Articles LXXI-LXXX, Amendments to the Massachusetts Constitution

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Massachusetts Constitution
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Preamble
Part the First:
Articles I - XXX
Part the Second:
Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Articles of Amendment

Article LXXI

Note: Article LXXI was superseded by Amendments, Arts. XCII, CI, and CIX.

[Article XXI of the articles of amendment is hereby annulled and the following is adopted in place thereof:

Article XXI. In the year nineteen hundred and thirty-five and every tenth year thereafter a census of the inhabitants of each city and town shall be taken and a special enumeration shall be made of the legal voters therein. Said special enumeration shall also specify the number of legal voters residing in each precinct of each town containing twelve thousand or more inhabitants according to said census and in each ward of each city. Each special enumeration shall be the basis for determining the representative districts for the ten year period beginning with the first Wednesday in the fourth January following said special enumeration; provided, that such districts as established in the year nineteen hundred and twenty-six shall continue in effect until the first Wednesday in January in the year nineteen hundred and thirty-nine.

The house of representatives shall consist of two hundred and forty members, which shall be apportioned by the general court, at its first regular session after the return of each special enumeration, to the several counties of the commonwealth, equally, as nearly as may be, according to their relative numbers of legal voters, as ascertained by said special enumeration; and the town of Cohasset, in the county of Norfolk, shall, for this purpose, as well as in the formation of districts as hereinafter provided, be considered a part of the county of Plymouth; and it shall be the duty of the secretary of the commonwealth to certify, as soon as may be after it is determined by the general court, the number of representatives to which each county shall be entitled, to the board authorized to divide such county into representative districts. The county commissioners or other body acting as such or, in lieu thereof, such board of special commissioners in each county as may for that purpose be provided by law, shall, within thirty days after such certification by the secretary of the commonwealth or within such other period as the general court may by law provide, assemble at a shire town of their respective counties, and proceed, as soon as may be, to divide the same into representative districts of contiguous territory and assign representatives thereto, so that each representative in such county will represent an equal number of legal voters, as nearly as may be; and such districts shall be so formed that no town containing less than twelve thousand inhabitants according to said census, no precinct of any other town and no ward of a city shall be divided therefore, nor shall any district be made which shall be entitled to elect more than three representatives. The general court may by law limit the time within which judicial proceedings may be instituted calling in question any such apportionment, division or assignment. Every representative, for one year at least immediately preceding his election, shall have been an inhabitant of the district for which he is chosen and shall cease to represent such district when he shall cease to be an inhabitant of the commonwealth. The districts in each county shall be numbered by the board creating the same, and a description of each, with the numbers thereof and the number of legal voters therein, shall be returned by the board, to the secretary of the commonwealth, the county treasurer of such county, and to the clerk of every city or town in such county, to be filed and kept in their respective offices. The manner of calling and conducting the elections for the choice of representatives, and of ascertaining their election, shall be prescribed by law.

Article XXII of the articles of amendment is hereby annulled and the following is adopted in place thereof:

[Article XXII. Each special enumeration of legal voters required in the preceding article of amendment shall likewise be the basis for determining the senatorial districts and also the councillor districts for the ten year period beginning with the first Wednesday in the fourth January following such enumeration; provided, that such districts as established in the year nineteen hundred and twenty-six shall continue in effect until the first Wednesday in January in the year nineteen hundred and thirty-nine. The senate shall consist of forty members. The general court shall, at its first regular session after the return of each special enumeration, divide the commonwealth into forty districts of contiguous territory, each district to contain, as nearly as may be, an equal number of legal voters, according to said special enumeration; provided, however, that no town or ward of a city shall be divided therefore; and such districts shall be formed, as nearly as may be, without uniting two counties, or parts of two or more counties, into one district. The general court may by law limit the time within which judicial proceedings may be instituted calling in question such division. Each district shall elect one senator, who shall have been an inhabitant of this commonwealth five years at least immediately preceding his election, and at the time of his election shall be an inhabitant of the district for which he is chosen; and he shall cease to represent such senatorial district when he shall cease to be an inhabitant of the commonwealth.][1]

Article LXXII

Section 1

[The general court shall assemble in regular session on the first Wednesday of January in the year following the approval of this article and biennially on said Wednesday thereafter. Nothing herein contained shall prevent the general court from assembling at such other times as they shall judge necessary or when called together by the governor.][1]

Section 2

[The budget required by Section 2 of Article LXIII of the amendments to the constitution shall be for the year in which the same is adopted and for the ensuing year.][1]

Section 3

Note: Article LXXII Section 3 was annulled by Amendments, Art. LXXV.

[All provisions of this constitution and of the amendments thereto requiring the general court to meet annually are hereby annulled.][1]

Article LXXIII

Article VIII of section I of chapter II of Part the Second of the Constitution of the Commonwealth is hereby annulled and the following is adopted in place thereof:--

Art. VIII. The power of pardoning offences, except such as persons may be convicted of before the senate by an impeachment of the house, shall be in the governor, by and with the advice of council, provided, that if the offence is a felony the general court shall have power to prescribe the terms and conditions upon which a pardon may be granted; but no charter of pardon, granted by the governor, with advice of the council before conviction, shall avail the party pleading the same, notwithstanding any general or particular expressions contained therein, descriptive of the offence or offences intended to be pardoned.[1]

Article LXXIV

Section 1

Article XLVIII of the amendments to the constitution is hereby amended by striking out section three, under the heading "THE INITIATIVE. III. Initiative Petitions.," and inserting in place thereof the following: -

Section 3. Mode of Originating. - Such petition shall first be signed by ten qualified voters of the commonwealth and shall be submitted to the attorney-general not later than the first Wednesday of the August before the assembling of the general court into which it is to be introduced, and if he shall certify that the measure and the title thereof are in proper form for submission to the people, and that the measure is not, either affirmatively or negatively, substantially the same as any measure which has been qualified for submission or submitted to the people at either of the two preceding biennial state elections, and that it contains only subjects not excluded from the popular initiative and which are related or which are mutually dependent, it may then be filed with the secretary of the commonwealth. The secretary of the commonwealth shall provide blanks for the use of subsequent signers, and shall print at the top of each blank a fair, concise summary, as determined by the attorney-general, of the proposed measure as such summary will appear on the ballot together with the names and residences of the first ten signers. All initiative petitions, with the first ten signatures attached, shall be filed with the secretary of the commonwealth not earlier than the first Wednesday of the September before the assembling of the general court into which they are to be introduced, and the remainder of the required signatures shall be filed not later than the first Wednesday of the following December.[1]

Section 2

Section three of that part of said Article XLVIII, under the heading "THE REFERENDUM. III. Referendum Petitions.," is hereby amended by striking out the words "The secretary of the commonwealth shall provide blanks for the use of subsequent signers, and shall print at the top of each blank a description of the proposed law as such description will appear on the ballot together with the names and residences of the first ten signers.," and inserting in place thereof the words "The secretary of the commonwealth shall provide blanks for the use of subsequent signers, and shall print at the top of each blank a fair, concise summary of the proposed law as such summary will appear on the ballot together with the names and residences of the first ten signers."[1]

Section 3

Section four of that part of said Article XLVIII under the heading "THE REFERENDUM. III. Referendum Petitions.," is hereby amended by striking out the words "The secretary of the commonwealth shall provide blanks for the use of subsequent signers, and shall print at the top of each blank a description of the proposed law as such description will appear on the ballot together with the names and residences of the first ten signers.," and inserting in place thereof the words "The secretary of the commonwealth shall provide blanks for the use of subsequent signers, and shall print at the top of each blank a fair, concise summary of the proposed law as such summary will appear on the ballot together with the names and residences of the first ten signers."[1]

Section 4

Said Article XLVIII is hereby further amended by striking out, under the heading "GENERAL PROVISIONS," all of subheading "III. Form of Ballot." and all of subheading "IV. Information for Voters.," and inserting in place thereof the following:--[1]

III. Form of Ballot.

A fair, concise summary, as determined by the attorney general, subject to such provision as may be made by law, of each proposed amendment to the constitution, and each law submitted to the people, shall be printed on the ballot, and the secretary of the commonwealth shall give each question a number and cause such question, except as otherwise authorized herein, to be printed on the ballot in the following form:--

In the case of an amendment to the constitution: Do you approve of the adoption of an amendment to the constitution summarized below, (here state, in distinctive type, whether approved or disapproved by the general court, and by what vote thereon)?

[Set forth summary here]

In the case of a law: Do you approve of a law summarized below, (here state, in distinctive type, whether approved or disapproved by the general court, and by what vote thereon)?

[Set forth summary here][1]

IV. Information for Voters.

The secretary of the commonwealth shall cause to be printed and sent to each registered voter in the commonwealth the full text of every measure to be submitted to the people, together with a copy of the legislative committee's majority and minority reports, if there be such, with the names of the majority and minority members thereon, a statement of the votes of the general court on the measure, and a fair, concise summary of the measure as such summary will appear on the ballot; and shall, in such manner as may be provided by law, cause to be prepared and sent to the voters other information and arguments for and against the measure.[1]

Article LXXV

Article LXXII of the amendments to the constitution providing for biennial sessions of the general court and a biennial budget is hereby annulled, and all provisions of this constitution and of the amendments thereto which were annulled or affected by said Article shall have the same force and effect as though said Article had not been adopted.[1]

Article LXXVI

Note: Article LXXVI was superseded by Amendments, Art. CV.

Article XLV of the articles of amendment is hereby annulled and the following is adopted in place thereof:--

[Article XLV. The general court shall have power to provide by law for voting, in the choice of any officer to be elected or upon any question submitted at an election, by qualified voters of the commonwealth who, at the time of such an election, are absent from the city or town of which they are inhabitants or are unable by reason of physical disability to cast their votes in person at the polling places.][1]

Article LXXVII

Article XVI of Part the First is hereby annulled and the following is adopted in place thereof:

Article XVI. The liberty of the press is essential to the security of freedom in a state: it ought not, therefore, to be restrained in this commonwealth. The right of free speech shall not be abridged.[1]

Article LXXVIII

Note: Article LXXVIII was annulled by Amendments, Art. CIV.

[No revenue from fees, duties, excises or license taxes relating to registration, operation or use of vehicles on public highways, or to fuels used for propelling such vehicles, shall be expended for other than cost of administration of laws providing for such revenue, making of refunds and adjustments in relation thereto, payment of highway obligations, or cost of construction, reconstruction, maintenance and repair of public highways and bridges and of the enforcement of state traffic laws; and such revenue shall be expended by the commonwealth or its counties, cities and towns for said highway purposes only and in such manner as the general court may direct; provided, that this amendment shall not apply to revenue from any excise tax imposed in lieu of local property taxes for the privilege of registering such vehicles.][1]

Article LXXIX

Article XVII of the amendments of the constitution, as amended, is hereby further amended by striking out, in the third sentence, the words "two persons who had the highest number of votes for said offices on the day in November aforesaid" and inserting in place thereof the words: - people at large, - so that said sentence will read as follows: - In case of a failure to elect either of said officers on the day in November aforesaid, or in case of the decease, in the meantime, of the person elected as such, such officer shall be chosen on or before the third Wednesday in January next thereafter, from the people at large, by joint ballot of the senators and representatives, in one room; and in case the office of secretary, or treasurer and receiver-general, or auditor, or attorney-general, shall become vacant, from any cause, during an annual or special session of the general court, such vacancy shall in like manner be filled by choice from the people at large; but if such vacancy shall occur at any other time, it shall be supplied by the governor by appointment, with the advice and consent of the council.[1]

Article LXXX

Note: Article LXXX was annulled and superseded by Amendments, Art. LXXXII.

[ Article LXIV of the Amendments to the Constitution is hereby amended by striking out section 1 and inserting in place thereof the following section:-

[Section 1. The governor, lieutenant-governor, councillors, secretary, treasurer and receiver-general, attorney-general, auditor, senators and representatives shall be elected biennially. The terms of the governor, lieutenant-governor and councillors shall begin at noon on the Thursday next following the first Wednesday in January succeeding their election and shall end at noon on the Thursday next following the first Wednesday in January in the third year following their election. If the governor elect shall have died before the qualification of the lieutenant-governor elect, the lieutenant-governor elect upon qualification shall become governor. If both the governor elect and the lieutenant-governor elect shall have died both said offices shall be deemed to be vacant and the provisions of Article LV of the Amendments to the Constitution shall apply. The terms of senators and representatives shall begin with the first Wednesday in January succeeding their election and shall extend to the first Wednesday in January in the third year following their election and until their successors are chosen and qualified. The terms of the secretary, treasurer and receiver-general, attorney-general and auditor, shall begin with the third Wednesday in January succeeding their election and shall extend to the third Wednesday in January in the third year following their election and until their successors are chosen and qualified.][1]

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