Welcome To The Bill Status Updating
        Service of The California State Senate!

         The goal of this service is to keep you informed as bills you
         care about move through the legislature.

         Please keep this file, as it has information you may want to
         refer to in the future.

       Information available:
         As bills move through the legislature many things may happen to
         them.  A separate record is maintained for each bill which
         itemizes those happenings.  That record is called the "bill
         history".  Following is a list of the most common events re-
         corded in the bill history:

              1. a bill is introduced
              2. it is assigned to a committee
              3. it is "set for hearing" before a committee
              4. acted on (voted on) by a committee
              5. amended by the author, or by the committee
              6. acted on (voted on) by the entire Senate
              7. defeated, or sent to the Assembly

                 In the Assembly it goes through a similar process

              8. defeated in the Assembly, or, passed in the Assembly
                   and sent to the governor, or amended in the Assembly
                   and returned to the Senate for concurrance in the
              9. defeated in the Senate, or, passed to the governor, or
                   re-referred to committee.
             10. vetoed by the governor, or signed into law
             11. chaptered by the Secretary of State

         In addition to the "bill history" the full text of the original
         (introduced) version of the bill and each amended version is
         available to you.  Also, corresponding to each committee hear-
         ing and to each floor vote, there is an analysis of the bill
         prepared by legislative analysts.  Also there is a bill-status
         document which summarizes the latest status of the bill.

       Daily Process:
         Each day, we look through all of the changes to the bills and
         send you electronic-mail copies of any documents added or
         changed which relate to the bills you are interested in.  This
         means that if a new bill version is created, a new analysis, or
         anything else, then you will get this file sent to you.  You
         will probably also get new copies of the bill history file and
         the bill status file because those change fairly often.

         (Note: if you signed up for notification service, rather than
         subscription service, we will just tell you which files have
         changed, rather than actually sending the files to you.  This
         can be less costly if you pay to receive electronic mail.  It's
         up to you to use MAIL, FTP, Gopher, or WWW to get the files.)

         Some actions which get reported in the paper do not always 
         become a matter of record until some time later.  
         In particular, when the Governor signs or vetoes a bill, it may 
         be a week or longer before official documents are transmitted 
         between the Governor's office, the Legislature, and the Secre-
         tary of State. Only after that transmittal is complete will you 
         see the veto message, or the chaptered version of the bill ap-
         pear in these archives.  
         Also, bills are sometimes "amended in committee". When that 
         occurs, it may be days before the amended version is available 
         on-line.  This is so, because most amendments in committee are 
         with reference to intent, not specific language. Thus, follow-
         ing the committee meeting, the committee staff, the author and 
         the lawyers have to get their heads together, agree on the in-
         tent of the committee, and figure out the legal language neces-
         sary to implement that intent. 

       Terminating a Subscription:
         If you decide that you wish to discontinue this service, send
         mail to senate-news@sen.ca.gov and include (in the body of the
         message) a command in the following form:

              UNSUBSCRIBE BILL bill-no

         where "bill-no" is the number of the bill you subscribed to.
         Typical bill numbers include SB_244 and AB_244.  Example:

              TO:       Senate-News@sen.ca.gov
              SUBJECT:  doesn't matter
              TEXT:      UNSUBSCRIBE BILL SB_244

         Every two years, the legislature ends a session and we will
         reset all subscriptions to bills.

       More Information:
         If you need more help using the Senate News service, send mail
         to senate-news@sen.ca.gov with a text line of "HELP."

         If you have a problem with this service, please contact
         "News.editor@sen.ca.gov."  If you have questions about the
         legislative process or a particular bill, please contact your
         legislator.  You can find out your Senator's name and phone
         number by using the FINGER command and FINGERing your
         For example, if your ZIP code is 90210, you can finger:

              finger 90210@sen.ca.gov

              Note that this command may vary, depending on your client
              software on your Internet access system.

         You can also do this using electronic mail as follows:

              TO:       finger@sen.ca.gov
              SUBJECT:  90210
              TEXT:     doesn't matter

       Subscribing to a Bill:
         To obtain information on a particular bill, send electronic
         mail to Senate-News@sen.ca.gov including the following command:

              SUBSCRIBE BILL bill-no

         where "bill-no" is the number of the bill you subscribed to.
         Typical bill numbers include SB_244 and AB_244.  Example:

              TO:       Senate-News@sen.ca.gov
              SUBJECT:  doesn't matter
              TEXT:     SUBSCRIBE BILL AB_244

         "SUBSCRIBE" will result in the full text of any added or
         changed documents that relate to the bill being sent to you by
         electronic mail.

         An alternative to "SUBSCRIBE" is "NOTIFY" which will result in
         a message to you identifying new or changed documents.

              TO:       Senate-News@sen.ca.gov
              SUBJECT:  doesn't matter
              TEXT:     NOTIFY BILL SB_244

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