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Lower house

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The term lower house refers to one of two state legislative chambers in a bicameral legislature. Forty-nine of the fifty states have a bicameral legislature and a lower house, with the only exclusion being Nebraska, which has a nonpartisan unicameral legislature.

Nebraska operated under a bicameral system until 1934, when voters approved a constitutional amendment to consolidate the two houses. No other state has seriously considered a unicameral system, although during his term as Governor of Minnesota, Jesse Ventura argued for one.[1]

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State Lower Houses


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AlabamaAlaskaArizonaArkansasCaliforniaColoradoConnecticutDelawareFloridaGeorgiaHawaiiIdahoIllinoisIndianaIowaKansasKentuckyLouisianaMaineMarylandMassachusettsMichiganMinnesotaMississippiMissouriMontanaNevadaNew HampshireNew JerseyNew MexicoNew YorkNorth CarolinaNorth DakotaOhioOklahomaOregonPennsylvaniaRhode IslandSouth CarolinaSouth DakotaTennesseeTexasUtahVermontVirginiaWashingtonWest VirginiaWisconsinWyoming


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Lower houses have a greater number of members than upper houses, and tend to have shorter terms. They also vary from state to state in a number of ways, including:

  • Term length - two years or four years
  • Session length - part-time or full time
  • Term limits - some states limit the number of terms members can serve, most do not
  • Number of legislators - the number of lower house members per states varies from 40 to 400
  • Salary - annual salaries vary from none at all up to $95,291 per year
  • Number of residents represented - Out of all state houses, California's assembly members represent the most residents - 465,674 per representative, while New Hampshire representatives represent the fewest - 3,291 residents per representative.

Partisan Control, 1992-2013

1992-2013

Praise or blame is extended to political parties for the economic, educational, health and other quality of life outcomes that result from the policies those parties enact into law. To better understand which political party enjoys power in each of the states, Ballotpedia has analyzed state government control from 1992-2013 using the concept of a "partisan trifecta." A partisan trifecta is defined as when a state's governorship and legislative chambers are controlled by the same political party.

The two major political parties claim that their policies will lead to better outcomes. What does the data show?

At Ballotpedia, we explored these issues in a three-part study, Who Runs the States.

Part 1: Partisanship

See also: Ballotpedia:Who Runs the States, Partisanship Results, Partisan Control of State Houses

We identified the party holding each state's lower legislative chamber for the majority of time in each year from 1992 through 2013. Across the 49 states (excluding Nebraska) with lower houses, there were 577 years (53.5%) of Democratic control and 483 years (44.8%) of Republican control.

The trifecta analysis over this period shows a notable trend toward one-party control of state governments. At the outset of the study period (1992), 18 states had trifectas while 31 states had divided governments. In 2013, only 13 states had divided governments, while single-party trifectas hold sway in 36 states, the most in the 22 years we studied. The number of states with trifectas doubled between 1992 and 2013.

The trifecta analysis also allowed us to identify seven states that have experienced dramatic changes in partisan state government control from the first 11 years of the study to the last 11 years of the study. Studying the partisan composition of state governments as we do also allows a clean way to assess whether a state is "moving red" or "moving blue."

Visualizations
Legend for State government trifecta visualization -- Figures 10 and 11

Legend for State government visualization with Presidential Voting -- Figures 19 and 20

Infographic
Lower Chamber Overview
Term length Houses
2 years 44
4 years 5
Partisan majority (as of July 2011) Houses
Republican 30
Democratic 18
Sessions Houses
Full-time 10
Part-time 39


Term limits Houses
None 35
3 terms 4
4 terms 8
6 terms 1
Session start Houses
December 2
January 41
February 2
March 2
April 1
Number of legislators Houses
Under 50 3
51-100 24
101-150 15
151-200 5
Over 201 2

Chamber articleMembersPartisan BreakdownTerm LengthTerm LimitSession start dateSalary
Alabama House of Representatives105Independent (1)
Vacant (2)
4 yearsNoneJanuary 14, 2014 $10/day + $4,308/month
Alaska House of Representatives402 yearsNoneJanuary 21, 2014 $50,400/year + per diem
Arizona House of Representatives602 years4 terms (8 years)January 13, 2014 $24,000/year + per diem
Arkansas House of Representatives100Green Party (1)2 years3 terms (6 years)February 10, 2014 $15,362/year + $136/day
California State Assembly802 years3 terms (6 years) if elected before 2012; 12 years if elected in or after 2012January 6, 2014 $95,291/year + per diem
Colorado House of Representatives652 years4 terms (8 years)January 8, 2014 $30,000/year + per diem
Connecticut House of Representatives151
Vacant (2)
2 yearsNoneFebruary 5, 2014 $28,000/year
Delaware House of Representatives412 yearsNoneJanuary 14, 2014 $41,680/year + expenses
Florida House of Representatives120Vacant (1)2 years4 terms (8 years)March 4, 2014 $29,697/year + per diem
Georgia House of Representatives180Independent (1)2 yearsNoneJanuary 13, 2014 $17,342/year + per diem
Hawaii House of Representatives512 yearsNoneJanuary 15, 2014 $48,708/year + per diem
Idaho House of Representatives702 yearsNoneJanuary 6, 2014 $16,116/year + per diem
Illinois House of Representatives118Vacant (1)2 yearsNoneJanuary 29, 2014 $67,836/year + per diem
Indiana House of Representatives1002 yearsNoneJanuary 6, 2014 $22,616.46/year + per diem
Iowa House of Representatives1002 yearsNoneJanuary 13, 2014 $25,000/year + per diem
Kansas House of Representatives1252 yearsNoneJanuary 13, 2014 $88.66/day + per diem
Kentucky House of Representatives1002 yearsNoneJanuary 7, 2014 $186.73/day + per diem
Louisiana House of Representatives105Independent (2)4 years3 terms (12 years)March 10, 2014 $16,800/year + per diem
Maine House of Representatives154Independent (4)
Non-voting (3)
2 years4 terms (8 years)January 8, 2014 $13,526/year Sess. 1, $9,661/year Sess. 2 + per diem
Maryland House of Delegates1414 yearsNoneJanuary 8, 2014 $43,500/year + per diem
Massachusetts House of Representatives160Vacant (5)2 yearsNoneJanuary 14, 2014 $61,133/year + per diem
Michigan House of Representatives110Independent (1)2 years3 terms (6 years)January 8, 2014 $71,685/year + expenses
Minnesota House of Representatives1342 yearsNoneFebruary 25, 2014 $31,140.90/year + per diem
Mississippi House of Representatives1224 yearsNoneJanuary 7, 2014 $10,000/year + per diem
Missouri House of Representatives163Vacant (3)2 years4 terms (8 years)January 8, 2014 $35,915/year + per diem
Montana House of Representatives100Vacant (1)2 years4 terms (8 years)Will not hold a regular session. $82.64/day + per diem
Nevada State Assembly42Vacant (1)2 years6 terms (12 years)Will not hold a regular session. $146.29/day + per diem
New Hampshire House of Representatives400Vacant (1)2 yearsNoneJanuary 8, 2014 $200/two-year term
New Jersey General Assembly802 yearsNoneJanuary 14, 2014 $49,000/year
New Mexico House of Representatives702 yearsNoneJanuary 21, 2014 $0/year + per diem
New York State Assembly150Vacancy (10)2 yearsNoneJanuary 8, 2014 $79,500/year + per diem
North Carolina House of Representatives1202 yearsNoneMay 14, 2014 $13,951/year + per diem
North Dakota House of Representatives944 yearsNoneWill not hold a regular session. $152/day + per diem
Ohio House of Representatives992 years4 terms (8 years)January 7, 2014 $60,584/year
Oklahoma House of Representatives1012 years12 year cumulative total,
in either or both chambers
February 3, 2014 $38,400/year + per diem
Oregon House of Representatives602 yearsNoneFebruary 3, 2014 $21,936/year + per diem
Pennsylvania House of Representatives2032 yearsNoneJanuary 7, 2014 $82,026/year + per diem
Rhode Island House of Representatives752 yearsNoneJanuary 7, 2014 $14,185.95/year
South Carolina House of Representatives1242 yearsNoneJanuary 14, 2014 $10,400/year + per diem
South Dakota House of Representatives702 years4 terms (8 years)January 14, 2014 $12,000/two-year term + per diem
Tennessee House of Representatives99Carter County Republican (1)2 yearsNoneJanuary 14, 2014 $19,009/year + per diem
Texas House of Representatives1502 yearsNoneNo regular session $7,200/year + per diem
Utah House of Representatives752 yearsNoneJanuary 27, 2014  $117/day + per diem
Vermont House of Representatives150Progressive Party (5)
Independent (4)
Vacancy (1)
2 yearsNoneJanuary 7, 2014 $604.79/week + per diem
Virginia House of Delegates1002 yearsNoneJanuary 8, 2014 $17,640/year + per diem
Washington House of Representatives98Vacant (2)2 yearsNoneJanuary 13, 2014 $42,106/year + per diem
West Virginia House of Delegates1002 yearsNoneJanuary 8, 2014 $20,000/year + per diem
Wisconsin State Assembly992 yearsNoneJanuary 14, 2014 $49,943/year + per diem
Wyoming House of Representatives602 yearsNoneFebruary 10, 2014  $150/day + per diem

State Lower Houses


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AlabamaAlaskaArizonaArkansasCaliforniaColoradoConnecticutDelawareFloridaGeorgiaHawaiiIdahoIllinoisIndianaIowaKansasKentuckyLouisianaMaineMarylandMassachusettsMichiganMinnesotaMississippiMissouriMontanaNevadaNew HampshireNew JerseyNew MexicoNew YorkNorth CarolinaNorth DakotaOhioOklahomaOregonPennsylvaniaRhode IslandSouth CarolinaSouth DakotaTennesseeTexasUtahVermontVirginiaWashingtonWest VirginiaWisconsinWyoming


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#Nevada State Assembly#Alaska House of Representatives#Hawaii House of Representatives#Arizona House of Representatives#Utah House of Representatives#New Mexico House of Representatives#Colorado House of Representatives#Wyoming House of Representatives#California State Assembly#Oregon House of Representatives#Washington State House of Representatives#Idaho House of Representatives#Montana House of Representatives#North Dakota House of Representatives#South Dakota House of RepresentativesNebraska State Senate#Kansas House of Representatives#Oklahoma House of Representatives#Texas House of Representatives#Minnesota House of Representatives#Iowa House of Representatives#Missouri House of Representatives#Arkansas House of Representatives#Louisiana House of Representatives#Mississippi House of Representatives#Alabama House of Representatives#Wisconsin State Assembly#Illinois House of Representatives#Tennessee House of Representatives#Kentucky House of Representatives#Indiana House of Representatives#Michigan House of Representatives#Ohio House of Representatives#Georgia House of Representatives#Florida House of Representatives#South Carolina House of Representatives#North Carolina House of Representatives#Virginia House of Delegates#West Virginia House of Delegates#Pennsylvania House of Representatives#New York State Assembly#Vermont House of Representatives#New Hampshire House of Representatives#Massachusetts House of Representatives#Rhode Island House of Representatives#Connecticut House of Representatives#New Jersey General Assembly#Delaware House of Representatives#Maryland House of Delegates#Maine House of RepresentativesUS map instr.png


Alabama House of Representatives

Section 48 of Article IV of the Alabama Constitution initially set the rules for the timing and length of sessions for the Alabama State Legislature, which the House is a part of. However, these rules have been changed by state statute.

The Alabama Legislature convenes in regular annual sessions on the first Tuesday in February, except during the first year of the four-year term, when the session begins on the first Tuesday in March. In the last year of a four-year term, the legislative session begins on the second Tuesday in January. The length of the regular session is limited to 30 meeting days within a period of 105 calendar days. There are usually two meeting or "legislative" days per week, with other days devoted to committee meetings.

The Governor of Alabama can call, by proclamation, special sessions of the Alabama legislature. The governor must list the subjects on which legislation will be debated upon. These sessions are limited to 12 legislative days within a 30 calendar day span. In a regular session, bills may be enacted on any subject. In a special session, legislation must be enacted only on those subjects which the governor announces on their proclamation or "call." Anything not in the "call" requires a two-thirds vote of each house to be enacted.[2]

Bills can be prefiled before sessions, starting at the end of the previous session and ending at the beginning of the session for which they are being filed. The exception to this is for sessions beginning in March every 4 years.[3]

The Alabama Legislature has a constitutional session length limit of 105 calendar days.

Alaska House of Representatives

Section 8 of Article II of the Alaska Constitution contains provisions relating to the timing and length of sessions of the Alaska State Legislature, of which the House of Representatives is a part. However, the provisions related to the convening date of the Legislature have been changed by law, and the provisions limiting the length of legislative sessions have been changed by the Alaska 90-Day Legislative Session Amendment. This amendment was passed in a 2006 ballot initiative, and it limits the regular sessions of the Legislature to ninety days.

Section 9 of Article II allows for special sessions to be called by the Governor of Alaska or by a two-thirds vote of the legislators. Special sessions are limited to thirty days.

Arizona House of Representatives

Article IV of the Arizona Constitution establishes when the Arizona State Legislature, of which the House of Representatives is a part, is to be in session. Section 3 of the Second Part of the Article contains the relevant provisions. It states that sessions are to convene on the second Monday of January of each year.

Section 3 also allows the Governor of Arizona to call special sessions of the Legislature.

Arkansas House of Representatives

Article V of the Arkansas Constitution establishes when the Arkansas General Assembly, of which the House is a part, is to convene. Section 5 of Article V establishes the beginning date for regular sessions, but this date has been changed by law (as Section 5 allows). Under the law, the Arkansas legislature convenes its regular session on the second Monday in January of every odd numbered year. The fiscal session is convened on the second Monday in February of every even numbered year.[1]

Section 17 of Article V limits the length of sessions to sixty days, unless extended by a two-thirds vote of each legislative house.

California State Assembly

Article IV of the California Constitution establishes when the California State Legislature, of which the Assembly is a part, is to be in session. Section 3 of Article IV states that the Legislature is to convene in regular session on the first Monday of December in each even-numbered year to organize. The Legislature must adjourn by November 30th of the following even-numbered year.

Section 3 also gives the Governor of California the power to call special sessions of the Legislature.

Colorado House of Representatives

Article V of the Colorado Constitution establishes when the Colorado General Assembly, of which the House is a part, is to be in session. Section 7 of Article V states that the Assembly is to convene its regular session no later than the second Wednesday of January of each year. Regular sessions are not to exceed one hundred twenty calendar days.

Section 7 also states that the Governor of Colorado can convene special sessions of the General Assembly. Special sessions can also be convened by a two-thirds vote of the members of both legislative houses.

Connecticut House of Representatives

Article III of the Connecticut Constitution establishes when the Connecticut State Legislature, which the House of Representatives is a part of, is to be in session. Section 2 of Article III states that, in odd-numbered years, the Legislature shall convene its regular session on the Wednesday after the first Monday in January. Section 2 requires regular sessions in odd-numbered years to adjourn by the Wednesday after the first Monday in June.

The Constitution does not establish when the Legislature is supposed to meet in even-numbered years, so these dates are established by law. In even-numbered years, the Legislature convenes on the Wednesday following the first Monday in February, pending the decision of the Legislature, and it must adjourn by the Wednesday after the first Monday in May.[1]

Delaware House of Representatives

Article II of the Delaware Constitution establishes when the Delaware General Assembly, of which the House is a part, is to be in session. Section 4 of Article II states that the General Assembly is to convene on the second Tuesday of January of each calendar year, and it is not to extend beyond the last day of June.

Section 4 also allows the General Assembly to be convened into special session by the Governor of Delaware or by the mutual call of the presiding officers of both Houses.

Florida House of Representatives

Article III of the Florida Constitution establishes when the Florida State Legislature, of which the House is a part, is to be in session. Section 3 of Article III states that the regular session of the Legislature is to convene on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in March of each year. Regular sessions of the Legislature are not to exceed sixty days, unless extended by a three-fifths vote of each house.

Section 3 also allows for the convening of special sessions, either by the proclamation of the Governor of Florida or as otherwise provided by law.

Georgia House of Representatives

Section 4 of Article III of the Georgia Constitution establishes when the Georgia General Assembly, which the House is a part of, is to meet in regular session. The General Assembly must convene annually by the second Monday in January, and its sessions can last for only forty legislative days.[1] Prefiling begins November 15 and runs until the start of the session.

Hawaii House of Representatives

Article III of the Hawaii Constitution establishes when the Hawaii State Legislature, which the House of Representatives is a part of, is to be in session. Section 10 of Article III states that the Legislature shall convene in regular session on the third Wednesday in January of every year. Regular sessions are limited to sixty legislative days, but they can be extended by fifteen days by the Governor of Hawaii or by the request of two-thirds of each legislative house. Section 10 mandates that the Legislature take a mandatory recess of at least five days during each regular session.

Section 10 also contains provisions regarding special sessions of the Legislature. Special sessions can involve both houses of the Legislature or the Senate alone. Special sessions can be convened by the Governor of Hawaii or by two-thirds of the house or houses seeking to convene. Special sessions are limited in length. They are not to last more than thirty legislative days, but they, like regular sessions, can be extended for fifteen days.

Idaho House of Representatives

Article III of the Idaho Constitution establishes when the Legislature is to be in session; section 8 of Article III allows the Legislature to change the starting date by law. According to 67-404 Idaho Code, the Idaho Legislature convenes annually at 12:00 noon on the Monday closest to the 9th of January. Section 8 also states that the Governor of Idaho can convene special sessions of the Legislature at any time.[1][2]

The Idaho Legislature normally convenes at the Idaho State Capitol in downtown Boise.

Illinois House of Representatives

Article IV of the Illinois Constitution establishes when the Illinois General Assembly, of which the House is a part, is to be in session. Section 5 of Article IV states that the General Assembly will convene its regular session on the second Wednesday of January.

Section 5 also creates rules for the convening of special sessions. The section allows the Governor of Illinois to convene the General Assembly or the Senate alone. When the Governor calls a special session, the General Assembly can generally only deal with matters related to the purpose of the session, as stated by the Governor's proclamation of the session, but they can also deal with impeachments or confirmation of appointments. Section 5 also allows the presiding officers of both houses of the General Assembly to convene a special session through joint proclamation.

Indiana House of Representatives

Article 4 of the Indiana Constitution establishes when the Indiana General Assembly, of which the House of Representatives is a part, is to be in session. Section 9 of Article 4 states that the General Assembly will begin its regular session on the Tuesday following the second Monday in January of each year. However, Section 9 allows the starting state for the session to be changed by law. This has happened in Indiana in 2010, as the General Assembly's session convened on January 5th instead of the constitutionally designated date, which was January 12th.

Section 9 also gives the Governor of Indiana the power to call special sessions of the General Assembly.

Iowa House of Representatives

The Legislative Department of the Iowa Constitution establishes when the Iowa General Assembly, of which the House of Representatives is a part, is to be in session. Section 2 of the article states that the General Assembly is to convene its regular session on the second Monday of January of each year. The General Assembly can also be called into special session by a proclamation of the Governor of Iowa or by a written request of two-thirds of both houses of the General Assembly.

Kansas House of Representatives

Article 2 of the Kansas Constitution establishes when the Kansas State Legislature, of which the House of Representatives is a part, is to be in session. Section 8 of Article 2 states that the Legislature is to convene on the second Monday of January of each year. Section 8 also limits the length of regular sessions in even-numbered years to ninety calendar days, but it allows these sessions to be extended by a two-thirds affirmative vote of both houses. In 2010, this kind of extension occurred, moving the session's adjournment date from March 30th to May 28th.

Kentucky House of Representatives

Section 36 of The Legislative Department of the Kentucky Constitution establishes when the Kentucky General Assembly, which the House is a part of, is required to meet. Regular Sessions convene on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in January. Sessions in odd numbered years can last no more than 30 legislative days and must be concluded by March 30. Sessions in even numbered years can last no more than 60 legislative days and must be concluded by April 15. The governor may call additional special sessions.[1]

Bills may be filed at anytime the House and Senate Senate Clerks' offices are open.[2]

Louisiana House of Representatives

Article III of the Louisiana Constitution establishes when the Louisiana State Legislature is to be in session. Section 2 of Article III states that, in even-numbered years, the Legislature shall convene on the last Monday in March and meet for no more than sixty legislative days during a period of eighty-five calendar days. In odd-numbered years, the Legislature is to convene on the last Monday in April and meet for no more than forty-five legislative days during a period of sixty calendar days. During regular sessions in odd-numbered years, the Legislature can only consider measures regarding the state budget, revenues and appropriations.

Section 2 of Article III also allows the Legislature to be called into a special session by the Governor of Louisiana or by a majority of the members of each legislative house. During special sessions, the Legislature can only legislate on matters related to the proclaimed purposes of the session.

Section 2 of Article III also authorizes the Governor of Louisiana to call an emergency session without prior notice in the event of a public emergency.

Maine House of Representatives

In 2010, the House of Representatives was in session from January 6th to April 12th.

Article IV, Part Third of the Maine Constitution establishes when the Maine State Legislature, of which the House of Representatives is a part, is to be in session. Section 1 of the Part states that, following a legislative election, the Legislature is to convene its first regular session on the first Wednesday of December. The second regular session of the legislature is to convene in the next even-numbered year. This second session is to convene on the first Wednesday after the first Tuesday in January. Section 1 also instructs the Legislature to enact statutory limits on the length of its regular sessions.

Section 1 also establishes the procedures for convening special sessions of the Legislature. A special session can be convened by the President of the Senate and Speaker of the House, with the consent of a majority of legislators from each political party.

Maryland House of Delegates

Article III of the Maryland Constitution establishes when the Maryland General Assembly, of which the House of Delegates is a part, is to be in session. Section 14 of Article III states that the General Assembly is to convene in regular session every year on the second Wednesday of January.

Section 14 also contains the procedures for convening extraordinary sessions of the General Assembly. If a majority of the members of each legislative house petition the Governor of Maryland with a request for an extraordinary session, the Governor is constitutionally required to proclaim an extraordinary session.

Article II of the Maryland Constitution also gives the Governor of Maryland the power to proclaim an extraordinary session without the request of the General Assembly.

Massachusetts House of Representatives

The Massachusetts Constitution contains provisions regarding when the Massachusetts General Court, which the House is a part of, is to meet. This subject has been the focus of several amendments to the Constitution. Originally, Chapter 1 of the Massachusetts Constitution called for the General Court to convene on the last Wednesday of May. Then, Amending Article X called for legislative sessions to convene yearly on the first Wednesday of January. Later, Amending Article LXXII called for the General Court to meet once every two years, but Amending Article LXXV repealed that amendment. Therefore, the rules that currently govern when the General Court is to meet are in Amending Article X.

Article X calls for the General Court to convene its regular session on the first Wednesday of January. The session does not dissolve until a new regular session convenes in the next year. Article X specifies that it does not prevent the General Court from meeting at any time that it judges necessary.

Michigan House of Representatives

Article IV of the Michigan Constitution establishes when the Michigan Legislature, of which the House of Representatives is a part, is to be in session. Section 13 of Article IV states that the Legislature is to convene on the second Wednesday in January of each year. Section 13 gives the Legislature the power to determine its date of adjournment through concurrent resolution.

Minnesota House of Representatives

Article IV of the Minnesota Constitution establishes when the Minnesota State Legislature, of which the House is a part, is to be in session. Section 12 of Article IV states that the Legislature is not to meet in regular session for more than 120 legislative days in each two-year period between legislative elections. Section 12 also does not allow the Legislature to meet in regular session after the first Monday following the third Saturday in May of any year. Within these limits, Section 12 allows the Legislature to decide its meeting dates by law.

As such, MN Statute 3.011 establishes that on odd numbered years the legislature must convene on the first Monday in January, unless that lands on January 1, in which case the legislature must convene by the first Wednesday after the first Monday. The legislature is required to set its own date for even numbered years.

Section 12 of Article IV states that the Governor of Minnesota can call special sessions of the Legislature on extraordinary occasions.

Mississippi House of Representatives

Article IV of the Mississippi Constitution establishes when the Mississippi State Legislature, of which the House of Representatives is a part, is to meet. Section 36 of Article IV states that the legislature is to convene in regular session on the Tuesday following the first Monday in January of each year. Section 36 limits the length of regular sessions to ninety calendar days, except for once every four years when the regular session can last up to one hundred twenty-five calendar days. The most recent one hundred twenty-five day session was in 2008, and the next session of this kind was in 2012.

Section 36 also allows the Legislature to extend its sessions for thirty days by a two-thirds vote of both legislative houses. There is no limit on the number of times a session can be extended in this way. In 2010, the Legislature extended its session once, moving the date of adjournment from April 3rd to May 3rd.

Article V of the Mississippi Constitution gives the Governor of Mississippi the power to call the Legislature into extraordinary session. Section 121 of Article V enumerates this power.

Missouri House of Representatives

Article III of the Missouri Constitution establishes when the Missouri General Assembly, of which the House is a part is to meet. Section 20 of Article III states that the General Assembly shall convene its regular session on the first Wednesday after the first Monday in January of each year. Section 20 requires the General Assembly to adjourn its regular session by May 30th.

Section 20 of Article III also allows for a special session of the General Assembly to be convened by a joint proclamation of three-fourths of the members of both houses.

Montana House of Representatives

Article V of the Montana Constitution establishes when the Montana State Legislature, of which the House is a part, is to be in session. Section 6 of Article V states that the Legislature is to meet in every odd-numbered year in a regular session of at most ninety legislative days. However, Section 6 allows any Legislature to increase the limit on the length of any subsequent session. Section 6 also allows for the Legislature to meet in special session when convened by the Governor of Montana or when a special session is requested by a majority of the Legislature's members.

Nevada State Assembly

When the Nevada Constitution was adopted, its fourth article established when the Nevada State Legislature, of which the Assembly is a part, was to be in session. However, Section 29 of Article 4, the section that dealt with legislative sessions, was repealed by vote of the people in the 1958 general election. The session dates for the Nevada Legislature are no longer limited by the Nevada Constitution.

New Hampshire House of Representatives

The Second Part of the New Hampshire Constitution establishes when the New Hampshire General Court, of which the House is a part, is to be in session. Article 3 of the Second Part states that the General Court is to convene annually on the first Wednesday after the first Tuesday in January. Additionally, in even-numbered years, the General Court is to meet on the first Wednesday of December for organizational purposes.

New Jersey General Assembly

Article IV of the New Jersey Constitution establishes when the New Jersey State Legislature, of which the General Assembly is a part, is to be in session. Section 1 of Article IV states that each annual session is to begin on the second Tuesday of January. The session does not end until the beginning of the next annual session or until the Legislature chooses to adjourn.

Section 1 also allows for special sessions of the Legislature to be called by the Governor of New Jersey or by a majority of the members of each legislative house.

New Mexico House of Representatives

Article IV of the New Mexico Constitution establishes when the New Mexico State Legislature, of which the House is a part, is to be in session. Section 5 of Article IV states that the Legislature is to convene its annual regular session on the third Tuesday of January. In odd-numbered years, the Legislature is to be in session for no longer than sixty days. In even-numbered years, the Legislature is to be in session for no longer than thirty days. In even-numbered years, the Legislature is limited to dealing with budgetary matters, bills that deal with issues raised by special messages of the Governor of New Mexico, and bills vetoed in the previous session by the Governor.

Section 6 of Article IV allows the Governor of New Mexico to call special sessions of the Legislature. Section 6 also allows the Legislature to meet in special session when three-fifths of each house petition the Governor with a request for a special session. Special sessions are not to exceed thirty days in length.

New York State Assembly

Article III of the New York Constitution outlines the legislative power for New York's government. Article III does not limit when the New York State Legislature, which the Assembly is a part of, can convene in regular session. However, Section 18 of Article III does contain provisions related to special sessions of the Legislature. Section 18 states that a special session can be called by a petition of request from two-thirds of both legislative houses.

North Carolina House of Representatives

The House of Representatives consists of 120 members who serve a term of two years. Each member represents an average of 79,462 residents, as of the 2010 Census.[1] After the 2000 Census, each member represented approximately 67,078 residents.[2] The presiding officer of the House of Representatives is the Speaker of the House. The Speaker is elected by the members from their membership for a two-year term. The Speaker’s duties include maintaining order in the House and appointing members to the House standing committees.[3]

North Dakota House of Representatives

Article IV of the North Dakota Constitution establishes when the North Dakota Legislative Assembly, of which the House is a part, is to be in session. Section 7 of Article IV states that the Assembly is to convene in regular session every January after a legislative election. This means that the Assembly convenes in January of every odd-numbered year. Section 7 specifies that the convening date is to be the first Tuesday after the third day in January, unless this date is changed by law. Section 7 limits the length of regular sessions to no more than eighty days every two years.

Ohio House of Representatives

Article II of the Ohio Constitution establishes when the Ohio General Assembly, of which the House of Representatives is a part, is to meet. Section 8 of Article II states that the regular session is to convene on the first Monday in January of each year, or the following day if that Monday is a legal holiday.

Section 8 also contains rules for convening special sessions of the General Assembly. It empowers the Governor of Ohio or the presiding officers of the General Assembly to convene a special session. For the presiding officers to convene the session, they must act jointly.

Oklahoma House of Representatives

Article V of the Oklahoma Constitution establishes when the Oklahoma State Legislature, of which the House of Representatives is a part, is to be in session. Section 26 of Article V states that the Legislature is to meet in regular session on the first Monday in February of each year, and it is to adjourn its regular session by the last Friday in May of each year. Additionally, Section 26 also states that the Legislature is to meet for organizational purposes on the first Tuesday following the first Monday in January of each odd-numbered year.

Section 27 of Article V contains the rules for convening special sessions of the Legislature. Section 27 allows a special session to be called by the Governor of Oklahoma or by a written call signed by two-thirds of the members of both legislative houses.

Oregon House of Representatives

Article IV of the Oregon Constitution establishes when the Oregon State Legislature, of which the House of Representatives is a part, is to meet. Section 10 of Article IV states that the Legislature will meet in regular session once every two years. The section goes on to establish starting dates for these sessions, but these dates have been changed by law (as the section allows).

Section 10 of Article IV also requires the presiding officers of both legislative houses to convene an emergency session of the Legislature when a majority of the members of each house request an emergency session.

Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Article II of the Pennsylvania Constitution establishes when the Pennsylvania General Assembly, of which the House of Representatives is a part, is to meet. Section 4 of Article II states that the General Assembly is to convene its regular session on the first Tuesday of January each year.

Section 4 gives the Governor of Pennsylvania the authority to convene special sessions of the General Assembly either when he judges a special session to be in the public interest, or when a majority of each legislative House requests a special session.

Rhode Island House of Representatives

Article VI of the Rhode Island Constitution establishes when the Rhode Island General Assembly, of which the House of Representatives is a part, is to be in session. Section 3 of Article states that the General Assembly is to convene its regular session on the first Tuesday of January in each year.

South Carolina House of Representatives

Article III of the South Carolina Constitution establishes when the South Carolina State Legislature, of which the House of Representatives is a part, is to be in session. Section 9 of Article III states that the Legislature is to convene on the second Tuesday of January each year. Section 9 allows the General Assembly to recede from session for up to thirty days by a majority vote of the legislative house seeking to recede. Furthermore, one or both houses can recede from session for more than thirty days if that action is approved by two-thirds of the members.

South Dakota House of Representatives

Article III of the South Dakota Constitution establishes when the South Dakota State Legislature, of which the House of Representatives is a part, is to be in session. Section 7 of Article III states that the Legislature is to meet in regular session each year on the second Tuesday of January.

The South Dakota Constitution also contains provisions concerning special sessions of the Legislature. Section 3 of Article IV allows the Governor of South Dakota to convene a special session of the Legislature. Additionally, Section 31 of Article III allows for a special session to be convened by the presiding officers of both legislative houses upon the written request of two-thirds of the members of each house.

Tennessee House of Representatives

The Tennessee General Assembly, which the House is a part of, convenes on the second Tuesday in January on the years following elections as outlined by Article II, Section 8 of the Tennessee Constitution. The legislature is limited to 90 paid legislative days within a two year term.

Texas House of Representatives

Article III of the Texas Constitution establishes when the Texas State Legislature, of which the House of Representatives is a part, is to be in session. Section 5 of Article III states that the Legislature shall meet every two years at times to be established by law. Section 5 goes on to say that the Legislature can also be convened by the Governor of Texas.

Utah House of Representatives

Section 2 of Article VI of the Utah Constitution establishes that the Utah State Legislature, which the House is a part of, is to convene a new session every two years on the second Monday in January. This means that the "2010 session" was actually a continuation of a regular session that convened in 2009. Section 16 of Article VI limits these regular sessions to sixty legislative days, except in cases of impeachment.

Vermont House of Representatives

The Vermont State Legislature, which the House is a part of, meets for biennial sessions starting on odd numbered years on the first Wednesday after the first Monday in January, pursuant to Section 7 of the Legislative Department of the Vermont Constitution. The opening date for even numbered years is established by the sitting legislature during the year prior.

Virginia House of Delegates

Article IV of the Virginia Constitution establishes when the Virginia General Assembly, of which the House of Delegates is a part, is to be in session. Section 6 of Article IV states that the General Assembly is to convene annually on the second Wednesday in January. In even-numbered years, regular sessions are limited to sixty days. In odd-numbered years, regular sessions are limited to thirty days. Section 6 allows the General Assembly to extend its regular sessions by thirty days if two-thirds of each house vote to extend the session.

Section 6 allows the Governor of Virginia to convene special sessions of the General Assembly. Section 6 also allows for a special session to be called when it is requested by two-thirds of the members of each house.

Washington House of Representatives

Article II of the Washington Constitution establishes when the Washington State Legislature, of which the House is a part, is to be in session. Section 12 of Article II allows the dates of regular sessions to be determined by statute. Section 12 limits the length of regular sessions to 105 days in odd-numbered years and 60 days in even-numbered years.

Section 12 also establishes rules for convening special sessions of the Legislature. It states that special sessions can be called by the Governor of Washington or by resolution of two-thirds of the members of each legislative house. Special sessions are not to exceed 30 days in length.

West Virginia House of Delegates

Article VI of the West Virginia Constitution establishes when the West Virginia State Legislature, of which the House of Delegates is a part, is to be in session. Section 18 of Article VI states that the Legislature is to convene its regular session on the second Wednesday of January of each year. Once every four years, on the year in which the Governor of West Virginia is inaugurated, the Legislature holds a thirty day recess after the first day of the session. This recess is designed to give the Governor time to prepare a budget.

Section 22 of Article VI limits regular sessions of the Legislature to sixty days. Regular sessions can be extended by a two-thirds vote of the members of both legislative houses.

Section 19 of Article VI gives the Governor of West Virginia the power to convene the Legislature into special session. Section 19 also requires the Governor to convene a special session if it is requested by three-fifths of the members of each legislative house.

Wisconsin State Assembly

Article IV of the Wisconsin Constitution contains provisions related to the meeting of the Wisconsin State Legislature, of which the Assembly is a part. Section 11 of Article IV states that the times for regular sessions are to be provided by law. Section 11 also states that the Governor of Wisconsin has the power to call the Legislature into special session.

Wyoming House of Representatives

Article III of the Wyoming Constitution establishes when the Wyoming State Legislature, of which the House of Representatives is a part, is to be in session. Sections 6 and 7 of Article III contain the relevant provisions. The Legislature is to convene in regular session for no more than sixty legislative working days every two years, and no more than forty legislative days in any year. In odd-numbered years, the Legislature meets for a general and budget session, beginning on the second Tuesday of January. In even-numbered years, the Legislature meets for a session devoted to budgetary matters.

Section 7 of Article III contains the provisions for convening special sessions of the Legislature. Special sessions can be convened by the proclamation of the Governor of Wyoming, or the Legislature can convene a special session of up to twenty legislative days if the session is requested by a majority of the members of each legislative house.

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