Let it be resolved that when new bills and documents are to be presented before the Senate, they will: -Be distributed in print to all Senators at the Senate meeting at least one week before they are intended to be discussed. -Even after the bill is distributed, the author retains the right to amend the bill as necessary prior to formal discussion of the bill. -Bill authors will be able to explain the bill and its rationale briefly during open comments on the date of distribution. -Have the author’s e-mail address (or some form of contact information) documented at the bottom of the bill draft. -Be submitted to the Policy Committee for consideration the Monday of the week before the date of distribution of copies of the bill to the Senate.
Rationale: -The current system of having bills and documents distributed to Senators through the FirstClass system has proven to be an ineffective means of allowing Senators to ponder topics before the actual Senate meeting. -Having a week to consider a discussion item on one’s own time or with committees before it is to be officially discussed in a Senate meeting is a vital part of the discussion process, as forethought allows for Senators to develop discussion points to make meetings more efficient and effective. -The author’s e-mail address on documents will allow Senators to contact each other outside of meetings. -Lastly, the Policy Committee’s primary function of bill review has been previously neglected, and should be practiced. Providing a copy of the bill the Monday two weeks before scheduled Senate discussion date will give the Policy Committee ample time to review and refine the bill.