Mississippi Veterinary Medical Association


ADVOCACY

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One of the many benefits to being a member of the MVMA is Legislative Representation.

The MVMA Advocacy/Legislative Committee serves its members in the following ways:

  • Advocacy Committee/Lobbyist
  • Practice Act Advocate
  • Bill Tracking
  • AVMA Representation

Harry Dendy serves as the MVMA lobbyist. He has done a superb job in bill tracking and monitoring the legislation for the veterinarians in Mississippi.

Dr. Bob Filgo and Dr. Katie Ebers serve as the Government Affairs Task Force Co-Chairs.

Dr. Jim Brett and Dr. Tim Fleming are currently serving as your AVMA Delegate and Alternate Delegate.

 


What is a PAC?

A political action committee (PAC) is a type of political committee organized to spend money for the election or defeat of a candidate. Although most political action committees would be considered either conservative or liberal -- Republican or Democrat -- many are non-partisan, favoring neither political party, and focus on issues rather than party affiliation.

Why is there a separate fund for the PAC?  Why can’t you just use some of the dues money to go towards the PAC?

The objectives of the Mississippi Veterinary Medical Association, Inc. are to advance the science and art of Veterinary Medicine, including their relationship to public health and to promote good fellowship among its members. While involvement in government policy and legislation is an important piece of the puzzle, we realize that not all MVMA members want to contribute funds to a political agenda.  Contributions to the PAC are strictly voluntary and will be kept separate from the operating funds of the Mississippi Veterinary Medical Association. 

 Why should I contribute to the PAC?

The money you contribute to the PAC will be used to support candidates that the Government Affairs Task Force believes supports the advancement of the veterinary profession. The past few years have proven that government has taken a greater interest in the laws and governing of our profession. The formation of a Political Action Committee (PAC) allows MVMA members to support the campaigns of those legislators that the PAC Committee feels will support the veterinary profession and look out for our best interest.

How do I contribute to the PAC?


 

2018 MVMA LEGISLATIVE REPORT – WEEK #5

Week #5 of the 2018 legislative session saw a major deadline as Tuesday, January 30 was the deadline for Committees to report general bills and constitutional amendments originating in their own house.  The total bill count was reduced from a total of approximately 2,500 bills to 372 – 162 bills in the Senate and 210 bills in the House.  Both chambers worked diligently Wednesday, Thursday and Friday as

February 8 is the deadline for floor action on general bills and constitutional amendments. 

 

Of particular interest to MVMA:

HB 131& SB 2817  – flagged by AVMA  - These companion bills would require a dispenser pharmacist or practitioner, licensed to dispense or prescribe controlled substances and specified non-controlled substance drugs, to obtain drug-monitoring information from the Prescription Monitoring Program (PMP) before dispensing or prescribing controlled substances or the specified non-controlled substance drugs.  HB 131 has been referred to the House Drug Policy Committee.  SB 2817 has been referred to the Senate Public Health and Welfare Committee.

Harry’s commentsBoth of these bills died in committee.  Current law states that veterinarians residing in the state of Mississippi are exempt from reporting the dispensing of controlled substance drugs and that exemption did not change.

 

HB 169flagged by AVMAThis legislation would prohibit the Mississippi Commission on Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks from issuing citations penalizing any licensed hunter engaged in hunting for deer or hogs with dogs on any state or county wildlife management area when such hunter enters the property of another to retrieve a runaway dog.  This bill has been referred to the House Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks committee.

Harry’s commentsThis bill died in committee.

 

HB 183 & SB 2839 – These companion bills would provide enhanced penalties for the transfer and possession of certain controlled substances with intent to transfer to a third party.  Fentanyl is included in the language of both these bills.   HB 183 has been referred to the House Drug Policy Committee and the House Judiciary B Committee.  SB 2839 has been referred to the Senate Accountability, Efficiency & Transparency Committee. 

Harry’s commentsBoth of these bills died in committee.

HB 386 and SB 2091flagged by AVMA – These companion bills would allow an emergency medical technician to transport a law enforcement dog injured in the line of duty to a veterinary clinic or similar facility if there are no persons requiring medical attention or transport at that time in addition to providing emergency medical services and transportation to human personnel.  These bills have been referred to the House Judiciary B Committee, the House Public Health and Human Services Committee and the Senate Public Health and Welfare Committee.

Harry’s commentsHB 386 died in committee.  SB 2091 passed out of the Senate Public Health and Welfare Committee and has been placed on the Senate calendar.   Probably not an issue for MVMA but I will monitor.

HB 391 – This bill would create the MS Medical Marijuana Pilot Program for therapeutic use for certain patients who have debilitating medical conditions.

This bill has been referred to the House Drug Policy Committee and the House Public Health and Human Services committee.

Harry’s commentsThis bill died in committee.

 

HB 474 – This bill creates the Mississippi retail marijuana code.  It has been referred to the House Drug Policy Committee and the House Judiciary A Committee.

Harry’s commentsThis bill died in committee.

 

HB 623flagged by AVMA - This legislation would prohibit a prescribing veterinarian from prescribing a patient more than 75 units of narcotics if the prescription is OxyContin (oxycodone), or a generic form thereof. This bill has been referred to House Public Health and Human Services Committee and the House Drug Policy Committee.

Harry’s comments – This bill died in committee.

 

HB 748 & SB 2744 – These companion bills (known as the bond bill) authorizes the issuance of state general obligation bonds for the purpose of making capital improvements for state institutions of higher learning.  HB 748 has been referred to the House Ways and Means Committee.  SB 2744 has been referred to the Senate Finance Committee.

Harry’s commentsSB 2744 died in committee.   HB 748 remains alive and authorizes the sale of $4,172,500 in bonds to finance the construction, furnishing and equipping of a new building and related facilities to house the Blackjack Forest and Wildlife Research Facility at Mississippi State University.  I will monitor.

HB 944flagged by MVMAThis legislation would include veterans diagnosed with PTSD in the qualifying list of disabilities and impairments for which an individual may be provided the use of a support animal.  This bill, as amended, has passed out of the House and now goes to the Senate for further action.

Harry’s comments – This bill likely flagged by AVMA as it references dogs as a support animal.  Probably not an issue for MVMA but I will monitor.

 

HB 1020 – This bill amends current law and provides civil penalties for certain persons who fail to report drug overdoses.  This bill has passed out of the House Drug Policy Committee and is on the House calendar awaiting further action.

Harry’s comments – This bill is currently written to exclude the veterinary profession from any civil penalties.  I will monitor to be sure the exclusion stays intact. 

 

HB 1055 & SB 2172flagged by AVMA – These companion bills would expand the offense of simple cruelty to an animal to include intentional or criminally negligent depravation of food, water, or adequate shelter.  It would expand the offense of aggravated cruelty to an animal to include intentionally suffocating, drowning or starving to death.  These bills have been referred to the House Agriculture Committee, the Senate Agriculture Committee and the Senate Judiciary A committee.

Harry’s commentsBoth of these bills died in committee.

 

HB 1096 – This bill proposes to abolish certain inactive Boards, Commissions, Councils and Committees.  This bill, as amended, has passed the House and has been transmitted to the Senate for further action.

Harry’s comments – The body of this proposed legislations mentions the State Veterinarian.  Probably not an issue for MVMA but I will monitor.

 

HB 1130 & SB 2840  – These companion bills are known as the Opioid Crisis Intervention Act. This House bill has been referred to the House Drug Policy Committee. The Senate bill was referred to the Senate Accountability, Efficiency and Transparency Committee.  The Senate bill, as amended, has passed out of committee and is on the Senate calendar for further consideration.

Harry’s commentsHB 1130 has died in committee.  SB 2840, as stated above, is alive and on the Senate calendar.  Veterinarians are included in the language of bill in the section dealing with a practitioner.  I will monitor.

HB 1204This bill would allow Alcorn State University to enter memoranda of understanding with local farmers to grow medical marijuana for out-of-state vendors.  This bill has been referred to the Drug Policy Committee.

Harry’s commentsThis bill died in committee.

 

HB 1358 & SB 2850 flagged by AVMA – These bills would increase the minimum fine for dog fighting.  HB 1358 has been referred to the House Judiciary B Committee.  SB 2850 has been referred to the Senate Judiciary A Committee.

Harry’s commentsBoth of these bills died in committee.

 

SB 2232flagged by AVMA – This bill refers to domestic abuse of pets and allows protection of pets in a protection order.  This bill has been referred to the Senate Judiciary A Committee.

Harry’s commentsThis bill died in committee.

 

SB 2267 – This bill amends various sections of current Mississippi law to legalize marijuana.  This bill has been referred to the Senate Public Health and Welfare Committee and the Judiciary B Committee.

Harry’s commentsThis bill died in committee.

 

SB 2333flagged by AVMA – This new legislation would remove the size limitation on the enclosure that a wild hog may be released into for the purpose of slaughter and would also require the Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks to issue metallic tags that must be affixed to the ear of each wild hog being transported within the State of Mississippi.  This bill has been referred to the Senate Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks Committee.

Harry’s commentsThis bill died in committee.

 

SB 2474flagged by AVMA – This bill would create the MS Companion Animal Abuse Registry Act and would require the MS Bureau of Investigation to post a publicly accessible list on its website of any person convicted of an animal abuse offense.  This bill has was amended and passed the Senate Judiciary B Committee.  It is now on the Senate calendar for further discussion.

Harry’s comments – This bill probably flagged by AVMA as it references dogs and animal abuse.  Probably not an issue for MVMA but I will monitor.

 

SB 2571 – This bill, known as the Mississippi Medical Cannabis Act, would authorize cannabis (marijuana) to be used by certain patients who have debilitating medical conditions and to provide certain legal protections to these people. This bill has been referred to the Senate Public Health and Welfare Committee and the Senate Judiciary B Committee.

Harry’s commentsThis bill died in committee.

SB 2865 – This bill amends current law to provide that theft of controlled substances, legend drugs or firearms will constitute grand larceny without regard to value of the item stolen.  This bill has been referred to the Senate Judiciary B Committee.

Harry’s commentsThis bill died in committee.

 

SB 2874 – This bill amends current law as it applies to cockfighting and the punishment thereof.  This bill has been assigned to the Senate Judiciary A Committee.

Harry’s commentsThis bill died in committee.

 

SB 2850 & SB 2934flagged by AVMA - Both of these Senate Bills would amend current legislation as it relates to dog fighting and any paraphernalia used for the purpose of engaging in or promoting or facilitating such a fight.  Both bills have been referred to the Senate Judiciary A Committee.  SB 2934, as amended, has passed out of the Senate Judiciary A Committee and is on the Senate calendar for further debate.

Harry’s commentsSB 2850 died in committee.  As stated above, SB 2934 is on the Senate calendar.  This bill flagged by AVMA as veterinarians are named as a possible custodian of fighting dogs and/or paraphernalia.  I will continue to monitor. 

As always, please feel free to call or email with questions or comments.

~Harry Dendy (MVMA Legislative Consultant)