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22 JULY 2019

XIII LEGISLATURE

Dictionary of terms

General terms

Ballot.

Procedure whereby collegiate bodies adopt decisions. In the case of Parliament, its status as a deliberative body means that it is normally preceded by a debate about the matter that will be put to the vote. There are various ballot or voting systems: electronic (which is usually used), roll call, standing and seated numbers, assent, etc. In turn, roll call ballots can be public or secret.

Bicameralism.

Model of parliamentary organisation characterised by the existence of two Houses. When, as is the case in Spain, the two Houses have a different function or weighting in parliamentary proceedings, the term asymmetrical or imperfect bicameralism is used.

Blue bench.

Row of seats occupied by the Speaker and other members of Government in the Chamber of Sittings in the Senate or the Congress of Deputies.

Budget of the Senate

The financial autonomy of the Houses implies that each of them independently approves its own budget, determining the volume of revenues required to carry out its tasks. The Bureau is responsible for drawing up and approving the Senate Budget. Once approved, it is sent to the Government for its inclusion in the Draft General State Budget. Autonomy also encompasses budget management and execution. Fiscal matters are handled by the Senate Inspection, and the Bureau is responsible for approving payment.

Bureau.

Governing body of the House, comprising the Speaker, Deputies Speakers (two in the Senate and four in the Congress of Deputies) and four Secretaries. Its election for each Legislature takes place in the constitutional session of the House. Its major competences are parliamentary and administrative in nature