Article 21, Wyoming Constitution

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Wyoming Constitution
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Article 21 of the Wyoming Constitution consists of 28 sections.

Section 1

Text of Section 1:

Acquired Rights Continue

That no inconvenience may arise from a change of the territorial government to a permanent state government, it is declared that all writs, actions, prosecutions, claims, liabilities and obligations against the Territory of Wyoming, of whatever nature, and rights of individuals, and of bodies corporate, shall continue as if no change had taken place in this government, and all process which may, before the organization of the judicial department under this constitution, be issued under the authority of the Territory of Wyoming, shall be as valid as if issued in the name of the state.[1]</center>

Section 2

Text of Section 2:

Territorial Property Vested in State

All property, real and personal, and all moneys, credits, claims and choses in action, belonging to the Territory of Wyoming, at the time of the adoption of this constitution, shall be vested in and become the property of the State of Wyoming.[1]

Section 3

Text of Section 3:

Territorial Laws Become State Laws

All laws now in force in the Territory of Wyoming, which are not repugnant to this constitution, shall remain in force until they expire by their own limitation, or be altered or repealed by the legislature.[1]

Section 4

Text of Section 4:

Accrued Fines Go to State

All fines, penalties, forfeitures and escheats, accruing to the Territory of Wyoming, shall accrue to the use of the state.[1]

Section 5

Text of Section 5:

State to Sue on Bonds and Prosecute Crimes

All recognizances, bonds, obligations or other undertakings heretofore taken, or which may be taken before the organization of the judicial department under this constitution shall remain valid, and shall pass over to and may be prosecuted in the name of the state, and all bonds, obligations or other undertakings executed to this territory, or to any officer in his official capacity, shall pass over to the proper state authority and to their successors in office, for the uses therein respectively expressed, and may be sued for and recovered accordingly. All criminal prosecutions and penal actions which have arisen or which may arise before the organization of the judicial department under this constitution, and which shall then be pending, may be prosecuted to judgment and execution in the name of the state.[1]

Section 6

Text of Section 6:

Territorial Officers to Hold Over

All officers, civil and military, holding their offices and appointments in this territory, under the authority of the United States or under the authority of this territory, shall continue to hold and exercise their respective offices and appointments until suspended under this constitution.[1]

Section 7

Text of Section 7:

Submission of Constitution

This constitution shall be submitted for adoption or rejection to a vote of the qualified electors of this territory, at an election to be held on the first Tuesday in November, A. D. 1889. Said election, as nearly as may be, shall be conducted in all respects in the same manner as provided by the laws of the territory for general elections, and the returns thereof shall be made to the secretary of said territory, who with the governor and chief justice thereof, or any two of them, shall canvass the same, and if a majority of the legal votes cast shall be for the constitution the governor shall certify the result to the president of the United States, together with a statement of the votes cast thereon and a copy of said constitution, articles, propositions and ordinances. At the said election the ballots shall be in the following form: "For the constitution--Yes. No." And as a heading to each of said ballots, shall be printed on each ballot the following instructions to voters: "All persons who desire to vote for the constitution may erase the word 'No.' All persons who desire to vote against the constitution may erase the word 'Yes.'" Any person may have printed or written on his ballot only the words: "For the Constitution," or "Against the Constitution," and such ballots shall be counted for or against the constitution accordingly.[1]

Section 8

Text of Section 8:

When Constitution Takes Effect

This constitution shall take effect and be in full force immediately upon the admission of the territory as a state.[1]

Section 9

Text of Section 9:

First State Election; Time of Holding; Proclamation

Immediately upon the admission of the territory as a state, the governor of the territory, or in case of his absence or failure to act, the secretary of the territory, or in case of his absence or failure to act, the president of this convention, shall issue a proclamation, which shall be published and a copy thereof mailed to the chairman of the board of county commissioners of each county, calling an election by the people for all state, district and other officers, created and made elective by this constitution, and fixing a day for such election, which shall not be less than forty days after the date of such proclamation nor more than ninety days after the admission of the territory as a state.[1]

Section 10

Text of Section 10:

First State Election; Duty of County Commissioners; Who May Vote; Conduct of Election

The board of commissioners of the several counties shall thereupon order such election for said day, and shall cause notice thereof to be given, in the manner and for the length of time provided by the laws of the territory in cases of general elections for delegate to congress, and county and other officers. Every qualified elector of the territory at the date of said election shall be entitled to vote thereat. Said election shall be conducted in all respects in the same manner as provided by the laws of the territory for general elections, and the returns thereof shall be made to the canvassing board hereinafter provided for.[1]

Section 11

Text of Section 11:

First State Election; Board of Canvassers

The governor, secretary of the territory and president of this convention, or a majority of them, shall constitute a board of canvassers to canvass the vote of such election for member of congress, all state and district officers and members of the legislature. The said board shall assemble at the seat of government of the territory on the thirtieth day after the day of such election (or on the following day if such day fall on Sunday) and proceed to canvass the votes for all state and district officers and members of the legislature, in the manner provided by the laws of the territory for canvassing the vote for delegate to congress, and they shall issue certificates of election to the persons found to be elected to said offices, severally, and shall make and file with the secretary of the territory an abstract certified by them of the number of votes cast for each person, for each of said offices, and of the total number of votes cast in each county.[1]

Section 12

Text of Section 12:

When Officers Shall Qualify; Oaths; Bonds

All officers elected at such election, except members of the legislature, shall, within thirty days after they have been declared elected, take the oath required by this constitution, and give the same bond required by law of the territory to be given in case of like officers of the territory or district, and shall thereupon enter upon the duties of their respective offices; but the legislature may require by law all such officers to give other or further bonds as a condition of their continuance in office.[1]

Section 13

Text of Section 13:

First State Legislature

The governor elect of the state, immediately upon his qualifying and entering upon the duties of his office, shall issue his proclamation convening the legislature of the state at the seat of government, on a day to be named in said proclamation, and which shall not be less than thirty nor more than sixty days after the date of such proclamation. Within ten days after the organization of the legislature, both houses of the legislature, in joint session, shall then there proceed to elect, as provided by law, two senators of the United States for the State of Wyoming. At said election the two persons who shall receive the majority of all the votes cast by said senators and representatives shall be elected as such United States senators, and shall be so declared by the presiding officers of said joint session. The presiding officers of the senate and house shall issue a certificate to each of said senators, certifying his election, which certificates shall also be signed by the governor and attested by the secretary of state.[1]

Section 14

Text of Section 14:

Laws to Be Passed

The legislature shall pass all necessary laws to carry into effect the provisions of this constitution.[1]

Section 15

Text of Section 15:

Transfer of Pending Causes, Records and Seal of Courts

Whenever any two of the judges of the supreme court of the state, elected under the provisions of this constitution, shall have qualified in their offices, the causes then pending in the supreme court of the territory, and the papers, records and proceedings of said court, and the seal and other property pertaining thereto, shall pass into the jurisdiction and possession of the supreme court of the state; and until so superseded the supreme court of the territory and the judges thereof shall continue with like powers and jurisdiction, as if this constitution had not been adopted. Whenever the judge of the district court of any district, elected under the provisions of this constitution, shall have qualified in office, the several causes then pending in the district court of the territory, within any county in such district, and the records, papers and proceedings of said district court and the seal and other property pertaining thereto, shall pass into the jurisdiction and possession of the district court of the state for such county; and until the district courts of this territory shall be superseded in the manner aforesaid, the said district courts and the judges thereof shall continue with the same jurisdiction and power to be exercised in the same judicial districts respectively as heretofore constituted under the laws of the territory.[1]

Section 16

Text of Section 16:

Court Seals

Until otherwise provided by law the seals now in use in the supreme and district courts of this territory are hereby declared to be the seals of the supreme and district courts, respectively, of the state.[1]

Section 17

Text of Section 17:

Transfer of Causes and Records from Probate Courts to District Courts

Whenever this constitution shall go into effect, records and papers and proceedings of the probate court in each county, and all causes and matters of administration and other matters pending therein, shall pass into the jurisdiction and possession of the district court of the same county, and the said district court shall proceed to final decree or judgment order or other determination in the said several matters and causes, as the said probate court might have done if this constitution had not been adopted.[1]

Section 18

Text of Section 18:

How Legislature Chosen

Senators and members of the house of representatives shall be chosen by the qualified electors of the several senatorial and representative districts as established in this constitution, until such districts shall be changed by law, and thereafter by the qualified electors of the several districts as the same shall be established by law.[1]

Section 19

Text of Section 19:

Duration of Terms of Territorial County and Precinct Officers

All county and precinct officers who may be in office at the time of the adoption of this constitution, shall hold their respective offices for the full time for which they may have been elected, and until such time as their successors may be elected and qualified, as may be provided by law, and the official bonds of all such officers shall continue in full force and effect as though this constitution had not been adopted.[1]

Section 20

Text of Section 20:

Terms of State Officers First Elected

Members of the legislature and all state officers, district and supreme judges elected at the first election held under this constitution shall hold their respective offices for the full term next ensuing such election, in addition to the period intervening between the date of their qualification and the commencement of such full term.[1]

Section 21

Text of Section 21:

Regular Session of Legislature Following First Session

If the first session of the legislature under this constitution shall be concluded within twelve months of the time designated for a regular session thereof, then the next regular session following said special session shall be omitted.[1]

Section 22

Text of Section 22:

Regular Election Following First Session of Legislature to Be Omitted

The first regular election that would otherwise occur following the first session of the legislature, shall be omitted, and all county and precinct officers elected at the first election held under this constitution shall hold their office for the full term thereof, commencing at the expiration of the term of the county and precinct officers then in office, or the date of their qualification.[1]

Section 23

Text of Section 23:

Why Constitution Framed

This convention does hereby declare on behalf of the people of the Territory of Wyoming, that this constitution has been prepared and submitted to the people of the Territory of Wyoming for their adoption or rejection, with no purpose of setting up or organizing a state government until such time as the congress of the United States shall enact a law for the admission of the Territory of Wyoming as a state under its provisions.[1]

Section 24

Text of Section 24:

State Part of United States

The State of Wyoming is an inseparable part of the federal union and the constitution of the United States is the supreme law of the land.[1]

Section 25

Text of Section 25:

Religious Liberty

Perfect toleration of religious sentiment shall be secured, and no inhabitant of this state shall ever be molested in person or property on account of his or her mode of religious worship.[1]

Section 26

Text of Section 26:

Ownership of Certain Lands Disclaimed; Restriction on Taxation of Nonresidents

The people inhabiting this state do agree and declare that they forever disclaim all right and title to the unappropriated public lands lying within the boundaries thereof, and to all lands lying within said limits owned or held by any Indian or Indian tribes, and that until the title thereto shall have been extinguished by the United States, the same shall be and remain subject to the disposition of the United States and that said Indian lands shall remain under the absolute jurisdiction and control of the congress of the United States; that the lands belonging to the citizens of the United States residing without this state shall never be taxed at a higher rate than the lands belonging to residents of this state; that no taxes shall be imposed by this state on lands or property therein, belonging to, or which may hereafter be purchased by the United States, or reserved for its use. But nothing in this article shall preclude this state from taxing as other lands are taxed, any lands owned or held by any Indian who has severed his tribal relations, and has obtained from the United States or from any person, a title thereto, by patent or other grant, save and except such lands as have been or may be granted to any Indian or Indians under any acts of congress containing a provision exempting the lands thus granted from taxation, which last mentioned lands shall be exempt from taxation so long, and to such an extent, as is, or may be provided in the act of congress granting the same.[1]

Section 27

Text of Section 27:

Territorial Liabilities Assumed

All debts and liabilities of the Territory of Wyoming shall be assumed and paid by this state.[1]

Section 28

Text of Section 28:

Legislature to Provide for Public Schools

The legislature shall make laws for the establishment and maintenance of systems of public schools which shall be open to all the children of the state and free from sectarian control.

Done in open convention, at the City of Cheyenne, in the Territory of Wyoming, this 30th day of September in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and eighty-nine.

Attested: Melville C. Brown,

John K. Jeffrey, President.

Secretary.

Geo. W. Baxter,

A. C. Campbell,

J. A. Casebeer,

C. D. Clark,

Henry A. Coffeen,

Asbury B. Conaway,

Henry S. Elliott,

Mortimer N. Grant,

Henry G. Hay,

Frederick H. Harvey,

Mark Hopkins,

John W. Hoyt,

Wm. C. Irvine,

James A. Johnston,

Jesse Knight,

Elliott N. Morgan,

Edward J. Morris,

John M. McCandlish,

Herman F. Menough,

Caleb P. Organ,

Louis J. Palmer,

C. W. Holden,

H. G. Nickerson,

A. L. Sutherland,

W. E. Chaplin,

Jonathan Jones,

John L. Russell,

Geo. W. Fox,

Frank M. Foote,

Chas. H. Burritt,

Chas. N. Potter,

D. A. Preston,

John A. Riner,

Geo. C. Smith,

H. E. Teschemacher,

C. L. Vagner,

Thos. R. Reid,

Robt. C. Butler,

C. W. Burdick,

De Forest Richards,

Meyer Frank,

M. C. Barrow,

Richard H. Scott.[1]

See also

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