February 19, 2019
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Numbers show Maine Legislature has a lot of work to do, not much time

Ashley L. Conti | BDN
Ashley L. Conti | BDN
Lawmakers applaud during the 2015 State of the State address in the House of Representatives chamber at the State House in Augusta in this Feb. 3, 2015, file photo.

AUGUSTA, Maine — Sunday marks one month until the Legislature’s theoretical adjournment date. This is the time of year when the Legislature begins its scramble to finish its work for the 2015 session. Here are some numbers from the Legislature’s Office of Policy and Legal Analysis, accurate as of Friday afternoon, regarding their progress.

The big picture

1,421: The number of bills submitted by lawmakers, Gov. Paul LePage and executive branch agencies.

1,396: The number of bills referred by the House and Senate to the Legislature’s policy committees.

1,105: The number of bills that have had at least an initial vote in their committee of jurisdiction.

689: The number of bills that have been reported out of the committees, meaning they have been deliberated on and sent to the House and Senate for final enactment.

416: The number of bills that have been voted on by committees but have not yet been sent to the Legislature because they await the drafting of amendments or have been delayed until next year.

Divided reports

168: Of the 416 bills that have not yet been released from committees, this is the number that have divided reports. That means the committee recommendation was not unanimous. A report reflecting the majority of committee members’ position and a minority report often result from these scenarios. Both reports could be debated on the floor of the House and Senate, starting with the chamber in which the bill’s sponsor serves.

123: Of the 689 bills that have been reported out of committees, this is the number of them that have divided reports.

291: Total number of divided reports. Many divided reports result in open and time-consuming floor debates in the Legislature.

Bills that are ‘done’

549: The number of bills that have received final disposition. That means action on them is complete.

467: Of the 549 bills that have received final disposition, this is the number of them that were not enacted and are considered dead.

82: The number of bills that have been enacted, with or without the governor’s signature.

Vetoes

19: The number of bills that have been vetoed by LePage this year, including three new vetoes Friday.

10: The number of vetoes that have been sustained.

1: The number of vetoes that have been overridden with a two-thirds vote of both chambers of the Legislature.

5: The number of vetoes still pending in the Legislature.

Committee progress

Note: The information in this section was accurate as of Monday, May 11, but in general shows which committees are nearest being done.

93 percent finished: Marine Resources, which had 28 bills.

91 percent: Veterans and Legal Affairs, which had 101 bills.

89 percent: Transportation, which had 99 bills.

85 percent: Criminal Justice and Public Safety, which had 84 bills.

84 percent: Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry, which had 55 bills.

84 percent: Insurance and Financial Services, which had 51 bills.

79 percent: Environment and Natural Resources, which had 52 bills.

76 percent: State and Local Government, which had 68 bills.

74 percent: Education and Cultural Affairs, which had 127 bills.

74 percent: Labor, Commerce, Research and Economic Development, which had 148 bills.

71 percent: Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, which had 66 bills.

69 percent: Taxation, which had 116 bills.

60 percent: Health and Human Services, which had 168 bills.

58 percent: Energy, Utilities and Technology, which had 52 bills.

48 percent: Judiciary, which had 126 bills

5 percent: Appropriations and Financial Affairs, which had 58 bills including the mammoth biennial state budget.

Deadlines

7: The number of days left until the deadline for committees to finish their work.

1: The number of months until the Legislature’s statutory adjournment date of June 17.



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