Article III, California Constitution
| I • II • III • IV • V • VI|
VII • VIII • IX • X • XA
XB • XI • XII • XIII • XIII A
XIII B • XIII C • XIII D • XIV • XV • XVI • XVIII • XIX • XIX A • XIX B • XIX C
XX • XXI • XXII
XXXIV • XXXV
An annotation of this Article of the California Constitution is underway. Please read this explanation.
| Text of Section 1:
The State of California is an inseparable part of the United States of America, and the United States Constitution is the supreme law of the land.
| Text of Section 2:
The boundaries of the State are those stated in the Constitution of 1849 as modified pursuant to statute. Sacramento is the capital of California.
| Text of Section 3:
The powers of state government are legislative, executive, and judicial. Persons charged with the exercise of one power may not exercise either of the others except as permitted by this Constitution.
| Text of Section 3.5:
An administrative agency, including an administrative agency created by the Constitution or an initiative statute, has no power:
| Text of Section 4:
(a) Except as provided in subdivision (b), salaries of elected state officers may not be reduced during their term of office. Laws that set these salaries are appropriations.
(b) Beginning on January 1, 1981, the base salary of a judge of a court of record shall equal the annual salary payable as of July 1, 1980, for that office had the judge been elected in 1978. The Legislature may prescribe increases in those salaries during a term of office, and it may terminate prospective increases in those salaries at any time during a term of office, but it shall not reduce the salary of a judge during a term of office below the highest level paid during that term of office. Laws setting the salaries of judges shall not constitute an obligation of contract pursuant to Section 9 of Article I or any other provision of law.
| Text of Section 5:
Suits may be brought against the State in such manner and in such courts as shall be directed by law.
| Text of Section 6:
English is the common language of the people of the United States of America and the State of California. This section is intended to preserve, protect and strengthen the English language, and not to supersede any of the rights guaranteed to the people by this Constitution.
(b) English as the Official Language of California.
English is the official language of the State of California.
The Legislature shall enforce this section by appropriate legislation. The Legislature and officials of the State of California shall take all steps necessary to insure that the role of English as the common language of the State of California is preserved and enhanced. The Legislature shall make no law which diminishes or ignores the role of English as the common language of the State of California.
(d) Personal Right of Action and Jurisdiction of Courts.
Any person who is a resident of or doing business in the State of California shall have standing to sue the State of California to enforce this section, and the Courts of record of the State of California shall have jurisdiction to hear cases brought to enforce this section. The Legislature may provide reasonable and appropriate limitations on the time and manner of suits brought under this section.
| Text of Section 7:
(a) The retirement allowance for any person, all of whose credited service in the Legislators' Retirement System was rendered or was deemed to have been rendered as an elective officer of the State whose office is provided for by the California Constitution, other than a judge and other than a Member of the Senate or Assembly, and all or any part of whose retirement allowance is calculated on the basis of the compensation payable to the officer holding the office which the member last held prior to retirement, or for the survivor or beneficiary of such a person, shall not be increased or affected in any manner by changes on or after November 5, 1986, in the compensation payable to the officer holding the office which the member last held prior to retirement.
(b) This section shall apply to any person, survivor, or beneficiary described in subdivision (a) who receives, or is receiving, from the Legislators' Retirement System a retirement allowance on or after November 5, 1986, all or any part of which allowance is calculated on the basis of the compensation payable to the officer holding the office which the member last held prior to retirement.
(c) It is the intent of the people, in adopting this section, to restrict retirement allowances to amounts reasonably to be expected by certain members and retired members of the Legislators' Retirement System and to preserve the basic character of earned retirement benefits while prohibiting windfalls and unforeseen advantages which have no relation to the real theory and objective of a sound retirement system. It is not the intent of this section to deny any member, retired member, survivor, or beneficiary a reasonable retirement allowance. Thus, this section shall not be construed as a repudiation of a debt nor the impairment of a contract for a substantial and reasonable retirement allowance from the Legislators' Retirement System.
(d) The people and the Legislature hereby find and declare that the dramatic increase in the retirement allowances of persons described in subdivision (a) which would otherwise result when the compensation for those offices increases on November 5, 1986, or January 5, 1987, are not benefits which could have reasonably been expected. The people and the Legislature further find and declare that the Legislature did not intend to provide in its scheme of compensation for those offices such windfall benefits.
| Text of Section 8:
(a) The California Citizens Compensation Commission is hereby created and shall consist of seven members appointed by the Governor. The commission shall establish the annual salary and the medical, dental, insurance, and other similar benefits of state officers.
(b) The commission shall consist of the following persons:
(c) The Governor shall strive insofar as practicable to provide a balanced representation of the geographic, gender, racial, and ethnic diversity of the State in appointing commission members.
(d) The Governor shall appoint commission members and designate a chairperson for the commission not later than 30 days after the effective date of this section. The terms of two of the initial appointees shall expire on December 31, 1992, two on December 31, 1994, and three on December 31, 1996, as determined by the Governor. Thereafter, the term of each member shall be six years. Within 15 days of any vacancy, the Governor shall appoint a person to serve the unexpired portion of the term.
(e) No current or former officer or employee of this State is eligible for appointment to the commission.
(f) Public notice shall be given of all meetings of the commission, and the meetings shall be open to the public.
(g) On or before December 3, 1990, the commission shall, by a single resolution adopted by a majority of the membership of the commission, establish the annual salary and the medical, dental, insurance, and other similar benefits of state officers. The annual salary and benefits specified in that resolution shall be effective on and after December 3, 1990.
Thereafter, at or before the end of each fiscal year, the commission shall, by a single resolution adopted by a majority of the membership of the commission, adjust the annual salary and the medical, dental, insurance, and other similar benefits of state officers. The annual salary and benefits specified in the resolution shall be effective on and after the first Monday of the next December.
(h) In establishing or adjusting the annual salary and the medical, dental, insurance, and other similar benefits, the commission shall consider all of the following:
(i) Until a resolution establishing or adjusting the annual salary and the medical, dental, insurance, and other similar benefits for state officers takes effect, each state officer shall continue to receive the same annual salary and the medical, dental, insurance, and other similar benefits received previously.
(j) All commission members shall receive their actual and necessary expenses, including travel expenses, incurred in the performance of their duties. Each member shall be compensated at the same rate as members, other than the chairperson, of the Fair Political Practices Commission, or its successor, for each day engaged in official duties, not to exceed 45 days per year.
(k) It is the intent of the Legislature that the creation of the commission should not generate new state costs for staff and services. The Department of Personnel Administration, the Board of Administration of the Public Employees' Retirement System, or other appropriate agencies, or their successors, shall furnish, from existing resources, staff and services to the commission as needed for the performance of its duties.
(l) "State officer," as used in this section, means the Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General, Controller, Insurance Commissioner, Secretary of State, Superintendent of Public Instruction, Treasurer, member of the State Board of Equalization, and Member of the Legislature.
- Proposition 112, California Citizens Compensation Commission (1990)
- Proposition 1F, No Legislative Pay Increases if Budget Is In Deficit (May 2009)
| Text of Section 9:
The proceeds from the sale of surplus state property occurring on or after the effective date of this section, and any proceeds from the previous sale of surplus state property that have not been expended or encumbered as of that date, shall be used to pay the principal and interest on bonds issued pursuant to the Economic Recovery Bond Act authorized at the March 2, 2004, statewide primary election. Once the principal and interest on those bonds are fully paid, the proceeds from the sale of surplus state property shall be deposited into the Special Fund for Economic Uncertainties, or any successor fund. For purposes of this section, surplus state property does not include property purchased with revenues described in Article XIX or any other special fund moneys.
- Section 9 was added by Proposition 60A (2004)
- California Proposition 57 (1986)
- Proposition 63 (1986)
- Proposition 112 (1990)
- Proposition 60A (2004)
- Proposition 1F (2009)