South Dakota Length of Legislative Session, Constitutional Amendment I (2008)
The measure provides for a maximum of forty legislative days each year.
See also 2008 ballot measure election results
These results are based on the Elections Division of South Dakota.
|South Dakota Amendment 1 (2008)|
Attorney General's Explanation
"The Constitution limits the length of regular legislative sessions held during odd-numbered years to no more than forty legislative days, and those held during even-numbered years to no more than thirty-five legislative days. Constitutional Amendment I would set all regular legislative sessions at a maximum of forty legislative days."
Bill Peterson, a Republican from Sioux Falls and the Majority Leader for the House of Representatives, wrote the "pro" arguments for the state Ballot Question Pamphlet:
- The Executive Branch of South Dakotan government is full-time, whereas the Legislative Branch is only part-time. This creates an imbalance of power.
- Adding days to the legislative session would help to correct the current imbalance of power between the Executive and Legislative branches.
- The Legislature already meets in 40 day sessions every odd numbered year, why not have the option of doing so every year?
- The Legislative Article (the section of the Constitution setting out guidelines for the legislature) has been changed very little since statehood. The world however, has changed quite a bit and it is not as easy to write laws as it once was. The Legislature needs more time to do it's job.
Senator Jerry Apa, a Republican from Lead and Chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, wrote the "con" arguments for the state Ballot Question Pamphlet:
- There is an added cost to the taxpayers if the session is lengthened of $550 per legislator per day, plus additional travel costs. The total additional costs would be at least $115,000 per year.
- On a number of occasions the Legislature has finished it's business and gone home before the end of the session. Why give more time if it is not needed?
- Making the session longer will only result in important work being put off to the last minute.
- A vote for Amendment I is a vote for expanded government.
- Amendment I is basically the legislature trying to give itself a raise.
- The Press Dakotan has endorsed the passage of Amendment I.
- Text of measure
- 2008 South Dakota Ballot Questions Pamphlet
- South Dakota Ballot Question Status from the Secretary of State
- South Dakota Elections Division, 2008 Election Results
- Attorney General's Explanation
- 2008 South Dakota Ballot Question pamphlet Pro -- Constitutional Amendment I
- 2008 South Dakota Ballot Question pamphlet Con -- Constitutional Amendment I
- Money at heart of debate over length of legislative session, Rapid City Journal, October 28, 2008
- Our Opinion: These S.D. Amendments Deserve Voter Approval, Press Dakotan, October 14, 2008
- Constitutional Amendment I will add strength to state's motto, 'Under God the People Rule', Dakota Voice, September 29, 2008
- Voters Will Decide Seven Issues, Marshall County Journal, October 1, 2008