By: Mike Winikoff, Hometown News
TREASURE COAST — Voters in the 2018 Florida General Election will face the most confusing ballot in a generation, especially regarding the proposed constitutional amendments. Understanding the proposals and figuring out how you wish to vote on each will take some time and independent research.
The Florida Constitution can be changed in four ways. The legislature can propose a change by joint resolution. Citizens and nonprofits can follow an initiative process including the gathering of large numbers of signatures. The Constitutional Revision Commission can propose changes, and the Taxation and Budget Reform Commission can propose changes.
Proposed amendments require 60 percent approval from voters to pass, per Florida Constitution, Article XI, Section 5(e).
For the November, 2018 general election, 13 proposed amendments will be on the ballot. Of these, eight were submitted by the CRC, three by the legislature, and two by citizen petition initiative.
The CRC meets once every 20 years. Florida is the only state with a constitutional amendment commission.
The CRC, created by Article XI, Section 2 of the Florida Constitution, has 37 members. The constitution sets the Attorney General as the only automatic member. The Governor appoints 15 commissioners including the commission chair. The President of the Senate appoints nine, the Speaker of the House of Representatives appoints nine, and the Chief Justice of the Florida Supreme Court appoints three commissioners…