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Index to the Debates of the Constitutional Convention of Maryland, 1967-1968
Volume 85, Page 49   View pdf image (33K)
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Guide/49

ary Department considered sections of the Declaration of Rights and constitution
dealing with courts in the state. The Committee on the Legislative Department con-
sidered sections of the Declaration of Rights and constitution dealing with legisla-
tion and the General Assembly. The Committee on Political Subdivisions and Local
Legislation considered sections of the constitution dealing with powers and duties of
county and municipal governments. The Committee on State Finance and Taxation
considered sections of the Declaration of Rights and constitution dealing with state
taxes and receipt and disbursement of state funds. The Committee on Miscellaneous
Provisions considered sections of the constitution not assigned to the other commit-
tees, such as those dealing with oaths of office, education, and jury trials.

The other three committees were assigned procedural matters. The Committee
on Convention Procedures developed recommendations for organizing a constitu-
tional convention. The Committee on Style considered the form and style for a draft
constitution. The Coordination Committee helped the chairman coordinate the
work of the commission and maintained liaison with the governor and General
Assembly.

In preparation for the referendum on holding a constitutional convention
Governor Tawes appointed a Citizens Committee on Constitutional Convention

Referendum. The Committee publicized the election, encouraged people to vote, and

advocated the need for a new constitution. The records of this committee were later
given to the historian of the convention.

On September 13, 1966, the citizens of Maryland voted in favor of a constitu-
tional convention to frame a new state constitution. The General Assembly had pro-
vided that, in the event of such a favorable vote, a convention of 142 delegates
should assemble on September 12, 1967. The Constitutional Convention Commis-
sion drafted a bill to establish procedures for the convention and to provide for the
election of delegates. The bill was amended and adopted by the General Assembly at
its 1967 session, and signed into law on March 24 (Chapter 4, Acts of 1967). The
special statewide election of delegates took place on June 12, 1967.

The site of the convention was the House of Delegates Chamber in the State
House in Annapolis. The sessions were to continue no later than January 12, 1968,
thus permitting the convention up to four months to do its work. The Enabling Act
authorized the Governor to assemble the delegates before September 12, 1967, for
the limited purpose of electing officers, organizing committees, and adopting rules
of procedure, thereby assuring that the convention, once convened, would be ready
for work. This organizational meeting was held on July 11, 1967.

Under the rules of procedure four principal officers were to be elected by the
convention: an honorary president, president, first vice-president, and second vice-
president. At its organizational meeting the convention elected former Governor J.
Millard Tawes honorary president. It elected the chairman of the convention com-
mission, H. Vernon Eney, as president. James Clark, state senator from Howard
County, was elected first vice-president and William S. James, president of the
Senate, was elected second vice-president.

The president was the chief executive officer of the convention. He presided at
sessions of the convention and Committee of the Whole, exercising all the usual
duties and powers of a presiding officer. He appointed the chairmen and members



 
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Index to the Debates of the Constitutional Convention of Maryland, 1967-1968
Volume 85, Page 49   View pdf image (33K)
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