House Speaker Robert Moore asked his committee chairmen to remain focused on budget matters in the upcoming fiscal session, including a request that no interim study proposals be brought before standing committees.
The request convinced Rep. Davy Carter (R-Cabot) to pull back on his intention to review all sales tax exemptions and exclusions in the House Revenue and Tax Committee during the session. Carter told Democrat-Gazette columnist John Brummett about the Speaker’s request this morning. Talk Business has subsequently obtained a copy of the email sent by the Speaker.
Speaker Moore said:
“As we continue our preparations for the fiscal session, I want to reiterate my request that you remain focused on the narrow mission that we are required to accomplish during this time. I believe it is our duty to efficiently and effectively take care of the business mandated in Amendment 86 and then, barring some issue arising that is so compelling as to otherwise likely necessitate a special session, adjourn and return to our districts. Based on my conversations with a number of you regarding the need to deal with budget matters accordingly, and without unnecessary distractions, it is the policy of the House of Representatives for committees to not conduct meetings during the fiscal session for the purpose of considering ISP’s. By logical definition, “interim study proposals” are matters to be studied when the legislature is not in session….i.e., in the “interim”. Aside from the obvious, there are a number of other substantial reasons to not consider ISP’s during the session which I will be happy to discuss at your convenience. I wanted to advise you early of this policy so that you can appropriately factor into your plans for committee activity during this period.”
Carter said he was comfortable with the request and would use time in the session to explain procedures and define goals and a scope for his committee in the interim period after the session concludes.
“His recommendation is wise and there is no disagreement or fuss from me,” Carter said. “We’ll get into substance after the session.”
Speaker Moore also sent an email to all House members reminding them that an internal rule restricts fundraising from the time the General Assembly gavels in until it adjourns.