Articles XXXI-XLVII, Amendments to the Massachusetts Constitution
|Part the First|
|Part the Second:|
|Articles of Amendment|
Article twenty-eight of the amendments of the constitution is hereby amended by striking out in the fourth line thereof the words "being a pauper", and inserting in place thereof the words: -- receiving or having received aid from any city or town, -- and also by striking out in said fourth line the words "if a pauper", so that the article as amended shall read as follows: ARTICLE XXVIII. No person having served in the army or navy of the United States in time of war, and having been honorably discharged from such service, if otherwise qualified to vote, shall be disqualified therefore on account of receiving or having received aid from any city or town, or because of the non-payment of a poll tax.
So much of article three of the amendments of the constitution of the commonwealth as is contained in the following words: "and who shall have paid, by himself, or his parent, master, or guardian, any state or county tax, which shall, within two years next preceding such election, have been assessed upon him, in any town or district of this commonwealth; and also every citizen who shall be, by law, exempted from taxation, and who shall be, in all other respects, qualified as above mentioned", is hereby annulled.
A majority of the members of each branch of the general court shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business, but a less number may adjourn from day to day, and compel the attendance of absent members. All the provisions of the existing constitution inconsistent with the provisions herein contained are hereby annulled.
So much of article two of section one of chapter two of part the second of the constitution of the commonwealth as is contained in the following words: "and unless he shall at the same time, be seised in his own right, of a freehold within the commonwealth of the value of one thousand pounds"; is hereby annulled.
So much of article two of section three of chapter one of the constitution of the commonwealth as is contained in the following words: "The expenses of travelling to the general assembly, and returning home, once in every session, and no more, shall be paid by the government, out of the public treasury, to every member who shall attend as seasonably as he can, in the judgment of the house, and does not depart without leave", is hereby annulled.
So much of article nineteen of the articles of amendment to the constitution of the commonwealth as is contained in the following words "commissioners of insolvency", is hereby annulled.
The governor, with the consent of the council, may remove justices of the peace and notaries public.
Voting machines or other mechanical devices for voting may be used at all elections under such regulations as may be prescribed by law: provided, however, that the right of secret voting shall be preserved.
Article ten of part one of the constitution is hereby amended by adding to it the following words: -- The legislature may by special acts for the purpose of laying out, widening or relocating highways or streets, authorize the taking in fee by the commonwealth, or by a county, city or town, of more land and property than are needed for the actual construction of such highway or street: provided, however, that the land and property authorized to be taken are specified in the act and are no more in extent than would be sufficient for suitable building lots on both sides of such highway or street, and after so much of the land or property has been appropriated for such highway or street as is needed therefore, may authorize the sale of the remainder for value with or without suitable restrictions.
Article three of the amendments to the constitution is hereby amended by inserting after the word "guardianship", in line two, the following: -- and persons temporarily or permanently disqualified by law because of corrupt practices in respect to elections.
Note: Article XLI was annulled by Amendments, Art. CX
[Full power and authority are hereby given and granted to the general court to prescribe for wild or forest lands such methods of taxation as will develop and conserve the forest resources of the commonwealth.]
Note: Article XLII was annulled and superseded by Amendments, Art. XLVIII.
Full power and authority are hereby given and granted to the general court to refer to the people for their rejection or approval at the polls any act or resolve of the general court or any part or parts thereof. Such reference shall be by a majority yea and nay vote of all members of each house present and voting. Any act, resolve, or part thereof so referred shall be voted on at the regular state election next ensuing after such reference, shall become law if approved by a majority of the voters voting thereon, and shall take effect at the expiration of thirty days after the election at which it was approved or at such time after the expiration of the said thirty days as may be fixed in such act, resolve or part thereof.
The general court shall have power to authorize the commonwealth to take land and to hold, improve, sub-divide, build upon and sell the same, for the purpose of relieving congestion of population and providing homes for citizens; provided, however, that this amendment shall not be deemed to authorize the sale of such land or buildings at less than the cost thereof.
Full power and authority are hereby given and granted to the general court to impose and levy a tax on income in the manner hereinafter provided. Such tax may be at different rates upon income derived from different classes of property, but shall be levied at a uniform rate throughout the commonwealth upon incomes derived from the same class of property. The general court may tax income not derived from property at a lower rate than income derived from property, and may grant reasonable exemptions and abatements. Any class of property the income from which is taxed under the provisions of this article may be exempted from the imposition and levying of proportional and reasonable assessments, rates and taxes as at present authorized by the constitution. This article shall not be construed to limit the power of the general court to impose and levy reasonable duties and excises.
The general court shall have power to provide by law for voting by qualified voters of the commonwealth who, at the time of an election, are absent from the city or town of which they are inhabitants in the choice of any officer to be elected or upon any question submitted at such election.
(In place of article XVIII of the articles of amendment of the constitution ratified and adopted April 9, 1821, the following article of amendment, submitted by the constitutional convention, was ratified and adopted November 6, 1917.)
Article XVIII. Section 1. No law shall be passed prohibiting the free exercise of religion.
Section 2. All moneys raised by taxation in the towns and cities for the support of public schools, and all moneys which may be appropriated by the commonwealth for the support of common schools shall be applied to, and expended in, no other schools than those which are conducted according to law, under the order and superintendence of the authorities of the town or city in which the money is expended; and no grant, appropriation or use of public money or property or loan of public credit shall be made or authorized by the commonwealth or any political division thereof for the purpose of founding, maintaining or aiding any other school or institution of learning, whether under public control or otherwise, wherein any denominational doctrine is inculcated, or any other school, or any college, infirmary, hospital, institution, or educational, charitable or religious undertaking which is not publicly owned and under the exclusive control, order and superintendence of public officers or public agents authorized by the commonwealth or federal authority or both, except that appropriations may be made for the maintenance and support of the Soldiers' Home in Massachusetts and for free public libraries in any city or town, and to carry out legal obligations, if any, already entered into; and no such grant, appropriation or use of public money or property or loan of public credit shall be made or authorized for the purpose of founding, maintaining or aiding any church, religious denomination or society.]
Section 3. Nothing herein contained shall be construed to prevent the commonwealth, or any political division thereof, from paying to privately controlled hospitals, infirmaries, or institutions for the deaf, dumb or blind not more than the ordinary and reasonable compensation for care or support actually rendered or furnished by such hospitals, infirmaries or institutions to such persons as may be in whole or in part unable to support or care for themselves.
Section 4. Nothing herein contained shall be construed to deprive any inmate of a publicly controlled reformatory, penal or charitable institution of the opportunity of religious exercises therein of his own faith; but no inmate of such institution shall be compelled to attend religious services or receive religious instruction against his will, or, if a minor, without the consent of his parent or guardian.
Section 5. This amendment shall not take effect until the October first next succeeding its ratification and adoption by the people.
The maintenance and distribution at reasonable rates, during time of war, public exigency, emergency or distress, of a sufficient supply of food and other common necessaries of life and the providing of shelter, are public functions, and the commonwealth and the cities and towns therein may take and may provide the same for their inhabitants in such manner as the general court shall determine.