:  Amendment 1 & Amendment 2.

! URGENT ! - Immediate Action Needed on HB 206, Increase Justice Court Filing Fees

Posted Date: 
February 4, 2013

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House Bill 206 - Increase fees in Justice Court is on second reading in the House today. Please contact your Representative IMMEDIATELY requesting they support House Bill 206.  (Click here to find your Representative.)

Pension Update: Week 4

Posted Date: 
February 1, 2013
Contact: 
Sheryl Wood, Associate Director, Montana Association of Counties

As everyone knows, the Montana Public Employee Retirement Systems (PERS) have significant unfunded liabilities.  Out of the eight public retirement systems, our counties have employees in PERS:  Defined Benefit Plan (PERS) and the Sheriff’s and Peace Officers Retirement System (SRS). FYI – 95% of the members of SRS are county employees. (While some counties have employees who have selected to participate in PERS – Define Contribution Plan, that is a separate system that is not involved in these discussions.)

PERB-Administered Retirement Systems: Actuarial Valuation Results

Posted Date: 
February 1, 2013

Here you will find the PERB-Administered Retirement Systems' Actuarial Valuation Results as of June 30, 2012.

! ALERT ! - Contact Your House Rep to Support HB 206, Increase Justice Court Filing Fees

Posted Date: 
January 30, 2013
Contact: 
Shantil Siaperas, Legislative Coordinator, Montana Association of Counties

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HB 206, Increase justice court filing fees, came out of the House Judiciary Committee amended to phase in the filing fee increase.  It will be going to the floor for second reading on Friday, February 1, so please contact your House Representatives and urge them to support this bill.  The current fees for civil actions do not cover the cost of the proceedings.

Special Alert--Oppose HB 220, Revise election laws for county commissioners

Posted Date: 
January 28, 2013
Contact: 
Harold Blattie, Executive Director, Montana Association of Counties

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HB 220, Revise election laws for county commissioners, will be heard in House State Administration on Wednesday at 8:00.

This bill would require all commissioners be elected only by the voters in their district.  This bill in one form or another has been introduced in nearly every session since I have been at MACo, however it seems to be getting more difficult to kill.  In 2011, it was Senate Bill 302. Senate Bill 302 came out of Senate Local Government committee on a 7-0 vote and died on the Senate floor on a 25-25 vote.  Proponents were Builders, Farm Bureau, Contractors and United Property Owners. This will take a full-court press to kill.

Pension Update: Week 3

Posted Date: 
January 25, 2013
Contact: 
Sheryl Wood, Associate Director, Montana Association of Counties

The Joint Select Committee on Pensions held their first organizational/informational meeting on Tuesday, January 22.  Members of both the House and Senate State Administration Committees joined the meeting.

SB 147, Revise Local Government Review in Regards to Impact on Surrounding Agricultural Operations 76-3-608

Posted Date: 
January 24, 2013
Contact: 
Tara DePuy, MACo JPIA Land Use Attorney

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This bill is a portion of HB 542 in 2011 session vetoed by Governor.  The bill changes the primary review criteria for “impact on agriculture” to “impact of proposed subdivision on surrounding agricultural operations.”