Skip to main content Skip to office menu Skip to footer
Capital IconMinnesota Legislature
Skip Navigation Links

Frequently Asked Questions About the Minnesota Legislature

Open All

About the Legislature

Answer

1. What is the structure and function of the Minnesota Legislature?

Answer

2. Who determines the size of the Legislature?

Answer

3. How can I find the laws governing the Legislature?

Answer

4. What is a bill?

Answer

5. What is a resolution?

Answer

6. How do I find information about a bill if I don't know the bill number, bill author or anything else other than a general topic?

Answer

7. Who can draft a bill?

Answer

8. What is the process for introducing a bill?

Answer

9. Is unrelated legislation permitted to be attached to bills? Who decides what is germane?

Answer

10. What is an omnibus bill?

Answer

11. Are there rules governing bills that can be introduced in each body?

Answer

12. What happens when a bill has passed one body but not the other?

Answer

13. Is a bill dead if it fails on final passage?

Answer

14. What is a veto?

Answer

15. What are line-item and pocket vetoes?

Answer

16. Is there a limit to the number of bills a governor can veto?

Answer

17. Are there any legislative calendar deadlines?

Answer

18. Is there a timeline for the governor to sign bills?

Answer

19. Must every bill receive a committee hearing?

Answer

20. Can the Legislature override the governor's veto? Is there a limit to that privilege?

Answer

21. What happens to bills remaining on the various calendars at the end of the first session of a biennium?

Answer

22. How do I find bills on a particular subject that were passed in a previous session?

Answer

23. Where can I read an old bill?

Open All

Calendars

Answer

24. How do I find out what is going on in the House and Senate every day?

Answer

25. What is the General Register? What is General Orders? What is Special Orders?

Answer

26. What is the Consent Calendar?

Answer

27. What is the Fiscal Calendar?

Answer

28. What is the Senate Agenda?

Answer

29. How do I find out what items the Senate or the House will take up during a particular day's session?

Open All

Caucuses (Political Parties)

Answer

30. What is a caucus?

Answer

31. Are all the House and Senate employees partisan?

Answer

32. What are the political affiliations of the heads of the Minnesota State Agencies?

Answer

33. How are leaders in the House and Senate chosen?

Open All

Citizen Participation

Answer

34. How do I contact my legislator? How do I let a representative or senator know how I feel about an issue?

Answer

35. Are there legislator contact lists?

Answer

36. May I testify at a committee hearing?

Answer

37. What publications are available from the Legislature?

Answer

38. How do I get a copy of the red book, green book and blue book? What are the differences between each of the publications?

Answer

39. How do I subscribe to the House Session Daily?

Answer

40. How can I watch the Legislature on television?

Answer

41. Are there services for people who are deaf or hard of hearing?

Answer

42. How do I find out who my senator and representative are?

Answer

43. Are there specific services for people who are blind or visually impaired?

Answer

44. Who do I contact to schedule an event at the Capitol?

Answer

45. Is there a way I can send a bulk email to all legislators?

Answer

46. How do I find information about a bill if I don't know the bill number, bill author or anything else other than a general topic?

Answer

47. How do I schedule a press conference or reserve a room at the Capitol?

Answer

48. Are committee hearings open to the public?

Open All

Committees

Answer

49. What is a conference committee?

Answer

50. How are committee chairs selected? How are members assigned to committees?

Answer

51. How many members are on each committee? How many committees may each member serve on?

Answer

52. What is the purpose of a committee? What actions can committees take?

Answer

53. May I testify at a committee hearing?

Answer

54. How can I find the laws governing the Legislature?

Answer

55. Are there any legislative calendar deadlines?

Answer

56. Must every bill receive a committee hearing?

Answer

57. How do I find out about committee hearings?

Answer

58. Are committee hearings open to the public?

Open All

Copyright

Answer

59. Use of Information

Answer

60. Copyright Limitations

Answer

61. Ownership

Answer

62. Who do I contact for permission?

Open All

Disability Access

Answer

63. What is the Legislature's policy for assisting persons with disabilities?

Answer

64. Are public hearings wheelchair-accessible?

Answer

65. Are there wheelchairs available?

Answer

66. Is there a guide to the Capitol for visitors with disabilities?

Answer

67. How can I watch the Legislature on television?

Answer

68. Are there services for people who are deaf or hard of hearing?

Answer

69. Are there specific services for people who are blind or visually impaired?

Answer

70. Is the Legislature's website accessible?

Open All

Glossary of Terms

Answer

71. Legislative Terms and Definitions

Open All

Journals

Answer

72. What is the Daily Journal?

Answer

73. What is the permanent Journal?

Answer

74. What is the distribution of the permanent Journal?

Answer

75. Where do I find Journals of the House and Senate?

Answer

76. Is there a charge for the Journal?

Open All

Laws, Statutes and Rules

Answer

77. What is a law?

Answer

78. What are statutes?

Answer

79. What is a rule?

Answer

80. What is an act?

Answer

81. How do laws, statutes, and rules differ?

Answer

82. How can I find the law on a particular subject?

Answer

83. When do new laws go into effect?

Answer

84. Where do I find Minnesota Statutes and Session Laws?

Answer

85. How do I retrieve past Minnesota statutes?

Answer

86. What are the official versions of Minnesota laws, statutes and rules?

Answer

87. How can I find historical data on the Minnesota Legislature?

Answer

88. How do I cite Minnesota's legal sources?

Answer

89. When are the numbers assigned to the sections of the statutes?

Answer

90. How do I read the statutes? What do the italicized numbers at the end of a section mean?

Answer

91. Where can I buy Minnesota Laws, Statutes, or Rules?

Open All

Lobbying

Answer

92. What is a lobbyist?

Answer

93. Where do I register as a lobbyist?

Answer

94. How many lobbyists are there? What is their role in lawmaking?

Open All

Procedures (Parliamentary)

Answer

95. What is First Reading? How many readings does a bill get before the body can vote on it? Why?

Answer

96. Must every bill receive a committee hearing?

Answer

97. What is the Committee of the Whole?

Answer

98. What happens if a bill is defeated in the Committee of the Whole?

Answer

99. What are the House Rules and Senate Rules? Why does each body have them?

Answer

100. How are executive appointments confirmed?

Answer

101. What is Rule 26? What are Special Orders?

Answer

102. Are there any legislative calendar deadlines?

Open All

Representatives and Senators

Answer

103. What is the current pay scale for Representatives and Senators?

Answer

104. How do I find out who my senator and representative are?

Answer

105. How many members are in the Minnesota Legislature? How many are in the House of Representatives and how many are in the Senate?

Answer

106. Are there legislator contact lists?

Answer

107. How long are terms for Minnesota Representatives and Senators?

Answer

108. If a state Representative or Senator resigns or dies in office, how is the vacancy filled?

Answer

109. How do I run for election to the House or the Senate?

Answer

110. Do Representatives and Senators receive special rights because of their office?

Answer

111. How are leaders in the House and Senate chosen?

Answer

112. What are the rules regarding gifts for legislators?

Answer

113. Can I find out what bills my Senator and my Representative sponsored and how my Senator or Representative voted in a previous session?

Answer

114. How do I find information on former legislators?

Open All

Research

Answer

115. How do I use the legislative website to research legislative issues?

Answer

116. How do I cite Minnesota's legal sources?

Open All

Schedules

Answer

117. How do I find out what is going on in the House and Senate every day?

Answer

118. How do I subscribe to the daily and weekly House and Senate schedule e-mail distribution list?

Answer

119. How do I find out about committee hearings?

Answer

120. Are there any legislative calendar deadlines?

Open All

Sessions

Answer

121. Are there any legislative calendar deadlines?

Answer

122. When does the Minnesota Legislature meet?

Answer

123. What is a legislative day?

Answer

124. What is a session of the Legislature?

Answer

125. What is a flexible session?

Answer

126. What is a budget session?

Answer

127. What is adjournment sine die?

Open All

Staff / Employment

Answer

128. How many people work for the Legislature and what are their salaries?

Answer

129. Where can I find job postings and employment opportunities?

Open All

State Symbols

Answer

130. What are the Minnesota state symbols?

Open All

Visiting the Capitol

Answer

131. Do you have travel directions to the Minnesota State Capitol?

Answer

132. Where do I park when I visit the Capitol?

Answer

133. Are tours of the Capitol available?

Answer

134. Who is allowed on the floor of the Senate?

Answer

135. Who is allowed on the floor of the House?

Answer

136. Are visitors allowed to attend sessions of the Senate and House?

Answer

137. Is photography allowed in the Capitol building?

Answer

138. Who do I contact to schedule an event at the Capitol?

Answer

139. How do I schedule a press conference or reserve a room at the Capitol?

Answer

140. Is there a guide to the Capitol for visitors with disabilities?

Answer

141. What food services are available in the Capitol?

Answer

142. Is there a map of the Capitol available?

Answer

143. Are lactation rooms available?

Answer

144. Can I find out what bills my Senator and my Representative sponsored and how my Senator or Representative voted in a previous session?

Answer

145. How many votes are required in order for a bill to become law?

Answer

146. How do representatives and senators vote?