The End Of The 2017-2018 Session Is Nigh!

The California legislature meets annually but but the legislative session is biennial.  Nevada's legislature in contrast meets every other year.  See Happy New Biennium!  The second year of California's current session comes to a close at the end of this month.  The last few weeks of the session when legislators typically make last minute amendments and sometimes a bill can be completely gutted and amended.  

In 2016, the California voters passed an initiative measure, Proposition 54, intended to put the kibosh on these end of session shenanigans.  Proposition 54 requires that a bill (including changes to that bill) be made available to legislators and posted on the Internet for at least 72 hours before the Legislature could pass it.  The Legislature may act more quickly in a gubernatorial declared emergency.  Even then, two‐thirds of the house considering the bill must vote to pass the bill.  This is only the second year with this measure in effect and it remains to be seen how effective it will be in curbing the practice of slipping fundamental changes in at the last minute.

Below are some key end of session dates:



Aug.  17

Last day for fiscal committees to meet and report bills (J.R. 61(b)(15))

Aug.  20-31

Floor session only. No committee may meet for any purpose except Rules Committee, bills referred pursuant to Assembly Rule 77.2, and Conference Committees (J.R. 61(b) (16))

Aug. 24

Last day to amend on Floor (J.R. 61(b) (17))

Aug. 31

Last day for each house to pass bills (Art. IV, Sec 10(c), J.R. 61(b)(18)). Final Recess begins on adjournment (J.R. 51(b)(3)

Sept. 30 

Last day for Governor to sign or veto bills passed by the Legislature before Sept. 1 and in the Governor's possession on or after Sept. 1 (Art. IV, Sec.10(b)(2))

Oct. 1 

Bills enacted on or before this date take effect January 1, 2019 (Art. IV, Sec. 8(c))

Tags: Legislation