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No significant fiscal implication to the State is anticipated.
The bill would provide that religious organizations, organizations connected to a religious organization,an individual employed by a religious organization while acting in the scope of that employment, or a clergy or minister may not be required to participate in any part of a marriage or celebration of a marriage if it would violate a sincerely held religious belief.
Under the provisions of this bill, if someone belonging to one of the proscribed categories refuses to provide services,accommodations, facilities, goods, or privileges because of a sincerely held religious belief, that person's refusal cannot be the basis for a civil or criminal cause of action, or any other cause of action by the state or a political subdivision of the state, including withholding benefits or privileges, tax exemptions, or government contracts, grants, or licenses.
We support SB 2065 in the second chamber. The second chamber sponsors are Reps. Cook, Sanford, Geren, Harless, and Farney.
First chamber recommendation:
We do not make recommendations on bills that deal primarily with social issues. While this bill does relate to what is widely considered a social issue, that issue is secondary to the actual purpose of SB 2065 which is to uphold religious liberty which is a foundational concept for our nation, our state, and modern civilized culture broadly. Protecting religious freedom, without regard to the specific things that freedom is being protected from, is an inherent function of limited government. For this reason, we support HB 3567.