HONOLULU - Nearly 3,000 bills were submitted this legislative session, signaling the start of a busy legislative session.

But lawmakers say those raw numbers don't tell the whole story.

"You can't compare it to an athletic contest, what we're talking about are bills that affect peoples lives," Rep. Della Au Belatti said. 

In a world full of numbers, statistics and comparisons, it's easy look at the latest figures from the state legislature and come to a conclusion.

Last year's data showed state lawmakers passed the least amount of bills in the past 6 years.

They also introduced the most bills over that same period of time.

Both House and Senate leaders say - don't get those numbers misconstrued.

"Democracy is messy, that's how the framers of the constitution put it together," Sen. Kalani English sad.  

"The legislative process is designed for us to whittle down to the very best ideas and it's not typical to have a few hundred passed per year," Belatti said. 

230 bills were passed in 2017.

It's much too early to estimate how many will survive through 2018.

But 2,943 bills are already introduced this session - the highest amount over a seven year period. 

Sen. English says they're able to introduce more bills now because the legislature has become more efficient.
    
For one, going paperless.

Rep. Belatti adds that if the process works, the bills that make it through typically are quality bills.

Those nearly 3,000 bills will now attempt to make it through that process.

On average, just over 250 of them will become law.