Skip to Content
The 193rd General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Joint Committee on Consumer Protection and Professional Licensure 191st (2019 - 2020)

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts


Paul R. Feeney 
Senate Chair
Tackey Chan 
House Chair

Committee Rules of Procedure for the 191th General Court 2019-2020 (As required by Joint Rule 1)

  1. Public Hearings
    1. All matters referred to the Committee in each legislative session shall be given a public hearing. The Chairs shall use their discretion in scheduling the order of petitions to be heard at any public hearing or executive session of the Committee. As feasibly as possible, each Chair shall preside over an equal number of hearings during the legislative session.
    2. The House & Senate Chairs shall be responsible for determining the schedule of all public hearings.  Whenever possible, bills that are referred to the Committee should be scheduled according to subject matter. 
    3. All public hearings shall be conducted by either the Senate or House Chairs. In the absence of the Chairs, the Vice-Chairs shall conduct the hearing. In the absence of the Chairs and Vice-Chairs, the hearing shall be conducted by a member of the Committee as designated by mutual agreement of the Chairs. 
    4. Each member of the Committee shall receive an information packet at least 24 hours prior to the public hearing, listing the bill number, title and summary of each bill that is scheduled for that hearing.
    5. The Chairperson shall have general supervision of all Committee hearings and shall preserve order and decorum. The presiding Chair may limit the time for questioning witnesses after giving due consideration to the importance of the subject matter, the number of petitions scheduled for hearing, and the length of time available.
    6. Persons testifying may be directed to limit the time of their verbal testimony as determined by the Chairs.
  2. Executive Session and Polls
    1. Executive sessions may be scheduled after each public hearing and at other appropriate times, as mutually agreed to by the Chairs. The agenda shall be provided in a timely manner by the Chairs to the members unless it is determined that there is an emergency.
    2. Except by mutual agreement of both Chairs, no executive session may be held in the absence of either Chair, no bill may be considered at an executive session, and no poll shall be dispensed except by agreement of both chairs. The presiding Chair will have general supervision of the executive session or hearing.
    3. All executive sessions of the Committee shall be open to the public unless the Committee, in accordance with Joint Rule 1A, votes to close such sessions.
    4. In lieu of an Executive Session, the Senate and House Chairs, by mutual agreement, may conduct a poll of each Committee member to determine the recommendation of the Committee on any specific petition.  A reasonable amount of time, as determined by the Chairs, shall be given for members to record their votes, and the deadline for recording votes shall be announced to each member. Members shall be directed to respond to the poll by notifying committee staff as designated by the Chairs.  Upon request, the results of polls shall be available to all members of the Joint Committee.
  3. Adoptions, Amendments, and Suspensions
    1. The Chairs shall have broad authority relative to the operations of the committee, public hearings and executive sessions as it pertains to the enforcement of the rules.
    2. As provided in the Joint Rules, the Committee Chairs may jointly or unilaterally initiate and form subcommittees regarding the subject matter of any legislative matter or any other subject matter under the jurisdiction of the committee. Such subcommittee shall make a report of its findings and recommendations to the Committee Chairs prior to the end of the biennium or at a date to be determined by the Committee Chairs. 
    3. None of these rules shall supersede the Joint Rules and any absence or conflict to these rules shall default to the Joint Rules.