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Understanding the California Legislative Process

Author(s): Chris Micheli

Edition: 1

Copyright: 2020

Pages: 274

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Understanding the California Legislative Process is one of the few that is focused exclusively on the California legislative process. The book is a compilation of short chapters on the state legislative process. Although focused on California, the book provide insights into the legislative process that will apply in most of the 50 states. Beginning with a discussion about the Legislature’s powers as set forth in the state constitution, the bill delves deeply into the legislative process, including information about support entities, deadlines, types of sessions, and some of the challenges and obstacles found in the legislative process.

In addition, bill introductions and referrals, committee procedures and hearings are examined, as well as floor procedures, with a thorough review of bills and amendments. The book covers legislative publications and resources available, before turning to a discussion of ethics and the conduct of legislators and their staff.

Thereafter, the book examines some of the influences on the legislative process, such as interest groups and the media, before reviewing how to draft and analyze bills. As part of this review, several chapters address statutory interpretation and legislative intent and history research. The book also explores the role of the executive branch in the legislative process and details the state budget process.

The book concludes with a discussion about the many misconceptions of the legislative process and makes several suggestions for reform. Finally, the book includes several appendices including further reference materials for the reader and an index of topics for quick reference.

Section One – The Legislature’s Powers and Its Role as an Institution
Chapter 1:       Legislature’s Constitutional Provisions
Chapter 2:       Other Constitutional Powers of the Legislature
Chapter 3:       Legislative Oversight
Chapter 4:       Delegation of Legislative Power
Chapter 5:       Impeachment by the Legislature

Section Two – The Legislative Process
Chapter 6:       Basics of California’s Legislative Process
Chapter 7:       Following the Legislative Process
Chapter 8:       Officers and Leadership of the Legislature
Chapter 9:       Legislative Branch Support Agencies
Chapter 10:     Role of the Legislative Counsel
Chapter 11:     Legislative Lingo
Chapter 12:     Legislative Calendar
Chapter 13:     Legislative Deadlines
Chapter 14:     Regular v. Special Sessions   
Chapter 15:     California Legislature’s Organizing Session
Chapter 16:     Differences between the Assembly and Senate Processes
Chapter 17:     Challenges in the Lawmaking Process          
Chapter 18:     Legislative Process Obstacles

Section Three – Committee Procedures, Including Bill Referrals
Chapter 19:     California’s Legislative Committee System
Chapter 20:     Types of Legislative Committees
Chapter 21:     Joint Committees of the Legislature
Chapter 22:     Rules Committees
Chapter 23:     Legislative Committee Rules
Chapter 24:     Legislative Committee Staff  
Chapter 25:     Legislative Committee Hearings
Chapter 26:     Referral of Bills
Chapter 27:     Suspense File Process for Fiscal Bills
Chapter 28:     Other Ways of Defeating Bills          

Section Four – Floor Procedures
Chapter 29:     Conducting Business on the Floors
Chapter 30:     Making the Houses Run Smoothly
Chapter 31:     Legislative Floor Procedures
Chapter 32:     Three Readings of a Bill
Chapter 33:     Final Form of Bills and the 72-Hour Rule
Chapter 34:     Methods of Floor Voting
Chapter 35:     Vote Requirements for Bills  
Chapter 36:     Reconsideration of Bills
Chapter 37:     Bills on Consent
Chapter 38:     Concurrence in Amendments
Chapter 39:     Sending and Withdrawing Bills from the Floor
Chapter 40:     Role of Leadership Staff
Chapter 41:     Letters to the Journal Process

Section Five – Legislative Publications and Resources
Chapter 42:     Legislative Publications
Chapter 43:     Where to Find California Laws
Chapter 44:     Examining Legislative Records         
Chapter 45:     Daily Journals in Detail
Chapter 46:     Daily Files in Detail
Chapter 47:     Histories in Details

Section Six – Ethics in the Legislative Process
Chapter 48:     Legislative Code of Ethics
Chapter 49:     Open Meetings Laws 
Chapter 50:     Role of Legislative Ethics Committees         
Chapter 51:     Crimes Against the Legislative Power
Chapter 52:     Ethics for Legislative Staff

Section Seven – Influences on the Legislative Process
Chapter 53:     Interest Groups and Their Role in Policy Making
Chapter 54:     Media's Role in the Lawmaking Process

Section Eight – Legislative Advocacy
Chapter 55:     Insights into the Lobbying Profession
Chapter 56:     Negotiating Bills and Amendments
Chapter 57:     Sponsored Bills
Chapter 58:     Tracking and Analyzing Legislation and Regulations

Section Nine – Drafting and Analyzing Bills
Chapter 59:     Bills, Resolutions and Constitutional Amendments
Chapter 60:     Drafting Bills and Amendments
Chapter 61:     Types of Bill Amendments
Chapter 62:     Dissecting Bills in the Legislature
Chapter 63:     California Legislation and the Single Subject Rule
Chapter 64:     Germane Amendments          
Chapter 65:     Making Sense of Technical Amendments
Chapter 66:     The Unseen Part of Passing New Laws
Chapter 67:     Spot Bills
Chapter 68:     Gut-and-Amend Bills
Chapter 69:     General Versus Special Statutes
Chapter 70:     Effective Versus Operative Dates
Chapter 71:     Urgency Clause Statutes
Chapter 72:     A Bill’s Keys
Chapter 73:     Drafting Bill Analyses

Section Ten – Statutory Interpretation and Legislative Intent
Chapter 74:     Role of the Judiciary in the Lawmaking Process
Chapter 75:     Rules on Statutory Construction for Non-Lawyers
Chapter 76:     Legislative Intent and California Courts
Chapter 77:     Court Cases Affecting California’s Legislative Process

Section Eleven – The Executive Branch Role in the Legislative Process
Chapter 78:     Governor’s Role in the Lawmaking Process
Chapter 79:     Governor’s Constitutional Provisions
Chapter 80:     Enrolled Bill Reports and the Governor

Section Twelve – The Budget Process
Chapter 81:     Overview of the Budget Process       
Chapter 82:     The Impact of the State Budget on California Public Policy
Chapter 83:     Appropriations Measures
Chapter 84:     Governor’s Line-Item Veto Authority

Section Thirteen – Legislative Process Misconceptions and Reforms
Chapter 85:     Common Misconceptions about California’s Legislative Process           
Chapter 86:     Possible Legislative Process Reforms

Chris Micheli

Prior to forming Aprea & Micheli, Chris Micheli owned his own lobbying and consulting firm, Snodgrass & Micheli, LLC. He has substantial legislative and regulatory experience in the areas of state and local taxation, transportation, civil liability, privacy, insurance, labor and employment, health care, and procurement. He has represented a number of major clients including the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority, Mercury Insurance, Mattel, Lockheed Martin, Chevron/Texaco, the California Ambulance Association, and the California Grocers Association.

As a legislative advocate, Chris regularly testifies before policy and fiscal committees of the California Legislature, as well as a number of administrative agencies, departments, and boards. He regularly drafts legislative and regulatory language, and is considered a leading authority on state tax law developments and California's knife laws. The Wall Street Journal (July 1998) called him "one of the top three business tax lobbyists in the state." The Los Angeles Times (May 2005) described him as an "elite lobbyist," and Capitol Weekly (August 2006) described him as a "prominent lobbyist."

Chris has been an attorney of record in several key cases, having argued before the Supreme Court of California (just two years out of law school), as well as the Court of Appeal on several occasions. He has filed more than fifteen amicus curiae briefs in California courts. He has published over six hundred and fifty articles in professional journals, and more than one hundred editorials in newspapers and trade magazines, whose diverse subjects range from tax incentives to transportation funding. He writes regularly for several journals including the CEB Business Law Reporter and California Tax Lawyer.  His editorials have appeared in a number of daily newspapers, most of the business journals in this state, and all of California's daily legal newspapers. In addition, his work has been cited in court briefs, books, law review articles, and by the Congressional Research Service.

Chris is a graduate of the University of California, Davis, where he received his B.A. in Political Science - Public Service, and was named an "Outstanding Graduating Senior." He obtained his law degree from the University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law, where he was on the Dean's Honor Roll in his final year. He is admitted to practice law before all of the state and federal courts in California. Chris also serves as an Adjunct Professor at McGeorge School of Law where he teaches Lawmaking in California.  Additionally, Chris has been qualified as an expert witness on California's knife laws in superior court, and has appeared as an expert witness before the State Board of Equalization in several key tax cases. He resides in Sacramento with his wife, Liza, and children, Morgan, Francesca, and Vincenzo.

Related ISBN's: 9781792401510, 9781792416774

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