A Bill's Journey to Becoming a Law

Below is a brief explanation of the steps a bill takes to become a law. There are always exceptions, but this is a simple overview of the typical path. It's important to know where a bill is in the process so you know when and to whom you should send emails or call.

Bill is drafted

Filed in House

1st & 2nd Read

Committee

Rules Committee

Calendar

Perfected on Floor*
(amendments can be added)

3rd Read & Passed on Floor
(no amendments; roll call vote)

Filed in Senate

1st & 2nd Read

Committee

Calendar

Perfected on Floor*
(amendments can be added)

3rd Read & Passed on Floor
(no amendments; roll call vote)

Senate bill sent to House

House bill sent to Senate

Bill goes to Governor

If the House makes no changes to Senate bill

If the Senate makes no changes to House bill

If the House bill is changed in the Senate or the Senate bill is changed in the House, it must return to the original chamber for a final vote.

Truly agreed & finally passed

Truly agreed & finally passed

Truly agreed & finally passed

Truly agreed & finally passed

Governor signs bill into law

Governor vetoes bill

Governor does nothing; bill becomes law

*A bill does not get perfected when it has crossed over and is in the other chamber. It is third read and it can be amended during third read.