Alabama, USA, regional Obligatory referendum [LOR] - Mode of Amending the Constitution

General Typology

Instrument
Obligatory referendum [LOR]
Location
Alabama, USA
Political level
regional
Local Name:
Mode of Amending the Constitution
Normative Level:
constitutional
Legally Binding:
yes
Legally Defined:

Alabama Constitution, Article XVIII, Section 284
Amendments may be proposed to this Constitution by the legislature in the manner following: The proposed amendments shall be read in the house in which they originate on three several days, and, if upon the third reading three-fifths of all the members elected to that house shall vote in favor thereof, the proposed amendments shall be sent to the other house, in which they shall likewise be read on three several days, and if upon the third reading three-fifths of all the members elected to that house shall vote in favor of the proposed amendments, the legislature shall order an election by the qualified electors of the state upon such proposed amendments, to be held either at the general election next succeeding the session of the legislature at which the amendments are proposed or upon another day appointed by the legislature, not less than three months after the final adjournment of the session of the legislature at which the amendments were proposed. [...]

Source: Constitution of Alabama 1901

Amendment 24 ratified

Amendment of Section 284.

Manner of proposing amendments; submission of amendments to electors; election on amendments; proclamation of result of election; basis of representation in legislature not to be changed by amendment.

Amendments may be proposed to this Constitution by the legislature in the manner following: The proposed amendments shall be read in the house in which they originate on three several days, and, if upon the third reading three-fifths of all the members elected to that house shall vote in favor thereof, the proposed amendments shall be sent to the other house, in which they shall likewise be read on three several days, and if upon the third reading three-fifths of all of the members elected to that house shall vote in favor of the proposed amendments, the legislature shall order an election by the qualified electors of the state upon such proposed amendments, to be held either at the general election next succeeding the session of the legislature at which the amendments are proposed or upon another day appointed by the legislature, not less than three months after the final adjournment of the session of the legislature at which the amendments were proposed. Notice of such election, together with the proposed amendments, shall be given by proclamation of the governor, which shall be published in every county in such manner as the legislature shall direct, for at least four successive weeks next preceding the day appointed for such election. On the day so appointed an election shall be held for the vote of the qualified electors of the state upon the proposed amendments. If such election be held on the day of the general election, the officers of such general election shall open a poll for the vote of the qualified electors upon the proposed amendments; if it be held on a day other than that of the general election, officers for such election shall be appointed; and the election shall be held in all things in accordance with the law governing general elections. In all elections upon such proposed amendments, the votes cast thereat shall be canvassed, tabulated and returns thereof be made to the secretary of state, and counted, in the same manner as in elections for representatives in the legislature; and if it shall thereupon appear that a majority of the qualified electors who voted at such election upon the proposed amendments voted in favor of the same, such amendments shall be valid to all intents and purposes as parts of this Constitution. The result of such election shall be made known by proclamation of the governor. Representation in the legislature shall be based upon population, and such basis of representation shall not be changed by constitutional amendments.

References: Constitution of Alabama Amendment of Section 284, 2014

Amendment 425 ratified

Adoption of Proposed Constitutional Amendments Affecting Only One County.

Any proposed constitutional amendment which affects or applies to only one county shall be adopted as a valid part of the constitution by a majority vote of the people of the county and in any political subdivision thereof so affected, provided that such proposed amendment has first been unanimously approved by at least a three-fifths vote of the elected members of each house and unanimously approved by a local constitutional amendment commission composed of the governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general, secretary of state and speaker of the house of representatives and notice of such election, together with the proposed amendment shall be given by proclamation of the governor, which proclamation shall be published once a week for four successive weeks next preceding the day appointed for the election in each newspaper qualified to run legal notices in the county affected. The proposed local constitutional amendment shall then be approved by a majority vote of the qualified electors of the county and in any political subdivision thereof affected by such proposed amendment voting in a referendum election held for the purpose of determining if such proposed amendment shall become adopted as a valid part of the Constitution.

Amendment of Amendment No. 425.

(a) Any proposed constitutional amendment which affects or applies to only one county shall be adopted as a valid part of the constitution by a favorable vote of a majority of the qualified electors of the affected county who vote on the amendment. Any proposed constitutional amendment which affects or applies to only one political subdivision within a county or counties shall be adopted as a valid part of the constitution by a favorable vote of a majority of the qualified electors of both the county and the political subdivision affected by the amendment who vote on the amendment. The proposed amendment may provide for a separate referendum in a political subdivision of less than a county if a simultaneous referendum is not possible because of conflicting voting precincts.

(b) The proposed amendment shall first be approved by at least a three-fifths vote of the elected members of each house of the Legislature with no dissenting vote cast and approved by a majority vote of the Local Constitutional Amendment Commission. The commission shall be composed of the Governor, Presiding Officer of the Senate, Attorney General, Secretary of State, and Speaker of the House of Representatives. The Legislature may by general act specify procedures for the Local Constitution Amendment Commission, but may not expand its role beyond deciding whether the amendment affects more than one county or more than one political subdivision in one or more counties.

(c) Notice of the election, together with the proposed amendment, shall be given by proclamation of the Governor, which proclamation shall be published once a week for four successive weeks next preceding the day appointed for the election in each newspaper qualified to run legal notices in the county or counties affected.

(d) In the event any constitutional amendment proposed for adoption pursuant to this amendment is approved by at least a three-fifths vote of the elected members of each house of the Legislature but with one or more dissenting votes cast, the amendment shall be treated as a statewide amendment as described in subsection (e).

(e) If after having been approved by at least a three-fifths vote of the elected members of each house of the Legislature without a dissenting vote cast the proposed amendment is not approved by a majority vote the Local Constitutional Amendment Commission, it shall automatically be submitted in a statewide referendum in accordance with the procedures for proposed statewide constitutional amendments under Sections 284 and 285 of the Constitution of Alabama of 1901. If the proposed amendment is submitted in a statewide referendum, it shall not become effective unless approved at a referendum by a majority of the qualified voters of the affected county voting on the proposition and the affected political subdivision voting on the proposition, if it affects less than the whole county. The referendum in a political subdivision may be held at the same time as the election for the ratification of the proposed amendment, or at another time if provided by the proposed amendment.

(f) Notwithstanding any provision of the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, to the contrary, all constitutional amendments which have been adopted by a majority vote of the appropriate electorate pursuant to Amendment No. 425 to the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, are hereby ratified and confirmed.

Subject Matter:

Amending the state constitution

Actors

Author:
Authority: both houses of legislature : 3/5 majority in each house
Initiator:
Law
Decision maker:
respective Electorate

Requirements

Available Time:
Turnout Quorum:
Legal source does not mention turnout quorum
Approval Quorum:
Majority of respective voters
Geographical Quorum:
Legal source does not mention geographical quorum
Excluded Issues:

Representation in the legislature cannot be changed by constitutional amendments (Alabama Constitution, Section 284).

Other Formal Requirements:

Referendum must be at least three months after the final adjournment of legislature where the amendments were proposed (Alabama Constitution, Section 284).

Procedural Elements

Wording Of Ballot Question:

Alabama Constitution, Article XVIII, Section 285
Upon the ballots used at all elections provided for in section 284 of this Constitution the substance or subject matter of each proposed amendment shall be so printed that the nature thereof shall be clearly indicated. Following each proposed amendment on the ballot shall be printed the word "Yes" and immediately under that shall be printed the word "No." The choice of the elector shall be indicated by a cross mark made by him or under his direction, opposite the word expressing his desire, and no amendment shall be adopted unless it receives the affirmative vote of a majority of all the qualified electors who vote at such election.

Source: Constitution of Alabama 1901

Interaction With Authorities:
Supervision And Support:

The notice of a referendum and the amendments will be published as the legislature directs for at four consecutive weeks before the vote takes place. (Alabama Constitution, Section 284)

Transparency And Finance:

Practice

Archive:
Remarks: