Standing Rules of the United States Senate, Rule XVI

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Rule XVI of the Standing Rules of the United States Senate, established by the Senate Committee on Rules and Administration, governs appropriations and amendments to general appropriations bills in the Senate.

Amendments to general appropriations[edit]

Paragraph 1 states that when any Senator makes a point of order, the general appropriations bill shall not receive any amendments that increase an appropriation already contained in the bill. Also, no new items may be introduced unless it is designed to carry out the provisions of some existing law, treaty stipulation, act, or resolution previously passed by the Senate during that session. The exception being any bill is moving by authority of the Committee on Appropriations or of a Senate committee that has legislative jurisdiction of the subject matter, or proposed in pursuance of an estimate submitted in accordance with law.

Reporting on appropriations bills[edit]

Paragraph 2 states that the Committee on Appropriations cannot report an appropriation bill containing amendments which propose new or general legislation. The committee cannot report on an appropriations bill with any restriction on the expenditure of the funds appropriated which proposes a limitation not authorized by law if such restriction is to take effect or cease to be effective upon the happening of a contingency, and if an appropriation bill is reported to the Senate containing amendments to such bill proposing new or general legislation or any such restriction, a point of order may be made against the bill, and if the point is sustained, the bill shall be recommitted to the Committee on Appropriations.

Committees with legislative jurisdiction[edit]

Paragraph 3 states that all amendments to general appropriation bills that are from a committee having legislative jurisdiction of the subject matter and proposing to increase an appropriation already contained in the bill, or add new items, be referred to the Committee on Appropriations at least one day before they are considered. When actually proposed to the bill no amendment proposing to increase the amount stated in such amendment shall be received on a point of order made by any Senator.

Amendments not received[edit]

Paragraph 4 states that on a point of order made by any Senator, no amendment can be offered by another Senator which proposes general legislation to any general appropriation bill. Any amendment not germane or relevant to the subject matter contained in the bill will be accepted. No amendment to any item or clause of such bill be received which does not directly relate.

No restriction on the expenditure of the funds appropriated which proposes a limitation not authorized by law be accepted if such restriction is to take effect or cease to be effective upon the happening of a contingency; and all questions of relevancy of amendments under this rule, when raised, shall be submitted to the Senate and be decided without debate; Any amendment or restriction to a general appropriation bill may be laid on the table without prejudice to the bill.

Private claim amendments[edit]

Paragraph 5 states that on a point of order made by any Senator, no amendment to provide for a private claim can be received to any general appropriation bill. Any general appropriation bill which contains provisions of an existing law or a treaty stipulation shall be cited on the face of the amendment.

Point of order[edit]

Paragraph 6 states when a point of order is made against any restriction on the expenditure of funds appropriated in a general appropriation bill on the grounds that the restriction violates this rule, the rule shall be construed strictly and in favor of the point of order.

Identification[edit]

Paragraph 7 states that every report filed by the Committee on Appropriations (on appropriation bills), must specifically identify each recommended amendment which proposes an item of appropriation which is not designed to carry out the provisions of an existing law, a treaty stipulation, or an act or resolution previously passed by the Senate during that session.

Reappropriation provisions[edit]

Paragraph 8 states that on a point of order made by any Senator, no general appropriation bill or amendment thereto shall be received or considered if it contains a provision reappropriating unexpended balances of appropriations. The exception is that this provision shall not apply to appropriations in continuation of appropriations for public works on which work has commenced.

References[edit]