Wisconsin Election and Terms of Sheriffs, Question 1 (1998)

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Wisconsin Question 1, also known as Terms of Office for, Appointment of, Vacancies in the Offices of, and the Restriction on Holding any Other Office by, Sheriffs, was a legislatively-referred constitutional amendment on the November 3, 1998 election ballot in Wisconsin, where it was approved. .

This amendment to Article VI, section 4 (1), (3) and (5) of the Wisconsin Constitution stated that the elected terms of sheriffs would be 4-years, sheriffs could hold nonpartisan offices, and vacancies would be filled by appointment of the governor until a successor is elected.[1]

Election results

Terms of office for, appointment of, vacancies in the offices of,
and the restriction on holding any other office by, sheriffs.
ResultVotesPercentage
Approveda Yes 1,161,942 73.8%
No412,50826.2%

Official results via: The Wisconsin Blue Book 1999-2000

Text of measure

The language that appeared on the ballot:

The ballot question was:

Terms of office for, appointment of, vacancies in the offices of, and the restriction on holding any other office by, sheriffs. Shall section 4 (1), (3) and (5) of article VI of the constitution be amended and section 4 (6) of article VI of the constitution be created to extend the terms of office of sheriffs from 2 years to 4 years, to allow sheriffs to hold nonpartisan offices, and to require that vacancies in the office of sheriffs be filled by appointment of the governor until a successor is elected and qualified?”[2]

Constitutional changes

(Note: Scored material would be added; stricken material would be deleted.)
Section 1. Section 4 (1), (3) and (5) of article VI of the constitution are amended to read:
[Article VI] Section 4 (1) Sheriffs Except as provided in sub. (2), coroners, registers of deeds, district attorneys, and all other elected county officers except judicial officers, sheriffs and chief executive officers, shall be chosen by the electors of the respective counties once in every 2 years.
(3) (a) Sheriffs shall may not hold no any other partisan office.
(b) Sheriffs may be required by law to renew their security from time to time, and in default of giving such new security their office shall be deemed vacant.
(c) Beginning with the first general election at which the governor is elected which occurs after the ratification of this paragraph, sheriffs shall be chosen by the electors of the respective counties once in every 4 years.
(5) All vacancies in the offices of sheriff, coroner, register of deeds or district attorney shall be filled by appointment. The person appointed to fill a vacancy shall hold office only for the unexpired portion of the term to which appointed and until a successor shall be elected and qualified.
Section 2. Section 4 (6) of article VI of the constitution is created to read:
[Article VI] Section 4 (6) When a vacancy occurs in the office of sheriff, the vacancy shall be filled by appointment of the governor, and the person appointed shall serve until his or her successor is elected and qualified.[2]

Path to the ballot

  • First Legislative Approval: AJR 37 & JR 23 (1995)
  • Second Legislative Approval: SJR 43& JR 18 (1997)[1]

See also

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