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Arts Center bill may get House vote today

By By Ben Alexander/The Meridian Star
Feb. 22, 2001
Legislation aimed at designating Meridian as the official site for a proposed Southern Arts and Entertainment Center could be voted on by the state House of Representatives as early as today.
The bill was reported out of the House Appropriations Committee on Wednesday. It was reported from the House Public Buildings and Grounds Committee last week, but in a substantially different form than the original version, which passed the Senate earlier in the session.
If each house approves different versions of the bill, the differences would have to be reconciled by conferees of both houses and then brought back for action.
Snowden, R-Meridian, said the fact the bill passed out of two committees was a good sign, but local representatives were being cautious in their optimism.
When the bill comes to the floor Snowden is hoping teamwork by Reps. Charles Young Sr., D-Meridian, Tommy Horne, I-Meridian, and Sens. Videt Carmichael, D-Lauderdale, and Terry Burton, D-Newton, will pay dividends.
However, if the bill passed the House it may not see the governor's desk for his signature and passage immediately because it was amended in the House Public Buildings and Grounds Committee. The committee used a "strike all" amendment to change the language of the bill before reporting it out, which means although the bill had passed through the Senate it will be sent back for approval before it can be sent to the governor.
The Senate can either concur with the changes made in the House committee or call for a conference on the changes, reword it again and send it back for approval by the House.
Ben Alexander is a staff writer for The Meridian Star. E-mail him at balexander@themeridianstar.com.