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Appropriations Committee Rules

Subject to the Joint Rules of the Senate and the Assembly, the Rules of the Assembly shall govern the conduct of all committee meetings. Committees may adopt additional rules not in conflict with the Assembly Rules or the Joint Rules.

BILL SETTING

Upon receipt of a bill by the committee secretary, the committee will set the bill for hearing. It is not necessary to call the committee to set a bill. The committee will not set a bill that is "pending referral."

Bills set for hearing will appear in the Daily File on Friday prior to the hearing.

Please contact committee staff as soon as possible to request the committee remove a bill from the committee’s hearing calendar. Generally, the committee will reset such a bill for hearing at the next committee meeting, unless arrangements are agreed to by the author and committee staff and approved by the committee Chair. The committee will make every effort to accommodate a request by a bill’s author to set a bill for hearing, consistent with the committee calendar and the committee’s workload.

A bill may be set for hearing in Appropriations only three times in accordance with Joint Rule 62(a).

AMENDMENTS

Author’s Amendments

Generally, the committee will accept author’s amendments until 12:00 p.m. (noon), seven days prior to the day on which a bill is set for hearing. (Because the committee generally meets on Wednesdays, typically, this deadline will fall on a Wednesday at noon.) The committee requires author’s amendments be in Legislative Council format and that the author submit, by the deadline, a signed original of the amendments, plus 11 copies and one "in-context" draft of the amendments.

To accommodate committee workload, the committee may establish deadlines for author’s amendments that differ from the deadline described above. This is especially likely during Interim Study Recess (typically in July). The committee will attempt to advise authors and staff of modified amendment deadlines. However, it is incumbent upon each author’s office to confirm amendment deadlines with the committee.

Amendments may require the committee to put a bill over to the following committee meeting. If an author offers amendments that, in the committee’s opinion, make major policy changes to a bill, the Chair may refer the bill to the Rules Committee for referral to policy committee. The committee strongly recommends authors discuss potential amendments, and share drafts of amendments, with committee staff before the amendment deadline.

Committee Amendments

Appropriations Committee staff is responsible for preparing amendments adopted in committee.

PILOT PROJECTS

Any bill that, in the judgement of the committee, establishes a pilot project will not be heard unless the bill specifies measurable goals, objectives, and time frames.

SUSPENSE FILE

Any bill with a fiscal effect in any fiscal year of $150,000 or more (any fund source) will, by a majority of members present and voting, a quorum being present, move to the Suspense File. "Fiscal impact" includes any fiscal effect on any fund source.

In addition, the committee will move to the Suspense File any bill the committee determines has the primary purpose of creating a task force, a commission, a work group, a pilot project or a pilot project extension, a report, or a study.

This provision shall not apply to deficiency or supplemental appropriations bills authored by the chair of the budget committee of the Assembly or the Senate or claims or judgements or settlements bills authored by the chair of the appropriations committee of the Assembly or Senate.

Authors should present all witnesses and testimony at the time of the bill’s first hearing, even if the bill’s provisions indicate a likely referral to the Suspense File. An author may waive their right to presentation.

The committee will hear a bill on the Suspense File just prior to the fiscal committee deadlines. When a bill is placed on the committee’s agenda as "From Suspense File – For Vote Only," no testimony will be taken and the authors need not be present.

CONSENT CALENDAR

The Chair will, with concurrence from the Vice Chair, prepare a proposed consent calendar for each hearing for noncontroversial bills with no significant costs that received no dissenting votes in the Assembly.

The consent calendar will be available at the hearing. Any committee member may remove a bill from consent or register a "no" vote with the secretary. If a bill is removed from the consent calendar during the hearing, the author will be notified by the sergeants to present the bill.

COMMITTEE ANALYSES

The committee will post its analysis of a bill on the Legislative Information System (LIS) website at least 24 hours prior to the committee hearing the bill.

In accordance with Assembly rules, a limited number of committee bill analyses will be available to the public in the hearing room immediately prior to the meeting.

AUTHOR ORDER

Authors are taken in the order in which they sign in with the sergeant. An author may take up all of their bills at the same time.

TESTIMONY

The committee considers all a bill’s effects and implications. However, the only aspect of a bill under consideration during a regular-order hearing of the committee is the bill’s fiscal impact. Therefore, authors should limit presentations to fiscal implications of their bills.

ROLL CALL VOTES

Bills may be passed by substituting the consent calendar vote or a previous roll call. Additions or changes to the roll will be permitted only immediately prior to, or just after, adjournment of the committee and only provided the outcome of the vote is not changed.

When the roll on a bill is called, members who are silent will be recorded as not voting.

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