PAYETTE COUNTY — One bill being fast-tracked on the Idaho Legislature’s docket could spell doom for a billboard presently located on the Highway 95 Business Loop in Payette and any similar ones throughout Idaho. Another four take aim at the Governor’s emergency declaration powers, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues.
Those are just two examples of legislation that rushed through the pipelines this week as the Legislature went into a week-long recess Wednesday, in case of veto action, rather than adjourn sine die, as reported by MagicValley.com. This means the 2021 session will break the record for the longest in state history, the record being 118 days as set in 2003.
Following are examples of bills which saw significant action since April 30.
House of Representatives
• Following the failure of House Bill 135 and Senate Bill 1136 to curtail Gov. Brad Little’s emergency powers, the latter failing to gain an override by one vote in the Senate, the House is giving it another go with House Bills 391, 392 and 393, as introduced by the Ways and Means Committee. According to its statement of purpose, 391 aims to protect constitutional rights by amending Idaho Code to say they “can not be suspended because of a declared emergency.” 392 is aimed at reserving the authority to create and change laws “to the legislature and that during a declared emergency that the executive branch can not change laws.” 393 aims to protect jobs as being essential under the law “and that any restrictions during a declared emergency be narrowly tailored to not place restrictions based on job type or classification.”
All three passed House on Tuesday, before passing the Senate Wednesday. They have all been transmitted to Little’s office for his signature.
• To maintain consistency in application of legislation enacted during this session, House Bill 394