Commonwealth Constitution : Article XVIII

CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT
 
Case Annotations: Sablan v. Tenorio, 4 N.M.I. 351--376.
 
Section 1: Proposal of AmendmentsAmendments to this Constitution may be proposed by constitutional convention, legislative initiative or popular initiative.
 
Source: Original provision, unaltered (ratified 1977, effective 1978).
 
Section 2: Constitutional Convention. 

a) The legislature, by the affirmative vote of a majority of the members of each house, may submit to the voters the question, "Shall there be a constitutional convention to propose amendments to the Constitution?" The legislature, or the governor in the event the legislature fails to act, shall submit this question to the voters at a regular general election no later than ten years after the question was last submitted and as provided by law. An act of the legislature under this subsection may not be vetoed by the governor.

b) An initiative petition may submit to the voters the question, "Shall there be a constitutional convention to propose amendments to the Constitution?" The petition shall be signed by at least twenty-five percent of the persons qualified to vote in the Commonwealth or by at least seventy-five percent of the persons qualified to vote in a senatorial district. An initiative petition shall be filed with the attorney general for certification that the requirements of this subsection have been met. An initiative petition certified by the attorney general shall be submitted to the voters at the next regular general election that is held at least thirty days from the date the petition has been certified.

c) If two-thirds of the votes cast are affirmative on the question of holding a convention, the legislature shall convene a convention promptly.

d) The number of delegates to the convention shall be equal to the number of members of the legislature. The delegates to the convention shall be elected on a nonpartisan basis.
 
Source: Original provision (ratified 1977, effective 1978); amended by Second Const. Conv. Amend. 39 (1985).
 
Section 3: Legislative InitiativeThe legislature by the affirmative vote of three-fourths of the members of each house present and voting may propose amendments to this Constitution. A proposed amendment may not embrace the subject matter of more than one article of this Constitution. An act of the legislature under this section may not be vetoed by the governor.

 

Source: Original provision, unaltered (ratified 1977, effective 1978).


Case Annotations: Sablan v. Tenorio, 4 N.M.I. 351--376.

 
Section 4: Popular Initiative.


a) The people may propose constitutional amendments by initiative. An initiative petition shall contain the full text of the proposed amendment. The petition shall be signed by at least fifty percent of the persons qualified to vote in the Commonwealth and at least twenty-five percent of the persons qualified to vote in each senatorial district. A petition shall be filed with the attorney general for certification that the requirements of this subsection have been met.


Case Annotations: Sablan v. Tenorio, 4 N.M.I. 351--376.


b) An initiative petition certified by the attorney general shall be submitted to each house of the legislature. If the proposal is approved by the affirmative vote of a majority of the members of each house of the legislature, the proposed amendment shall be submitted for ratification in the same manner as an amendment proposed by legislative initiative. The proposed amendment shall be submitted for ratification to the voters at the next regular general election with or without legislative approval.

 

Source: Original provision, unaltered (ratified 1977, effective 1978).
 
Section 5: Ratification of Amendments.

a) A proposed amendment to this Constitution shall be submitted to the voters for ratification at the next regular general election or at a special election established by law.


b) An amendment proposed by legislative initiative shall become effective if approved by a majority of the votes cast. An amendment proposed by constitutional convention or by popular initiative shall become effective if approved by a majority of the votes cast and at least two-thirds of the votes cast in each of two senatorial districts.


c) In the case of a proposed amendment to Article XII of this Constitution, the word "voters" as used in subsection 5(a) above shall be limited to eligible voters under Article VII who are also persons of Northern Marianas descent as described in Article XII, Section 4, and the term "votes cast" as used in subsection 5(b) shall mean the votes cast by such voters.

 

Source: Original provision (ratified 1977, effective 1978); amended by Second Const. Conv. Amend. 39 (1985); new subsection c) added by Section 1 of Senate Legislative Initiative 11-1 (1999).
 
Commission Comment: Subsection c) of this article was added by the provisions of Section 1 of Senate Legislative Initiative 11-1 (1999). The following is the section with new subsection c) as added by Senate Legislative Initiative 11-1 (1999).