House and Senate Rules Changed, Committees Named

Posted 2/3/16

The Speaker and Lieutenant Governor have named committee chairs and members. Sen. Gray Tollison and Rep. John Moore will once again chair the Senate and House Education committees. Click here to see all members of the education and appropriations committees.

In addition, the rules by which the House and Senate will operate for the next four years were adopted. Two notable changes:
• a change in the joint rules to reduce the number of votes required to pass some revenue bills (taxes and fees) from a three-fifths to a simple majority
• a change to a House rule that previously designated seating space for the media at the front of the House chamber just below the clerk's desk. The change allows the House Rules Committee to seat the media anywhere in the Capitol (including outside the chamber).

The 2012 rule making it difficult to amend appropriations bills during floor debate, which gives disproportionate appropriations power to the leadership and reduces significantly the influence of rank and file legislators, was left intact.

Lt. Governor Reeves has made some Senate education bills available to the public online; Speaker Gunn has not yet done so. Previous administrations made bills available online as early as December so that the public and legislators had sufficient time to study the bills that were being proposed. We will continue to watch for bills and will keep you posted regarding their potential impact on your children's education.

We are going to need your help as we work to ensure that all Mississippi children have strong public schools!