2012: A Glimpse at the Year Ahead

Issue Spot is looking ahead to 2012 and has put together a calendar of upcoming dates for the second half of the legislative session.  January marks the beginning of the second year in the two-year session.  The BBA will continue to work on advancing important bills that have already enjoyed some progress in the last year – whether that means they have had a public hearing or have been reported favorably from the committees to which they were originally assigned.  These bills include the Massachusetts Uniform Trust Code, technical corrections to the Uniform Probate Code, a statute allowing post-conviction access to DNA testing, and the income tax “step-up.”

The Judiciary Committee – the committee that has jurisdiction over the majority of the BBA’s bills – still has five hearings left to schedule before March.  The upcoming hearings will include bills that fall into the categories of real estate, criminal procedure, torts, constitutional issues and the catch-all category of miscellaneous and late file bills.

In addition to keeping an eye on legislation in the next few months and working to move our legislative priorities over the finish line, the BBA will closely monitor the state budget for FY 2013.  Throughout the budget process, the BBA will continue to advocate for issues that impact the criminal justice system, including the Judiciary’s budget and legal services.

JANUARY

  • 1/4       Formal session resumes for the Massachusetts Legislature
  • 1/11       Judiciary Committee hearing – real estate bills
  • 1/25     The Governor must release his annual budget by the third Wednesday in January
  • 1/26     13th Annual Walk to the Hill for Civil Legal Aid

 FEBRUARY

  • 2/7       Judiciary Committee hearing – subject matter to be determined

 MARCH

  • 3/1       Alimony Reform Act of 2011 goes into effect
  • 3/21     Joint Rule 10 Day; any bill that has been assigned to a committee by February 15, 2012 will either receive a favorable report, an adverse report or be placed into a study order
  • 3/31     Massachusetts Uniform Probate Code goes into effect

 APRIL

  • House budget debate takes place – usually the last full week of April

 MAY

  • Senate budget debate takes place – usually the last full week of May

 JUNE

  • Budget Conference Committee works on a compromise between the House and Senate versions of the budget and is sent to the Governor to sign or veto

 JULY

  • 7/1       Fiscal Year 2013 begins
  • 7/31     Formal session ends for the Massachusetts Legislature

 AUGUST

  • 8/1       Informal legislative session begins for the Massachusetts Legislature

 NOVEMBER

  • 11/6     Election Day

 DECEMBER

  • 12/31   187th General Court session ends

 

 

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