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How an Idea Becomes a Law

This is a simplified chart of the steps an idea must go through before it becomes law in North Carolina. Of course, the actual progress of a bill through the General Assembly is much more complicated than what is indicated here, and it is important to keep in mind that at any point along this route a bill can "die" and never become law. However, for those ideas that do make their way into law, this is the path generally followed:

1. A concerned citizen, group, or legislator has an idea and suggests legislation.


Representative or
Senator writes bill
1.   The bill is
introduced to
either the House
or Senate.
1. Committee
reviews the
bill and
reports on
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1. If the bill has been
changed, it either
returns to the
original chamber for a new vote or
proceeds to a
committee. If no
changes have been
made, the bill is sent to the Governor.


The Senate
or House
passes the
1.   Bill sent to other
chamber of the
1. House or
passes the
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9. A conference
committe made up of House and
Senate members
writes a final
version of the bill.


The House
and Senate
pass the final
version of the
11.   The Governor signs the bill. 12. The Secretary of
State is given
custody of
the bill and
it becomes