2019 Legislative Session Transmittal:
What You Need to Know
The 2019 Legislative Session is in full swing and the Montana Women Vote staff are here to keep you informed and give you the tools to affect policy and create change in our state.
Week 8 Priorities
The 2019 Legislature hits its half-way mark on Saturday. If a general bill doesn’t make it out of its original house by that day – the transmittal deadline – it’s pretty much dead. After Saturday, the Senate will be on break through the 6th, and the House will be on break through the 8th.
The Capitol Switchboard is closed during Transmittal, so you will not be able to call and leave messages for legislators until March 7th. You can, however, send messages to legislators using the online form.
Medicaid Expansion – SUPPORT
Montana’s Medicaid expansion program provides health insurance to nearly 100,000 (1 in 10) Montanans, but without legislative action, the program will expire in July 2019. Some legislators are calling for changes to the program that would kick up to 43,000 Montanans off their health insurance. House Bill 425 rejects these barriers.
The Capitol Switchboard is closed during Transmittal. Send your legislators a message through this online form, and ask them to SUPPORT HB 425!
Human Rights – TABLED
House Bill 465, carried by Rep. Kim Abbott, would have added “sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression” to the Montana Human Rights Act, giving LGBTQ+ Montanans the opportunity to earn a living and take care of their families without the fear of being fired or denied housing.
Unfortunately, HB 465 was tabled in the House Judiciary Committee, meaning the bill is effectively dead. Montana Women Vote will continue to fight to expand the rights of LGBTQ+ Montanans defend them from harmful rhetorical and policy attacks.
Reproductive Rights – TABLED
House Bill 595, carried by Rep. Laurie Bishop, would have increased access to birth control by allowing people to receive a 12-month supply of birth control at one time. Currently, private insurers only provide reimbursement for 30 to 90 days of birth control at one time. Studies show that dispensing a 12-month supply of birth control at one time leads to tangible benefits.
HB 595 was tabled in the House Legislative Administration Committee, meaning the bill is effectively dead. We will continue our work to protect and advance access to comprehensive reproductive healthcare.