Local News

In-State Tuition For Children Of Immigrants Among Bills That Likely Died

Posted June 3, 2005

— "Crossover Day" is officially over at the state Legislature.

The "crossover" rule requires that bills that do not generate taxes or spend money must pass at least one chamber by the end of Thursday. Otherwise, the measures cannot be considered again until 2007.

Several proposed bills did not make the deadline, including one that defined marriage as the union of a man and a woman. Another would have required the governor and lieutenant governor to run for office as a team. Others that appeared dead included a bill that would provide in-state tuition for children of illegal immigrants and a law making it harder for illegal immigrants to get a driver's license.

There are some maneuvers lawmakers can make, however, to try to get them revived. If they can be revised to include a financial aspect, they could ultimately get around the deadline and brought back up in the General Assembly.

The state House and Senate worked well into the night Wednesday to consider dozens of bills in advance of the self-imposed deadline.

House Speaker Jim Black stopped the clock in the chamber just before 9 p.m. Wednesday to attempt to avoid violating a House rule prohibiting sessions from going past that time. Black also suspended rules requiring male lawmakers to keep their coats and ties on and barring legislators from eating on the floor.

"We got a lot of work done last night and we still have some to do today," Black said.

Lawmakers spent about an hour Thursday before heading home.

Another hot topic on the agenda was discussion of a proposed moratorium on the death penalty. The measure went through a House judiciary committee on Tuesday, but when supporters learned they may not have the support of the full Senate, they pulled it.

Black said the measure may be discussed again in the next week or two.


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