The “D” in December Stands for Deadlines

by Patti Dahlberg

For most people, December means holidays, lots of food, and maybe a little snow here and there. For Colorado state legislators, the “D” in December marks the beginning of the many legislative deadlines driving us into and through the next legislative session. It all starts at the beginning of the month with that very important December 1 bill request deadline.

Too many to remember and too important to forget. The official December and January bill request and introduction deadlines are listed below. Internal deadlines for drafting and introduction of bills have also been included. Deadlines applying only to House bills are in green, deadlines applying only to Senate bills are in red, and deadlines applying to both the House and Senate are in blue. Click here for a link to “cliffnote”charts for deadlines for  the House and Senate. Paper copies of the charts are also available in Room 091 of the Capitol.

December deadlines:
December 1. The last day for legislators to request their first three (or early) bill requests. After December 1 legislators will only be allowed two additional bill requests (and only if they are under the five-bill limit).

December 8. Office of Legislative Legal Services (OLLS) internal deadline* to have early bill requests drafted and in the system for editing and review. This deadline applies to bill requests that were submitted on or before the December 1 deadline.

*The OLLS internal deadlines are designed to help move bill requests through the drafting process in a timely manner and to allow sufficient time for editing and review in order to provide a higher quality work product and assure the timely introduction of bills.

December 8. Drafting information for SBSO’s* due. This deadline applies to bill requests that were submitted on or before the December 1 deadline.

*What is an SBSO?  SBSO is short for “Submitted By Subject Only”. An SBSO bill request indicates that there is not enough information on the bill request for the drafter to start drafting the bill.

December 14. The OLLS internal deadline to have SBSO bill requests drafted and in the system for editing and review.

In addition, during the first two weeks of December legislators are expected to determine the introduction order, or “bill order”, of their bill requests. OLLS needs to have each legislator’s bill order as soon as possible. Every December the OLLS contacts legislators to find out which of their requests will be a prefile (filed prior to the start of session), which two requests will be the other two early bills, and, if the legislator has more than three bill requests in, which two requests will become regular bills. The bill order information is necessary to be able to draft bills and meet introduction deadlines in a timely manner.

Hold on to your hats  — Upcoming January deadlines

January 3. The OLLS internal deadline to finalize prefile bills. Bills with a January 6 deadline for introduction.
January 6. Deadline for filing prefile bills with House and Senate front desks.
January 10. The OLLS internal deadline to finalize Senate early bills. Bills with a January 13 deadline for introduction.
January 11. The OLLS internal deadline to finalize House early bills. Bills with a January 16 deadline for introduction.
January 13. Deadline to file Senate early bills with the Senate front desk.
January 16. Deadline to request last two bills (regular bills) if a legislator is under the five-bill limit.
January 16. Deadline to file House early bills with the House front desk.
January 20. The OLLS internal deadline to have Senate regular bill requests drafted and in the system for editing and review. This deadline applies to bill requests that were submitted on or before the January 16 deadline.
January 23. Drafting information for SBSO’s due. This deadline applies to bill requests that were submitted on or before the January 16 deadline.
January 24. The OLLS internal deadline to have House regular bill requests drafted and in the system for editing and review. This deadline applies to bill requests that were submitted on or before the January 16 deadline.
January 25. The OLLS internal deadline to finalize Senate regular bills. Bills with a January 27 introduction deadline.
January 27. Deadline to file Senate regular bills with the Senate front desk.
January 30. The OLLS internal deadline to finalize House regular bills. Bills with a February 1 introduction deadline.
February 1. Deadline to file House regular bills with the House front desk.

General Assembly members can submit bill requests to the OLLS by calling 303-866-2045 or by emailing olls.ga@state.co.us. Be sure to include as much drafting information as possible with your request so that our drafters can start working on the bill request right away.