After considering a bill, a committee may choose to take no action or may issue a
report on the bill to the house or senate. Committee reports are advisory only and
may take several forms. The committee may recommend passage of the bill without
amendments, or it may recommend amendments to the bill or even substitute a new bill
for the original document.
The committee report includes a record of the committee’s recommendations and vote
regarding house or senate action on the bill, including the recommendation regarding
placement on a calendar; the text of the bill as reported by the committee, which may
be the introduced text or a substitute; any proposed amendments; a detailed bill analysis;
a fiscal note or other impact statement; and other attachments as necessary.
In the house, all committee reports are referred to the committee coordinator, who forwards them
to the printer. After being printed, a copy of the house committee report printing is
placed in the post office box of each member of the house. The chief clerk then delivers
a certified copy of the committee report to the appropriate calendars committee (the
Committee on Calendars or the
Committee on Local and Consent Calendars) for placement of
the bill on a calendar for consideration by the full house. Calendars committees are
given wide discretion in scheduling bills for floor consideration.
The senate rules also require committee reports to be printed. After being printed,
a copy of the senate committee report printing is placed in the bill book on each senator’s
desk in the senate chamber. Except for the role of the Senate Committee on Administration
in scheduling local and noncontroversial bills for consideration, there is no equivalent
to a calendars committee in the senate. The senate’s regular order of business lists all
bills and resolutions that have been reported from a senate committee in the order in which
they were reported. During a regular session, the regular order of business is merely a
listing of bills that are eligible for consideration because the senate rules provide that
a bill on the regular order of business may not be brought up for floor consideration
unless the senate author or sponsor of the bill has filed with the secretary of the senate a notice
of intent to suspend the regular order of business for consideration of the bill.