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Understand How You Are Voting: An Explanation of the 2 Questions that Will Be on the Nov. 6th Ballot

Report by Paula Antolini
November 2, 10:07AM EDT

 

Photo above shows a SAMPLE November 6, 2018 ballot for District 2, but all districts will have the two questions on the ballot.

 

Understand How You Are Voting: An Explanation of the 2 Questions that Will Be on the Nov. 6th Ballot

This year in addition to voting for candidates there will be two questions on the November 6th ballot. Do you know what these questions are and what a yes or no vote will mean?

View information below, from the office of the CT Secretary of the State, Denise W. Merrill.

 

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BALLOT QUESTION 1.

Shall the Constitution of the State be amended to ensure (1) that all moneys contained in the Special Transportation Fund be used solely for transportation purposes, including the payment of debts of the state incurred for transportation purposes, and (2) that sources of funds deposited in the Special Transportation Fund be deposited in said fund so long as such sources are authorized by statute to be collected or received by the state?

 

CONTENT AND PURPOSE OF THE PROPOSED AMENDMENT

If this amendment is approved, it would impose constitutional protections on state transportation funding. These protections, commonly referred to as the “transportation lockbox, ”are currently established only in the ConnecticutGeneral Statutes. Specifically,this constitutional amendment, like the statutory lockbox, would do the following:

1. preserve the state’s Special Transportation Fund (STF) as a permanent fund;

2. require that the fund be used exclusively for transportation purposes, which include paying transportation-related debt; and

3. require that any funding sources directed to the STF by law continue to be directed there, as long as the law authorizes the state to collect or receive them.

 

Background: The STF

By law, the STF is a dedicated fund primarily used to finance state highway and public transportation projects as well as operate the Department of Motor Vehicles and Department of Transportation. The law directs a number of revenue sourcesto the fund,such as(1)state fuel taxes, (2) most transportation-related fees and motor vehicle-related fines, and (3) a portion of state sales and use taxes. STF resources are pledged to secure bonds for transportation projects and must be used first to pay debtservice on these bonds.

The preceding explanatory text was prepared by the nonpartisan Office of Legislative Research and approved by the General Assembly’s joint standing Committee on Government Administration and Elections in accordance with Section 2-30a of the Connecticut General Statutes.

 

TEXT OF THE PROPOSED CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT

(As set forth in H.J.R. No. 100 of 2017)

Section 1. That the following be proposed as an amendment to the Constitution of the State, which, when approved and adopted in the manner provided by the Constitution, shall, to all intents and purposes, become a part thereof: Article third of the Constitution is amended by adding section 19 as follows: Sec. 19. The Special Transportation Fund shall remain a perpetual fund. The general assembly shall direct the resources of said fund solely for transportation purposes, including the payment of debtservice on obligations of the state incurred for transportation purposes. Sources of funds, moneys and receipts of the state credited, deposited or transferred to said fund by state law on or after the effective date of this amendment shall be credited, deposited or transferred to the Special Transportation Fund, so long as such sources are authorized by statute to be collected or received by the state, or any officer thereof, and the general assembly shall enact no law authorizing the resources of said fund to be expended other than for transportation purposes.

Adopted June 7, 2017

 

CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT PROCESS

In accordance with Article Sixth of the amendments to the Connecticut State Constitution, this proposed amendment was approved by the General Assembly and is to be voted on by the electors of each town at the state election on Tuesday, November 6, 2018. If a majority of the electors voting on the proposed amendment approve it, the amendment will become part of the state constitution.

 

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BALLOT QUESTION 2.

Shall the Constitution of the State be amended to require (1) a public hearing and the enactment of legislation limited in subject matter to the transfer, sale or disposition of state-owned or state-controlled real property or interests in real property in order for the General Assembly to require a state agency to sell, transfer or dispose of any real property or interest in real property that is under the custody or control of the agency, and (2) if such property is under the custody or control of the Department of Agriculture or the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, that such enactment of legislation be passed by a two thirds vote of the total membership of each house of the General Assembly?

 

CONTENT AND PURPOSE OF THE PROPOSED AMENDMENT

If this amendment is approved, it would limit the General Assembly’s ability to pass legislation that requires a state agency to transfer (sell or otherwise convey) any state real property (land or buildings) or property interestto non-state entities. It does this by imposing the following conditions:

1. a legislative committee must first hold a public hearing to allow for public comment on the property transfer; and

2. the legislation must address only the property under consideration.

In addition, for property that belongs to the state Department of Agriculture or the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, the legislation must pass by at least two-thirds of the membership of the state House of Representatives and of the state Senate.

 

Further Explanation

The Connecticut General Statutes establish various procedures that state agencies must follow to transfer state real property. Alternatively, the General Assembly may transfer property through legislation, known as“conveyance bills, ” without subjecting the transfers to the statutory procedures. The constitutional amendment would prohibit the General Assembly from transferring property by passing these types of bills, unless the above conditions were met. The amendment would not apply to transfers made by state agencies under the statutory procedures.

The preceding explanatory text was prepared by the nonpartisan Office of Legislative Research and approved by the General Assembly’s joint standing Committee on Government Administration and Elections in accordance with Section 2-30a of the Connecticut General Statutes.

 

TEXT OF THE PROPOSED CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT

(As set forth in H.J.R. No. 35 of 2018)

Section 1.That the following be proposed as an amendment to the Constitution of the State, which, when approved and adopted in the manner provided by the Constitution, shall, to all intents and purposes, become a part thereof: Article third of the Constitution is amended by adding section 19 as follows:

Sec. 19. (a) The general assembly shall not enact any legislation requiring a state agency to sell, transfer or otherwise dispose of any real property or interest in real property that is under the custody or control ofsuch agency to any person or entity other than another state agency unless a committee ofthe general assembly has held a public hearing regarding such sale, transfer or disposition of such property or interest and the act of the general assembly requiring such sale,transfer or disposition ofreal property or interest in real property is limited in subject matter to provisions concerning such sale, transfer or disposition.

(b) In the case of real property or an interest in real property that is under the custody or control of the Department of Agriculture ortheDepartment of Energy and Environmental Protection, or a successor agency of either department, in addition to complying with the requirements of subsection (a) of this section, any act requiring the sale, transfer or disposition of such property or interest shall pass upon roll call by a yea vote of at least two-thirds of the total membership of each house.

Adopted May 9, 2018

 

CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT PROCESS

In accordance with Article Sixth of the amendments to the Connecticut State Constitution, this proposed amendment was approved by the General Assembly and is to be voted on by the electors of each town at the state election on Tuesday, November 6, 2018. If a majority of the electors voting on the proposed amendment approve it, the amendment will become part of the state constitution.

 

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View above information in Spanish:

Constitutional Amendment Question 1 – Spanish

Constitutional Amendment Question 2 – Spanish

 

 

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