Senate Rules

Senate Rules Relating to Constitutional Amendments

76. A standing committee of the Senate or any member of the Senate may propose an amendment to the Constitution during any regular session when permitted by the Constitution. The proposal shall be printed in accordance with the provisions of Rule 42, introduced into the Senate, read the first time, and by the President referred to an appropriate committee of the Senate. The committee of reference shall report to the Senate its recommendations concerning the proposal. If the committee to which a proposal of amendment was referred report it favorably, recommending amendments, the question shall be first upon the amendments.

77. On being reported by the committee, whether favorably or unfavorably, or without recommendation, the proposal shall thereupon be printed in full in the calendar, including any amendments thereto recommended by the committee.  On the fifth legislative day following the appearance of such proposals of amendment in the calendar, the proposal shall be read the second time in full. Thereupon the question shall be: "Shall the Senate adopt the proposal of amendment to the Constitution of Vermont as recommended by the Committee on _______________and request the concurrence of the House?" Upon any proposal of amendment to the Constitution or of amendment to such proposal, the yeas and nays shall be taken. Pending this question the proposal shall be open to amendment.

78. Amendments to any proposal of amendment to the Constitution may be recommended by the committee of reference by majority vote of such committee. Amendments recommended by any senator before second reading shall be submitted to the committee of reference, in written form , where they shall be acted upon by the committee. Any amendment may be adopted or rejected, in whole or in part, by majority vote of such committee. Upon adoption or rejection of any amendment by the committee, the same shall be printed in the calendar at least one legislative day before second reading.

79. These rules may be suspended only upon the affirmative vote of three‑fourths of the members of the Senate. Upon completion of the vote upon any amendments to the proposal, the question shall be: "Shall the Senate adopt the ________________ proposal of amendment to the Constitution of Vermont (as amended) as recommended by the Committee on  _______________, and request the concurrence of the House?"

80. The yeas and nays by roll call shall be taken upon the proposal of amendment which shall require a two‑thirds vote of the Senate for adoption, and also upon any proposal of amendment thereto which shall require a majority vote for its adoption.

81.Such hearings may be held upon a proposal of amendment as are deemed necessary by the committee of reference.

82. In the event that the Senate requests the House to return any proposal of amendment to the Constitution without having acted thereon, the proposal shall be recommitted to the committee which last acted upon such proposal, whereupon it shall be in order to further amend such proposal in compliance with these rules. Upon report to the Senate by the committee of reference, the question shall first be upon any recommendation of amendment and then as stated in Rule 79.

83. During the first year of the next biennial session following the initial adoption of any proposal of amendment, each proposal of amendment to the Constitution shall be printed in the calendar upon direction given by the Committee on Judiciary or by the Committee on Rules. Upon the 7th legislative day following the printing thereof, each proposal shall be read the third time and acted upon separately.  Amendments to such proposals shall not be in order. The question shall be: "Shall the Senate concur in proposal...(or the proposal), and request the concurrence of the House?" The concurrence of the Senate shall be upon the affirmative vote of a majority of the members thereof, and the yeas and nays by roll call shall be taken.

84. Upon concurrence of the House in the same proposals of amendment, or any of them, the Committee on Judiciary shall forthwith offer a joint resolution setting forth the time and manner in which such proposals of amendment so concurred in shall be submitted to a direct vote of the freemen of the state.

85. All other rules of the Senate shall be applied to proposals of amendment to the Constitution unless inconsistent herewith.

This page was last updated: 2014-07-30