Keeping Current @ the Capitol – Sine Die Edition
Author: Ky Lindberg
Yesterday marked Sine Die, the final day of the 2022 Georgia legislative session. Bills had until the end of day to pass both chambers (House & Senate) before heading to Governor Kemp’s desk. If a bill does not proceed before the close of Sine Die, it is still eligible for consideration during the 2022 legislative session. Once the General Assembly adjourns, the Governor has 40 days to sign or veto legislation. If a bill is not signed or vetoed by the end of the 40 days, it automatically becomes law.
Come join HMHBGA, Postpartum Support International – GA Chapter and March of Dimes to learn more during our end of session wrap up. Click the following link to learn more – https://hmhbga.org/event/2022-virtual-legislative-wrap-up-free-event/
HOT TOPIC: SB338 – HEADED TO THE GOVERNOR’S DESK
SB338: (Sen. Dean Burke, R – District 11): is on its way to be signed into law by Governor Brian Kemp after passing the full Senate and House. This bill will increase postpartum coverage under Medicaid from six months to one year following birth. With nearly half of Georgia’s births being covered by Medicaid and 2/3’s of maternal mortalities occurring postpartum, this is a critical piece is increasing health outcomes for moms and birthing people in our State. This has been a significant policy priority for HMHBGA for several years and we rejoice with our partners for getting this important law to the finish line. We are truly thankful to all of the lawmakers and advocates for supporting this bill.
WHAT ELSE IS HEADED TO THE GOVERNOR’S DESK?
HB1013: Mental Health Parity Act: A BILL to be entitled an Act to amend Titles 15, 20, 31, 33, 37, 45, and 49 of the O.C.G.A., relating to courts, education, health, insurance, mental health, public officers and employees, and social services, respectively, so as to implement the recommendations of the Georgia Behavioral Health Reform and Innovation Commission; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.
HB1355: A BILL to be entitled an Act to amend Chapter 41 of Title 31 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to lead poisoning prevention, so as to update provisions to comport with nationally recognized guidelines; to revise definitions; to revise provisions relating to abatement of lead poisoning hazards; to expand written advisement requirements; to expand applicability of provisions; to provide for related matters; to provide for a funding contingency; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.
SB496: Medical Examinations on the Death of Pregnant Women: A BILL to be entitled an Act to amend Article 2 of Chapter 16 of Title 45 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to death investigations, so as to require a medical examiner’s inquiry when a pregnant female dies and an inquest; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.
SB342: Annual Reporting Regarding Mental Health Parity: A BILL to be entitled an Act to amend Chapter 24 of Title 33 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to insurance generally, so as to provide for annual reporting regarding mental health parity in healthcare plans; to provide definitions; to establish penalties; to provide for rules and regulations; to provide for an effective date and applicability; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws and for other purposes.
HB1348: Georgia Smoke-Free Air Act: A BILL to be entitled an Act to amend Chapter 12 of Title 16 of the O.C.G.A., relating to offenses against public health and morals, so as to provide that vaping in restricted areas is a misdemeanor punishable by fine; to amend Chapter 1A of Title 20 of the O.C.G.A., relating to early care and learning, so as to provide that operators of early care and education programs shall post signs prohibiting vaping; to amend Chapter 12A of Title 31 of the O.C.G.A., relating to smoke-free air, so as to revise the short title; to prohibit vaping in designated smoke-free areas; to provide for exemptions; to provide that “No Smoking” signs may include the words “or Vaping”; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes. **Top HMHBGA Agenda Priority
HB1092: Georgia Women’s CARE Act: A BILL to be entitled an Act to amend Article 2 of Chapter 4 of Title 17 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to arrest by law enforcement officers generally, so as to revise provision relating to the arrests of pregnant women; to provide that women who have been arrested are offered pregnancy testing upon detention; to enact a provision regarding delayed sentencing for postpartum female inmates; to amend Article 1 of Title 42 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to inmate policies, so as to revise provisions relating to the treatment of pregnant and postpartum female inmates; to provide for a short title; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.
We will continue to advocate for appropriate accommodations for pregnant peoples, smoking & vaping taxes/regulations as well as other policies to ensure moms, birthing people and babies survive and thrive. Stay tuned to learn how you can support!
A Tool for Advocating: PROJECT 236
Project 236 is an advocacy tool that can be used to understand the state of maternal and infant health in your legislative district! Outcomes include rates of preterm birth, low birthweight, infant mortality, and prenatal care inadequacy. In this age of virtual advocacy, we hope that this can be used as a way to advocate for improved maternal and infant health in your own backyard.
How does your district compare to the state of Georgia overall? Is there an area where your Senate district is performing lower? Speak with your Senator about how comprehensive policies can address negative outcomes. Does your House district have outcomes that are better than the state of Georgia? Talk with your Representative about what they can do to make sure it stays that way or even improves. Fact sheets for all 236 of Georgia’s legislative districts are available.
CLICK HERE to access Project 236