Once again, state legislators can’t get their work done on schedule, and they’re moving to another expensive special session (TNT, 4-22). This recurring problem happens because legislators have their priorities backwards: They spend most of the session working on lower-priority pet bills.
This year, for example, legislators introduced a bill recognizing National Day of the Cowboy, a resolution celebrating Nowruz (Iran’s New Year), and a crucial bill creating special license plates to honor wrestling.
That’s what some of our legislators toiled on before and in lieu of working on the budget. Sure, non-budget bills can be beneficial, but if they can be passed before the budget is finalized, then they can be passed after it’s finalized, too.
Solution? No pet bills, no silly resolutions - nothing - until the budget is done. And special sessions should be limited to the budget. If legislators dilly-dally and don’t finish the budget by the last day of the session, then no other bills get passed that year.
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If this requirement were implemented, we’d see the end of extra sessions. In fact, the budget would probably be completed in a week, as legislators would rush to get to their own bills. A cost-saving win-win for everyone.