Statewide Referendums on Georgia Ballot
This November’s national election is not only one that could profoundly change our nation’s direction, but could also seriously change the way the State of Georgia operates. On the November ballot, in addition to national and state candidates, Georgian’s will have four amendments upon which to vote. If these amendments pass, they will change the Georgia Constitution and the way Georgia operates in regards to each of these ballot items.
Getting an amendment put in the constitution is much easier than getting it taken out. Therefore, changes to the Georgia Constitution should be carefully considered beforehand.
We have experienced that the State sometimes presents ballot language that sounds great at first glance, but because of limited space or other reasons, does not always tell you what you really need to know. If you are not sure how to vote, it is always wiser to vote NO.
Following is the ballot language of the four issues in which you will be asked to vote. We ask that you thoughtfully consider how each of these amendments will change the balance of power in state government and how that could affect your family and community.
1. Opportunity School District Amendment
Shall the Constitution of Georgia be amended to allow the state to intervene in chronically failing public schools in order to improve student performance?
2. The Safe Harbor for Sexually Exploited Children Fund
“Shall the Constitution of Georgia be amended to allow additional penalties for criminal cases in which a person is adjudged guilty of keeping a place of prostitution, pimping, pandering, pandering by compulsion, solicitation of sodomy, masturbation for hire, trafficking of persons for sexual servitude, or sexual exploitation of children and to allow assessments on adult entertainment establishments to fund the Safe Harbor for Sexually Exploited Children Fund to pay for care and rehabilitative and social services for individuals in this state who have been or may be sexually exploited.”
3. Judicial Qualification Commission Amendment (JQC)
“Shall the Constitution of Georgia be amended so as to abolish the existing Judicial Qualifications Commission; require the General Assembly to create and provide by general law for the composition, manner of appointment, and governance of a new Judicial Qualifications Commission, with such commission having the power to discipline, remove, and cause involuntary retirement of judges; require the Judicial Qualifications Commission to have procedures that provide for due process of law and review by the Supreme Court of its advisory opinions; and allow the Judicial Qualifications Commission to be open to the public in some manner?”
4. Excise Tax on Fireworks Sales
Shall the Constitution of Georgia be amended so as to provide that the proceeds of excise taxes on the sale of fireworks or consumer fireworks be dedicated to the funding of trauma care, firefighter equipping and training, and local public safety purposes?