| Session - 127th Maine Legislature
RESOLUTION, Proposing an Amendment to the Constitution of Maine To Elect 2 Senators from Each County
Constitutional amendment. Resolved: Two thirds of each branch of the Legislature concurring, that the following amendment to the Constitution of Maine be proposed:
Constitution, Art. IV, Pt. Second, §1 is amended to read:
Section 1. Number of Senators. The Senate shall consist of an odd number of Senators, not less than 31 nor more than 35, except that, on or after December 7, 2016, the Senate shall consist of 32 Senators, elected at the same time and for the same term as Representatives by the qualified electors of the districts into which the State shall be from time to time divided.
Constitution, Art. IV, Pt. Second, §2, first ¶ is amended to read:
Section 2. Submission of reapportionment plan to Secretary of Senate; Legislature's action on commission's plan; division of State into Senatorial Districts; division by Supreme Judicial Court. The Legislature which shall convene in the year 2013 , and also the Legislature which shall convene in the year 2021 and every tenth year thereafter, shall cause the State to be divided into districts for the choice of a Senator from each district, using the same method as provided in Article IV, Part First, Section 2 for apportionment of Representative Districts , and the Legislature which shall convene on January 6, 2016 shall reapportion the State so that the Senatorial Districts coincide with the counties of the State, resulting in the voters of each county having the right to vote for 2 Senators.
Constitution, Art. IV, Pt. Second, §5 is amended to read:
Section 5. Determination of Senators elected; procedure for filling vacancies. The Senate shall, on said first Wednesday of December, biennially determine who is elected by a plurality of votes to be a Senator in each district. All vacancies in the Senate arising from death, resignation, removal from the State or like causes, and also vacancies, if any, which may occur because of the failure of any district to elect by a plurality of votes the a Senator to which said district shall be entitled shall be filled by an immediate election in the unrepresented district. The Governor shall issue a proclamation therefor and therein fix the time of such election.
Constitution, Art. IV, Pt. Third, §1-A, last indented ¶ is amended to read:
Public members of the commission shall receive the same rate of per diem that is paid to Legislators for every day's attendance at special sessions of the Legislature as defined by law. All members of the commission shall be reimbursed for actual travel expenses incurred in carrying out the business of the commission. The Legislature which is required to apportion shall establish a budget for the apportioning commission within the state budget document in the fiscal year previous to the fiscal year during which the apportioning commission is required to convene and shall appropriate sufficient funds for the commission to satisfactorily perform its duties and responsibilities except that the Legislature which is required to apportion and which convenes on January 6, 2016 is not required to so establish a budget for the apportioning commission. The budget shall include sufficient funds to compensate the chairperson of the commission and the chairperson's staff. The remainder of the appropriation shall be made available equally among the political parties represented on the commission to provide travel expenses, incidental expenses and compensation for commission members and for partisan staff and operations.
"Do you favor amending the Constitution of Maine to reduce the size of the Senate from no more than 35 members to 32 members by reapportioning senatorial districts to coincide with the counties of the State, effective December 7, 2016?"
The legal voters of each city, town and plantation shall vote by ballot on this question and designate their choice by a cross or check mark placed within the corresponding square below the word "Yes" or "No." The ballots must be received, sorted, counted and declared in open ward, town and plantation meetings and returns made to the Secretary of State in the same manner as votes for members of the Legislature. The Governor shall review the returns. If it appears that a majority of the legal votes are cast in favor of the amendment, the Governor shall proclaim that fact without delay and the amendment becomes part of the Constitution of Maine on the date of the proclamation; and be it further
Secretary of State shall prepare ballots. Resolved: That the Secretary of State shall prepare and furnish to each city, town and plantation all ballots, returns and copies of this resolution necessary to carry out the purposes of this referendum.
This resolution proposes to amend the Constitution of Maine to reduce the size of the Senate from no more than 35 members to 32 members as a result of reapportioning to 2 Senators per county. The resolution also requires the redrawing of district lines in 2016.
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