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Maryland Manual, 1994-95
Volume 186, Page 42   View pdf image
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42 /Legislature Maryland Manual 1994-1995


through the legislative process within the 90-day
session. Therefore, legislators often try to introduce
their bills as early as possible. A bill filed with the
Secretary of the Senate or the Chief Clerk of the
House prior to the first day of a regular session is
called a prefiled bill. Such a bill is introduced (i.e.,
read across the floor) and assigned to a standing
committee on the opening day of a session, thus
obtaining a head start advantage. In 1993, some
175 Senate bills and 127 House bills were prefiled.


In addition to bills, legislators introduce joint
resolutions. Substantive in nature, a joint resolution
expresses the will, opinion, or public policy of the
General Assembly (Senate Rule 25; House Rule
25). They are subject to the same legislative process

as are bills, must be passed by both houses, but after
passage are not codified in the Annotated Code.
Joint resolutions that pass both houses are num-
bered and printed in the Session Laws for that year.
The Governor does not veto joint resolutions and
may or may not sign them.
Certain issues are required by law or the Consti-
tution to be introduced in the form of a joint
resolution and such joint resolutions have the force
and effect of law. Examples include salary recom-
mendations from the General Assembly Compen-
sation Commission, the Governor's Salary
Commission, and the Judicial Compensation Com-
mission; reapportionment plans for General As-
sembly membership required after every decennial
census; and amendments to the U.S. Constitution
submitted for ratification.


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Maryland Manual, 1994-95
Volume 186, Page 42   View pdf image
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