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Legislative Lingo

Acronyms, Abbreviations, and Other Legislative Lingo

1525: 1525 Sherman Street. Building located north of the capitol across Colfax where the AG's office used to be and where some legislators now have offices.  

2nd reading: The time when a bill is being considered by the committee of the whole of either legislative chamber. (See also Glossary of Legislative Terms)

3rd reading: The time when a bill is being considered by the entire legislative chamber for final passage. (See also Glossary of Legislative Terms)

Billback: Colored stock paper (green for the House, beige for the Senate) enclosing a bill, which bears the bill number, sponsor, and dated history of the bill's action through the legislative process.

Billpaper: Final version of bill that's ready for introduction.Chamber: Room in which the Senate or the House of Representatives meets.

CDC: Capital Development Committee

Circle Parking (or "The Circle"): The parking lot surrounding the capitol.

COLS: Committee on Legal Services (See also Glossary of Legislative Terms)

Conference Committee: Assigned members from each legislative chamber who meet to work out language acceptable to both chambers on a measure. A conference committee is appointed if a measure is amended in the second house and the first house refuses the second house amendments and asks for appointment of the conference committee.

Conforming amendments: Amendments made to old law to make it conform or be consistent with the new law.

Co-prime: Additional prime sponsor of the bill. There may be no more than two co-prime sponsors on any bill. Also referred to as “joint prime.”

Co-sponsor: Sponsors who "sign on" after third reading of the bill with their endorsement of the bill.

Delayed Bill Form: Form attached to bills ready for introduction that the Senate or House Committee on Delayed Bills has approved for a delayed introduction date.

Division (head count vote): On second reading in the committee of the whole, a member may call for this type of vote, which means a standing count is taken of ayes and noes instead of a voice vote.

Floor: House or Senate chamber.

Floor Work: Legislative business conducted in the House or Senate, including second and third reading of bills.

HCPF: (pronounced "Hickpuff") - Department of Health Care Policy and Financing 

HCR: House Committee Room or House Concurrent Resolution (depends on context)

IP: introductory portion to a statutory section

JBC: Joint Budget Committee. (See also Glossary of Legislative Terms.)

Joint Prime: Additional prime sponsor of the bill. There may be no more than two joint prime sponsors on any bill and joint prime sponsorship counts against a legislator’s five bill limit. Sometimes referred to as “co-prime.”  (See also Glossary of Legislative Terms.)

LAC: Legislative Audit Committee

LCS: Legislative Council Staff. (See also Glossary of Legislative Terms.)

LIS: Legislative Information Services

L/O: laid over to later in the calendar

LSB: Legislative Services Building (south of the capitol - the old state museum)

Memorial: Nonstatutory legislative document that expresses one legislative chamber's sympathy on the death of certain persons or requests the United States Congress to take a certain action.

Old State Library: location of a large committee room on the second floor of the capitol, numbered as Room 271.

Old Supreme Court: Original Supreme Court chambers on the second floor of the capitol, now location for larger committee hearings.

OLLS or LLS: Office of Legislative Legal Services. (See also Glossary of Legislative Terms.)

OSA: Office of the State Auditor

PERA: Public Employees' Retirement Association

PI: postpone indefinitely (used in committee hearings). (See also Glossary of Legislative Terms.)

Prime: Prime sponsor of bill. (See also Glossary of Legislative Terms.)

Resolution: Nonstatutory legislative document considered by a chamber that pertains to the transaction of the business of that chamber, establishes investigating committees composed of members of that chamber, or expresses the will or sentiment of that chamber on any matter.

Safety Clause: The clause at the end of a bill that identifies the bill as necessary for the public peace, health, and safety and therefore exempt from the people's power of referendum. (See also Glossary of Legislative Terms.)

SCR: Senate Committee Room or Senate Concurrent Resolution (depends on context)

SEBEC/Strike Below: "Strike everything below the enacting clause"- an amendment to a bill that deletes the entire contents of the bill and substitutes different language.

Sergeant-at-arms: Persons who provide security and enforce House and Senate decorum.

Sergeant delivery: Billback delivery from OLLS to a Sergeant-at-arms, who will deliver the billback directly to the bill sponsor (the bill sponsor must then turn the billback in to the front desk so the bill can be introduced).

Session Laws: Compilation of laws passed during a legislative session. Found in tan books or online. 

Settled question: House of Representatives' rule that once a question has been "settled" by the House of Representatives body, it cannot be given further consideration except through formal reconsideration.

Sponsor: Additional sponsors of the bill who "sign on" before bill introduction and who are secondary to prime or  joint prime sponsors. 

SRC: Statutory Review Committee

SVMA: State, Veterans, and Military Affairs Committee

TABOR: Taxpayer's Bill of Rights

TLRC: Transportation Legislation Review Committee 

Tribute: Nonlegislative action that does not require introduction or floor action. Tributes usually take the form of expressing the congratulations, recognition, appreciation, greetings, or sentiment of the General Assembly.

The well: In the House or Senate chamber, the area between the front desk and the first row of members' desks where the podium is located.

WRRC: Water Resources Review Committee