Louisiana Homeland Security, Amendment 2 (October 2010)

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Louisiana Constitution
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Preamble
Articles
IIIIIIIVVVIVIIVIIIIXXXIXIIXIIIXIV
The Louisiana Homeland Security, Amendment 2, also known as Act 538, was on the October 2, 2010 statewide ballot in Louisiana as a legislatively-referred constitutional amendment where it was approved.[1]

The measure proposed placing the director, deputy director and all employees of the Governor's Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness under the unclassified service of the state civil service department. The changes were effective 20 days following the governor's approval.[2]

Election results

Louisiana Amendment 2 (October 2010)
ResultVotesPercentage
Approveda Yes 306,106 51.94%
No283,18548.06%

Results via the Louisiana Secretary of State.

Text of measure

To provide that the director, deputy director and all employees of the Governor's Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness shall be in the unclassified service of the state civil service. (Becomes effective 20 days after the governor proclaims its adoption.) (Amends Article X, Sections 2(B)(11) and (12); adds Article X, Section 2 (B)(13))[2]

Constitutional changes

See also: Louisiana Amendment 2 (2010), constitutional text changes

Amendment 2 amended Article X, Sections 2(B)(11) and (12) and added Article X, Section 2 (B)(13) in the Louisiana Constitution.[1]

Support

Supporters of the measure argued that all employees should be free of the obligation to civil service during natural disasters and only those that are qualified to deal with disasters should be classified as such.[3]

Opposition

  • The Times-Picayune wrote an editorial stating their opposition to this measure on the grounds that it was not fair to allow everyone to be exempt from these services.[4]

Those in opposition also noted that the Civil Service Commission already had the power to exempt positions from being classified as those which would need to serve.[3]

Media editorial positions

See also: Endorsements of Louisiana ballot measures, 2010

Support

  • The Louisiana Weekly was in favor of this measure because the amendment they argued that the measure simply rectifies inconsistencies in the current charter; it would not change anything in practice.[5]
  • The Shreve Port Times was also in favor of this measure because it would clear up the issue of who would be called to serve during natural disasters (i.e. those of Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Rita were still fresh in citizen's minds).[3]

Opposition

  • The Times-Picayune was against this measure because they argued that the blanket exemption would hinder the ability to appoint people to the job who were suitable to perform those duties. They argued that it could also have potentially taken away the jobs from more qualified people and potentially led to unqualified people being appointed. A case by case assessment of employees who could be exempted from services would be a better option, they said.[4]
  • The Town Talk also came out against this measure. They noted that governmental workers could not work efficiently during an emergency while they had restrictions set out by civil service requirements. The newspaper also noted that if the measure was approved, they would just become political appointees without the need to actually have knowledge and qualification for their positions.[6]

Path to the ballot

See also: Louisiana legislatively-referred constitutional amendments

In order to qualify for the ballot the proposed measure required the approval of 2/3rds of the members of both houses of the Louisiana State Legislature.

See also

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