Bills in State law

Note: The following is based specially in Florida law. For information about other State law , please research.

Introduction of a Bill

Bills are either sponsored by individual members of the legislature or by committees of the legislature. When discussing legislation, it is important to remember that a bill requires nothing: it only proposes change in the law. Session laws (acts) and statutes require or permit action.

While an individual member’s bill will not be heard by a committee until it has been formally introduced, the committees often hear “proposed committee bills” or “PCBs.”

These bills may eventually beformally introduced as committee bills, but they are heard by the committee before introduction for refinement and to avoid some of the technical amending procedures required of introduced bills.

Often a bill is substantially amended in committee, and it becomes a committee substitute. The committee substitute also may be amended into a new committee substitute, either in the same committee or when it is heard by another committee.

Consequently, because some bills may be heard by as many as three committees, the
final bill heard by the full house may be referred to as “the Committee Substitute for Committee Substitute for Committee Substitute for House/Senate Bill xxx.”

Depending upon the author’s approach, an article may discuss the legislation either by reference to the bill or to the act. However, the recommended course is for the basis of the discussion of passed legislation to be the act, with unpassed or earlier versions of the legislation discussed as the bill.

Passage of a Bill

Not all bills are passed by the legislature. In the final days of the legislative session, however, bills that are killed or die on the calendar or in committee may nevertheless become law. This occurs by amending another bill to include a second bill, in full or in part, or by including the thrust of the bill in the proviso language to the Appropriations
Act. Technically, when a bill is amended to include all or part of another bill, the amendment form is to state the number of the bill that is being amended onto the host bill. When this occurs, the legislative computer will indicate this information, but notice
may not be revealed to the chamber considering the amendment.

Bills with subsections

Sections of bills frequently have subsections that correspond to their proposed location in the State Statutes.

Location of Title on Bill

The title begins at the very top of the bill in a block-indented paragraph that may run on for several pages depending upon the length and complexity of the bill. In Florida, these titles will not be reproduced in the Florida Statutes , but they will appear in the Laws of Florida.

Subdivisions of Statutes and Bills

The State Legislature has its own way of referring to subdivisions within statutes and bills.

Appropriations Bills

The appropriations bill is essentially the same as any other bill, except that a single section of an appropriations bill may exceed 100 pages.



See Also

About the Author/s and Rewiever/s

Author: United States

References and Further Reading

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Spending Bills in Constitutional Law

From the Comparative Constitutions Project: Spending bills refer to legislation for disbursing government funds.



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