McDaniel Previews This Week's Legislative Agenda

--Posted at 10:45 pm Sunday February 20, 2005

Thirty days into the ninety-day Arkansas general assembly, and education is not the only topic on the board. In the last sixty scheduled days, healthcare will be big,  and thanks to a first year representative from Jonesboro, so will prescription drugs.

"Getting the Arkansas RX bill through committee this week and them off the floor of the house has been exhilarating for me." says Dustin McDaniel.

Not bad for a Freshmen.

Dustin McDaniel is already making a name for himself as the district 75 State Representative. His bill, The Arkansas RX bill, a piece of legislation that aims to lower the cost of prescription drugs in the Natural State, won passage in the house last week. It's now on to the senate.  "I'd expect it to go through committee in the next week or so." said McDaniel.

As far as the rest of the session work load for the 85th general assembly, McDaniel says two issues will dominate the remaining time; education and the "Any Willing Provider Law" which he expects the house to pass this week. In laymen's terms, "Any Willing Provider" says insurers can't tell you which doctor to go to.

And then, there's education.

On this tough topic, McDaniel had this to say. "This last week we got our first look at four bills that have been floated. Obviously they are up for debate and most likely several amendments. They are going to have broad reaching impact on every school building in Arkansas and I expect fully that the focus of the attention and the debate of the rest of the 85th general assembly will be on school facilities."