Drink up. Gov. Phil Bryant’s signature is all that’s required on a Mississippi legislative bill for visitors to Mississippi breweries to buy a case of beer to take home.
The House concurred with Senate changes to House Bill 1322, which would allow Mississippi’s craft brewers to sell their beer on-site. Georgia and Mississippi are the only two states to prohibit on-premises sales and the Peach State’s General Assembly is also working to change that.
On Wednesday, the Mississippi Legislature had another key deadline, this one for bills from the other chamber to be voted on by the other chamber.
- H.B. 645, the “Back the Badge” Act, originally would have boosted the penalties under the state’s crimes-against-persons statutes for a violent crime against a law enforcement officer and other first responders such as firefighters and paramedics. The Senate Judiciary A Committee amended the bill to put it under the state’s hate crimes law like the Senate’s original version — that was killed by the House — and the differences will likely have to be worked out in conference.
- H.B. 812 would mandate reporting requirements for law enforcement agencies every time they forfeit property and create a new forfeiture warrant system. The bill would also mandate the construction of a state-run website detailing every forfeiture if funds are provided by the Legislature and require law enforcement agencies to use either local district attorneys or the Mississippi Bureau of Narcotics to handle all legal work on forfeitures.
- H.B. 967 would mandate licensure requirements for daily fantasy sports gaming operators by the Mississippi Gaming Commission. The bill would also set requirements for daily fantasy sports gaming, including a minimum age for participation (18) and rules to prevent participation in the games by an operator’s employees. An operator license would cost $5,000 and last for three years before requiring renewal.
- H.B. 1090, the “Restore HOPE” Act, would add verification requirements for recipients of Medicaid, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families and provide oversight for the tracking of the use of EBT (food stamp) and TANF cards. The bill is held over on a motion to reconsider and will die unless it’s passed by Friday.
- H.B. 1303 would allow the incoming executive director and chief investment officer of the state’s pension system an exception to law that caps most state salaries at that given to the governor.
- H.B. 1330 would eliminate any state board or commission that becomes inactive.
- H.B. 1425 would mandate changes for the state’s occupational licensing boards and mandate that the governor provide active supervision of them. Passage of the bill would make the state compliant with the U.S. Supreme Court 2015 decision North Carolina Board of Dental Examiners v. Federal Trade Commission. The court ruled in the decision that state licensing boards can only receive immunity if they are actively supervised by the state. The bill is being held over on a motion to reconsider and will die if not passed by the Senate by Friday.
- Joint Resolution 1 would mandate competitive bidding for the fourth-floor office space in the Capitol that is rented to media members.
- Senate Bill 2273 would mandate the teaching of cursive in the state’s public elementary schools.
- S.B. 2632 would’ve banned contract lobbying by state agencies.
Bills signed into law by Bryant will go into effect on July 1, the first day of the new fiscal year.