March 2 2005 Understanding the Roles and

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March 2, 2005 • Understanding the Roles and Clout of Committees – Discussion of March 2, 2005 • Understanding the Roles and Clout of Committees – Discussion of Lobbyists Roles – Introduction of Legislation – Oleszek (Chapter 3) – King (Chapter 2) – Setting Course (Chapters 1 -7)

“Preliminary Legislative Action” from Congressional Procedures and the Policy Process -Walter J. Oleszek “Preliminary Legislative Action” from Congressional Procedures and the Policy Process -Walter J. Oleszek

Categories of Bills • Bills Lacking Wide Support – Introduced with no expectation of Categories of Bills • Bills Lacking Wide Support – Introduced with no expectation of passage – Die in committee • Noncontroversial Bills – Expedited – Passed on Floor with little debate • Major Legislation – Executive Branch Bills – Influential Members’ Bills – Must Pass Legislation

Bill Referral Procedure • Receives a number: H. R. in House; S in Senate Bill Referral Procedure • Receives a number: H. R. in House; S in Senate • Speaker assigns bill to committee – Parliamentarians make assignment on behalf of Speaker • Referrals typically routine but committees clash over turf • Representative can only appeal assignment in instances of erroneous assignment

Legislative Drafting/ Referral Strategy • Draft bill in such a way that it is Legislative Drafting/ Referral Strategy • Draft bill in such a way that it is referred to a favorable committee • Technique 1: word it ambiguously so the Presiding Officer has options • Technique 2: amend existing laws over which a committee has jurisdiction • Know precedents regarding bill referral • Parliamentarians provide advice to staff about referrals

Referral to Several Committees • Committees often share jurisdiction – Formal – Informal • Referral to Several Committees • Committees often share jurisdiction – Formal – Informal • Speaker allowed to refer bill to multiple committees since 1975 – Joint – Sequential – Split • May create ad hoc committees to deal with bills that overlap jurisdiction of several committees • 1995: Joint referrals abolished, but sequential and split are allowed

Consideration in Committee • Options – Consider and Report the Bill • With amendments Consideration in Committee • Options – Consider and Report the Bill • With amendments or recommendation • Without amendments or recommendation – Rewrite bill entirely – Reject bill – Refuse to consider bill

Consideration in Committee • Whole Committee may consider bill • Often Chair sends bill Consideration in Committee • Whole Committee may consider bill • Often Chair sends bill to subcommittee – – Public hearings or No Public Hearings Approve, rewrite, amend or block bill Mark Up: consider the bill line by line Report bill to full Committee • Whole Committee may repeat subcommittee’s procedures in whole or part • If bill passes Committee, it is sent for consideration for Floor debate with a Report (statement of committee action)

Role of Committee Chair • • Controls committees legislative agenda Refers bills to subcommittees Role of Committee Chair • • Controls committees legislative agenda Refers bills to subcommittees Controls committee finances Hires/Fires committee staff May refuse to consider a bill May refuse to recognize member for questions Used to be determined by Seniority Now subject to majority selection within caucuses

Hearings • Format – Traditional, Panel, Field, Joint, High Tech • Purpose – Public Hearings • Format – Traditional, Panel, Field, Joint, High Tech • Purpose – Public record of committee members’ and interest groups’ positions – Orchestrated – Testimony solicited and taken • Timing – Chairs may delay or schedule hearings to affect outcome of legislation

Markup • Line-by-Line review of legislation by committee members • May implement formal or Markup • Line-by-Line review of legislation by committee members • May implement formal or informal procedures • House markups occur at subcommittee and full committee levels usually • 1/3 membership needed for quorum, majority needed to report bill

Markup Procedures • Usually in open session • Issues decided by voice vote or Markup Procedures • Usually in open session • Issues decided by voice vote or show of hands • Proxy: allowing a member to cast a vote for an absent member – Banned by Republican Majority – Modified rule allows Chairs to reschedule vote when they are certain of majority support

Report • Written statement of committee action that accompanies a bill that has passed Report • Written statement of committee action that accompanies a bill that has passed committee – Describes purpose and scope of bill – Explains committee revisions – Outlines proposes changes to existing laws – Outlines views of Executive Branch agencies affected – Committee members may file Minority, Supplemental or additional views

Bypassing Committees • Committee Power has diminished compared to Party Power • Techniques to Bypassing Committees • Committee Power has diminished compared to Party Power • Techniques to Bypass – Partisan Task Forces – Riders to Appropriations Bills – House Rules Committee can send bills to floor without previous committee consideration • Reasons – Time, Partisanship, Committee Gridlock, Electoral Salience, Consensus

“The Nature of Committee Jurisdiction” from Turf Wars -David C. King “The Nature of Committee Jurisdiction” from Turf Wars -David C. King

Committee Borders “Jurisdictions are, at once, both rigid and flexible. ” • Sources of Committee Borders “Jurisdictions are, at once, both rigid and flexible. ” • Sources of Jurisdictional Legitimacy – Statutory Law – Common Law

Statutory Jurisdictions • Easy to quantify, rarely change • Based on 1946 Legislative Reorganization Statutory Jurisdictions • Easy to quantify, rarely change • Based on 1946 Legislative Reorganization Act – Supposed to get rid of jurisdictional fluidity • Previous statutory jurisdictions were imprecise – “committee boundaries were like gerrymandered electoral districts”

Common Law Jurisdictions • Precedents are KEY • Decision are made by Parliamentarians routinely Common Law Jurisdictions • Precedents are KEY • Decision are made by Parliamentarians routinely • Typically affect discreet bills and not wide issue areas • The closer a bill is to committee turf increase its chances of being referred to that committee

Policy Entrepreneurs “Jurisdictionally ambiguous bills arise in areas that are not yet clearly defined Policy Entrepreneurs “Jurisdictionally ambiguous bills arise in areas that are not yet clearly defined and within issues areas that are undergoing redefinition. ” • See turf as malleable • Strike claim on turf as they are motivated by policy or election

Setting Course: A Congressional Management Guide -Congressional Management Foundation Setting Course: A Congressional Management Guide -Congressional Management Foundation

First 60 Days: Nov. & Dec. • PRIORITIZE Urgent Important Not Urgent Dealing with First 60 Days: Nov. & Dec. • PRIORITIZE Urgent Important Not Urgent Dealing with crises or handling projects with deadline Planning, building relations and preventing crises Interruptions; some calls, mail and meetings Busy work; some calls and mail

Critical Transition Tasks 1. Decisions about Personal Circumstances – Family – Current job status Critical Transition Tasks 1. Decisions about Personal Circumstances – Family – Current job status – Relocating to Washington or commute 2. Selecting & Lobbying for Committee Assignments 3. Setting Up Your Office – – – Creating a First Year Budget Management Structure for Office Hiring Core Staff Evaluating Technological Needs Establishing District Office

Guiding Principles • Develop and Base Decisions Around Strategic Goals • Recognize “Less is Guiding Principles • Develop and Base Decisions Around Strategic Goals • Recognize “Less is More” • Delegate • DON’T: Try to Do Everything • DONT: Procrastinate and Put off Planning Until the Next Year

Selecting Committee Assignments • • • Committee Choices in the First Year are Not Selecting Committee Assignments • • • Committee Choices in the First Year are Not Necessarily Binding Try to Land Committee of Choice from the Start Steps 1. Party Recommendation 2. Approval by the Party Caucus (Most Important 3. House or Senate Floor Vote on Roster

Committee Categories • House: Limit to Serve on 2 Standing Committees and 4 Subcommittees Committee Categories • House: Limit to Serve on 2 Standing Committees and 4 Subcommittees of those Standing Committees • Service Limited to 1 Exclusive Committee • Service Limited to 2 Non-Exclusive Committees

Advice for Choosing a Committee • Start early: learn where the openings are, learn Advice for Choosing a Committee • Start early: learn where the openings are, learn jurisdictions, talk with Members • Gather Information: Talk with other members from region • Select Committees that will Help You Achieve your Goals • Make Your Case • Consider Leadership Requests • Assess Your Chances

Congressional Budget Primer • Allocations Fixed: Personal responsibility for finances • Funds Not Given Congressional Budget Primer • Allocations Fixed: Personal responsibility for finances • Funds Not Given to office, held by Treasury • Funds Authorized Annually • Funds have Limited Uses • Office Doesn’t Pay for Fringe Benefits • Office not Charged for Washington Office Space

Developing a First Year Budget 1. Collect Expense Information 2. Make Major Allocations • Developing a First Year Budget 1. Collect Expense Information 2. Make Major Allocations • • • Salaries Franking Equipment District Office Rent, Telecommunications, Utilities Travel (Member and Staff) Supplies and Materials Printing and Production Other Services (eg: newsclipping, cleaning of district office Returning Money to Treasury Contingencies ($5, 000 in reserve usually)

Developing a First Year Budget 3. Compare Major Allocations to Your Office Goals 4. Developing a First Year Budget 3. Compare Major Allocations to Your Office Goals 4. Build a Month-by-Month Budget

Advice on Building a Budget • Read and Know the Rules; Ask Questions • Advice on Building a Budget • Read and Know the Rules; Ask Questions • Keep Options Open When it Comes to Spending Leftover Funds • Get to Know the Employees of the House Finance Office • Use the Buddy System • Estimate Transportation Costs • Budget at the Highest Level of Detail • District Offices are Expensive • Pay attention to Freshmen Legislator Specials that Only Last for 1 Year

Management Structure • Option 1: Centralized Structure MEMBER Press Sec. Office Manager Chief of Management Structure • Option 1: Centralized Structure MEMBER Press Sec. Office Manager Chief of Staff Executive Asst. Legislative Dir. District Dir.

Management Structure • Option 2: Washington/District Parity Structure MEMBER Chief of Staff District Director Management Structure • Option 2: Washington/District Parity Structure MEMBER Chief of Staff District Director

Management Structure • Option 3: Functional Structure MEMBER Co. S LD PS EA DD Management Structure • Option 3: Functional Structure MEMBER Co. S LD PS EA DD

Management Structure • Option 4: Member as Manager MEMBER Management Structure • Option 4: Member as Manager MEMBER

Advice for Designing Communication System • Employ a full range of methods • Draft Advice for Designing Communication System • Employ a full range of methods • Draft a memo that specifies how the office intends to manage Member-Staff relations • Evenly enforce the agreed upon rules and practices • Conduct regular office-wide discussions about your communications to identify problems

Hire a Core Staff • Scarce time • Increase the chances of hiring the Hire a Core Staff • Scarce time • Increase the chances of hiring the “right” staff – Turnover High

Vital Functions • • • Answering phone/greeting visitors Answering mail Conducting basic legislative research Vital Functions • • • Answering phone/greeting visitors Answering mail Conducting basic legislative research Maintaining computer system Handling scheduling requests Providing member with personal assistance Handling casework Handling press inquiries Day-to-day management

Staff Candidate Selection Process 1. Do a job analysis for each position 2. Develop Staff Candidate Selection Process 1. Do a job analysis for each position 2. Develop interview questions and other tests that will elicit information about whether the candidates have the skills identified in the job analysis 3. Ask the same key questions; use a rating system 4. Involve other staff in the interview 5. Don’t hesitate to conduct further interviews 6. Check references

Technology • Freshman members inherit predecessors’ computers, unless the systems do not comply with Technology • Freshman members inherit predecessors’ computers, unless the systems do not comply with the House’s/Senate’s standards – – – – – Staff computers Networks and file servers Printers Correspondence Management System Scheduling Software Word Processor E-mail Management Web Browser Budgeting and Accounting

Steps to Making Wise Technology Purchases 1. Conduct an inventory of hardware, software, and Steps to Making Wise Technology Purchases 1. Conduct an inventory of hardware, software, and functionality 2. Talk to the people who can help 3. Shop around 4. Try before you buy 5. Be sure purchases are compatible 6. Pay close attention to installation and maintenance details

Establishing District Offices • “All politics is local” • Consider – Size of district Establishing District Offices • “All politics is local” • Consider – Size of district – Accessibility to constituents – Constituent expectations • Number of offices operated by previous Member • Campaign promises – – Budget constraints Urban/Rural differences Strategic importance of constituent services Staff hiring limitations

Office Options • Occupying predecessor’s offices • Using government vs. privately-owned space • Mobile Office Options • Occupying predecessor’s offices • Using government vs. privately-owned space • Mobile offices

Considerations • Symbolism Counts • Make Sure the Office can “Carry the Load” • Considerations • Symbolism Counts • Make Sure the Office can “Carry the Load” • Don’t Do Anything Just to Look Good on Day 1 • Everything not inherited must be paid by Member’s Account

Credits • • • Presentation based on: Congressional Management Foundation, Setting Course: A Congressional Credits • • • Presentation based on: Congressional Management Foundation, Setting Course: A Congressional Management Guide. (Washington: Congressional Management Foundation 2004), Chapters 1 -7. Image on Cover from: Congressional Management Foundation, http: //www. cmfweb. org Accessed 2/19/2005 Presentation based on: King, David C. Turf Wars: How Congressional Committees Claim Jurisdiction. (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1997) 33 -55. Image from: http: //www. press. uchicago. edu/cgi-bin/hfs. cgi/00/13268. ctl (Accessed 2/28/05); http: //www. ksg. harvard. edu/news/experts/2001/king_election_reform_03130 1. htm; Accessed 3/1/05) Presentation based on: Oleszek, Walter J. , Congressional Procedures and the Policy Process. (Washington, DC: CQ Press, 2004) 76 -109. Images from: http: //www. cqpress. com/product/Congressional-Proceduresand-the-Policy-2. html, http: //www. school-house-rock. com/Bill. html, http: //en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Image: US_House_Committee. jpg (Accessed 2/28/2005)




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