Greetings from the Capitol. Week two rolls along at a quickened pace.
As you have spent this week slipping and sliding around, we have been doing the same in the statehouse. I appreciate the desire for a shorter session where we buckle down and get to work right off the bat. However, this lends itself to hurry, hurry, hurry this must be passed now! I wonder if quick solutions make for good solutions. We must remain vigilant in our review of proposed legislation. We try to foresee potential unintended consequences and avoid them.
Last week we hurriedly passed Education Bills to meet a Federal Deadline to apply for (Race to the Top Funds) Federal Stimulus dollars targeted at low performing schools.
This week one of our major focuses has been on early state employee retirements. If we truly downsize government, this could be positive. But, if this is merely cosmetic and we give early retirement packages and continue to hire new employees, what have we gained? As I write this, we are voting on an amendment to cap re-hires. Unfortunately, this amendment failed. I will vote for this bill even though it could have been better.
Tuesday we had a joint Senate and House Transportation committee meeting. Experts explained the increased safety associated with the graduated drivers license. States that have enacted stronger graduated licenses have seen drastic reductions in teen deaths as a result of their inexperience behind the wheel. We will be taking this up next week in the Transportation committee.
I will keep working to represent you and hope to see you out and about the district.
As always, I appreciate your input and advice. And remember, every day is one day closer to Spring.
Please feel free to contact me: firstname.lastname@example.org or 515 281-3371.