2002 Gubernatorial Election
Question Number 2 - Chapter 588 (House Bill 346)
Emergency Legislation - Scope: Amends Section 2 of Article XVI (the Referendum) of the Constitution of Maryland to allow the General Assembly to adopt emergency laws creating or abolishing any office or changing the term or duties of any officer.
The State constitution provides that a bill may not take effect before June 1st following its enactment unless it is an emergency bill. An emergency bill is a bill that is declared necessary for the immediate preservation of the public health and safety and is passed by the General Assembly by a vote of three-fifths of the elected membership of each house. An emergency bill may take effect immediately upon approval by the Governor or at a specified date before June 1. There are several classes of legislation that the constitution prohibits from being enacted as emergency legislation: measures that create or abolish any office; change the salary, term, or duties of any officer; grant a franchise or special privilege; or create any vested right or interest.
This constitutional amendment proposes removing the limitation on the authority of the General Assembly to pass emergency laws creating or abolishing any office or changing the term or duties of any officer.