The glossary is designed to familiarize
you with many of the terms and definitions
used within the Legislative Assembly.
Act: A bill which has been made law by passing both houses of the Legislature.
Amendment: A change to a measure.
Bicameral: A body made up of or having two houses, branches, or chambers. Oregon, for example, has a bicameral Legislature.
Bill: A measure that creates new law, or changes an existing law.
Capital: Refers to the capital city of the state: Salem is the capital of Oregon.
Capitol: The Statehouse, or Capitol building. Its address is: 900 Court St. NE., Salem, OR, 97301.
Chief Clerk of the House: The chief administrative officer of the House of Representatives. The Chief Clerk is elected by all the members of the House.
Constituent: A citizen residing within the district of a legislator (or other elected official).
Effective Date: The date a law takes effect. Usually it is January 1 of the year after the bill passed.
Enrolled Bill: A final copy of a bill.
First Reading: The reading of the bill's number, title, and sponsor by the reading clerk in either house. After the first reading, the measure is sent to a committee by the Speaker or President.
Hearing: A public meeting of a legislative committee.
House of Representatives: The legislative body of 60 members, called representatives, each of which represents a district of approximately 47,000 Oregon citizens.
Interim: The period of time between two sessions of the Legislative Assembly.
Lobbyist: A person who is employed by an organization to represent its interests before the Legislature.
Majority Leader: A legislator elected by his or her peers to lead the party having the majority in his or her house.
Minority Leader: A legislator elected by his or her peers to lead the party in the minority in his or her house.
Oregon Revised Statutes (ORS): The laws of the State of Oregon.
Page: A person who works on the chamber floors, and occasionally in committees, to distribute materials, open doors and pass notes. Honorary pages are guests of members who serve as pages for a day.
President of the Senate: The presiding officer of the Senate, elected by all members of the Senate when the Senate organizes for a regular legislative session.
Second Reading: Like the First Reading, a reading of the measureís number, title, and sponsor by the reading clerk. Second Reading occurs after the measure has been referred to committee, worked on, and reported back to the floor (in the house where it originated) for a vote.
Secretary of the Senate: The chief administrative officer of the Senate.
Session: The period of time in which the Legislative Assembly officially begins. The regular session begins on the second Monday in January of every odd-numbered year.
Sine Die: "Without fixing a day for a future meeting": the last day of a legislative session.
Third Reading: As in First or Second Readings, a reading of a measureís number, title, and sponsor by the reading clerk on the floor before consideration by either house, usually done before a final vote.
Veto: An action of the Governor in disapproval of a measure that has passed both houses. After a veto, the bill is returned to its house of origin with written objections. A Governorís veto may be reconsidered by both houses, and if it is again passed by two-thirds of the members present, it is considered overridden and becomes law.
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