I woke up this morning looking like a boxer that had lost the fight – my left eye was red and swollen shut. I normally don’t have problems with allergies but apparently that is an exception this year. Symptoms started showing up on Friday – itchy, irritated eyes to the point I was sensitive to light and by Sunday I was shielding my eyes even in doors; Sunday School was interesting. After a search of the house for “what’s different” we realized the culprit – the Valentine’s Day flowers I picked up on my way home from Montgomery last Thursday, sigh...I try so hard to do the right thing! My wife and daughter tossed them Sunday night but the damage had been done.
So, after a long, slow drive – wearing the BIG sunglasses that fit over my eyeglasses (I normally wear contacts) – I arrived in Montgomery for this week’s session, somewhat scatterbrained.
On the bright side, we debated and passed several bills in the Senate today. Of note:
SB68 by Sen Pittman; The Alabama Informed Voter Act creates the Fair Ballot Commission to approve statements that explain the effect of a vote for or against a proposed ballot question. This is a direct result of the ballot language from the September 18th Resolution – remember that?
Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, to provide adequate funding for the State General Fund budget, to prevent the mass release of prisoners from Alabama prisons, and to protect critical health services to Alabama children, elderly, and mothers by transferring funds from the Alabama Trust Fund to the State General Fund...
SB29 by Sen Ward; defines the crimes of financial exploitation of an elderly person. This has become a growing concern and I have first hand documentation of recent instances where someone (a family member of someone in the financial industry) has clearly taken advantages of an elderly person. The licensing issuing authority has limited reach on these matters and is unable to act at the state level.
The SJR I’ve introduced, SJR 10 reaffirming our commitment to the spirit and intent of the budget process and the BIR – the Bill Isolation Resolution – based on a 1984 Amendment to the Alabama Constitution passed the Senate today. I encourage you to review it and the budgets as introduced.
Tomorrow my day starts with a 7AM phone interview with Dale Jackson (listen live at WVNN.Com) followed by several committee meetings. I start at 8:30 with the Education Policy Committee where we will take up the House version of the School Flex Bill – HB84. As promised I’ve linked the version from the house that includes all of the amendments. This follows the Senate version, ensuring tenure is secured for current and future employees.
Hopefully my allergy condition will improve and I’ll be able to use both eyes to view the computer screen tomorrow.
Semper Fi - Bill