Monday, June 05, 2023

Conservative legislation moving forward

by Matt Regier, Rhonda Knudsen and Sue Vinton
| March 5, 2023 12:00 AM

The Leadership of the Montana House of Representatives is proud of the accomplishments the Republican led Legislature has achieved on behalf of the people of Montana in the first half of the legislative session.

Several key pieces of legislation have passed both chambers and will be sent to the Governor, these include a property tax rebate of $1,000 to residential property owners paid out in 2024 and 2025, and an income tax rebate of up to $1,250 per individual taxpayer and $2,500 for married couples filing jointly. Additionally, we are paying down $200 million of Montana state debt. As a result, nearly $1 billion of our state’s historic budget surplus is on its way back to taxpayers. We are incredibly proud to fulfill this promise and return to our Montanans their hard-earned money.

Additional conservative bills have been transmitted to the Senate including legislation to improve our children’s educational opportunities, many of which give students the flexibility they need to receive the best education possible. Republicans have advanced multiple bills that will increase enrollment and school choice options for Montana students and their families. Bills that support Montana’s small businesses, including a reduction in Montana’s business equipment tax as well as bills that restore our judiciary and demand the Government be accountable to you, the people, are advancing with Republican support.

Republicans have also produced bills that protect the individual freedoms of Montanans in a medical environment. This is reflected in legislation that will create a hospital patient bill of rights; as well as legislation that legally protects medical practitioners when they stand up against specific medical services that violate their conscience.

Several conservative proposals have moved forward to ensure the security of Montana’s elections, such as a process to secure tabulation machines and clarifying that illegal aliens cannot vote in Montana’s elections.

Protecting children from obscene materials in school libraries and obscenity on their devices is of paramount importance to Republicans this session, including protecting children from adult oriented entertainment. We believe our children should remain free from the bombardment of obscene material.

Republicans in the House have blocked several bad bills, including legalizing partial-birth abortion, allowing abortion-inducing drugs to be provided at schools, increasing taxes, and bills impeding Montanans First and Second Amendment rights.

In the second half of the legislative session, we will be focused on returning more of the $2 billion surplus to Montanans and passing a conservative state budget. House Bill 2, the budget bill, will be considered by the full Appropriations committee beginning March 9.

Speaker of the House Rep. Matt Regier, Speaker Pro Tempore Rep. Rhonda Knudsen and Major Leader Rep. Sue Vinton.

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