Vanderbilt Law Review

First Page



Increasing awareness of the critical needs of the state legislatures has stimulated a number of groups to study these needs and suggest reforms. As a result of these efforts, the problems in this area are well-defined. However, all too often the states have failed to take an overview of the needs of the legislative branch; instead most efforts in this area have been directed towards the solutions of specific problems. The result has been as follows: a specific service agency will be created in response to a felt need; subsequently the agency will assume additional duties under the force of circumstances, until finally it is attempting to provide a multiplicity of services which it is not structured to undertake. The result is an agency understaffed, overworked, and no longer able to meet even those demands for which it was formed. Recognizing the inadequacy of such an ad hoc problem-solving approach, this Note seeks to stimulate an overview of legislative needs. In order to illustrate the needs of the legislative branch, this Note will present a functional analysis of the individual legislator's role in the law-making process.