Wednesday, April 13, 2011
SENATE VOTED REWRITE OF HB87
In an unusual state of events the Senate voted upon a re-write of HB 87 after a long day of debate on 50 some bills yesterday. HB 87 was changed by Senate Committee, and further changes were made by floor amendments. There were many amendments put in last minute and it was obvious that the Senators were confused too on which amendment they were voting on and which states what. One amendment that passed after lots of pressure from the business community was to remove the E-Verify mandate for private businesses. So the good news out of all this is that based on the new Senate version, E-Verify is no longer mandated for private businesses. The bill goes back to the House where they will have an opportunity to Agree or Disagree with what the Senate did. The House can take-up the Agree/Disagree vote at any time Thursday (last day for them to do so). Agree/Disagree are voted upon in between other bills that are already on the calendar. The House could then try to amend what the Senate sent over, and then that would go back to the Senate. If the House Disagrees or amends the bill further, it will go back to the Senate where they have the chance to vote on "insisting" on their version or amending it further. And if this happens then the bill goes to conference committee. I don't think there is enough time for a Conference Committee and they are running out of time for negotiations between both chambers on the bill. Also, the Governor is staying out of the debate so far. He said that immigration is a sticky wicket. Although he is not expected to veto this bill if it passes because of his anti-immigrant record, as Governor he also has to balance the interests of businesses who are pressuring him to veto the bill if it passes. Please continue to call your Senators to stop this insanity!