Jansen Owen Weekly Legislative Update: Mississippi Legislature Sees Progress on Key Bills

Published 3:07 pm Wednesday, February 14, 2024

The Mississippi Legislature had a busy week as committees worked diligently before the deadline for introducing bills and amendments.

Representative Jansen Owen provided updates on significant legislative developments.

Senate Bill 2140, the Mississippi Prior Authorization Reform Act, passed unanimously in the House. The bill aims to regulate insurance companies’ handling of prior authorization for medical procedures and medications, requiring the creation of a web portal to expedite the approval process.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

House Bill 777, seeking to end alcohol prohibition in certain municipalities, also made progress, passing the House with a vote of 93-21. It would automatically legalize the sale of wine and spirits in smaller communities while allowing flexibility for municipalities to decide their alcohol policies through local referendums.

House Bill 331, which aims to reverse burdensome construction permit mandates imposed in 2022, passed with a vote of 82-29, reflecting opposition from contractors and subcontractors.

In committee proceedings, the House Judiciary B Committee brought forth two bills. Representative Elliot Burch presented House Bill 295, advocating for electronic search warrant applications and signatures. Representative Celeste Hurst introduced House Bill 634, which aims to regulate fees associated with acquiring service firearms by retired or deceased law enforcement officers.

Both bills received strong support, with HB 295 passing by a vote of 117-1 and HB 634 advancing for further consideration in the Senate.