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Article III, Connecticut Constitution

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Connecticut Constitution
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Preamble
Articles
IIIIIIIVVVIVIIVIIIIXXXIXIIXIIIXIV
Article III of the Connecticut Constitution is entitled of the Legislative Department.

Article III has been amended nine times: the first three times in 1970 and the four most recent times in 1980. The two other times in which Article III was amended was in 1976 and 1992, the latter adding section 18 to the article. Amendment 16 amends both sections five and six.[1]

Amendments

Section 1

Text of Section 1:

The legislative power of the state shall be vested in two distinct houses or branches; the one to be styled the senate, the other the house of representatives, and both together the general assembly. The style of their laws shall be: Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened.[1]

Section 2

Text of Section 2:

There shall be a regular session of the general assembly to commence on the Wednesday following the first Monday of the January next succeeding the election of its members, and at such other times as the general assembly shall judge necessary; but the person administering the office of governor may, on special emergencies, convene the general assembly at any other time. All regular and special sessions of the general assembly shall be held at Hartford, but the person administering the office of governor may, in case of special emergency, convene the assembly at any other place in the state. The general assembly shall adjourn each regular session not later than the first Wednesday after the first Monday in June following its organization and shall adjourn each special session upon completion of its business. If any bill passed by any regular or special session or any appropriation item described in Section 16 of Article Fourth has been disapproved by the governor prior to its adjournment, and has not been reconsidered by the assembly, or is so disapproved after such adjournment, the secretary of the state shall reconvene the general assembly on the second Monday after the last day on which the governor is authorized to transmit or has transmitted every bill to the secretary with his objections pursuant to Section 15 of Article Fourth of this constitution, whichever occurs first; provided if such Monday falls on a legal holiday the general assembly shall be reconvened on the next following day. The reconvened session shall be for the sole purpose of reconsidering and, if the assembly so desires, repassing such bills. The general assembly shall adjourn sine die not later than three days following its reconvening.[1]

Amendments

Section 3

Text of Section 3:

The senate shall consist of not less than thirty and not more than fifty members, each of whom shall be an elector residing in the senatorial district from which he is elected. Each senatorial district shall be contiguous as to territory and shall elect no more than one senator.[1]

Amendments

Amendment 15, Sect. 1 amended Amendment 2, Sect. 1.

Section 4

Text of Section 4:

The house of representatives shall consist of not less than one hundred twenty-five and not more than two hundred twenty-five members, each of whom shall be an elector residing in the assembly district from which he is elected. Each assembly district shall be contiguous as to territory and shall elect no more than one representative. For the purpose of forming assembly districts no town shall be divided except for the purpose of forming assembly districts wholly within the town.[1]

Amendments

Amendment 15, Sect. 2 amended Amendment 2, Sect. 2.

Section 5

Text of Section 5:

The establishment of districts in the general assembly shall be consistent with federal constitutional standards.[1]

Amendments

Section 6

Text of Section 6:

a. The assembly and senatorial districts as now established by law shall continue until the regular session of the general assembly next after the completion of the next census of the United States. Such general assembly shall, upon roll call, by a yea vote of at least two-thirds of the membership of each house, enact such plan of districting as is necessary to preserve a proper apportionment of representation in accordance with the principles recited in this article. Thereafter the general assembly shall decennially at its next regular session following the completion of the census of the United States, upon roll call, by a yea vote of at least two-thirds of the membership of each house, enact such plan of districting as is necessary in accordance with the provisions of this article.

b. If the general assembly fails to enact a plan of districting by the first day of the April next following the completion of the decennial census of the United States, the governor shall forthwith appoint a commission consisting of the eight members designated by the president pro tempore of the senate, the speaker of the house of representatives, the minority leader of the senate and the minority leader of the house of representatives, each of whom shall designate two members of the commission, provided that there are members of no more than two political parties in either the senate or the house of representatives. In the event that there are members of more than two political parties in a house of the general assembly, all members of that house belonging to the parties other than that of the president pro tempore of the senate or the speaker of the house of representatives, as the case may be, shall select one of their number, who shall designate two members of the commission in lieu of the designation by the minority leader of that house.

c. The commission shall proceed to consider the alteration of districts in accordance with the principles recited in this article and it shall submit a plan of districting to the secretary of the state by the first day of the July next succeeding the appointment of its members. No plan shall be submitted to the secretary unless it is certified by at least six members of the commission. Upon receiving such plan the secretary shall publish the same forthwith, and, upon publication, such plan of districting shall have the full force of law.

d. If by the first day of the July next succeeding the appointment of its members the commission fails to submit a plan of districting, a board of three persons shall forthwith be empaneled. The speaker of the house of representatives and the minority leader of the house of representatives shall each designate, as one member of the board, a judge of the superior court of the state, provided that there are members of no more than two political parties in the house of representatives. In the event that there are members of more than two political parties in the house of representatives, all members belonging to the parties other than that of the speaker shall select one of their number, who shall then designate, as one member of the board, a judge of the superior court of the state, in lieu of the designation by the minority leader of the house of representatives. The two members of the board so designated shall select an elector of the state as the third member.

e. The board shall proceed to consider the alteration of districts in accordance with the principles recited in this article and shall, by the first day of the October next succeeding its selection, submit a plan of districting to the secretary. No plan shall be submitted to the secretary unless it is certified by at least two members of the board. Upon receiving such plan, the secretary shall publish the same forthwith, and, upon publication, such plan of districting shall have full force of law.[1]

Amendments

(Sec. 6, subsections a through e, amended in 1976. See Art. XII of Amendments to the Constitution of the State of Connecticut; amended in 1980. See Art. XVI, Sec. 2 of Amendments to the Constitution of the State of Connecticut.)

Section 7

Text of Section 7:

The treasurer, secretary of the state, and comptroller shall canvass publicly the votes for senators and representatives. The person in each senatorial district having the greatest number of votes for senator shall be declared to be duly elected for such district, and the person in each assembly district having the greatest number of votes for representative shall be declared to be duly elected for such district. The general assembly shall provide by law the manner in which an equal and the greatest number of votes for two or more persons so voted for senator or representative shall be resolved. The return of votes, and the result of the canvass, shall be submitted to the house of representatives and to the senate on the first day of the session of the general assembly. Each house shall be the final judge of the election returns and qualifications of its own members.[1]

Section 8

Text of Section 8:

A general election for members of the general assembly shall be held on the Tuesday after the first Monday of November, biennially, in the even-numbered years. The general assembly shall have power to enact laws regulating and prescribing the order and manner of voting for such members, for filling vacancies in either the house of representatives or the senate, and providing for the election of representatives or senators at some time subsequent to the Tuesday after the first Monday of November in all cases when it shall so happen that the electors in any district shall fail on that day to elect a representative or senator.[1]

Section 9

Text of Section 9:

At all elections for members of the general assembly the presiding officers in the several towns shall receive the votes of the electors, and count and declare them in open meeting. The presiding officers shall make and certify duplicate lists of the persons voted for, and of the number of votes for each. One list shall be delivered within three days to the town clerk, and within ten days after such meeting, the other shall be delivered under seal to the secretary of the state.[1]

Section 10

Text of Section 10:

The members of the general assembly shall hold their offices from the Wednesday following the first Monday of the January next succeeding their election until the Wednesday after the first Monday of the third January next succeeding their election, and until their successors are duly qualified.[1]

Section 11

Text of Section 11:

No member of the general assembly shall, during the term for which he is elected, hold or accept any appointive position or office in the judicial or executive department of the state government, or in the courts of the political subdivisions of the state, or in the government of any county. No member of congress, no person holding any office under the authority of the United States and no person holding any office in the judicial or executive department of the state government or in the government of any county shall be a member of the general assembly during his continuance in such office.[1]

Section 12

Text of Section 12:

The house of representatives, when assembled, shall choose a speaker, clerk and other officers. The senate shall choose a president pro tempore, clerk and other officers, except the president. A majority of each house shall constitute a quorum to do business; but a smaller number may adjourn from day to day, and compel the attendance of absent members in such manner and under such penalties as each house may prescribe.[1]

Section 13

Text of Section 13:

Each house shall determine the rules of its own proceedings, and punish members for disorderly conduct, and, with the consent of two-thirds, expel a member, but not a second time for the same cause; and shall have all other powers necessary for a branch of the legislature of a free and independent state.[1]

Section 14

Text of Section 14:

Each house shall keep a journal of its proceedings, and publish the same when required by one-fifth of its members, except such parts as in the judgment of a majority require secrecy. The yeas and nays of the members of either house shall, at the desire of one-fifth of those present, be entered on the journals.[1]

Section 15

Text of Section 15:

The senators and representatives shall, in all cases of civil process, be privileged from arrest, during any session of the general assembly, and for four days before the commencement and after the termination of any session thereof. And for any speech or debate in either house, they shall not be questioned in any other place.[1]

Section 16

Text of Section 16:

The debates of each house shall be public, except on such occasions as in the opinion of the house may require secrecy.[1]

Section 17

Text of Section 17:

The salary of the members of the general assembly and the transportation expenses of its members in the performance of their legislative duties shall be determined by law.[1]

Amendments

See also

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