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The North Carolina General Assembly is seeking to limit the governor’s emergency powers.

First Branch News | Legislative Headlines, Week of Oct. 18, 2021

By Gene Rose | Oct. 22, 2021 | State Legislatures News | Print

Arkansas and Arizona welcome new members. Florida chooses its next Senate president. A Missouri legislator dies, and a South Carolina senator is in hospice.

Legislative Operations

The Florida governor is calling the Legislature into special session in November to consider vaccine requirement legislation, and Wyoming legislators and the Tennessee General Assembly will meet next week with similar agendas. Legislation passed by the North Carolina General Assembly to reduce the governor’s emergency powers now awaits his signature. A special session of the Arkansas General Assembly will be delayed, the governor announced this week. The Illinois General Assembly started a two-week session this week to produce congressional maps. The West Virginia Legislature ended its special session, and Texas lawmakers recently completed their third special session of the year.

Legislators and Staff in the News

Missouri Representative Tom Hannegan (R) died of a stroke at the age of 51. South Carolina Senator Hugh Leatherman (R) is in hospice care following surgery that discovered inoperable cancer. The next president of the Florida Senate will be Kathleen Passidomo (R). Cynthia Lee Almond (R) is the newest member of the Alabama House of Representatives, and Arizona Representative Stephanie Stahl Hamilton (D) was appointed to a vacant seat in the state Senate. Connecticut Representative Michael DiMassa (D) resigned this week following an arrest on wire fraud charges. Kyle Bailey (D) resigned from the Maine House of Representatives this week for a new job opportunity. Monica Mullin, who served three state senators from both political parties in Massachusetts, retired this week in a big ceremony. New Jersey Assemblywoman Nancy Munoz (R) is likely to be the next House minority leader. Maryland Senators Bryan Simonaire (R) and Justin Ready (R) have been elected minority leader and minority whip, respectively.

Announcing they will not seek reelection: Alabama Speaker Pro Tem Victor Gaston (R), North Carolina Representatives David Price (D) and Mike Doyle (D), Texas Representative Dan Huberty (R), Massachusetts Representative Liz Malia (D), Texas Senator Kel Seliger (R), and Washington, D.C., Councilmember Kenyan McDuffie (D).

2022 Election Moves by Sitting Legislators 

Pennsylvania Representative Summer Lee (D) will seek a congressional seat next year. Oregon Representative Suzanne Weber (R), Maine Representative Nate Wadsworth (R), Arkansas Representative Spencer Hawks (R), and Massachusetts Representative Paul Mark (D) all launched campaigns for their respective state senates. Florida Senator Annette Taddeo (D) said she is running for governor, and Maryland Delegate Dereck Davis (D) announced he is running for state treasurer.

In Remembrance

Former Alaska Senate President Clem Tillion passed away at the age of 96.

Other News 

The Louisiana Senate approved an 8% increase in pay for the chamber’s staffers. In the U.S. Virgin Islands, the Government House is nearly ready to open, four years after hurricanes severely damaged the building.

This Week From NCSL’s State Legislatures News

First Branch News is NCSL’s weekly roundup of legislative headlines from news sources across the country and throughout the territories. Articles and social media posts from news sources curated in First Branch News are provided for information purposes only and do not necessarily reflect NCSL views. 

Gene Rose is NCSL’s communications director.


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