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TO AMEND RULE 32, RELATING TO THE ORDER OF BUSINESS OF THE SENATE, TO PROVIDE THAT A BILL OR RESOLUTION COSPONSORED BY TWENTY-SEVEN OR MORE MEMBERS AT THE TIME OF INTRODUCTION IS CONSIDERED A CONSENSUS BILL AND MUST BE PLACED ON THE CALENDAR WITHOUT REFERENCE, TO PROVIDE THAT A CONSENSUS BILL MUST BE PRINTED ON THE CALENDAR FOR THREE STATEWIDE LEGISLATIVE DAYS PRIOR TO CONSIDERATION, AND TO ESTABLISH AN ORDER OF BUSINESS TO CONSIDER CONTESTED CONSENSUS BILLS.
Be it resolved by the Senate:
That Rule 32 of the Rules of the Senate is amended to read:
1. Called to Order by the President
2. Prayer by the Chaplain
3. Pledge of Allegiance
4. Receipt of Communications
5. Introduction and reference of new Bills and Resolutions
6. Call of the Uncontested local Third Reading Calendar
7. Call of the Uncontested local Second Reading Calendar
8. Call of the Uncontested Statewide Third Reading Calendar
9. Call of the Uncontested Statewide Second Reading Calendar
10. Motion Period
11. Acts returned by the Governor
12. Reports of Committees of Conference and Free Conference
13. Bills and Resolutions returned from the House of Representatives
14. Interrupted Debate
15. Adjourned Debate
16. Special Order
17. Consensus Bills
18. Call of the contested Statewide Third Reading Calendar
1819. Call of the contested Statewide Second Reading Calendar
1920. Call of the contested local Calendar
The order of business above provided for may be varied by vote of two thirds (2/3) of the Senators present and voting and any order or business already completed may be reverted to in any legislative day by the vote of two thirds (2/3) of the Senators present and voting. A motion to vary the order of the day shall be in order, prior to, or at the completion of, any orders enumerated above or during the motion period and any such motion shall be decided without debate.
For the order of business designated as Interrupted Debate there shall not be more than one (1) Bill in this status at any one time provided however, that this limitation shall not apply to the General Appropriation Bill. For the order of business designated as Adjourned Debate there shall not be more than two (2) Bills in this status at any one time. For the order of business designated as Special Order there shall not be more than three (3) Bills on second reading and three (3) Bills on third reading in this status at any one time. Provided that of the Special Order slots, one (1) shall be reserved exclusively for Bills which are the subject of motions authorized by the Rules Committee and made by the Chairman of the Rules Committee or his or her designee, and provided only one bill may be in this status on any reading at any one time. The Bills occupying the slot reserved for the Rules Committee shall have a unique notation to call such status to the Senate's attention.
When a Bill or Resolution is returned from the House of Representatives or an Act or Joint Resolution is returned by the Governor with his or her objections, the message shall be read and the matter placed on the Calendar for consideration the next legislative day. However, in the final two (2) weeks before the date set for sine die adjournment, this requirement may be waived upon a motion adopted at the time the message is read in which case the matter will be considered when the Senate reaches that order of business. Such motion shall be decided without debate.
On any legislative day, a Senator may move no more than three Bills or Resolutions from the Uncontested Statewide Calendar to the Contested Statewide Calendar.
During the motion period, a motion may be made by the Chairman of the Rules Committee to call any Bill or Resolution, which has been on the calendar for a minimum of six (6) statewide legislative days, from the Contested Calendar. Except for explanatory remarks, such motions shall be determined without debate and by a majority of the Senators present and voting. If agreed to, the Bill or Resolution shall be considered in the ordinary course of business after Special Orders.
However, in the final two (2) weeks before sine die adjournment, a Bill or Resolution which is on the calendar, may be called from the Contested Calendar by the Rules Committee upon majority vote of the committee and shall be considered in the ordinary course of business after Special Orders.
If a Bill or Resolution is returned from the House of Representatives with amendments that add subject matter that is not germane to the Bill as passed by the Senate pursuant to Rule 24 or that is substantially similar to a bill on the Senate Calendar or in a standing committee of the Senate or a subcommittee thereof, the President must, upon recommendation of the President Pro Tempore or his designee, refer the matter to the Standing Committee with jurisdiction over the bill. After which, the Bill or Resolution may be reported to the full Senate to be considered when the Senate next reaches that order of business. All bills returned from the House of Representatives shall be subject to debate as provided for bills on third reading in Rule 15A. The referral required under this provision may be waived by three fifths (3/5) of the Senators present and voting upon motion of any Senator at the time of referral and the debate on any such motion is limited to no more than twenty (20) minutes, ten (10) minutes for and ten (10) minutes against.
Notwithstanding the provisions of Rule 32A, during the final three (3) statewide legislative days prior to the date set for Sine Die adjournment, reports of committees of conference and free conference and Sine Die Resolutions shall be in order at any time except when a question of order has been raised, when the Senate is voting on any matter, while ascertaining a quorum, or when a Senator who has been recognized prior thereto makes a motion to adjourn.
Notwithstanding the requirements of Rule 19, a Bill or Resolution that has twenty-seven or more cosponsors in addition to the main sponsor at the time of introduction is considered a Consensus Bill or Resolution and shall be ordered placed on the calendar without reference. A Consensus Bill or Resolution must be printed on the Calendar for three statewide legislative days before it may be considered. An uncontested Consensus Bill or Resolution will be considered in the ordinary course of business on the Uncontested Calendar. A contested Consensus Bill or Resolution must be considered in the order of business dedicated for that purpose by this rule and must be considered on each reading in the order with which the bill or resolution was placed on the Calendar. If a Bill or Resolution that has been referred to committee attains twenty-seven or more cosponsors, any member may make a motion to recall the Bill or Resolution at any time between the call of orders of business or during the motion period and the Bill or Resolution may be recalled from committee by a majority vote of the Senators present and voting. A Bill or Resolution recalled pursuant to this subsection must be treated as a Consensus Bill upon being recalled."
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