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Florida Legislative Seats, Amendment 5 (1956)

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The Florida Legislative Seats Amendment, also known as Amendment 5 was a legislatively-referred constitutional amendment in Florida which was defeated on November 6, 1956.

This amendment modified Article VII, Sections 2, 3, and 4, of the Florida Constitution to reapportion the seats in the State Senate and House.[1][2]

Election results

Florida Amendment 5 (1956)
ResultVotesPercentage
Defeatedd No288,57560.59%
Yes 187,662 39.41%

Election results via: Report of the Secretary of State of the State of Florida (1955-1956) (p.388-391)

Text of measure

The language that appeared on the ballot:

This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.

No. 5

CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT TO

ARTICLE VII, SECTIONS 2, 3, AND 4

A proposed Amendment to Article VII relating to apportionment of the Senate and House of Representatives; providing that the Senate shall consist of one Senator from each of the 67 Counties; that the house of representatives shall consist of 135 members and shall be appointed by proclamation of the Governor based upon the latest official census allowing each county at least 1 representative and the remaining representatives shall be apportioned among counties having populations in excess of 8,000; that each unit of 8,00 shall be allowed 1 additional representative, that the amendment shall become effective immediately upon ratification and providing that the Governor shall call a special election to fill new vacancies prior to the next session of the Legislature. [1]

Constitutional changes

The text of the amendment read:

Section 2. Terms of Senate and House Apportionment of Senate. The legislature shall consist of the senate and the house of representatives. House members shall serve for a term as provided in Article III Section 3 hereof; and members of the Senate shall serve for a term of four (4) years. The election for members of the house of representatives and senate shall be at the same time and place. The senate shall consist of one senator from each county of the state of Florida. The senate shall be divided into two (2) groups by the legislature, the larger group thirty-four (34) senators to be elected for four (4) years, and the smaller group fourteen (14) senators, to be elected for two (2) years at the next general election. Thereafter all senators shall be elected for four (4) year terms.

Section 3. Apportionment of House of Representatives. The house of representatives shall consist of one hundred thirty-five (135) members and shall be apportioned by proclamation of the governor based upon the latest official census of the entire state on or before January first next following the official census and each county shall be allowed at least one (1) representative and the remaining representatives shall be apportioned among those counties which have a population in excess of eight thousand (8,000) in each county. The population in excess of eight thousand (8,000) in each county shall be divided by the number of representatives in excess of one (1) for each county and the quotient shall constitute the unit to be used as a basis for apportioning the representatives in excess of one (1) for each county. For each such unit or major portion thereof, in each county, computed on the population in excess of eight thousand (8,000) in each county, the county shall be allowed one (1) additional representative, except that if within the limits set forth herein, any county or counties cannot be allowed a representative for a major portion of such unit, or if there should remain any representatives to be apportioned, then a representative shall be allowed to each of the counties having the greatest portion of such unit until all of said number of representatives shall be apportioned.

Section 4. Effective Date. This amendment shall become effective immediately upon ratification by a majority of the qualified electors of the state. The governor shall apportion the house immediately after ratification based upon the latest official census and call a special election so that new vacancies of the house and senate may be filled prior to the next session of the legislature. Those elected will serve until the next general election.[2]

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