A Senate resolution
adopting Permanent Rules of the Senate.
BE IT RESOLVED, by the Senate of the State of Minnesota:
The Permanent Rules of the Senate for the 84th Legislature
shall read as follows:
PERMANENT RULES OF THE SENATE
1. PARLIAMENTARY REFERENCE
The rules of parliamentary practice contained in Mason's
Manual of Legislative Procedure govern the Senate in all cases
in which they are applicable, and in which they are not
inconsistent with these rules and orders of the Senate and the
joint rules and orders of the Senate and House of
2. REPORTING OF BILLS
Every bill, memorial, order, resolution or vote requiring
the approval of the Governor must be reported to the Senate on
three different days before its passage.
(a) The first report, called the first reading, is made
when it has been received for introduction.
(b) The second report, called the second reading, is made
when it has been considered by all the necessary standing
committees and is ready for debate.
(c) The third report, called the third reading, is made
when it is ready for final passage.
3. BILL INTRODUCTION
Bills, memorials, and concurrent or joint resolutions
may be introduced by a member or by a standing committee.
The name of the author, authors, or committee must be
written on the bill, memorial or resolution. The number of
authors may not exceed five.
An original and two copies are required for
A member or a committee desiring to introduce a bill,
memorial or concurrent or joint resolution shall deliver it to
the office of the Secretary, and the Secretary shall promptly
deliver all the bills, memorials or concurrent or joint
resolutions to the President who shall present them to the
During the period between the last day of the session
in any odd-numbered year and the first day of the session in the
following year, a bill filed with the Secretary for introduction
must be given a file number and may be unofficially referred by
the President, with the approval of the Chair of the Committee
on Rules and Administration, to an appropriate standing
committee of the Senate. All bills filed for introduction
during this period must be presented to the Senate when it
reconvenes and must be referred to the standing committees
previously indicated by the President, subject to objection to
the referral under Rule4.9
4. BILL REFERRAL
The President shall refer each bill without motion to
the proper standing committee unless otherwise referred by the
A bill or resolution may not be referred to committee
or amended until it has been given its first reading.
A member may not object to a bill or resolution on its
All bills appropriating money, or obligating the state
to pay or expend money, or establishing a policy which to be
effective will require expenditure of money, when referred to
and reported by any other than the Committee on Finance, must be
referred before passage to the Committee on Finance.
All bills delegating rulemaking to a department or
agency of state government and all bills exempting a department
or agency of state government from rulemaking, when referred to
and reported by any other than the Committee on State and Local
Government Operations, must be referred before passage to the
Committee on State and Local Government Operations.
All bills creating a new commission, council, task
force, board, or other body to which a member of the legislature
will be appointed must be referred before passage both to the
3.1 Committee on State and Local Government Operations and to the
3.2 Committee on Rules and Administration.
All bills authorizing or increasing a sentence of
3.4 imprisonment to a state correctional institution must be
3.5 referred before passage to the Committee on Crime Prevention.
A bill introduced by a committee need not be referred
to a standing committee unless a question arises. It must lie
over one day before being given its second reading.
4.9 A member may question the reference of a bill during
the order of business of first reading on the day of
introduction. When a member questions the reference of a bill,
the bill must be referred without debate to the Committee on
Rules and Administration to report the proper reference. Upon
adoption of the report of the Committee on Rules and
Administration, the bill must be referred accordingly.
5. RECALL FROM COMMITTEE
With the concurrence of the chief author of the bill,
before the deadline for committee action on a bill, a majority
of the whole Senate may recall the bill from a committee and
re-refer it to any other committee or place it on General
Orders. After the committee deadline for action on a bill, 41
affirmative votes of the whole Senate may recall the bill from
any committee and re-refer it to any other committee or place it
on General Orders.
By a report of the Committee on Rules and
Administration adopted by the Senate, the Committee on Rules and
Administration, on request of the chief author, may remove a
bill from committee and re-refer it to any other committee or
place it on General Orders.
Memorial resolutions addressed to the President or the
Congress of the United States, or a house or member of Congress,
or a department or officer of the United States, or a state or
foreign government, joint resolutions, and resolutions requiring
the signature of the Governor must follow the same procedure as
bills before being adopted.
A resolution may not be changed to a bill, and a bill
4.2 may not be changed to a resolution.
When a member gives notice of intent to debate a
4.4 resolution not required to follow the same procedure as bills
4.5 and not offered by the Committee on Rules and Administration,
4.6 the resolution must lie over one calendar day without debate or
4.7 other action.
Upon the request of a member, the resolution must be
4.9 referred to the proper committee. If a question arises
concerning the proper reference the procedure provided by Rule
7. BUDGET RESOLUTION
The Committees on Taxes and on Finance must hold
hearings as necessary to determine state revenues and
appropriations for the fiscal biennium.
Within 30 days after the last state general fund
revenue and expenditure forecast for the next fiscal biennium
becomes available during the regular session in the odd-numbered
year, and after receiving from the Committee on Taxes a
resolution containing its recommendation on the maximum limit on
revenues and an amount to be set aside as a budget reserve and a
cash flow account, the Committee on Finance must adopt and
report to the Senate a budget resolution, in the form of a
Senate resolution. The budget resolution must set: (1) the
maximum limit on revenues and net appropriations for the next
fiscal biennium for the general fund; and (2) an amount or
amounts to be set aside as a budget reserve and a cash flow
account. The budget resolution must not specify, limit, or
prescribe revenues or appropriations by any category other than
those specified in clauses (1) and (2). If the Committee on
Finance recommends a maximum limit on revenues or an amount for
the budget reserve or cash flow account that differs from the
amount recommended by the Committee on Taxes, the recommendation
of the Committee on Finance must be referred to the Committee on
Rules and Administration before it may be considered by the
After the Senate adopts the budget resolution, the
5.2 limits in the resolution are effective during the regular
session in the year in which the resolution is adopted, unless
the Senate, acting upon a subsequent report of the Committee on
Taxes as to revenues or of the Committee on Finance as to
appropriations, adopts a different limit or limits for the same
fiscal biennium. During the regular session in the
even-numbered year, before the Committee on Finance reports a
bill containing net appropriations in excess of the general fund
appropriations in the current fiscal biennium estimated by the
most recent state budget forecast, the Committee must adopt a
budget resolution that accounts for the net appropriations.
After the Committee adopts the budget resolution, it is
effective during the regular session that year, unless the
Committee adopts a different or amended resolution.
Within 14 days after the Senate or the Committee on
Finance adopts a budget resolution, the Committee must adopt, by
resolution, limits for each major appropriation bill identified
in this Rule. After the Committee adopts the resolution, the
limits in the resolution are effective during the regular
session in the year in which the resolution is adopted, unless
the Committee subsequently adopts different or amended limits
for the same fiscal biennium. If the Committee on Finance or
the Senate combines two or more major appropriation bills into
one bill, the limits in the Committee resolution pertaining to
those bills are also combined, and the sum of the combined
limits applies to the combined bill.
The major tax and appropriation bills are:
(1) the omnibus tax bill;
(2) the early childhood education appropriations bill;
education appropriations bill;
the higher education appropriations bill;
the environment, agriculture, and economic
development appropriations bill;
(6) (7) the public safety appropriations bill;
the state government appropriations bill;
the transportation appropriations bill; and
the omnibus capital investment bill.
6.5A major appropriation or tax bill may not be divided.
After the adoption of a resolution by the Senate or by
the Committee on Finance, the Committee on Finance and the
Committee on Taxes must reconcile each bill recommended by the
committee with the resolution or resolutions. When reporting a
bill, the committee must certify to the Senate that the
committee has reconciled the fiscal effect of the bill with the
resolution or resolutions and that the bill, as reported by the
committee, together with other bills reported and expected to be
reported by the committee, does not and will not exceed the
limits specified in either resolution.
After the adoption of a resolution by the Senate or the
Committee on Finance, an amendment to a bill is out of order if
it would cause any of the limits specified in either resolution
to be exceeded. Whether an amendment is out of order under this
Rule is a question to be decided in the Senate by the President
and in committee by the committee chair. In making the
determination, the presiding officer may consider:
(1) the limits in a resolution;
(2) the effect of existing laws on revenues and
(3) the effect of amendments previously adopted to the
bill under consideration;
(4) the effect of bills previously recommended by a
committee or bills previously passed in the legislative session
by the Senate or by the Legislature;
(5) whether appropriation increases or revenue decreases
that would result from the amendment are offset by decreases in
other appropriations or increases in other revenue specified by
the amendment; and
(6) other information reasonably related to appropriation
and revenue amounts.
7.1 8. CONFIRMATIONS
Every gubernatorial appointment requiring the advice
7.3 and consent of the Senate must be referred by the President to
7.4 the appropriate committee. If a question arises as to the
7.5 proper committee, the appointment must be referred without
7.6 debate to the Committee on Rules and Administration for a report
7.7 making the proper reference.
An appointment referred to committee and not reported
to the Senate within one year after it was referred is withdrawn
from committee and placed on the confirmation calendar for
consideration by the Senate before adjournment of the regular
The final question on the appointment is, "Will the
Senate, having given its advice, now consent to this
appointment?" The question must not be put the same day the
appointment is received or on the day it is reported by
committee except by unanimous consent. Confirmation of the
appointment requires the affirmative vote of a majority of the
9. STANDING COMMITTEES
The standing committees of the Senate are as follows:
Agriculture, Veterans and Gaming
Crime Prevention and Public Safety
Environment and Natural Resources
Health and Family Security
Jobs, Energy and Community Development
Rules and Administration
State and Local Government Operations
8.1 10. APPOINTMENTS TO STANDING COMMITTEES
The majority and minority groups must each be
8.3 represented on all standing committees of the Senate
substantially in proportion to their numbers in the Senate. The
majority group shall assign the number of positions the minority
group will hold on each committee. The minority group must be
given adequate notice of its positions before the session begins.
Both the majority and minority groups shall appoint
their own members to fill the number of positions each group
will hold on each committee and budget division. The minority
group shall transmit notice of its assignments to the majority
group within ten calendar days after receipt of the notice of
positions available. The minority group may designate a ranking
member for each committee. Nothing prohibits a member of the
minority group from serving as chair or vice chair of a
committee, subcommittee, division, or commission. If the
minority group for any reason fails to make its appointments
pursuant to this rule, the majority group may make all the
committee and budget division assignments.
The majority and minority committee assignments are
subject to the uniform criteria governing committee assignments
applicable to both the majority and minority groups. The
uniform criteria must be promulgated by the majority group and
transmitted to the minority group together with notification of
committee and budget division positions available to the
The Senate resolution establishing representation on
all Senate standing committees must set forth committee
assignments as made by the majority and minority groups.
A member may not serve as the chair of the same
standing committee or the same division of a standing committee,
or a committee or division with substantially the same
jurisdiction, for more than three consecutive Senate terms.
This limit does not apply to the Committee on Rules and
Administration. This limit applies to time served as a chair in
the seventy-eighth legislature and thereafter.
After the organization of the Senate and after
consultation and advice from the minority leader, the Chair of
the Committee on Rules and Administration may add members to or
delete members from the standing committees.
11. APPOINTMENTS BY SUBCOMMITTEE ON COMMITTEES
The Committee on Rules and Administration may
constitute a standing Subcommittee on Committees, the report of
which within its jurisdiction has the effect of a report of the
Committee on Rules and Administration. The subcommittee
consists of five members, one of whom must be a member of the
Unless otherwise provided, the Subcommittee on
Committees shall appoint all members of commissions or other
bodies authorized to be appointed by the Senate and report the
appointments to the Senate.
12. COMMITTEE MEETINGS
All meetings of the Senate, its committees, committee
divisions, and subcommittees are open to the public. A meeting
of a caucus of the members of any of those bodies from the same
political party need not be open to the public. A caucus of the
Hennepin county, Ramsey county, or St. Louis county delegation
is open to the public. For purposes of this rule, a meeting
occurs when a quorum is present and action is taken regarding a
matter within the jurisdiction of the body.
Any person may submit to the Chair of the Committee on
Rules and Administration a complaint that members have violated
the open meeting requirements of Minnesota Statutes, section
3.055. A member of the Senate may submit the complaint either
orally or in writing; others must submit the complaint in
writing. Whether the complaint was written or oral, the Chair
of the Committee on Rules and Administration shall immediately
forward it in writing to the Subcommittee on Ethical Conduct
without disclosing the identity of the complainant. The
complaint must not be further disclosed without the consent of
the complainant, except to the members against whom the
complaint was made, unless the complaint was made by a member of
10.1 the Senate in writing under oath, in which case the
10.2 investigatory procedures of Rule 55 apply.
To the extent practical, a committee, subcommittee, or
10.4 division shall announce each meeting to the public at least
10.5 three calendar days before convening. The notice must state the
10.6 name of the committee, subcommittee, or division, the bill or
bills to be considered, and the place and time of meeting. The
notice must be posted on the Senate's Web site and on all Senate
bulletin boards in the Capitol and the State Office Building. A
notice must be sent to the House of Representatives for posting
as it deems necessary. If the three-day notice requirement
cannot be met, the committee, subcommittee, or division shall
give simultaneous notice to all of the known proponents and
opponents of the bill as soon as practicable.
A Senate committee, subcommittee, or division shall
adjourn no later than 10:00 p.m. each day, unless two-thirds of
the members present vote to suspend this requirement.
Committees, subcommittees, and divisions may not meet
while the Senate is in session without permission of the
Senate. The names of the members excused shall be printed in
A majority of its members constitutes a quorum of a
committee, subcommittee, or division.
Each standing committee of the Senate, including a
subcommittee or division of the committee, may at any time sit
and act, investigate and take testimony on any matter within its
jurisdiction, report hearings held by it, and make expenditures
as authorized by the Committee on Rules and Administration.
A standing committee, but not a subcommittee or
division, may require by subpoena or otherwise the attendance
and testimony of witnesses and the production of correspondence,
books, papers, and documents, in the manner provided by
Minnesota Statutes, section 3.153.
Upon the request of a member of a committee,
subcommittee, or division to which a bill has been referred, or
upon the request of the chief author of the bill, a record must
11.1 be made of the vote on the bill or any amendment in the
11.2 committee, subcommittee, or division.
Upon request of three members of the committee before
the vote is taken, the record of a roll call vote in a standing
committee must accompany the committee report and be printed in
A committee report may only be based on action taken
at a regular or special meeting of the committee. A report in
violation of this rule is out of order.
13. HOUR OF CONVENING
If the Senate adjourns without setting a time to reconvene,
the Senate shall convene on the next legislative day at 10:00
The President shall take the chair at the time to
which the Senate adjourned. The President shall immediately
call the members to order and, on the appearance of a quorum,
shall proceed with the regular order of business.
The President may call a member to preside. In the
absence of the President, the President Pro Tem, the Chair of
the Committee on Rules and Administration, or the Chair's
designee, shall preside over the Senate. In the absence of the
President and the Chair, the Senate may select a member to
perform the duties of the President. Substitutions do not
extend beyond adjournment.
The President shall preserve order and decorum, may
speak on points of order in preference to members, and shall
also decide all questions of order, subject to an appeal to the
Senate by a member.
An appeal is decided by a majority vote of those
present and voting. Upon an appeal from the decision of the
President, the question is, "Shall the decision of the President
be the judgment of the Senate?"
The President shall sign all acts, memorials,
addresses and resolutions. All writs, warrants, and subpoenas
issued by the Senate must be signed by the President and
12.1 attested by the Secretary.
Upon a finding by the Committee on Rules and
12.3 Administration that the President refuses or is unable to sign
12.4 any of the documents described in this rule, the Chair of the
12.5 Committee on Rules and Administration, or some other member
12.6 selected by the committee, shall assume the duties of the
12.7 President under this rule until the President is able to sign
12.8 the documents described or until the Senate elects a new
12.9 President, whichever occurs first.
12.10 15. ADMISSION TO SENATE CHAMBER
The Senate Chamber is reserved for Senate use.
A person may not be admitted to the Senate Chamber
except as provided in these rules. A member, an officer, the
constitutional officers, ex-Governors of the State of Minnesota,
members of the House, judges of the trial and appellate courts
and members of Congress may be admitted.
Past members of Congress or of the state Legislature
who are not interested in any claim or directly in a bill
pending before the Legislature may be personally admitted by a
member of the Senate.
An employee of either house may be admitted at the
request of a member or an officer of the Senate.
The head of a department of state government may be
admitted by the President.
A member of another state, provincial, or national
legislative body may be admitted to the floor by any member of
the Senate. A member of another legislative body who is
admitted to the floor may be introduced to the Senate by the
When the Senate is not meeting, a person who is not a
member may be admitted to the floor at the request of a member
or an officer.
Public hearings may not be held in the Senate
Chamber. The Senate Chamber may not be used for any commercial
The Retiring Room of the Senate is reserved for the
exclusive use of the members of the Senate at all times. The
Sergeant at Arms shall strictly enforce this rule.
13.315.10When a member-elect is sworn in, the member-elect may
13.4request that one guest be admitted until the member-elect has
13.5been sworn in.
16. PRIVILEGE OF REPORTERS
The Secretary shall provide space for news reporters
on the Senate floor in limited numbers, and in the Senate
gallery. Because of limited space on the floor, permanent space
is limited to those news agencies that regularly cover the
legislature, namely: The Associated Press, St. Paul Pioneer
Press, St. Paul Legal Ledger, Star Tribune, Duluth News-Tribune,
The Forum, Rochester Post-Bulletin, St. Cloud Times, WCCO radio,
Minnesota Public Radio, and Minnesota News
. The Secretary shall provide an additional two spaces
to other reporters if space is available. One person from each
named agency and one person from the Senate Publications Office
may be present at the press table on the Senate floor at any
time. Other news media personnel may occupy seats provided in
the Senate gallery.
The Secretary shall compile and distribute to the
public a directory of reporters accredited to report from the
Senate floor. The directory must include each reporter's
picture and news organization and a brief biography.
The Secretary must issue each accredited reporter an
identification badge showing the reporter's name and news
organization. The reporter must wear the badge when in the
In case of a disturbance or disorderly conduct in the
lobbies or galleries, the President may order them cleared.
A member may not introduce a visitor or visitors in
the galleries from the floor or rostrum of the Senate.
Smoking is not permitted in the Senate Chamber or
galleries, the Retiring Room, hearing rooms, offices, or other
spaces under the control of the Senate.
During floor proceedings, picture taking by persons
14.2 other than accredited news or legislative photographers, picture
14.3 taking with floodlights or flash units, and visual or audible
14.4 disruptions are prohibited. At all times, demonstrations and
14.5 food or beverages are prohibited in the Senate Chamber and in
14.6 the galleries.
Television recording or broadcasting on the Senate
floor is under the direction of the Secretary.
18. ORDER OF BUSINESS
The order of business is as follows:
1. Petitions, letters, remonstrances.
2. Executive and official communications.
3. Messages from the House of Representatives.
4. First reading of House bills.
5. Reports of committees.
(a) From standing committees.
(b) From select committees.
6. Second reading of Senate bills.
7. Second reading of House bills.
8. Motions and Resolutions.
10. Consent Calendar.
11. General Orders.
12. Introduction and first reading of Senate bills.
13. Announcements of Senate interest.
Under the order of business of Motions and
Resolutions, the Senate may by a majority vote of the whole
Senate temporarily revert or proceed to any other order of
19. PETITIONS AND OTHER COMMUNICATIONS
In presenting a petition, memorial, remonstrance or
other communication addressed to the Senate, a member shall only
state the general purpose of it.
Every petition, memorial, remonstrance, resolution,
bill and report of committee, must have an appropriate title,
and the name of the member presenting it written on it.
Every written communication distributed to members in
15.2 the Senate Chamber must have the name of the member or officer
15.3 distributing it displayed on it.
15.4 20. MESSAGES FROM THE HOUSE
15.5 A message from the House of Representatives that a Senate
15.6 bill has been amended, and the amendment, must be printed and
15.7 placed on the members' desks before a member may move to concur
15.8 in the House amendment. If the amendment has been printed in
15.9 the House Journal for a preceding day and is available to the
15.10 members, the Journal copy may serve as the printed copy.
21. OBJECTIONS TO COMMITTEE REFERRALS
A member may question the proper reference of a bill at the
time the bill is reported by a standing committee to which it
was previously referred. When a member questions the reference
of a bill, the bill must be referred without debate to the
Committee on Rules and Administration to report the proper
reference. Upon adoption of the report of the Committee on
Rules and Administration, the bill must be referred accordingly.
22. GENERAL ORDERS
The Secretary shall make a list of all bills,
resolutions, reports of committees, and other proceedings of the
Senate that are referred to the Committee of the Whole and
number them. The lists are called the "General Orders".
Items on General Orders must be taken up in the order
in which they are numbered unless otherwise ordered by a
majority of the committee.
General Orders, together with all bills required to be
included on it, must be electronically available or printed at
least one calendar day before being considered in Committee of
With the concurrence of the chief author of the bill,
a majority of the whole Senate may at any time take a bill from
the table and place it on General Orders.
23. COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE
All bills, memorials, orders, resolutions and votes
requiring the approval of the Governor must, after a second
16.1 reading, be considered in Committee of the Whole before they are
16.2 finally acted upon by the Senate, unless considered on the
16.3 Consent Calendar or as a Special Order.
The President may call a member to the Chair when the
Senate resolves itself into the Committee of the Whole.
The rules observed in the Senate govern, as far as
practicable, the proceedings of the Committee of the Whole, and
the Chair of the Committee of the Whole has the powers of the
President, as appropriate. However, a member may speak more
than twice on the same subject and a call for the previous
question may not be made.
Three members may request a roll call vote. The vote
must be recorded in the Journal along with the amendment.
The recommendations of the Committee of the Whole must
be reported to the Senate. The question is on the adoption or
rejection of the report, and no other question may be admitted.
The question may be divided to permit separate Senate action on
the report as to any bill.
On adoption of the report of the Committee of the
Whole, all bills recommended to pass must be placed on the
The Secretary shall make a Calendar of all bills,
resolutions and other matters approved by the Committee of the
Whole for final action. The Secretary shall place them on the
Calendar in the order in which they have been acted upon in
Committee of the Whole.
The Calendar must be electronically available or
printed at least one calendar day before the matters on it are
25. CONSENT CALENDAR
If a committee determines that a bill it recommends to
pass is not likely to be opposed, the committee may recommend
that the bill be placed on the Consent Calendar. If the
committee report is adopted, the bill must be electronically
available or printed and placed on the Consent Calendar after
17.1 its second reading. On the question of adoption of the report,
17.2 the question of accepting the recommendation that the bill be
17.3 placed on the Consent Calendar may be divided from the question
17.4 of adopting the report in other respects.
A majority of the whole Senate, or the Chair of the
Committee on Rules and Administration, may order a bill on
General Orders placed on the Consent Calendar.
The Consent Calendar must be electronically available
or printed at least one calendar day before the matters on it
If a member objects to consideration of a bill on the
Consent Calendar at any time during its consideration in the
Senate before the question on final passage is put, and that
objection is supported by at least two other members, the bill
is referred to the Committee of the Whole, and the Secretary
shall place it at the bottom of General Orders subject to Rule
22.2, except that it need not lie over one calendar day before
consideration in the Committee of the Whole.
26. SPECIAL ORDERS
The Chair of the Committee on Rules and
Administration, or the Chair's designee, may designate a special
order for a bill that has been given its second reading.
A special order may provide that the bill be
considered immediately, at a time certain, or after specific
other business is completed.
During consideration of a special order, Rule36.5
As nearly as applicable, debate on the bill and all
proceedings including amendments and substitutions must be
conducted as in the Committee of the Whole.
On any question, a member may request a roll call
vote, which must be entered in the Journal.
Unless it is otherwise disposed of, after
consideration a bill on Special Orders must immediately proceed
to its third reading and final passage.
A bill may not be made a special order if the chief
18.1 author has declined on three previous occasions to take the bill
18.2 up after it was designated a special order.
A motion or amendment must be written if a member
requests. It must identify the member or committee offering it.
When a motion is made, it must be stated by the
President. If it is in writing, it must be handed to the
Secretary and read to the members.
After a motion is stated by the President, or read by
the Secretary, it is in possession of the Senate, but may be
withdrawn by the author at any time before decision or amendment.
28. PRECEDENCE OF MOTIONS
When a question is under debate no motion may be made,
1. To adjourn.
2. To recess.
3. To reconsider.
4. To lay on the table.
5. For the previous question.
6. To refer.
7. To postpone to a day certain.
8. To amend.
9. To postpone indefinitely.
Motions numbered 1, 2, 4 and 5 above are not debatable.
These motions have precedence in the foregoing order;
but when a motion for the previous question has been made, or
the main question ordered, a motion to lay on the table is not
A motion to postpone to a day certain, to refer, to
postpone indefinitely, or to amend, having been decided, may not
again be put on the same day, nor at the same stage of the bill
29. MOTION TO ADJOURN
A motion to adjourn or a motion to adjourn to a time
certain is always in order. The latter motion is debatable
solely as to the time. When either motion is rejected, it may
19.1 not be renewed until further business has been transacted.
19.2 30. MOTION TO RECONSIDER
When a motion or question has been decided, a member
who voted with the prevailing side may move for reconsideration
on the same day on which the vote was taken or within the next
two calendar days or, if later, the first day the Senate meets
after the vote was taken. The motion takes precedence over all
other questions except a motion to adjourn or recess. When a
motion to adjourn is adopted before the disposition of the
motion for reconsideration, a motion for reconsideration must
lie over until the next succeeding day the Senate meets except
as provided in this rule.
When notice of intent to move reconsideration of the
final action of the Senate on a question is given by a member,
the Secretary shall retain the subject of the notice until after
the expiration of the time during which the motion can be made.
A notice of intent to move for reconsideration is not
in order after the Tuesday before the third Saturday in May, but
a motion to reconsider may be made.
A motion for reconsideration having been once voted on
may not be made again nor reconsidered.
31. MOTION FOR THE PREVIOUS QUESTION
Unless a motion for the previous question is made
specifically applicable to a subsidiary motion, it must be in
this form: "Shall the main question now be put?" If the motion
for the previous question is supported by a majority of the
members present, its effect is to put an end to all debate and
bring the Senate to a direct vote upon all pending amendments in
their order and then upon the main question.
On a motion for the previous question, a call of the
Senate is in order before the President submits the question to
On a motion for the previous question there is no
debate. All incidental questions of order, arising after a
motion is made for the previous question, and pending the
motion, must be decided, whether on appeal or otherwise, without
32. MOTION TO REFER
A bill or resolution may be referred to committee at any
time before its passage. If an amendment is reported on the
referral to any committee other than the Committee of the Whole,
it must again be read the second time, considered in Committee
of the Whole, read the third time and placed on final passage.
If the referral is to the Committee of the Whole it must be
placed at the head of General Orders, except when the referral
is from the Consent Calendar under Rule 25.4.
33. MOTION TO AMEND BILL OR RESOLUTION
A motion to amend must be written if a member
requests. It must identify the member offering it.
In drawing an amendment to a bill or resolution,
reference must be made, first to the number of the bill, then to
the page, and then to the line or lines where language is to be
stricken or inserted.
In filling blanks, the largest sum, the longest time
and the greatest distance must be first taken.
The title to a bill may be amended by the Secretary at
any time the bill is amended by the Senate.
An amendment is not in order to a bill on the Calendar
or after third reading without the unanimous consent of the
Senate unless it fills a blank, amends the title, is proposed to
the chief author of the bill by the Revisor of Statutes to
correct technical defects found by the Revisor while engrossing
earlier amendments to the bill, or is proposed to a bill on the
Consent Calendar before the bill is given its third reading.
34. MOTION TO SUSPEND RULES
A rule may be suspended by a vote of at least
two-thirds of the whole Senate.
A motion to suspend the rules for the purpose of
advancing a bill may be made only under the order of business,
"Motions and Resolutions".
An amendment proposed to the Senate or to the
Committee of the Whole that is not germane is out of order.
A non-germane amendment includes one that relates to a
substantially different subject, or is intended to accomplish a
substantially different purpose, than that of the original bill
to which it is proposed.
An amendment to insert a constitutional amendment is
not germane to a bill that does not already include a
Whether an amendment is germane is to be decided by
the President, who may put the question to the body if the
A motion to remove an amendment placed on a House bill
under Rule 45.1 is out of order if removal of the amendment
would make a portion of the House bill not germane to the Senate
companion for which it was substituted.
If a House amendment to a Senate bill is not germane
to the Senate bill, a motion to concur in the House amendment is
out of order.
When a member is about to speak to the Senate, the
member shall rise and respectfully address "Mr. (or Madam)
President." The member may not proceed to speak further until
recognized by the President.
The member shall speak only to the question under
debate and avoid personality.
The member may inform the Senate of the Governor's
position on a bill and on its status in the House of
In discussing a resolution, each member is limited to
36.5 A member may not speak more than twice on the same
question on the same day without permission of the Senate.
When a member is speaking, no one may stand between
the member speaking and the President.
A member may not speak without using a microphone.
All remarks during debate shall be addressed to the
When the President puts a question, or addresses the
22.3 Senate, no one may walk out of or cross the Chamber.
When a member is called to order, the member shall be
silent until it is determined whether or not the member is in
order. If a member is called to order for words spoken in
debate, the words excepted to must be taken down in writing by
the Secretary immediately.
37. ABSENCE OF MEMBERS
A member or officer of the Senate may not be absent from a
session of the Senate unless excused by the Senate. The name of
a member excused must be printed in the Journal.
38. CALL OF THE SENATE
38.1 A member may impose a call of the Senate requiring the
attendance of all members before any further proceedings occur
except a motion to adjourn.
38.2 Upon the imposition of a call, a member may request a
record of those present and the Sergeant at Arms shall bring in
the absent members.
38.3 When the Senate has been placed under call, a member
may demand that the doors be closed and that no member be
permitted to leave the Chamber until the matter or question, if
any, under consideration at the time of the call is disposed of,
or until the call is lifted by a majority of the whole Senate,
or until the Senate adjourns.
38.4 A majority of the whole Senate may excuse members not
answering the call.
38.5 A call may not be imposed after voting has commenced.
39. DIVISION OF QUESTION
39.1 A member may call for a division of the question when
the division is possible. A motion to strike and insert is
39.2 The defeat of a motion to strike does not preclude an
amendment nor a motion to strike and insert.
40.1 The President shall distinctly state the question
23.1 before taking the vote. The President shall declare the result
23.2 of the vote. If a member questions the result of a vote, the
23.3 President shall order a division.
23.4 40.2 A member may vote on a question or be counted on a
23.5 division only at the member's own seat in the Senate Chamber.
23.6 40.3 At any time before the start of voting on a question,
a member may request a roll call vote, which must be entered in
40.4 Unless otherwise ordered, a roll call vote, except
upon elections, may be taken by means of the electrical voting
system under the control of the President.
40.5 A roll call vote may not be interrupted except to
close the roll as provided in Rule 41.3.
40.6 A member or other person may not proceed to or remain
by the Secretary's desk while a roll call or division is being
41. MEMBERS TO VOTE UNLESS EXCUSED
41.1 Every member who is in the Senate Chamber during a
roll call shall vote upon the request of another member unless
excused by the Senate.
41.2 A motion by a member to be excused from voting must be
made before the question is put. A member wishing to be excused
from voting may make a brief statement of the reason for making
the request. The question on the motion to excuse must be taken
without further debate.
41.3 When members have had an opportunity to vote and fail
to do so, a majority of the whole Senate may, by motion, direct
the President to close the roll.
41.4 The vote on a motion to close the roll must be taken
without debate. No member is required to vote on the motion.
42. FINAL PASSAGE
The final question on a bill or other matter requiring
action by both Houses after its first and second reading, and
after the consideration in Committee of the Whole, is on its
43. TRANSMITTING BILLS TO THE HOUSE
24.1 43.1 Except when a motion to reconsider has been made as
24.2 provided in Rule 30, immediately after the passage of a bill or
other matter in which the concurrence of the House of
Representatives is requested, the Secretary shall transmit it to
43.2 On the concurrence of a bill or other matter of the
House by the Senate, or on the concurrence or disagreement in a
vote of the House, the Secretary shall notify the House.
44. ENGROSSING AND ENROLLING OF BILLS
44.1 The Secretary and the Engrossing Secretary shall
ensure that every bill, memorial, or resolution originating in
the Senate is carefully engrossed before it is transmitted to
the House of Representatives for concurrence.
All engrossing and enrolling of bills shall be done at the
direction and under authority of the Senate.
44.2 The Secretary shall ensure that every bill, memorial,
or resolution originating in the Senate is carefully enrolled by
the Revisor of Statutes before it is presented to the Governor
or filed with the Secretary of State.
45. COMPARISON AND SUBSTITUTION OF BILLS
45.1 A House bill, after its first reading, must be
referred as follows, unless there is a motion by the Chair of
the Committee on Rules and Administration or a designee of the
(a) If there is no Senate companion bill, the House bill
must be referred to the appropriate standing committee, unless
there is objection under Rule 4.9.
(b) If there is a Senate companion bill, the House bill
must be referred to the standing committee possessing the Senate
(c) If the Senate companion bill has been reported to the
Senate, the House bill must be referred to the Committee on
Rules and Administration, which shall report whether the House
bill is identical to the Senate companion bill. If the bills
are identical, the report must recommend that the House bill be
given its second reading and substituted for the Senate
25.1 companion bill and the Senate companion bill be indefinitely
25.2 postponed. If the House bill is not identical to the Senate
25.3 companion bill, the report of the committee must recommend an
25.4 amendment to the House bill that when adopted will render the
House bill identical to the Senate bill. Upon adoption of a
committee report containing the proposed amendment, the House
bill as amended must be given its second reading and substituted
for the Senate companion bill and the Senate companion bill must
be indefinitely postponed.
45.2 The Secretary shall prepare and submit reports under
this rule on behalf of the Committee on Rules and Administration.
45.3 A House bill placed on the Calendar by substitution
must not be given its third reading on the same day as the
46. CONFERENCE COMMITTEES
The Subcommittee on Committees shall appoint all conference
committees of the Senate and report the appointments to the
Senate. In the appointment of members of conference committees
between the two houses, the Subcommittee on Committees shall
appoint those who are in accord with the position of the
Senate. Whenever practical, the subcommittee shall give
preference to authors of bills in dispute and to members of
standing committees in which the bills were considered.
47. DISPOSITION OF BILLS ON ADJOURNMENT
Adjournment of the regular session in an odd-numbered year
to a date certain in the following year is equivalent to daily
adjournment, except that a bill on the Calendar, Consent
Calendar, or General Orders must be returned to the standing
committee other than the Committee on Rules and Administration
from which it was last reported to the Senate, unless otherwise
provided for by motion before adjournment. Bills returned to
committee under this rule must, upon request of the chief
author, be given priority for consideration by the committee in
the even-numbered year ahead of all other bills in the order in
which they appeared on the Calendar, Consent Calendar, or
26.1 48. PRINTING AND DISTRIBUTION OF BILLS
26.2 48.1 Unless otherwise ordered by the Senate, all Senate
26.3 bills that have been reported upon favorably or without
26.4 recommendation by a committee must be electronically available
26.5 or printed before consideration by the Senate or the Committee
26.6 of the Whole.
26.7 48.2 A House bill amended by the Senate must be
unofficially engrossed and electronically available or printed
when placed on General Orders.
48.3 A bill may be electronically available or printed by
order of the Secretary when amended after second reading.
48.4 A bill must be electronically available or printed
when ordered by the Senate.
48.5 Action by the Senate on a bill that has not been
printed is a waiver of the printing requirement.
48.6 To the extent practical, the Secretary shall provide a
copy of any bill to the public and may charge a reasonable fee.
49. JOURNAL AND INDEX
49.1 The Secretary shall keep a correct Journal of the
proceedings of the Senate and shall perform other duties
assigned to the Secretary.
49.2 The Secretary shall not permit Journal records,
accounts or papers to be taken out of the Secretary's custody,
other than in the regular mode of business. If a document in
the Secretary's charge is missing, the Secretary shall report
the fact to the President, so that inquiry may be made.
49.3 The Secretary shall supervise the recording of
proceedings in the Journal, the engrossing, transcribing and
copying of bills and resolutions, and generally perform the
duties of Secretary, under direction of the Committee on Rules
49.4 The Journal of each day's proceedings is open for
correction at any time during the session of the next day the
Senate meets. Unless corrected on that day, the Journal stands
49.5 The Secretary shall keep a record of all Senate and
27.1 House bills showing the status of each bill pending, until its
27.2 final passage.
27.3 50. ELECTRONIC RECORDINGS
50.1 The Secretary shall cause to be recorded on electronic
media the proceedings of the Senate, the Committee of the Whole,
and each standing committee, subcommittee, and division. Each
electronic record must be clearly labeled to show the name of
the body whose proceedings are recorded and the dates the
proceedings occurred. Each electronic record of the proceedings
of the Senate and the Committee of the Whole must be accompanied
by a log showing the number of each bill considered and the
places on the record where consideration of the bill occurred.
50.2 Within two working days after each Senate session, the
Secretary shall make a copy of the electronic record and
corresponding log of proceedings of the Senate and the Committee
of the Whole available to the Legislative Reference Library.
50.3 Within one week after each meeting of a standing
committee, subcommittee, or division, the Secretary shall make
the electronic record of the meeting available to the
Legislative Reference Library, together with an agenda showing
bills considered and any action taken on them.
50.4 Upon completion and approval of the minutes of the
meeting, the Secretary shall promptly deliver a copy of the
minutes to the Legislative Reference Library.
50.5 The Secretary shall keep a record of each session of
the Senate and the Committee of the Whole, each meeting of a
Senate standing committee, subcommittee, or division and the
date on which the electronic record of the session or meeting
was made available to the Legislative Reference Library. The
Library shall keep a similar record of all electronic records to
which it has been given access.
50.6 The Library shall provide committee staff with
reasonable access to Senate electronic records and shall provide
the public with convenient facilities to listen to them.
50.7 The Secretary shall make copies of Senate electronic
records available to the public for a fee determined by the
28.1 Secretary to be adequate to cover the cost of preparing the
28.2 copies. A copy must be provided free to a member of the Senate
28.3 upon request for use in legislative business.
28.4 50.8 The Secretary shall keep the original electronic
record and log of each session of the Senate and the Committee
of the Whole until the end of the period for which the members
of the existing House of Representatives have been elected, at
which time the electronic record may be preserved or disposed of
as the Secretary sees fit. The Legislative Reference Library
shall keep electronic records, logs, and minutes forwarded to it
until two years after the end of the period for which the
members of the existing Senate have been elected, at which time
they may be preserved or disposed of as the Library sees fit.
50.9 The Senate intends that testimony and discussion
preserved under this rule not be admissible in any court or
administrative proceeding on an issue of legislative intent.
51. OTHER DUTIES OF SECRETARY
51.1 The Secretary shall not issue a certificate
authorizing the payment of money by virtue of a motion or
resolution, unless the motion or resolution is voted for by a
majority of the whole Senate on a roll call vote.
51.2 The Secretary and the Engrossing Secretary shall
correct all mistakes in numbering the sections and reference to
them, whether the errors occur in the original bill or are
caused by amendments to it.
51.3 The Secretary is the agent of the Senate for the
purchase of supplies and services. The Secretary's records on
purchase of supplies and services are open for inspection.
51.4 The Secretary shall adopt administrative controls to
ensure that each member is accountable for the member's own long
distance telephone calls and that Senate telephones are used
only for Senate business.
51.5 By the 15th day of April, July, October, and January
of each year, the Secretary shall submit a detailed report of
Senate expenditures during the previous quarter to the Committee
on Rules and Administration.
51.6 The Secretary's public records may be inspected during
normal business hours.
52. SERGEANT AT ARMS
The Sergeant at Arms shall execute all orders of the
President and perform all assigned duties connected with the
police and good order of the Senate Chamber; exercise
supervision over the entry and exit of all persons to and from
the Chamber; see that messages are promptly delivered; see that
the hall is properly ventilated and the temperature is properly
regulated, and that the Chamber is open for the use of members
of the Senate at least one-half hour before the start of a
session; and perform all other services pertaining to the office
53. BUDGET AND EXPENDITURES
53.1 The Committee on Rules and Administration shall adopt
an operating budget for the Senate.
53.2 All propositions for the appointment and payment of
employees of the Senate or for expenditures of the Legislature,
other than those provided by law, must be referred without
debate to the Committee on Rules and Administration.
54.1 The Committee on Rules and Administration shall
establish positions, set compensation, appoint employees, and
authorize expense reimbursement for employees as it deems
necessary to carry out the work of the Senate. At the request
of any committee member, an action of the committee must be
submitted as a Senate resolution for adoption by the Senate.
54.2 The Secretary shall keep a roster of all employees of
the Senate, including positions and compensation, which must be
open for inspection by the public.
54.3 The Secretary shall post, in a public place in the
Capitol, a notice of every vacant position on the permanent
staff of the Senate. The notice must remain posted for at least
two weeks, and no vacancy may be filled until the period of
posting has elapsed.
54.4 Except as otherwise provided in these rules, the
30.1 Committee on Rules and Administration has full and exclusive
30.2 authority over, and charge of all employees of the Senate both
30.3 elected and appointed. The committee has the sole and exclusive
30.4 power and authority to assign them to duties other than for
which they were elected or appointed as the committee may
54.5 The committee may make employment rules and
regulations. In case of violation of an order of the committee
by an employee, or in case of a violation of a rule or
regulation made by the committee, or in case of misconduct or
omission by an employee, the Committee on Rules and
Administration may hear complaints and discharge the employee or
impose discipline, a fine, or other punishment upon the employee.
54.6 The Secretary shall supervise the employees under the
direction of the Committee on Rules and Administration.
55. SUBCOMMITTEE ON ETHICAL CONDUCT
55.1 The Subcommittee on Committees shall appoint a
Subcommittee on Ethical Conduct of the Committee on Rules and
Administration consisting of four members, two from the majority
group and two from the minority group.
55.2 The subcommittee shall serve in an advisory capacity
to a member or employee upon written request and shall issue
recommendations to the member or employee. A member may request
the subcommittee to provide its advice on a potential conflict
of interest to the member in private. If so requested, the
subcommittee shall conduct its proceedings on the advisory
opinion in private. The request, proceedings on the request,
and any advice given by the subcommittee in response to the
request must remain private. The member may not use an advisory
opinion from the subcommittee as a defense to a complaint under
this rule unless the opinion has been adopted by the
subcommittee at a public meeting.
55.3 The subcommittee shall investigate a complaint by a
member of the Senate in writing under oath received before
adjournment sine die in the last year of a senate term or during
30.36a special session held after that time
31.1 conduct by a member or employee of the Senate. The subcommittee
31.2 has the powers of a standing committee to issue subpoenas under
31.3 Minnesota Statutes, section 3.153.
55.4 Within 30 days after receiving a complaint, the
subcommittee must meet and either make a finding of no probable
cause, vote to defer action until a certain time, or proceed
with its investigation.
55.5 In order to determine whether there is probable cause
to believe that improper conduct has occurred, the subcommittee
may, by a vote of three of its members, conduct a preliminary
inquiry in executive session to which the open meeting
requirements of Rules 12.1 to 12.3 do not apply. The executive
session may be ordered by a vote of three of its members
whenever the subcommittee determines that matters relating to
probable cause are likely to be discussed. The executive
session must be limited to matters relating to probable cause.
Upon a finding of probable cause, further proceedings on the
complaint are open to the public.
55.6 The subcommittee may appoint special counsel to
provide expert advice on how to conduct its proceedings. The
subcommittee may appoint a suitable person to conduct the
investigation and report findings of fact and recommendations
for action to the subcommittee.
55.7 If, after investigation, the subcommittee finds the
complaint substantiated by the evidence, it shall recommend to
the Committee on Rules and Administration appropriate
55.8 To minimize disruption of its public proceedings, the
subcommittee may require that television coverage be pooled or
be provided by Senate media services.
55.9 If criminal proceedings relating to the same conduct
have begun, the subcommittee may defer its proceedings until the
criminal proceedings have been completed.
55.10 The Senate intends that proceedings of the
Subcommittee on Ethical Conduct not be admissible in any
56. STANDARDS OF ETHICAL CONDUCT
56.1 Members shall adhere to the highest standard of
ethical conduct as embodied in the Minnesota Constitution, state
law, and these rules.
This standard applies until the
32.5 legislature has adjourned sine die in the last year of a senate
56.2 A member shall not publish or distribute written
material if the member knows or has reason to know that the
material includes any statement that is false or clearly
misleading, concerning a public policy issue or concerning the
member's or another member's voting record or position on a
public policy issue.
56.3 Improper conduct includes conduct that violates a rule
or administrative policy of the Senate, that violates accepted
norms of Senate behavior, that betrays the public trust, or that
tends to bring the Senate into dishonor or disrepute.
57. CONFLICTS OF INTEREST
A member who in the discharge of senatorial duties would be
required to take an action or make a decision that would
substantially affect the member's financial interests or those
of an associated business, unless the effect on the member is no
greater than on others in the member's business classification,
profession, or occupation, shall disclose the potential conflict
of interest by following the procedure set forth in Minnesota
Statutes, section 10A.07.
58.1 A lobbyist shall not appear before a Senate committee
pursuant to the lobbyist's employment unless the lobbyist is in
compliance with the law requiring lobbyist registration,
Minnesota Statutes, sections 10A.03 to 10A.06. A lobbyist, when
appearing before a committee, shall disclose to the committee on
whose behalf the lobbyist speaks and the purpose of the
A lobbyist shall not knowingly, either directly or
32.35through a third party,
furnish false or misleading information
or make a false or misleading statement that is relevant and
33.1 material to a matter before the Senate or any of its committees
33.2 when the lobbyist knows or should know it will influence the
33.3 judgment or action of the Senate or any of its committees,
33.4 subcommittees, or divisions.
The Subcommittee on Ethical Conduct shall
investigate a complaint by a member of the Senate in writing
under oath received
during a legislative session before
33.8adjournment sine die in the last year of a Senate term or during
33.9a special session held after that time
that a lobbyist has
violated Rule 58.1 or 58.2
. The investigatory procedures of
Rule 55 apply, except as provided in this rule. The complaint
and proceedings on the complaint are private until the
subcommittee has found probable cause to believe that a
violation of Rule 58.1 or 58.2
has occurred, unless they are
made public by the lobbyist whose conduct is the subject of the
complaint or by the vote of at least three members of the
59. AMENDMENTS TO RULES
Every proposition to amend a rule of the Senate must be
referred to the Committee on Rules and Administration. The
proposition may not be acted upon until the report of the
committee is received by the Senate.