Is more really better? It was recently reported that 2013 saw a record number of bills passed. We will have to see the impact of this year's legislation moving forward to know if this was a good thing or not. Nevertheless, we do appear to be on an interesting trend line. Here is the chart:
There may be several explanations to the trends:
1. Technology and processes have become ironed out to allow for more information and bills to be heard in the limited amount of time provided.
2. The number of controversial bills has declined overall and the increase is represented by "technical" bills that simply adjust minor aspects of the code. Not every bill is new law but rather the tweaking of a current one.
3. Legislators are asleep at the wheel.
Having been there, I doubt the third option is really the answer. Although, cynics everywhere are probably nodding and ribbing each other in agreement even at the suggestion.
Regardless, this is an very interesting trend. These high numbers could reflect the more regulated environment we are living in. More regulation requires more frequent adjustments.
I would like to see the number decrease. I have limited my bill proposals to around 5 per session. If everyone passed 5 bills per session it would put us at 505 a year. However, we have some "high achievers" at the Hill who run 40 or so bills, and that throws the numbers off.
I hope we keep our powder dry for the serious issues and spend some time repealing some laws as well next year.