Arkansas Executive Article Revision, Amendment 2 (2002)

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Arkansas Amendment 2, also known as the Proposing a Constitutional to Revise the Executive Article of the Arkansas Constitution Act, appeares as a legislatively-referred constitutional amendment on the November 7, 2002 election ballot in Arkansas, where it was defeated.[1]

Election results

Executive Article Revision
Defeatedd No359,94154.6%
Yes 298,808 45.4%

Text of measure

The language that appeared on the ballot:

What are the significant changes in the proposed amendment from the current article in the Arkansas Constitution? - Allows the Governor to retain his/her powers when he/she is out of the state. (Currently the Lieutenant Governor assumes those powers when the Governor is out of the state.) - Provides the elected officers of the executive department will be elected at a general election except as otherwise provided in the law or Constitution. - Provides that the Governor, Secretary of State, Treasurer, Auditor, Attorney General and Commissioner of State Lands shall be U.S. citizens, registered voters and residents of Arkansas for 7 years. All elected officials of the executive department must be at least 25 years old upon assuming office, except the Governor who must be 30 years old. - Provides that the Attorney General be a licensed attorney in Arkansas. - Provides that existence of a physical or mental disability of the Governor or Lieutenant Governor will be determined by the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court will also determine when such disability ceases. Their decisions on each will be final. - Provides that the General Assembly will establish the process for determining the existence of disability (physical or mental) for the Secretary of State, Treasurer, Auditor, Attorney General and Commissioner of State Lands. - Allows the Governor five days to sign or veto a bill passed by the General Assembly. If the Governor takes no action five days after it reaches his desk, the bill becomes law without his signature. (Current law is the same with one exception. Existing law provides that after the legislature finally adjourns, the Governor has twenty days to sign or veto a bill or a line item in an appropriation bill.)

The following provisions are already in the current Constitution or state law in one place or the other. This new language is meant to more directly state, consolidate and clarify these laws. - Allows the Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Secretary of State, State Treasurer, Attorney General, Commissioner of State Lands and State Auditor to receive retirement benefits, insurance and other benefits available to state employees. - Allows the Governor to fill any state elective office (except Lieutenant Governor, member of the General Assembly or the U.S. House of Representatives) when it becomes vacant unless the Constitution or laws provide procedures to fill the vacancy. - Provides that for any reason the Governor's office becomes vacant that the order of succession will be Lieutenant Governor, President Pro Tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives. The General Assembly will establish successors in cases not covered in this section.

When does the legislation take effect if passed? - The amendment, if passed, would become effective January 1, 2003.

What significant provisions in the proposed amendment will remain the same as the current constitution? - The executive officers of the state referred to in this amendment will serve four year terms and will be limited to two terms. - The salaries of the executive officers can be changed at a general election but may also be increased by the General Assembly by an amount not to exceed the average percent increase in the Consumer Price Index for Urban Consumers published by the United States Department of Labor. - The current executive officer salaries allowed by this amendment are as follows: Governor - $73,603 Lieutenant Governor - $35,574 Secretary of State - $46,002 Treasurer of State - $46,002 Attorney General - $61,335 Commissioner of State Lands - $46,002 Auditor of State - $46,002 - No executive officer may be reimbursed for expenses except for those reasonably connected to official duties and only if the reimbursement is for documented expenses actually incurred. - The Governor will report periodically to the General Assembly, will be the Commander in Chief of the State Militia, will keep the State Seal, will sign all grants and commissions, will have the power to pardon and reprieve, can sign or veto bills by the General Assembly, will have the power to veto line items in a bill appropriating money and can call the General Assembly into special session. - Contested elections of these executive officers will be decided by the General Assembly. - The Lieutenant Governor will preside over the Senate and vote only in case of a tie. - If the Lieutenant Governor leaves office for any reason, the Governor will call for a special election to fill the vacancy. - The executive officers may not hold any other office, civil or military, in Arkansas or the U.S.

Does the amendment raise taxes? The amendment does not raise taxes.

Is there any organized opposition to this amendment? As of this writing there appears to be no strong organized opposition to this amendment.

See also

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