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More on the Part Time Legislature Initiative in California

December 4, 2009

Sponsored by a group called Citizens for California Reform. I don’t recognize the leadership at all –

Gabriella Holt

Gabriella Holt is committed to public service. A registered nurse, Holt is the former president of the Palos Verdes Unified School District Board of Education as well as a Los Angeles County Probation Commissioner.

Amy Lyons
Vice President

Amy Lyons is an attorney certified to sit as a Temporary Judge of the Los Angeles County Superior Court. Lyons is a graduate of the Bergeson Excellence in Public Service Series and serves on its Board of Governors. In 2008 Lyons was appointed to the State Board of Guide Dogs for the Blind.

The initiative is called the Citizen Legislature Act and reads –


SECTION 1. Title.

This Act shall be known and may be cited as “The Citizen Legislature Act.”

SECTION 2. Findings and Purposes.

The People of the State of California hereby make the following findings and declare that
their purpose in enacting this Act is as follows:

(a) California’s experiment with a “full-time” Legislature has failed. The result has been
a Legislature dominated by career politicians beholden to special interests. Legislators do not
work “full-time” yet they receive full-time pay and benefits, more than double the amount of all
other states. Yet, with all of these incentives, they continually fail to accomplish their most
important job, passing a balanced state budget on-time.

(b) California needs and deserves a Legislature that is only interested in conducting the
people’s business. Most states have a part-time Legislature, including some of the largest and
most populous. A part-time Legislature will replace professional politicians with citizen
legislators and will break the stranglehold of special interests. It will reduce the number of
unnecessary and self-serving bills and will result in a more responsible and accountable
government institution.

(c) In order to further these and the purposes stated in section 1.5, the people hereby
amend the California Constitution to enact the “Citizen Legislature Act.”

SECTION 3. Constitutional Amendment

Section 3.5 of Article IV of the California Constitution is added to read as follows:

Sec. 3.5(a) The Legislature shall reconvene in regular session on the first Monday in
January of each year for a period not to exceed 30 calendar days, whereupon the Legislature
shall stand in recess. The Legislature shall reconvene in regular session on the first Monday in
May for a period not to exceed 60 calendar days.

(b) Notwithstanding subdivision (a), the Legislature may reconvene for an additional
period of 5 days following recess or adjournment to reconsider bills vetoed by the Governor
pursuant to section 10.

SECTION 4. Operative Date/Severability

(a) Section 3.5 shall become effective immediately, however it shall become operative for
the biennium session commencing on the first Monday in December in 2012.

(b) If any part of this measure or the application to any person or circumstance is held
invalid, the invalidity shall not affect other provisions or applications which can reasonably be
given effect without the invalid provision or application.

Not that anyone cares 🙂

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