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Jon Fleischman

The Damage Already Done – Time To Adjourn the MCO Tax Special Session

Last June Governor Brown called a special session for his managed healthcare organization tax deal — the other for tax increases to fund transportation infrastructure.  Special sessions may as well be called “transparency obfuscation and fair process elimination” tools.  In these sessions the normal legislative rules and deadlines do not apply.

With the passage and signing of the new MCO tax, that first special session is over, right?  WRONG.

It turns out that that special session on the MCO tax was not adjourned — it is still very much open.  And my Capitol sources tell me there is discussion by Democrat legislative leaders of pressing forward with more tax increases and regulations, using that technically-still-in-effect special session to avoid all of the normal rules that would apply to lawmaking.  I’m told that part of the terrible MCO deal included a commitment to end that special session — but you know what they say about deals with the devil…

The legislature should end the special session on the MCO tax.  The legislature should oppose any more new or higher taxes in this now-rump session — nothing else should be considered outside of the legislature’s regular rules and procedures.

Republicans should publicly insist that this special session be formally adjourned. Frankly enough damage has been caused within it already.