Senate Rules Relating to Senators



RULE 37.

(a) No Senator shall absent himself or herself from the service of the Senate for as long as one day, without leave of the Senate. In case a lesser number than a quorum of the Senate shall answer the roll or a quorum call shall determine that a quorum is not present, the members present are hereby authorized to send the Secretary, the Doorkeeper or some other person for any or all absent Senators, as the majority of the Senators present shall agree. The expense of sending for an absent Senator shall be paid by the absentee, unless an excuse for non-attendance shall be made, as a quorum of the Senate shall judge sufficient. In which event, the expense of securing the attendance of such absent Senator shall be paid out of funds appropriated for the Legislature.

(b) No member of the Senate or any person who has privileges of the floor, except television cameramen, shall be admitted upon the floor of the Senate while the Senate is in session, unless properly attired.

Minimum standards of dress in the Senate Chamber and in committee meetings while in session shall consist of the wearing of a coat and tie by males and the wearing of a suitable dress or an appropriate blouse and skirt or pants suit by females.

Minimum attire for pages shall be the same as for members.

Whenever a special circumstance, such as injury, prevents a Member from meeting the dress requirements hereinabove cited, such Member shall, upon motion adopted by a majority of the Senators present and voting, be excused from the requirements of this Rule.

Whenever special circumstances arise relating to staff, the press and any others entitled to the floor, the Secretary shall decide whether such person shall be excused from the requirements of this Rule.

RULE 38.

[Reserved]

RULE 39.

(a) Except as provided herein, no member shall speak more than twice on any question under debate and none shall, without unanimous consent of the Senate, speak for more than one hour at each time on motions for the adoption of an amendment to a bill or substitute, a substitute to a bill, an amendment to an amendment, the bill itself, motions to concur or nonconcur, including a motion to nonconcur and request a committee on conference, or motions to confirm an appointment. Debate on resolutions and debatable motions (other than those above), shall be subject to a reasonable time limit not to exceed fifteen (15) minutes. The bill sponsor or bill manager may be permitted to speak to the question as many times as is necessary to facilitate the debate or the offering of amendments, and shall have the right to conclude the debate.

(b) Points of personal privilege by members shall be limited to five minutes. The Presiding Officer may recognize a Senator for a point of personal privilege only when the Senate is not engaged in business. When recognized for a point of personal privilege, a Senator may speak upon any subject not in violation of Rule 40, and the Presiding Officer may not otherwise define the subject matter as a condition for recognition.

RULE 40.

(a) Senators engaged in debate shall refrain from engaging in abusive and derogatory language in reference to other Senators or the Presiding Officer, or speaking without being recognized by the Presiding Officer, and shall immediately be called to order by the Presiding Officer if such practice occurs. When a Senator shall be called to order by the Presiding Officer, he or she shall immediately cease debating and the exceptional words shall be taken down immediately in writing by the Secretary; however, the Senator will not lose his or her time remaining for debate and may resume the microphone at the direction of the Presiding Officer.

(b) Senators engaged in debate shall address each other by their official title and last name or reference their geographical district of representation.

RULE 41.

(a) Smoking shall be prohibited on the third, seventh, and eighth floors.

(b) The use of cellular telephones and pagers shall be permitted on the Senate floor only on silent or vibrating mode.

(c) Any other electronic devices shall only be used in a manner as not to be disruptive to the Senate.

(d) Assignment of offices and desks shall be made by the Secretary of the Senate, subject to the approval of the President Pro Tempore and the Majority Leader.