Louisiana. Constitutional Convention (1973).

Records of the Louisiana Constitutional Convention of 1973 (Volume 4) online

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C. p. No. 17
meiitary of the power (ability) conferred and as such means
onus or obligation to execute the power granted ;

(7) "Structure and organization" means the structure and
organization and, or the particular distribution and redistrib-
ution of powers and functions and/or the supervision, control,
and internal arrangement of the component parts of the
political subdivision.

(8) "General law" means a law of statewide concern en-
acted by the legislature which is uniformly applicable to all
persons or to all political subdivisions in the entire state or
which is uniformly applicable to all persons or to all political
subdivisions within the same class.

(9) "Local or special law" means any law enacted by the
legislature other than a general law;

(10) "General obligation bond" means those bonds, the
principal and interest of which are secured by and payable
from ad valorem taxes levied without limitation as to rate
or amount;

(11) "Deep-water port commissions and port, harbor, and
terminal districts" means those commissions or districts
within whose territorial jurisdiction exist facilities capable of
accommodating vessels of at least twenty-five feet of draft and
of engaging in foreign commerce.



I'age 27



Constitutional Convention of Louisiana of 1973
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1 COMMITTEE PROPOSAL No. 17—

2 Introduced by Delegate Perez, Chairman, on behalf of the

3 Committee on Local and Parochial Government, and Delegates

4 Burson, Cannon, Chatelain, Conino, D'Gerolamo, Fowler, Giar-

5 russo, Hayes, Heine, J. Jackson, Kean, Lanier, Reeves, Shan-
g non, Stephenson, Taylor, Toomy, Ullo, and Zervigon :
7 A PROPOSAL
g Making general provisions for local and parochial government,
9 levee districts, ar.d ports, the financing thereof, and neces-

10 sary provisions with respect thereto.

11 Be it adopted by the Constitutional Convention of Louisiana

12 of 1973:

13 ARTICLE VL LOCAL GOVERNMENT

14 PART L GENERAL PROVISIONS

15 Section 1. Parishes; Ratification of Boundaries, Creation,

16 Consolidation, and Dissolution

17 Section 1. (A) All parishes and their boundaries as estab-

18 lished under existing law are recognized and ratified.

19 (B) The legislature shall provide by general law for the j

20 creation, consolidation, or dissolution of parishes under the

21 limitations hereinafter provided. No new parish shall contain

22 'ess than six hundred and twenty-five square miles, or less

23 than fifty thousand inhabitants, and no parish shall be reduced |

24 below that area or number of inhabitants.

25 Section 2. Change of Parish Lines; Election

26 Section 2. Before taking effect any law changing parish j

27 lines, consolidating parishes, dissolving parishes, or creating |

28 new parishes shall be submitted to the electors of the parishes j

29 to be affected at a special election held for that purpose. The

30 change shall take effect only if two-thirds of the total vote

31 cast on the question in each affected parish is in favor thereof.

32 Section 3. New or Enlarged Parishes; Adjustment of Assets

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and Liabilities



2 Section 3. When a parish is enlarged or created from con-

Q tiguous territory, it shall be entitled to a just proportion of the

A property and assets and shall be liable for a just proportion

g of the existing debts and liabilities of the parish or parishes

g from which the territory is taken.

u Section 4. Change of Location of Parish Seat

g Section 4. Upon the written petition of not less than twenty-

g five percent of the electors, as certified by the registrar of

20 voters, the governing authority of a parish shall call an elec-

11 tion on the question of changing the location of the parish seat.

22 The location of a parish seat shall not be changed unless two-

23 thirds of the total vote cast on the question is in favor thereof.

24 Section 5. Municipalities; Incorporation, Consolidation,

25 Merger, and Government

26 Section 5. The legislature shall provide by general law for

27 the incorporation, consolidation, merger, and government of
2g municipalities. No local or special law shall be enacted to
29 create a municipal corporation or to amend, modify, or repeal

20 its charter. However, if a municipality is operating under a

21 special legislative charter it may be amended, modified, or

22 repealed by local or special law as long as such municipality

23 continues to operate under such charter.

24 Section 6. Classification

25 Section 6. Except as provided in this constitution, the legis-

26 lature may classify parishes or municipalities according to

27 population or on any other reasonable basis related to the

28 purpose of this classification, and legislation may be limited

29 in its effect to any of such class or classes. However, no statute

30 which is applicable to fewer than six parishes or municipalities

31 shall become operative in any such parish or municipality

32 until approved by ordinance enacted by the governing author-

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1 ity of the affected parish or municipality.

2 Section 7. Existing Home Rule Charters and Plans of Gov-

3 ernment of Parishes and Municipalities Ratified

4 Section 7. (A) The plans of government and home rule

5 charters of the parishes of East Baton Rouge, Jefferson, and

6 Plaquemines and of the cities of New Orleans, Baton Rouge,

7 and Shreveport shall remain in effect, and may be amended,

8 modified, or repealed as provided therein. Each of them shall

9 retain the authority, powers, rights, privileges, and immunities

10 granted by its charter. Each shall be subject to the duties im-

11 posed by the applicable constitutional provisions under which

12 its plan or charter was adopted. Each of them also shall enjoy

13 such additional powers and functions as are granted to local

14 governmental subdivisions by provisions of this constitution,

15 including Sections 8 and 9 of this Article, unless the exercise

16 of such powers and performance of such functions is pro-

17 hibited by its charter.

18 (B) Every other home rule charter adopted or authorized

19 when this constitution is adopted shall remain in effect and

20 may be amended, modified, or repealed as provided in the

21 charter.

22 Section 8. Home Rule Charter

23 Section 8. (A) Any local governmental subdivision may

24 draft, adopt, or amend a charter of government to be known as

25 a home rule charter in accordance with the provisions of this

26 Section. The governing authority of any such local govern-

27 mental subdivision may appoint a commission to prepare

28 and propose a charter or alternate charter, or may call an

29 election for the purpose of electing such a commission.

30 (B) The governing authority ot any such local governmen-

31 tal subdivision shall call an election to elect a commission to
^2 prepare and propose a charter or alternate charter when pre-

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1 sented with a petition signed by not less than fifteen percent

2 of the electors, who live within the boundaries of the affected

3 subdivision, as certified by the registrar of voters.

4 (C) A home rule charter shal be adopted when approved

5 by a majority of the electors who vote on the charter pro-
g posal at an election called for that purpose.

7 (D) Two or more local governmental subdivisions situated

8 within the boundaries of one parish may avail themselves

9 of the provisions of this Section, provided that a majority of

10 the electors in each affected local governmental subdivision

11 who vote in an election held for that purpose vote in favor

12 thereof. The legislature shall provide for the method of ap-

13 pointment or election of a commission to prepare and pro-

14 pose such a charter consistent with Paragraph (A) of this

15 Section. However, at least one member of the commission

16 shall be elected or appointed from each affected local gov-

17 ernmental subdivision. The legislature shall provide the meth-

18 od by which the electors of more than one local governmental

19 subdivision within the boundaries of one parish may petition

20 for an election for such purpose consistent with Paragraph

21 (B) of this Section.

22 (E) A home rule charter adopted pursuant to the pro-

23 visions of this Section shall provide for the structure and

24 organization, powers, and functions for the government of the

25 local governmental subdivision, which may include the exer-

26 cise of any power and performance of any function neces-

27 sary, requisite, or proper for the management of its affairs,

28 not denied by general law or this constitution. The legislature

29 shall not pass any law the effect of which changes, modifies,,

30 or affects the structure and organization and/or the particular

31 distribution and redistribution of the powers and functions
«''' of any local governmental subdivision which operates under

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1 a home rule charter.

2 (F) A local governmental subdivision adopting a home
g rule charter under this Section shall also enjoy such addi-

4 tional powers and functions as are granted to local govern-

5 mental subdivisions by other provisions of this constitution,
including Section 9 of this Article, unless the exercise of such
7 powers and performance of such functions is prohibited by
g its charter.

9 (G) The powers and functions of a parish or city school

IQ board and the offices of sheriff, clerk of the district court,

11 coroner, or assessor shall not be affected by any provision of

12 a home rule charter or plan of government adopted or amended

13 under the provisions of this Section.

14 Section 9. Powers of Other Local Governmental Subdivi-

15 sions

18 Section 9. (A) Any other local governmental subdivision

17 may exercise any power and perform any function neces-

18 sary, requisite, or proper for the management of its affairs

19 not denied to it by its charter, by this constitution, or by J

20 general law, including but not limited to the power (1) to

21 legislate upon, regulate, conduct, and control all matters of

22 local governmental administration; (2) to define the powers,
28 duties, and qualifications of parochial or municipal employees;

24 (3) to provide for the protection of the public health, safety,

25 morals, and welfare; (4) to create special districts; (5) to

26 license; (6) to tax under the limitations provided in this con-

27 stitution or by general law; (7) to incur debt and issue bonds,

28 except as otherwise provided in this constitution.

29 (B) Any local governmental subdivision may exercise any

30 power or perform any function concurrently with the state

31 pertaining to its government and affairs to the extent that

32 the legislature by general law does not specifically limit the

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^ concurrent exercise of any such power or performance of any

n such function or specifically declare the state's exercise of

Q any such power or performance of any such function to be

A exclusive except as provided in this Article.

r (C) The powers granted in this Section shall not be con-

o strued to affect the powers and functions of a parish or city

r, school board and the offices of sheriff, clerk of a district

Q court, coroner, or assessor.

Q Section 10. Powers of Local Governmental Subdivisions;



10



Liberal Construction



1 1 Section 10. Powers and functions of local governmental sub-

■lo divisions shall be construed liberally in favor of such local

■10 governmental subdivisions.

■I A Section 11. Home Rule Parish; Incorporation of Cities,

1 c Towns, and Villages

ig Section 11. When two-thirds of the electors, as certified by

17 the registrar of voters, of an unincorporated settlement in any

10 parish operating under a home rule charter or a home rule

29 plan of government sign and present to the governor a petition

20 and meet other necessary requirements as set forth under the

21 general laws providing for the incorporation of cities, towns,

22 and villages, such cities, towns, and villages may be incorpo-

23 rated. However, no such newly incorporated area shall include

24 any property previously included in any industrial area or

25 district.

26 Section 12. Limitations of Local Governmental Subdivisions

27 Section 12. Local governmental subdivisions shall not: (1)

28 incur debt payable from ad valorem tax receipts maturing

29 more than forty years from the time it is incurred: (2) de-

30 fine and provide for the punishment of a felony: or (3) enact

31 private or civil ordinances governing civil relationships.

32 Section 13. Local Officials

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C. P. No. 17

1 Section 13. The electors of each local governmental sub-

2 division shall have the exclusive right to elect the members

8 of their governing authority and, if a plan or form of gov-

4 ernment or home rule charter so provides, their chief execu-

5 five officer at elections held in accordance with the election

6 laws of the state. Such officials shall not be subject to re-

7 moval by the legislature.

g Section 14. Local Officials; Compensation

9 Section 14. The compensation or method of fixing the com-

10 pensation of a local elected official of any local governmental

11 subdivision which operates under a home rule charter or plan

12 of government as provided in Sections 7 and 8 of this Article,

13 shall be provided in its charter. The compensation or method

14 of fixing the compensation of local elected officials of any

15 other local governmental subdivision shall be provided for by

16 law. Compensation of local officials shall not be reduced dur-

17 ing the term.s for which they are elected.

18 Section 15. Filling of Vacancies; Appointment

19 Section 15. (A) Except in the office of sheriff, assessor,

20 clerk of a district court, or coroner, a vacancy occasioned by

21 death, resignation, or otherwise in the office of mayor, in

22 the membership of the governing authority of a local govern-

23 mental subdivision or in any other local office filled by elec-

24 tion wholly within the boundaries of a local governmental

25 subdivision, shall be filled by appointment by the governing

26 authority of such local governmental subdivision in which the

27 vacancy occurs. A vacancy in the membership of a city or

28 parish school board shall be filled by appointment by the

29 remaining members thereof. A tie vote on such appointment

30 to be made by the governing authority of a local governmental

31 subdivision or school board shall be broken by the presiding
2^ officer thereof notwithstanding the fact that he may already

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1 have voted thereon.

2 (B) If, at the time a vacancy occurs in an elective office
o lor which appointment is provided in Paragraph (A) of this

4 Section, the unexpired portion of the term of office is more

5 than one year, a special election to fill the vacancy shall be
g called by the governing authority, and held without the neces-
7 sity of a call by the governor, not more than six months nor
g less than three months, after first receipt of notice of the
9 vacancy by the secretary of state, to be given as hereinafter

IQ provided, in the local governmental subdivision or special dis-

11 trict thereof in which the vacancy occurred, and in such case

12 the appointment provided for in Paragraph (A) of this Sec-

13 tion shall be effective only until a successor is duly elected

14 and qualified.

15 (C) Upon being informed of the occurrence of a vacancy

16 in any of the offices specified in Paragraph (A) of this Sec-

17 tion, the clerk or chief clerk of the district court in the par-

18 ish where the vacancy occurred, and in the parish of Orleans

19 the clerk or chief clerk of the criminal district court, shall,

20 within twenty-four hours after being thus informed, notify the

21 secretary of state in writing by registered or certified mail of

22 the occurrence of the vacancy. Upon receipt of such notice, the

23 secretary of state shall, within twenty-four hours after such

24 receipt, notify in writing by registered or certified mail all

25 election officials, including party committees and boards of

26 supervisors of elections, having any duty to perform in con-

27 nection with a special election to fill such vacancy, of the oc-

28 currence of the vacancy.

29 (D) Nothing in this Section shall be construed as changing

30 the qualifications for the various offices involved and all ap-

31 pointments must be of persons who would otherwise be eligible

32 to hold offices to which appointed.

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1 (E) The provisions of this Section shall apply to all local

• governmental subdivisions unless otherwise provided by the

3 home rule charter or the home rule plan of government of the

4 affected local governmental subdivisions.

5 (F) The provisions of this Section shall not apply to the
( office of judge of any state court of record or district attorney.
7 Section 16. Legislation Increasing Financial Burden of Po-
g litical Subdivisions; Local Approval

9 Section 16. No law requiring an increase in expenditures, or

10 a deduction from the funds of a political subdivision for sal-

11 aries of local public officials or for wages, hours, working

12 conditions, pension and retirement benefits, vacation or sick
18 leave benefits of political subdivision employees, or an increase
14 in commissions of or for local political subdivision offices, ex-

16 cept a law providing for civil service, minimum wages, work-
18 ing conditions, and retirement benefits for firemen and police-

17 men, shall have effect until approved by ordinance enacted

18 by the governing authority of the political subdivision affected

19 thereby or until the legislature appropriates funds to the af-

20 fected political subdivision for that purpose and only to the

21 extent and amount that such funds are provided.

22 Section 17. Governing Authorities of Local Governmental
28 Subdivisions; Control Over Agencies They Create

24 Section 17. (A) In addition to any other powers granted by

26 the legislature, the governing authority of a local governmen-
28 tal subdivision shall have the following discretionary powers

27 over any agency heretofore or hereafter created by it: (1) to

28 appoint and remove members of the governing body of the

29 agency; (2) to exercise budgetary and fiscal control over the
80 agency, including the power to modify or veto its operating
"1 budget, veto or reduce line items, or substitute a different
32 budget therefor; (3) to abolish the governing body of the

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1 agency and to substitute itself therefor, with authority to

2 exercise all of its powers and perform all of its functions; and

3 (4) to abolish the agency if the obligations or indebtedness of

4 the agency are not thereby impaired.

5 (B) No such agency shall have authority to levy a tax, im-
fl pose any charge, or issue bonds unless the proposal therefor is

7 first approved by the governing authority of the local gov-

8 ernmental subdivision, and the requirements of this constitu-

9 tion and applicable laws relative to the levy of taxes and the

10 issuance of bonds are complied with. However, after such

11 original approval is granted no further approval shall be re-

12 quired.

13 (C) If the creation of the agency required the concur-

14 rence of two or more local governmental subdivisions, con-

15 currence of all of them shall be required for the exercise of

16 the above powers.

17 Section 18. Special Districts and Local Public Agencies;

18 Consolidation, Merger, and Assumption of Debt

19 Section 18. (A) Any local governmental subdiiision may

20 consolidate and merge into itself any special district or

21 local public agency, except a school district, situated and

22 having jurisdiction entirely within the boundaries of such

23 local governmental subdivision. Upon such merger and con-

24 solidation the local governmental subdivision shall succeed

25 to and be vested with all of the rights, revenues, resources,

26 jurisdiction, authority, and powers of such special district

27 or local public agency. No such merger and consolidation

28 shall take effect unless a majority of the electors voting

29 thereon in the local governmental subdivision as a whole
80 and also a majority of the electors voting thereon in the

31 affected special district vote in favor of such proposition.

32 No such action involving a local public agency shall take

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1 effect unless a majority of the electors voting thereon in

2 the local governmental subdivision in which the local public

3 agency is located vote in favor thereof in an election held

4 for that purpose.

5 (B) If the special district or local public agency which

6 is consolidated and merged has any outstanding indebted-

7 ness, the authority provided for by this Section shall not be
g exercised unless provision is made for the assumption of
9 such indebtedness by the governing authority or authorities

10 of the local governmental subdivisions involved.

11 Section 19. Historic Preservation Districts

12 Section 19. (A) In order to promote the educational, cul-
18 tural, economic, and general welfare of the public through

14 the preservation and protection of buildings, sites, monu-

15 ments, structures, areas and districts of historic or archi-

16 tectural interest or importance, each local governmental sub-

17 division, acting through a commission or otherwise, shall

18 have the power and authority to establish, operate and

19 maintain historic preservation areas and districts by the

20 adoption of appropriate ordinances and laws, which is

21 hereby declared to be for a public purpose.

22 (B) The governing authority of each local governmental

23 subdivision shall have the power and authority of review to

24 affirm, reverse or modify, in whole or in part, any action or

25 decision of any such commission.

26 Section 20. Zoning

27 Section 20. Local governmental subdivisions may enact

28 land use regulations and zoning ordinances and create

29 and classify therein residential, commercial, industrial, and

30 other districts, and may regulate the preservation of the

81 character of buildings, monuments, structures, and build-

82 ings and areas of historical importance. Local governmental

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1 subdivisions may create airport zones and regulate the

2 heights of buildings, structures, and objects of natural

3 growth in areas surrounding airports.

4 Section 21. Industrial Areas

5 Section 21. The legislature may authorize parishes to
create industrial areas within their boundaries in accor-
7 dance with such procedures and subject to such regulations
g as the legislature shall determine. Industrial areas shall not
9 be subdivisions of the state.

10 Section 22. Creation of Special Districts by the Legisla-

11 ture; Authority

12 Section 22. Subject to the limitations imposed in this con-
18 stitution, the legislature by general law or by local or special

14 law may create or authorize the creation of special dis-

15 tricts, boards, agencies, commissions, and authorities of

16 every type, define their powers, and grant to the special

17 districts, boards, agencies, commissions, and authorities so

18 created such rights, powers, and authorities as it deems

19 proper, including, but not limited to, the power of taxation,

20 the power to incur debt and issue bonds, and the power to

21 reclaim property from the beds of lakes and streams.

22 Section 23. Intergovernmental Cooperation

23 Section 23. (A) Any political subdivision may exercise and

24 perform any of its authorized powers and functions, includ-

25 ing financing, jointly or in cooperation with one or more

26 political subdivisions, either within or without the state,

27 the United States or agencies thereof, except as the legisla-

28 ture shall provide otherwise by law.

29 (B) Except as otherwise provided in this constitution, the

30 legislature shall not require political subdivisions to exer-
81 cise powers or perform functions jointly or in cooperation
32 with any other political subdivision, nor shall the legislature



Online LibraryLouisiana. Constitutional Convention (1973)Records of the Louisiana Constitutional Convention of 1973 (Volume 4) → online text (page 30 of 65)