The rules that will govern the Massachusetts House of Representatives for this legislative session will be voted on this Wednesday, Jan. 30. A group of Representatives is presenting a package of Rules amendments to bring greater transparency, access and accountability to House procedures.
Trust in government relies on transparency, open debate and accountability. The legislative process in the Massachusetts State House has become increasingly concentrated in the hands of a few. Popular bills with the support of a majority of legislators fail to make it to the floor for open debate and vote. When bills get to the floor, debate can be minimal and votes are frequently tallied without a recorded roll call. Rules that govern bringing bills to the floor and open debate and accountability are often suspended by House leadership.
Please take action TODAY to support these changes
. Call or email your state Representative and urge support for the following rules reforms:
- Provide 72 hours for legislators to read bills before floor vote; provide 30 minutes for legislators to read amendments before floor vote
- Provide 24 hours for committee members to read bill redrafts before committee vote
- Allow for the discharge of bills that have substantial legislator support from joint committees
- Require that written testimony and other documents provided to committees be made available to lawmakers and the public
- Require that all committee votes are publicly available within 48 hours of votes taken
- Create standards for staff, office, and resource allocations and make the standards publicly available
You can find contact information for your Representative here.
Transparency in government and accessibility to the political process is fundamental to democracy. Expect it. Demand it.
Call your State Representative NOW. Find the phone number here.
This email was sent to all members.