THE 2016 SESSION CALENDAR: A GUIDE TO THE DEADLINES
JAN 20 OPENING DAY – Hawaii’s constitution mandates that the regular legislative session starts at 10:00 a.m. on the third Wednesday of January.
JAN 22 LAST DAY TO INTRODUCE ALL NON-ADMINISTRATION BILL PACKAGES – Bills bundled together by common interest groups and accepted and labeled as a package by the clerks. You can view the various packages of legislation by clicking on the “Reports and Lists” button on capitol.hawaii.gov.
JAN 22 LAST DAY FOR ORGANIZATIONS TO SUBMIT GRANT AND SUBSIDY REQUESTS – Deadline for “Grant-in-Aid” (GIA) applications. Grants may be appropriated to nonprofit and other organizations for various public purposes that are recognized as priorities and are seen as complimentary to state government functions. Applications, information, and more specifics regarding the deadline appear under “Legislative Information” on capitol.hawaii.gov.
JAN 25 STATE-OF-THE-STATE ADDRESS – The Governor’s annual address to the assembled joint legislature. The address presents an opportunity for the Governor to report on affairs of state, and to put forth recommendations and initiatives. Many visitors come to the Capitol to hear the Governor’s speech and witness the proceedings from the gallery (accessible on the ground floor/atrium level).
JAN 25 LAST DAY TO INTRODUCE ADMINISTRATION BILL PACKAGE – This is what is known as the “Governor’s Package.” The bills are prepared by executive branch agencies for consideration by the legislature, and are introduced on behalf of the executive branch by the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives.
JAN 27 LAST DAY TO INTRODUCE BILLS – A bill is “introduced” when it has been filed with the House or Senate Clerk, who gives it a number (with an HB or SB prefix) and then puts it on the calendar for First Reading by the chamber. After First Reading, it is given its committee referrals which specify which committees must hear and pass the measure for it to succeed. Only legislators may introduce bills. [Note: At introduction, each bill is given a “Bill Status” webpage that can be accessed via the Legislature’s website (capitol.hawaii.gov) and used to track all the measure’s activity.]
FEB 11 TRIPLE REFERRAL FILING (BILLS) – All bills referred to three or more committees must be filed so that they can be in their second-to-last committee by the following day. (Note: A referral to a joint committee counts as one committee referral.) This deadline allows ample time for successful bills to make their way to the last committee in their originating chamber by the First Lateral deadline.
FEB 19 FIRST LATERAL (BILLS) – All bills referred to more than one committee (i.e., those with multiple referrals) must move to their final committee in the originating chamber by this day.
FEB 25 – MAR 2 MANDATORY 5-DAY RECESS – Hawaii’s Constitution mandates a 5 day recess between the 20th and 40th days of the regular session. Neither the House of Representatives nor the Senate convene or assemble formally in chamber on recess days. Committee hearings do take place.
MAR 4 FIRST DECKING (BILLS) – All bills under consideration for crossover to the other chamber must be submitted to the clerk of the originating chamber in their final form at least 48 hours prior to third reading. This “decking” ensures an opportunity for final review by the chamber’s members before being asked to vote on the third reading. Note: A bill must pass three readings in each chamber before being enrolled to the governor.
MAR 10 FIRST CROSSOVER (BILLS) – Deadline for bills to pass third reading in order to move (or “crossover”) to the other chamber. If successful, House bills are sent to the Senate and Senate bills are sent to the House for further consideration.
MAR 11 LAST DAY TO INTRODUCE SUBSTANTIVE RESOLUTIONS – Resolutions are legislative measures which may request action of a government entity or state the legislature’s position on an issue. They don’t have the force and effect of law, require only one reading in chamber, and are not enrolled to the Governor.
MAR 14 BUDGET DECKING – Deadline for submitting the spending plan developed by the Governor which estimates expenditures for the fiscal year or biennium and the proposed means of financing these expenditures.
MAR 16 BUDGET CROSSOVER – Last day for third reading of budget bills in order to move to the other chamber.
MAR 17 TRIPLE REFERRAL FILING (BILLS) – All bills referred to three or more committees must be in their second-to-last committee in the non-originating chamber by this date. (Note: A referral to a joint committee counts as one committee referral.) This deadline allows ample time for successful bills to make their way to their last committee by the Second Lateral deadline.
MAR 24 SECOND LATERAL (BILLS) – All bills with multiple referrals must move to their final referral committee in the non-originating chamber by this date.
MAR 29 FIRST LATERAL FOR CONCURRENT RESOLUTIONS – Concurrent resolutions require adoption in each chamber and are used to state the official position of the Legislature on an issue, or to request action formally without having to mandate it by law. All concurrent resolutions with multiple referrals must move to their final committee in the originating chamber by this date.
APR 7 FIRST CROSSOVER FOR CONCURRENT RESOLUTIONS – Deadline for passing the single floor vote for adoption required for resolutions in order to move from the originating chamber to the other chamber.
APR 8 SECOND DECKING (BILLS) – Deadline for submitting bills that have been amended by the non-originating chamber to the clerk of that chamber. This allows for delivery of the amended bills in their final form to the chamber’s members at least 48 hours prior to third reading.
APR 14 SECOND CROSSOVER (BILLS) – Deadline for bills to pass third reading in their non-originating chamber in order to “cross back” to the originating chamber.
APR 14 LAST DAY FOR THE ORIGINATING BODY TO DISAGREE WITH BILL AMENDMENTS – The deadline for the originating chamber to disagree with changes made to its bills by the other chamber. When the Senate and House disagree on a bill, members from each chamber can meet in a “conference” committee to reconcile their differences.
APR 18 SECOND LATERAL FOR SENATE CONCURRENT RESOLUTIONS –All Senate concurrent resolutions with multiple referrals must move to their final House committee by this date.
APR 22 DEADLINE FOR FINAL FORM OF BILLS PROPOSING CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENTS – A proposed amendment’s final form must be provided by written notice to the Governor at least 10 days prior to passing final reading by a 2/3 vote in each chamber. Once adopted by the Legislature, the proposed amendment is submitted to the voters, in the form of a ‘yes or no’ question on the ballot, for ultimate decision.
APR 25 SECOND CROSSOVER FOR CONCURRENT RESOLUTIONS – Deadline for passing amended concurrent resolutions in the non-originating chamber in order to “cross back” to the originating chamber.
APR 28 FINAL DECKING OF NON-FISCAL BILLS – Deadline for submitting non-fiscal bills for final reading by both chambers.
APR 29 FINAL DECKING OF FISCAL BILLS – Deadline for submitting fiscal bills for final reading by both chambers. Fiscal bills include appropriation or spending bills, tax credits, etc. that emerge from the fiscal committee (House Finance, Senate Ways and Means) of their respective originating chamber.
MAY 5 ADJOURNMENT SINE DIE – In Latin, “sine die” means “without a day specified for future meeting.” Adjournment sine die occurs on the 60th legislative day of a regular session, and indicates a suspension of the business of the legislature indefinitely. From this point, the Legislature will certify bills whose form both chambers have agreed to, and will transmit or “enroll” those bills to the Governor.
Contact PAR for information regarding the Governor’s deadlines. Public Access Room (PAR): phone 808/587-0478; email [email protected]; website LRBhawaii.org/PAR [12/23/2015]