All of the legislation that JPus has been following has wrapped up for the 2020 spring session. A summary of each follows.
The Resolve for a commission study to evaluate the one-day solemnizer rule passed out of committee favorably at the end of February. But, then it got stuck and died in March. In order to plan for next year, we’ve spoken with Senator Cyr’s office and requested that the bill be resubmitted in January. More about our work to address one-day solemnizer problems.
After the special marriage officiant bill died in the House, it was revived as an amendment in the Senate. Under guise of the pandemic, no head’s up was given to constituents. The language allowing lay officiants was attached to a sure-to-pass bill that protected children from sexual assault. Even worse, the senators were coy when introducing the floor amendment, neglecting to share the existing controversy about it. It passed and is on its way to the Governor. He won’t veto the bill, but we’re in discussions to have an executive order to stop implementation of the temporary officiant parts. We also submitted an op-ed reiterating our ask to Governor Sununu. The details are in the nitty-gritty backstory.
All non-covid legislation is on hold in the state, and that includes S2294, An Act to End Child Marriage. JPus has been involved, as a member of the Massachusetts Coalition to End Child Marriage, and submitting testimony in support of the legislation. Read about our activity.
The bill to end child marriage in New Hampshire passed the House of Representatives, but then got tabled in June before being heard in the Senate. It will be resubmitted for the 2021 session. Read about JPus’ support of this bill.
With a unanimous vote, Pennsylvania ended child marriage in the state. Governor Wolf signed it into law on May 8th, 2020! Four states down, 46 to go. JPus submitted testimony in support of the legislation.