While program areas let out for the night, and delegates look forward to the Governor’s Ball and election results, the last day of Model Assembly looms above us. The dramatic word choice is necessary as we all begin to drag our feet, making the rest of our time last as long as we can.
With these thoughts in the back minds, delegates all over the program continued to make great strides. Upper legislatures are experiencing an odd occurrence, one that is more common at the Capitol in real sessions, the creation of an Omnibus. This is one bill, combining 11 bills in to one. It had to pass through the multiple committees of the individual bills, and is now headed for Knutson Senate as one bill. As legislators continued to pass and fail bills, two of them made their way to Governor Yablonsky’s desk.
Bill #6302, concerning community supervision for nonviolent offenders, was Yablonsky’s first bill passed into law. Minutes later, he signed Bill #5301, an act to require voter I.D. Both bills were signed because they mirror Yablonsky’s platform and beliefs.
Lt. Governor Blake signed ten bills throughout her day, and currently holds 27 on her desk awaiting decisions. Blake’s Press Secretary and Legislative Analyst said that the Lt. Governor has “educated herself a lot on the bill topics.” While her opinions haven’t changed, she’s been informed on new topics to be able to form opinions. Blake is also very proud of her cabinet, who have been working very well with lobbyists on Blake’s goals.
The lobbyists, while assisting with the goals of the Governor and Lt. Governor, continued work on their own agenda. Bill #3200, an act to require all sex and HIV/STI education provided in K12 schools include contraceptive education, passed through the senate to their excitement. Lobbyists worked on making buttons to pass bills, and continued to get the word out about lobbying.
National Issues Forum started their day in a new location. It didn’t disrupt their progress, but was actually a better room with a less cave-like feel. On the other end of the spectrum, the YikYak use has affected even more students. After passing a proposal on enacting free medical and therapeutic services for rape victims, jokes made on the social media account were not taken lightly by delegates. There was still much development and positivity in the program as they passed Proposal #112, legalizing prostitution, among others.
Leadership Corps delegates continued work writing and debating bills, as well as working on the Robin Hood Trial Court case. Justin Scheerer of Leadership Corps Group 4, worked on the defense, and won, finding Robin Hood a victim of circumstance. Scheerer created an amendment on a bill working to add more cooking classes in schools. Delegates were not in favor of losing other classes to free up space, so Scheerer came up with the solution of extending the cooking classes into FACs. When asked what his favorite program area is so far, Scheerer asked if he could choose five. He is already full of promise and dedication to this program, his only future challenge being choosing a program area.
The courts held many intense debates through their cases, and Supreme Court Chief Justice Raul Sanchez shared that he believed “the delegates argued the hardest he’s ever seen in the courts today.” Anna Bixby, Chief Justice of Court of Appeals felt the same. The courts are all on schedule, and on track to finish off Model Assembly on a great note.
The Secretary of State’s office began their busiest day of the conference, as they opened polls for voting at 11 am. The turn out for voting has been fairly good, with several hours still to go. Tommy Bye, Deputy Secretary of State and Secretary of State candidate, signed his first bill into law alongside Governor Yablonski.
The State Steering Committee Executive Office are hard at work promoting WhY I Give, and want all delegates to give and promote the scholarship program as much as they can. The more students given the chance to become delegates, the stronger and better each Model Assembly will be.
Moving into the final day of Model Assembly, the program as a whole are high on productivity, and excitement for the work they are putting in. Work that is paying off to the highest extent. Tonight, once voting closes and the results are out, delegates will get a look at the framework for the future of the program.
Written by Tori Miller, Digital Media