Legislative Update

After 101 days, the Arizona State Senate and House of Representatives concluded the

2014 legislative session yesterday at 1:46 AM.

In early April, legislators successfully passed a budget proposal for Fiscal Year 2015 that ultimately received the Governor’s approval.  Typically, the successful passage of the budget signals the end of the legislative session.  This year, however, there were still over 250 bills in the Senate, and 150 bills in the House remaining to be processed.

In the remaining days of the 51st Legislature, 2nd Regular Session, there was a flurry of legislative activity on these bills that kept lawmakers working well into the night.

Proposals that saw last-minute legislative action included legislation that would have helped the City of Glendale cover public safety costs during next year’s Super Bowl.  This bill died in the Senate after concerns were voiced regarding Glendale’s “fiscal mismanagement.”

Lawmakers had a lengthy debate over legislation aimed at defining popular ride-sharing services, like Uber and Lyft.  Those in support of the measure said it establishes a regulatory framework for innovative entrepreneurs, while opponents said it gives these services an unfair advantage over traditional taxi and limo companies.  The legislation ultimately passed the House by the necessary 31 votes.

Other measures approved late last night include legislation that prohibits anyone from aiming a laser pointer at an aircraft, a bill regulating trampoline courts, and a measure making it a crime to distribute naked photos of a person without his or her consent.

Both chambers also approved a number of pro-gun bills, although some have already been met with the Governor’s veto stamp.

In all, lawmakers approved nearly 300 of the 1,205 bills introduced during this year’s legislative session.  The Governor, so far, has signed 215 and vetoed 14 of the measures that reached her desk.

Now that the Arizona Legislature has officially adjourned “sine die,” Brewer has until May 6th to sign, veto or allow the remaining measures to become law without her signature.

Legislation that includes an “emergency clause” will become law immediately upon receiving her signature, while bills with a “general effective date” will become operational on July 24th.

It’s worth noting that lawmakers expect the Governor to call a special session as early as May 1st to tackle the creation of a new child welfare agency.  Earlier this year, authorities discovered over 6,600 uninvestigated child abuse and neglect cases, and creation and funding of the new agency will require legislative approval.

Below, your government relations team has outlined the final legislative activity on bills that were of particular interest in the waning days of session.

SB 1160 (ROC; discipline grounds) – Signed by Governor

Final version of bill: http://www.azleg.gov/legtext/51leg/2r/bills/sb1160h.pdf

SB 1307 (residential construction; fall protection) – Signed by Governor

Final version of bill: http://www.azleg.gov/legtext/51leg/2r/bills/sb1307h.pdf

HB 2487 (insurance carriers; subcontractor audits) – DEAD

Representative Steve Smith has requested that stakeholders work with him over the interim on this issue.  We have made it clear that the ASCC would like a seat at the table.  It’s worth noting that Smith is running for the Senate seat being vacated by Senator Al Melvin.

If you are interested in how ASA plans to address these concerns,  please reach out to a member of the Government Relations-Advocacy Committee. You may reach Matthew Meaker, Sacks Tierney P.A. via email Meaker@SacksTierney.com or at (480) 425-2627, or contact Committee Chairmen Richard Usher, Hill & Usher Insurance and Surety via email rbu@hillusher.com or at his office at (602)956-4220.

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