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Florida Constitution Revision Commission

PUB 700268: Article III: Complete Edit by Christopher Louis Licata III - Withdrawn by the Submitter

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, Section 1. Composition.

SECTION 1.Composition.

The legislative power of the state shall be vested in a legislature of the State of Florida, consisting of a senate composed of nineone senator elected from each countysenatorial district and a house of representatives composed of fiveone member elected from each representative district. After ratification, yet before the first election, the members of the house and the senate shall maintain thier seats thereto, and all current and former memeber be eligble to be elected in the new legisture with due reguard to previous term limit constraints.

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, Section 2. Members; officers.

SECTION 2. Members; officers.

Each house shall be the sole judge of the qualifications, elections, and returns of its members, and shall biennially choose its officers, including a permanent presiding officer selected from its membership, who shall be designated in the senate as President of the Senate, and in the house as Speaker of the House of Representatives. The senate shall designate a Secretary to serve at its pleasure, and the house of representatives shall designate a Clerk to serve at its pleasure. The legislature shall appoint an auditor to serve at its pleasure who shall audit public records and perform related duties as prescribed by law or concurrent resolution.

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, Section 3. Sessions of the legislature.

SECTION 3. Sessions of the legislature.
  1. ORGANIZATION SESSIONS. On the fourteenth day following each general election the legislature shall convene for the exclusive purpose of organization and selection of officers.
  2. REGULAR SESSIONS. A regular session of the legislature shall convene on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in March of each odd-numbered year, and on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in March, or such other date as may be fixed by law, of each even-numbered year.
  3. SPECIAL SESSIONS.
    1. The governor, by proclamation stating the purpose, may convene the legislature in special session during which only such legislative business may be transacted as is within the purview of the proclamation, or of a communication from the governor, or is introduced by consent of two-thirds of the membership of each house.
    2. A special session of the legislature may be convened as provided by law.
  4. LENGTH OF SESSIONS. A regular session of the legislature shall not exceed sixty consecutive days, and a special session shall not exceed twenty consecutive days, unless extended beyond such limit by a three-fifths vote of each house. During such an extension no new business may be taken up in either house without the consent of two-thirds of its membership.
  5. ADJOURNMENT. Neither house shall adjourn for more than seventy-two consecutive hours except pursuant to concurrent resolution.
  6. ADJOURNMENT BY GOVERNOR. If, during any regular or special session, the two houses cannot agree upon a time for adjournment, the governor may adjourn the session sine die or to any date within the period authorized for such session; provided that, at least twenty-four hours before adjourning the session, and while neither house is in recess, each house shall be given formal written notice of the governor's intention to do so, and agreement reached within that period by both houses on a time for adjournment shall prevail.

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, Section 4. Quorum and procedure.

SECTION 4. Quorum and procedure.
  1. A majority of the membership of each house shall constitute a quorum, but a smaller number may adjourn from day to day and compel the presence of absent members in such manner and under such penalties as it may prescribe. Each house shall determine its rules of procedure.
  2. Sessions of each house shall be public; except sessions of the senate when considering appointment to or removal from public office may be closed.
  3. Each house shall keep and publish a journal of its proceedings; and upon the request of five members present, the vote of each member voting on any question shall be entered on the journal. In any legislative committee or subcommittee, the vote of each member voting on the final passage of any legislation pending before the committee, and upon the request of any two members of the committee or subcommittee, the vote of each member on any other question, shall be recorded.
  4. Each house may punish a member for contempt or disorderly conduct and, by a two-thirds vote of its membership, may expel a member.
  5. The rules of procedure of each house shall provide that all legislative committee and subcommittee meetings of each house, and joint conference committee meetings, shall be open and noticed to the public. The rules of procedure of each house shall further provide that all prearranged gatherings, between more than two members of the legislature, or between the governor, the president of the senate, or the speaker of the house of representatives, the purpose of which is to agree upon formal legislative action that will be taken at a subsequent time, or at which formal legislative action is taken, regarding pending legislation or amendments, shall be reasonably open to the public. All open meetings shall be subject to order and decorum. This section shall be implemented and defined by the rules of each house, and such rules shall control admission to the floor of each legislative chamber and may, where reasonably necessary for security purposes or to protect a witness appearing before a committee, provide for the closure of committee meetings. Each house shall be the sole judge for the interpretation, implementation, and enforcement of this section.

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, Section 6. Laws.

SECTION 6. Laws.

Every law shall embrace but one subject and matter properly connected therewith, and the subject shall be briefly expressed in the title. No law shall be revised or amended by reference to its title only. Laws to revise or amend shall set out in full the revised or amended act, section, subsection or paragraph of a subsection. The enacting clause of every law shall read: "Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:".

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, Section 7. Passage of bills.

SECTION 7. Passage of bills.

Any bill may originate in either house and after passage in one may be amended in the other. It shall be read in each house on three separate days, unless this rule is waived by two-thirds vote; provided the publication of its title in the journal of a house shall satisfy the requirement for the first reading in that house. On each reading, it shall be read by title only, unless one-third of the members present desire it read in full. On final passage, the vote of each member voting shall be entered on the journal. Passage of a bill shall require a majority vote in each house. Each bill and joint resolution passed in both houses shall be signed by the presiding officers of the respective houses and by the secretary of the senate and the clerk of the house of representatives during the session or as soon as practicable after its adjournment sine die.

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, Section 8. Executive approval and veto.

SECTION 8. Executive approval and veto.
  1. Every bill passed by the legislature shall be presented to the governor for approval and shall become a law if the governor approves and signs it, or fails to veto it within seven consecutive days after presentation. If during that period or on the seventh day the legislature adjourns sine die or takes a recess of more than thirty days, the governor shall have fifteen consecutive days from the date of presentation to act on the bill. In all cases except general appropriation bills, the veto shall extend to the entire bill. The governor may veto any specific appropriation in a general appropriation bill, but may not veto any qualification or restriction without also vetoing the appropriation to which it relates.
  2. When a bill or any specific appropriation of a general appropriation bill has been vetoed, the governor shall transmit signed objections thereto to the house in which the bill originated if in session. If that house is not in session, the governor shall file them with the custodian of state records, who shall lay them before that house at its next regular or special session, whichever occurs first, and they shall be entered on its journal. If the originating house votes to re-enact a vetoed measure, whether in a regular or special session, and the other house does not consider or fails to re-enact the vetoed measure, no further consideration by either house at any subsequent session may be taken. If a vetoed measure is presented at a special session and the originating house does not consider it, the measure will be available for consideration at any intervening special session and until the end of the next regular session.
  3. If each house shall, by a two-thirds vote, re-enact the bill or reinstate the vetoed specific appropriation of a general appropriation bill, the vote of each member voting shall be entered on the respective journals, and the bill shall become law or the specific appropriation reinstated, the veto notwithstanding.

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, Section 9. Effective date of laws.

SECTION 9. Effective date of laws.

Each law shall take effect on the sixtieth day after adjournment sine die of the session of the legislature in which enacted or as otherwise provided therein. If the law is passed over the veto of the governor it shall take effect on the sixtieth day after adjournment sine die of the session in which the veto is overridden, on a later date fixed in the law, or on a date fixed by resolution passed by both houses of the legislature.

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, Section 10. Special laws.

SECTION 10. Special laws.

No special law shall be passed unless notice of intention to seek enactment thereof has been published in the manner provided by general law. Such notice shall not be necessary when the law, except the provision for referendum, is conditioned to become effective only upon approval by vote of the electors of the area affected.

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, Section 11. Prohibited special laws.

SECTION 11. Prohibited special laws.
  1. There shall be no special law or general law of local application pertaining to:
    1. election, jurisdiction or duties of officers, except officers of municipalities, chartered counties, special districts or local governmental agencies;
    2. assessment or collection of taxes for state or county purposes, including extension of time therefor, relief of tax officers from due performance of their duties, and relief of their sureties from liability;
    3. rules of evidence in any court;
    4. punishment for crime;
    5. petit juries, including compensation of jurors, except establishment of jury commissions;
    6. change of civil or criminal venue;
    7. conditions precedent to bringing any civil or criminal proceedings, or limitations of time therefor;
    8. refund of money legally paid or remission of fines, penalties or forfeitures;
    9. creation, enforcement, extension or impairment of liens based on private contracts, or fixing of interest rates on private contracts;
    10. disposal of public property, including any interest therein, for private purposes;
    11. vacation of roads;
    12. private incorporation or grant of privilege to a private corporation;
    13. effectuation of invalid deeds, wills or other instruments, or change in the law of descent;
    14. change of name of any person;
    15. divorce;
    16. legitimation or adoption of persons;
    17. relief of minors from legal disabilities;
    18. transfer of any property interest of persons under legal disabilities or of estates of decedents;
    19. hunting or fresh water fishing;
    20. regulation of occupations which are regulated by a state agency; or
    21. any subject when prohibited by general law passed by a three-fifths vote of the membership of each house. Such law may be amended or repealed by like vote.
  2. In the enactment of general laws on other subjects, political subdivisions or other governmental entities may be classified only on a basis reasonably related to the subject of the law.

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, Section 12. Appropriation bills.

SECTION 12. Appropriation bills.

Laws making appropriations for salaries of public officers and other current expenses of the state shall contain provisions on no other subject.

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, Section 13. Term of office.

SECTION 13. Term of office.

No office shall be created the term of which shall exceed four years except as provided herein.

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, Section 14. Civil service system.

SECTION 14. Civil service system.

By law there shall be created a civil service system for state employees, except those expressly exempted, and there may be created civil service systems and boards for county, district or municipal employees and for such offices thereof as are not elected or appointed by the governor, and there may be authorized such boards as are necessary to prescribe the qualifications, method of selection and tenure of such employees and officers.

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, Section 15. Terms and qualifications of legislators.

SECTION 15. Terms and qualifications of legislators.
  1. SENATORS. Senators shall be elected for terms of four years, those from odd-numbered districts in the years the numbers of which are multiples of four and those from even-numbered districts in even-numbered years the numbers of which are not multiples of four; except, at the election next following a reapportionment, some senators shall be elected for terms of two years when necessary to maintain staggered terms.
  2. REPRESENTATIVES. Members of the house of representatives shall be elected for terms of two years in each even-numbered year.
  3. QUALIFICATIONS. Each legislator shall be at least twenty-one years of age, an elector and resident of the district from which elected and shall have resided in the state for a period of two years prior to election.
  4. ASSUMING OFFICE; VACANCIES. Members of the legislature shall take office upon election. Vacancies in legislative office shall be filled only by election as provided by law.

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, Section 16. Legislative apportionment.

SECTION 16. Legislative apportionment.
  1. SENATORIAL AND REPRESENTATIVE DISTRICTS. The legislature at its regular session in the second year following each decennial census, by joint resolution, shall apportion the state in accordance with the constitution of the state and of the United States into not less than thirty nor more than forty consecutively numbered senatorial districts of either contiguous, overlapping or identical territory, and into not less than eighty nor more than one hundred twenty consecutively numbered representative districts of either contiguous, overlapping or identical territory. Should that session adjourn without adopting such joint resolution, the governor by proclamation shall reconvene the legislature within thirty days in special apportionment session which shall not exceed thirty consecutive days, during which no other business shall be transacted, and it shall be the mandatory duty of the legislature to adopt a joint resolution of apportionment.
  2. FAILURE OF LEGISLATURE TO APPORTION; JUDICIAL REAPPORTIONMENT. In the event a special apportionment session of the legislature finally adjourns without adopting a joint resolution of apportionment, the attorney general shall, within five days, petition the supreme court of the state to make such apportionment. No later than the sixtieth day after the filing of such petition, the supreme court shall file with the custodian of state records an order making such apportionment.
  3. JUDICIAL REVIEW OF APPORTIONMENT. Within fifteen days after the passage of the joint resolution of apportionment, the attorney general shall petition the supreme court of the state for a declaratory judgment determining the validity of the apportionment. The supreme court, in accordance with its rules, shall permit adversary interests to present their views and, within thirty days from the filing of the petition, shall enter its judgment.
  4. EFFECT OF JUDGMENT IN APPORTIONMENT; EXTRAORDINARY APPORTIONMENT SESSION. A judgment of the supreme court of the state determining the apportionment to be valid shall be binding upon all the citizens of the state. Should the supreme court determine that the apportionment made by the legislature is invalid, the governor by proclamation shall reconvene the legislature within five days thereafter in extraordinary apportionment session which shall not exceed fifteen days, during which the legislature shall adopt a joint resolution of apportionment conforming to the judgment of the supreme court.
  5. EXTRAORDINARY APPORTIONMENT SESSION; REVIEW OF APPORTIONMENT. Within fifteen days after the adjournment of an extraordinary apportionment session, the attorney general shall file a petition in the supreme court of the state setting forth the apportionment resolution adopted by the legislature, or if none has been adopted reporting that fact to the court. Consideration of the validity of a joint resolution of apportionment shall be had as provided for in cases of such joint resolution adopted at a regular or special apportionment session.
  6. JUDICIAL REAPPORTIONMENT. Should an extraordinary apportionment session fail to adopt a resolution of apportionment or should the supreme court determine that the apportionment made is invalid, the court shall, not later than sixty days after receiving the petition of the attorney general, file with the custodian of state records an order making such apportionment.

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, Section 17. Impeachment.

SECTION 17. Impeachment.
  1. The governor, lieutenant governor, members of the cabinet, justices of the supreme court, judges of district courts of appeal, judges of circuit courts, and judges of county courts shall be liable to impeachment for misdemeanor in office. The house of representatives by two-thirds vote shall have the power to impeach an officer. The speaker of the house of representatives shall have power at any time to appoint a committee to investigate charges against any officer subject to impeachment.
  2. An officer impeached by the house of representatives shall be disqualified from performing any official duties until acquitted by the senate, and, unless impeached, the governor may by appointment fill the office until completion of the trial.
  3. All impeachments by the house of representatives shall be tried by the senate. The chief justice of the supreme court, or another justice designated by the chief justice, shall preside at the trial, except in a trial of the chief justice, in which case the governor shall preside. The senate shall determine the time for the trial of any impeachment and may sit for the trial whether the house of representatives be in session or not. The time fixed for trial shall not be more than six months after the impeachment. During an impeachment trial senators shall be upon their oath or affirmation. No officer shall be convicted without the concurrence of two-thirds of the members of the senate present. Judgment of conviction in cases of impeachment shall remove the offender from office and, in the discretion of the senate, may include disqualification to hold any office of honor, trust or profit. Conviction or acquittal shall not affect the civil or criminal responsibility of the officer.

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, Section 18. Conflict of Interest.

SECTION 18. Conflict of Interest.

A code of ethics for all state employees and nonjudicial officers prohibiting conflict between public duty and private interests shall be prescribed by law.

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, Section 19. State Budgeting, Planning and Appropriations Processes.

SECTION 19. State Budgeting, Planning and Appropriations Processes.
  1. ANNUAL BUDGETING.
    1. General law shall prescribe the adoption of annual state budgetary and planning processes and require that detail reflecting the annualized costs of the state budget and reflecting the nonrecurring costs of the budget requests shall accompany state department and agency legislative budget requests, the governor's recommended budget, and appropriation bills.
    2. Unless approved by a three-fifths vote of the membership of each house, appropriations made for recurring purposes from nonrecurring general revenue funds for any fiscal year shall not exceed three percent of the total general revenue funds estimated to be available at the time such appropriation is made.
    3. As prescribed by general law, each state department and agency shall be required to submit a legislative budget request that is based upon and that reflects the long-range financial outlook adopted by the joint legislative budget commission or that specifically explains any variance from the long-range financial outlook contained in the request.
    4. For purposes of this section, the terms department and agency shall include the judicial branch.
  2. APPROPRIATION BILLS FORMAT. Separate sections within the general appropriation bill shall be used for each major program area of the state budget; major program areas shall include: education enhancement "lottery" trust fund items; education (all other funds); human services; criminal justice and corrections; natural resources, environment, growth management, and transportation; general government; and judicial branch. Each major program area shall include an itemization of expenditures for: state operations; state capital outlay; aid to local governments and nonprofit organizations operations; aid to local governments and nonprofit organizations capital outlay; federal funds and the associated state matching funds; spending authorizations for operations; and spending authorizations for capital outlay. Additionally, appropriation bills passed by the legislature shall include an itemization of specific appropriations that exceed one million dollars ($1,000,000.00) in 1992 dollars. For purposes of this subsection, "specific appropriation," "itemization," and "major program area" shall be defined by law. This itemization threshold shall be adjusted by general law every four years to reflect the rate of inflation or deflation as indicated in the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers, U.S. City Average, All Items, or successor reports as reported by the United States Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics or its successor. Substantive bills containing appropriations shall also be subject to the itemization requirement mandated under this provision and shall be subject to the governor's specific appropriation veto power described in Article III, Section 8.
  3. APPROPRIATIONS PROCESS.
    1. No later than September 15 of each year, the joint legislative budget commission shall issue a long-range financial outlook setting out recommended fiscal strategies for the state and its departments and agencies in order to assist the legislature in making budget decisions. The long-range financial outlook must include major workload and revenue estimates. In order to implement this paragraph, the joint legislative budget commission shall use current official consensus estimates and may request the development of additional official estimates.
    2. The joint legislative budget commission shall seek input from the public and from the executive and judicial branches when developing and recommending the long-range financial outlook.
    3. The legislature shall prescribe by general law conditions under which limited adjustments to the budget, as recommended by the governor or the chief justice of the supreme court, may be approved without the concurrence of the full legislature.
  4. SEVENTY-TWO HOUR PUBLIC REVIEW PERIOD. All general appropriation bills shall be furnished to each member of the legislature, each member of the cabinet, the governor, and the chief justice of the supreme court at least seventy-two hours before final passage by either house of the legislature of the bill in the form that will be presented to the governor.
  5. FINAL BUDGET REPORT. A final budget report shall be prepared as prescribed by general law. The final budget report shall be produced no later than the 120th day after the beginning of the fiscal year, and copies of the report shall be furnished to each member of the legislature, the head of each department and agency of the state, the auditor general, and the chief justice of the supreme court.
  6. TRUST FUNDS.
    1. No trust fund of the State of Florida or other public body may be created or re-created by law without a three-fifths vote of the membership of each house of the legislature in a separate bill for that purpose only.
    2. State trust funds shall terminate not more than four years after the effective date of the act authorizing the initial creation of the trust fund. By law the legislature may set a shorter time period for which any trust fund is authorized.
    3. Trust funds required by federal programs or mandates; trust funds established for bond covenants, indentures, or resolutions, whose revenues are legally pledged by the state or public body to meet debt service or other financial requirements of any debt obligations of the state or any public body; the state transportation trust fund; the trust fund containing the net annual proceeds from the Florida Education Lotteries; the Florida retirement trust fund; trust funds for institutions under the management of the Board of Governors, where such trust funds are for auxiliary enterprises and contracts, grants, and donations, as those terms are defined by general law; trust funds that serve as clearing funds or accounts for the chief financial officer or state agencies; trust funds that account for assets held by the state in a trustee capacity as an agent or fiduciary for individuals, private organizations, or other governmental units; and other trust funds authorized by this Constitution, are not subject to the requirements set forth in paragraph (2) of this subsection.
    4. All cash balances and income of any trust funds abolished under this subsection shall be deposited into the general revenue fund.
  7. BUDGET STABILIZATION FUND. Subject to the provisions of this subsection, an amount equal to at least 5% of the last completed fiscal year's net revenue collections for the general revenue fund shall be retained in the budget stabilization fund. The budget stabilization fund's principal balance shall not exceed an amount equal to 10% of the last completed fiscal year's net revenue collections for the general revenue fund. The legislature shall provide criteria for withdrawing funds from the budget stabilization fund in a separate bill for that purpose only and only for the purpose of covering revenue shortfalls of the general revenue fund or for the purpose of providing funding for an emergency, as defined by general law. General law shall provide for the restoration of this fund. The budget stabilization fund shall be comprised of funds not otherwise obligated or committed for any purpose.
  8. LONG-RANGE STATE PLANNING DOCUMENT AND DEPARTMENT AND AGENCY PLANNING DOCUMENT PROCESSES. General law shall provide for a long-range state planning document. The governor shall recommend to the legislature biennially any revisions to the long-range state planning document, as defined by law. General law shall require a biennial review and revision of the long-range state planning document and shall require all departments and agencies of state government to develop planning documents that identify statewide strategic goals and objectives, consistent with the long-range state planning document. The long-range state planning document and department and agency planning documents shall remain subject to review and revision by the legislature. The long-range state planning document must include projections of future needs and resources of the state which are consistent with the long-range financial outlook. The department and agency planning documents shall include a prioritized listing of planned expenditures for review and possible reduction in the event of revenue shortfalls, as defined by general law.
  9. GOVERNMENT EFFICIENCY TASK FORCE. No later than January of 2007, and each fourth year thereafter, the president of the senate, the speaker of the house of representatives, and the governor shall appoint a government efficiency task force, the membership of which shall be established by general law. The task force shall be composed of members of the legislature and representatives from the private and public sectors who shall develop recommendations for improving governmental operations and reducing costs. Staff to assist the task force in performing its duties shall be assigned by general law, and the task force may obtain assistance from the private sector. The task force shall complete its work within one year and shall submit its recommendations to the joint legislative budget commission, the governor, and the chief justice of the supreme court.
  10. JOINT LEGISLATIVE BUDGET COMMISSION. There is created within the legislature the joint legislative budget commission composed of equal numbers of senate members appointed by the president of the senate and house members appointed by the speaker of the house of representatives. Each member shall serve at the pleasure of the officer who appointed the member. A vacancy on the commission shall be filled in the same manner as the original appointment. From November of each odd-numbered year through October of each even-numbered year, the chairperson of the joint legislative budget commission shall be appointed by the president of the senate and the vice chairperson of the commission shall be appointed by the speaker of the house of representatives. From November of each even-numbered year through October of each odd-numbered year, the chairperson of the joint legislative budget commission shall be appointed by the speaker of the house of representatives and the vice chairperson of the commission shall be appointed by the president of the senate. The joint legislative budget commission shall be governed by the joint rules of the senate and the house of representatives, which shall remain in effect until repealed or amended by concurrent resolution. The commission shall convene at least quarterly and shall convene at the call of the president of the senate and the speaker of the house of representatives. A majority of the commission members of each house plus one additional member from either house constitutes a quorum. Action by the commission requires a majority vote of the commission members present of each house. The commission may conduct its meetings through teleconferences or similar means. In addition to the powers and duties specified in this subsection, the joint legislative budget commission shall exercise all other powers and perform any other duties not in conflict with paragraph (c)(3) and as prescribed by general law or joint rule.

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, Section 20. Standards for establishing congressional district boundaries.

SECTION 20. Standards for establishing congressional district boundaries.

In establishing congressional district boundaries:

  1. No apportionment plan or individual district shall be drawn with the intent to favor or disfavor a political party or an incumbent; and districts shall not be drawn with the intent or result of denying or abridging the equal opportunity of racial or language minorities to participate in the political process or to diminish their ability to elect representatives of their choice; and districts shall consist of contiguous territory.
  2. Unless compliance with the standards in this subsection conflicts with the standards in subsection (a) or with federal law, districts shall be as nearly equal in population as is practicable; districts shall be compact; and districts shall, where feasible, utilize existing political and geographical boundaries.
  3. The order in which the standards within subsections (a) and (b) of this section are set forth shall not be read to establish any priority of one standard over the other within that subsection.

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, Section 21. Standards for establishing legislative district boundaries.

SECTION 21. Standards for establishing legislative district boundaries.

In establishing legislative district boundaries:

  1. No apportionment plan or district shall be drawn with the intent to favor or disfavor a political party or an incumbent; and districts shall not be drawn with the intent or result of denying or abridging the equal opportunity of racial or language minorities to participate in the political process or to diminish their ability to elect representatives of their choice; and districts shall consist of contiguous territory.
  2. Unless compliance with the standards in this subsection conflicts with the standards in subsection (a) or with federal law, districts shall be as nearly equal in population as is practicable; districts shall be compact; and districts shall, where feasible, utilize existing political and geographical boundaries.
  3. The order in which the standards within subsections (a) and (b) of this section are set forth shall not be read to establish any priority of one standard over the other within that subsection.

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, New Section.

Catchline: Memebership of the House and Senate

 

(a) The election of the Legislators shall occur on the first even numbed year after ratification. An enumeration of persons shall be made on calendar years ending in zero. The enumeration shall count every person under the jurisdiction of the State of Florida.

 

(b) The State divided after each enumeration into forty districts of equal population using the shortest spilt-line algorithm, this done under the supervision of the Florida Senate alone.

(c) The House of Representatives be composed of five Legislators from each district, all chosen every even numbered year on the 1st Wednesday of July by the Citizens of the State of Florida via single transferable vote of each district with due regard to the Droop quota.  No Legislator shall serve any more than six terms of two years each. 

 

(d) When vacancies happen among legislators by resignation or otherwise, the vacant seat should be immediately temporary filled by the runner-up from the last election then filled for the rest of the vacate term via special election of the district at large by instant exhaustive vote within ninety days.

(e) The House of Representatives shall choose their officers as they see fit. The Speaker of the State of Florida will be the Chair of this chamber, having no vote unless to break a tie. The House of Representatives shall elect a sitting Legislator as Chair Pro-Tempore to preside over the chamber in the absents of the Speaker.  

(f)The State be divided after each enumeration into five Counties of equal population using the optimal compactness algorithm, (by Brian Olson of bdistricting.com) this done under the supervision of the Florida House of Representatives alone, the five county shall result with due regard to five permanent county seats of: Miami, Fort Myers, Tampa, Orlando, Jacksonville.

(the algorithm code be adapted to meet the 1 person deviation between population required compare to the 1% deviation employed.)

 

(g) The Senate shall be composed of nine Senators from each county, three chosen every even numbered year on the 1st Wednesday of July by a joint session of the County’s legislature via single transferable vote. Every Senator shall serve no more than two terms of six years each.  

(h) Each County shall choose three Senator every two years so that one-third (33%) may be chosen every even numbered year via single transferable vote of each county with due regard to the Droop quota. Senators may be removed from office by vote of no confidence by three-fifths (60%) of both chambers of that Senator's County Legislature or by negative retention by more than two-thirds (66%) of the Citizens of the County at every even number year. 

(i) When vacancies happen among Senators by resignation or otherwise, the vacant seat should be immediately temporary filled by the runner-up from the last election then filled for the rest of the vacate term via election by the County Legislature within ninety days. In all cases, the normal election cycle shall be maintained.  

(j) The Senate will choose their officers as they see fit. The Chancellor of Florida will be the Chair of this chamber, having no vote unless to break a tie. The Senate shall elect a sitting Senator as Chair Pro-Tempore to preside over the chamber in the absents of the Chancellor.  

 

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, New Section.

Catchline: Sessions

 

Neither chamber during a session of Legislature shall without the consent of the other; adjourn for more than three days, nor to convene in any other place in which the other shall be sitting. Each member shall have but one vote, and no person shall be a Legislator or Senator who is not a Citizen of the United States not resident of the State of Florida. No Citizen shall be a Legislator or Senator from a County or District in which they are not a resident of, and inhabiting within. The Legislature shall be assemble in session at least one-half of all the calendar days of every year. The Legislators and Senators shall receive while in office, a compensation for their services paid out of the treasury, equal to the average household income of the State. The terms of Legislators and Senators shall begin at noon on the last Friday of July. While in office, all Legislator or Senators have the duty to cast their vote and to attend all sessions of Legislature. Nothing whatsoever shall hinder this. 

Within each chamber: a majority vote shall constitute a quorum to do business; but a smaller number may adjourn from day-to-day, or authorized to compel the attendance of absent members, in such manner, and under such penalties as each chamber may provide. Each chamber may expound upon the rules of its proceedings herein, punish its members for disorderly behavior, and with the concurrence of four-fifths, (80%) expel a member, or should a member be convicted of a crime the member and then with only a two-thirds concurrence, (66%). Each chamber shall keep a public journal of its proceedings, along with a public record of the yeas, nays, and abstentions on every question. Each chamber shall hold weekly full attendance general debate between the majority leader and minority leader of each chamber. (“Question Time”)  

 

 

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, New Section.

Catchline: Law Making

 

(a)  The Creation of Law shall be accomplished that every bill or resolution shall be introduced by a legislator to the hopper of the House of Representatives shall be sent to a germane committee or subcommittee by the Speaker. The bill or resolution shall not exceed three pages in text and must be followed by no more than seven pages of plain English translation. The bill or resolution may only be amended in committee or subcommittee. Should the bill or resolution pass committee it shall be put to the floor of the House of Representatives for an up or down vote with debate within ten days, no riders may be attached.  

(b) Should a bill or resolution pass the floor of the House or Representatives it shall within three days be introduced by the Speaker to the Senate floor at which time the Chancellor shall put it to the floor of the Senate for an up or down vote with debate, or send it to a Senate germane committee or subcommittee. The bill or resolution may only be amended in committee or subcommittee. Should the bill or resolution pass committee it shall be put it to the floor of the Senate for an up or down vote with debate, no riders may be attached. Should a bill or resolution pass the Senate floor in identical form as the one from the House of Representatives then it shall be sent to the Governor.  

(c) Should the Senate of made an amendment to the version introduced to them, then the bill or resolution be sent to a conference committee made up of: three majority coalition members and two minority coalition members of both chambers plus majority and minority coalition leadership of both chambers plus the Chancellor and Speaker. The version of the bill or resolution that results from this conference committee shall then be put to a vote without debate on the floor of both chambers on the same day, should it pass the House of Representatives and the Senate it shall be sent to the Governor.  

(d) Every bill or resolution sent to the Governor shall be considered by the Governor. Should the Gvernor consent to the bill or resolution he or she shall sign it and it shall be law. If the Governor shall disapprove of the bill or resolution he or she shall veto in full or veto in part and sign it, all vetoed parts shall not be law. If the bill or resolution shall not be signed or vetoed by the Governor within ten days after it shall have been publicly presented to him or her, the same shall be a law, in like manner as if he or she had signed it, this be whether Legislature be in session or not.  

(e) Should the Governor veto a bill or resolution, it shall be reconsidered by the Senate and the Senate alone by two-thirds majority may within one year override the veto or line item veto and the bill or resolution shall be law. Votes of Legislature shall be determined by yeas, nays and abstentions, and the names of the Legislators and Senators voting for and against a bill or resolution shall be entered in the public journal of each chamber respectively.  

 

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, New Section.

Catchline: Forbiden Fruit

 

The legislature shall not itself, nor grant or allow any County or Municipality to the following powers. 
Allow public official to hold any other office of government at any level of government during the time for which he or she was elected or appointed as it may be a conflict of interest or a consolidation of power. 

Allow a law to be made that applies to the Citizens that does not apply equally to the members of government, nor vice versa.  
Pass a bill of attainder, corruption of the blood, or an ex post facto Law nor allow civil forfeiture to be conducted. 
Neither grant title of nobility nor allow a Citizen holding any office or public trust of the Republic or it's parts shall without the consent of the US Senate, accept any present, emolument, office or title, of any kind whatsoever, from any foreign government or member of foreign government. 
Make a law varying the compensation of any elected office that would take effect before that elected office's following respective election cycle. 
Create or allow the creation of monopolies on any industry, good or service.  
Make preference by any regulation of commerce or revenue to the ports of one State over those of another: nor shall vessels bound to, or from, one State be obliged to enter, clear or pay duties in another. 
Draw money from the treasury, but in consequence of appropriations made by law. 

 

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, New Section.

Catchline: Legislative Powers

 

The Legislature shall have the power to:  
To lay and collect duties and imposts as well as an income tax upon the several counties for the purpose and as shall be necessary in order to pay the Debt, provide a common Defense and to secure to the people the promise of justice, freedom and liberty.  
To borrow exact amounts of money on the credit of the state of Florida but that no money may be borrow but upon two-thirds consent of the House of Representatives along with two-thirds of the Senate and the concurrence of the Governor. 
To balance government spending, maintaining a reserve for our posterity, enter in to no deficit but in the case of invasion or rebellion. This is by adopting a budget by law no later than ninety days before the start of the upcoming fiscal year. Should a budget not be made law an automatic, across-the-board, ten percent reduction of expenditure of the current year budget shall be imposed for the year with no adopted budget. 
To regulate commerce but not to be itself a hindrance of commerce but a promotor of it. 
To establish and disestablish Courts inferior to the Supreme Court of Florida.  
To remove from office by vote of No Confidence via two-thirds majority of both chambers, unless otherwise prescribed herein; The Governor, The Chancellor, The Speaker, Justices and Judges, members of the Executive Cabinet of Florida, and all other officers of Florida not stated herein. 
To provide and maintain the National Guard and State Defense Force. Establishing a standard disciple to ensure the readiness in accordance with US law.  
To audit the Treasury and ensure a regular statement of incomes and expenditures of all public money shall be published to the public once every six months. 
To establish public services, but these services shall always be in free market competition with similar services of other levels of government and private enterprises. 
To make rules, regulations, directions and tasking for the Executive Departments along with vesting the appointment of inferior officers, as deemed proper, in the executive triad alone.  
To make and dispose of all needful rules and regulations . 

To make laws which shall be necessary and proper for the general welfare of the people of Florida. 

 

ARTICLE III: LEGISLATURE, New Section.

Catchline: Congressional District Boundaries

 

Should the number of allotted representatives to the US Congress be prime then single member districts elected via instant exhaustive vote shall be employed. In all other cases the number of representatives allotted divided by a number between three and nine that equals a whole number shall revile the number of districts and the number of representatives per multi-member district and shall be elected via single transferable vote.  In either case the State shall be divided into congressional districts of equal population using the optimal compactness algorithm (by Brian Olson of bdistricting.com), this done under the supervision of the Florida Legislature (the algorithm code be adapted to meet the 1 person deviation between population required compare to the 1% deviation employed.)