VMS Weighs In On a Flurry of Bills Before Town Meeting Week

This is an extremely busy week in the legislature, as it is the last week before the legislature goes home to their districts for the week and Town Meeting Day. When lawmakers come back, they will be in the last week before the crossover deadline, in which all bills that have not been taken up this session will remain "on the wall." This is also an extremely busy week for the VMS, as both VMS staff and members are weighing in a wide array of bills, including: 

  • The Senate Health and Welfare is drafting a Committee "prevention bill" that would create a Substance Misuse Prevention Council that would be tasked with educating and preventing the misuse and use of of tobacco, alcohol, opioids and cannabis for all Vermonters. Stephanie Winters testified today in support.
  • S.111 is being debated in the Senate Government Operations Committee. In part, the bill asks the Department of Health and the Vermont Medical Society to assist in notifying Vermonters of the Department of Veteran's Open Burn Pit Registry. Jessa Barnard testified in support today. To learn more here is a recent article. 
  • The Senate Judiciary Committee has passed S.54, the bill to create a tax and regulate system for cannabis and that also contains proposals regarding the marijuana for symptom relief program. The Judiciary Committee will consider another bill this week, S.117., that also seeks to eliminate a three-month bona-fide health care professional relationship requirement and to open up all conditions as a diagnosis that qualifies for marijuana for symptom relief. Jessa Barnard will testify against this proposal this week.
  • S.61, a bill aimed at reducing the barriers to Vermont health care professionals to access meals at out of state CME conferences if paid for by a drug manufacturer, will be heard in the Senate Health and Welfare Committee this week.
  • S.22, a bill to require a 48-hr waiting period for the purchase of firearms and for firearms to be in a lock box when not in use, will be heard in the Senate Judiciary Committee. Dr. Rebecca Bell, M.D. will testify in support on behalf of the VMS and the AAP of VT.
  • The Senate Health and Welfare Committee will take testimony on S.42, the bill to require a health care professional on the GMCB, and Dr. Kat MacGraw will testify in support. 

Please let us know if you have any questions or would like to comment on this legislation by contacting Jill Sudhoff-Guerin at jsudhoffguerin@vtmd.org

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