We are in the last five days of the 2021 legislative session. It will take a week and a half to finish these last days. The 40th Day, which is the final day, will be at midnight, March 31! So, time is running out to get bills passed that have already passed one chamber to the other.
I want to mention two bills that need a hearing, and then will need to be voted on to the floor of the other chamber in order to go to the Governor’s desk for a signature. Then it can become law.
1. “The Right to Visit Act” – HB 290
As many of you know the “Right to Visit Act” (now known as the “Patient and Resident Representation and Visitation Act”) is sponsored by Representative Ed Setzler and has successfully passed out of the House and is over in the Senate Health and Human Services Committee.
This bill supports the legal rights of patients to have physical contact with one key family ‘legal representative’ for not less than one-hour each day in hospitals and two ‘caregivers’ for not less than two-hours each day in a long-term care setting. This bill is desperately needed considering all that Georgians have gone through this past year regarding not being allowed to visit loved ones during the pandemic.
Please contact the Senate Health and Human Service Committee members (click here) and ask them to please have a hearing and favorably pass HB 290 on to the floor of the Senate for a vote before the 40th day! Senator Ben Watson is the Chairman.
2. “The Maternity Supportive Housing Act” – SB 116
This important piece of maternity legislation is sponsored by Senator Randy Robertson and has successfully passed out of the Senate and is now in the House Health and Human Services Committee, awaiting a committee hearing.
This important bill will allow Georgia churches and non-profits to provide housing to mothers over the age of 18 who are in need of supportive housing to care for their newborns, as well as get back on their feet financially. Many of our Georgia Baptist churches in connection with our Mission Georgia emphasis are interested in providing this kind of supportive housing at no cost to the government, and passage of this legislation is an important part of making this vision a reality.
Please contact the House Health and Human Services Committee Members and ask them to please have a hearing and favorably pass SB 116 on to the floor of the House for a vote before the 40th day of the session. Representative Sharon Cooper is the Chairman.
Thank you all so much for your prayers and support during this legislative session. There are still other bills that we are watching as we come down to the finish line. Please follow us on Public Affairs Facebook and Twitter pages for daily updates on what is happening!