AGO 1971 No. 5 - Jan 26 1971
INITIATIVE AND REFERENDUM ‑- LEGISLATURE ‑- AMENDING INITIATIVE ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE ‑- SUBMISSION OF ALTERNATIVE PROPOSAL
Consideration of various alternatives which are available to the legislature under Article II, § 1 (Amendments 7 and 30) and Article II, § 41 (Amendment 26) of the Washington Constitution upon certification and transmittal to it of an initiative to the legislature; adoption and amendment; rejection and submission of alternative proposal to voters; time for certification of initiative to legislature.
- - - - - - - - - - - - -
January 26, 1971
Honorable Thomas L. Copeland
State Representative, District 11-B
Honorable Irving Newhouse
State Representative, District 8-A
Olympia, Washington 98501
Cite as: AGO 1971 No. 5
This is written in response to your recent request for our opinion on several questions relating to the legislature's powers with respect to ‑ and in response to ‑ the transmittal to it of an initiative to the legislature under Article II, § 1 (Amendments 7 and 30) and Article II, § 41 (Amendment 26) of our state Constitution. Because of the number of questions which you have posed, we will respond on the basis of a "question" and "answer" format within the body of this opinion.
The constitutional provisions which bear upon your questions, Article II, §§ 1 and 41, are set forth in full as an appendix to this opinion. Essentially, they provide for referendum by the people against all but certain specified categories of laws enacted by the legislature, and for initiatives (a) to the people and (b) to the legislature. [[Orig. Op. Page 2]] All of your questions pertain to the second of these two types of initiatives.
The critical language of Article II, § 1, which sets forth the procedures to be followed with respect to an initiative to the legislature, reads as follows:
". . . If such petitions are filed not less than ten days before any regular session of the legislature, he shall transmit the same to the legislature as soon as it convenes and organizes. Such initiative measure shall take precedence over all other measures in the legislature except appropriation bills and shall be either enacted or rejected without change or amendment by the legislature before the end of such regular session. If any such initiative measures shall be enacted by the legislature it shall be subject to the referendum petition, or it may be enacted and referred by the legislature to the people for approval or rejection at the next regular election. If it is rejected or if no action is taken upon it by the legislature before the end of such regular session, the secretary of state shall submit it to the people for approval or rejection at the next ensuing regular general election. The legislature may reject any measure so proposed by initiative petition and propose a different one dealing with the same subject, and in such event both measures shall be submitted by the secretary of state to the people for approval or rejection at the next ensuing regular general election. . . ." (Emphasis supplied.)
We paraphrase, and answer, your questions regarding these provisions as follows:
May the legislature make any changes in the text of an initiative to the legislature without, thereby, being required to submit its altered version of the initiative to the people as an alternative for the original initiative?
Article II, § 1,supra, is explicit that the initiative [[Orig. Op. Page 3]] "shall be either enacted or rejectedwithout change or amendment by the legislature . . ." (Emphasis supplied.) In light of that language any alteration in the text of an initiative to the legislature would therefore of necessity constitute a rejection of the initiative and a proposal of an alternative measure on the same subject. Under the provisions of Article II, § 1 (a), supra, both measures would then have to be submitted to the voters. Accord,Farris v. Goss, 143 Me. 227, 60 A.2d 908 (1948), discussed in more detail below.
Can an initiative to the legislature have an emergency clause?
Although some legislative acts are not subject to referendum under Article II, § 1 (b) (see cases cited in State ex rel. Humiston v. Meyers, 61 Wn.2d 772, 380 P.2d 735 (1963)), all initiatives to the legislature, regardless of content, are subject to referendum if enacted by the legislature. This conclusion is dictated by the fact that Article II, § 1 (a) specifically provides:
". . . If any such initiative measures shall be enacted by the legislature it shall be subject to the referendum petition, . . ."
An emergency clause is, of course, simply a legislative declaration that an act take effect prior to the time set forth in Article II, § 41, which provides as follows:
"No act, law, or billsubject to referendum shall take effect until ninety days after the adjournment of the session at which it was enacted. . . ." (Emphasis supplied.)
Therefore, an initiative to the legislature cannot have an emergency clause, and if it purports to have such a clause, the clause is ineffective. See,State ex rel. Humiston, supra, in which the court invalidated the emergency clause which the legislature had included in the adoption of chapter 37, Laws of 1963.
[[Orig. Op. Page 4]]
May the legislature add an emergency clause to an initiative?
The legislature may not add an effective emergency clause to an initiative ‑ both for the reasons set forth above in responding to question (2), and, as well, because the addition of an emergency clause to an initiative would constitute an alteration in the original which would, in any event, thus have to be submitted to the voters as an alternative measure.
Can the legislature pass a statute relating to a particular section, or sections, in the initiative so as to make corrections to an initiative that has been submitted to the legislature?
We would answer this question in essentially the same manner as question (1),supra. Any such "corrective" legislation would constitute an alternative proposal which would have to be submitted to the voters along with the original initiative itself.
Must the secretary of state transmit the initiative as soon as the legislature convenes and organizes?
Article II, § 1 (a),supra, states that:
". . . If such petitions are filed not less than ten days before any regular session of the legislature, he [the secretary of state] shall transmit the same to the legislature as soon as it convenes and organizes. . . ."
This provision has been implemented by a statute, RCW 29.79.200, which provides in pertinent part:
"Upon filing the volumes of an initiative petition proposing a measure for submission to the legislature at its next regular session, the secretary of state shall forthwith in the presence of at least one person representing the advocates and one person representing the opponents of the proposed measure, should either desire to be present, proceed to canvass and count the names of the legal voters thereon. . . . If the petition is found to be sufficient, the secretary of state shall transmit a certified [[Orig. Op. Page 5]] copy of the proposed measure to the legislature at the opening of its session together with a certificate of the facts relating to the filing of the petition and the canvass thereof."
InState ex rel. Evich v. Superior Court, 188 Wash. 19, 61 P.2d 143 (1936), the Washington supreme court held that it was not proper for the secretary of state to certify an initiative to the legislature before having completed his canvass of the signatures. Therefore, although RCW 29.79.200 and the Constitution itself, as well, contemplate the certification of an initiative to the legislature at the commencement of its session, about all that can be said, in terms of practicalities, is that the secretary of state is supposed to complete the canvass as quickly as possible, and only when he has completed the canvass and determined the sufficiency of the signatures is the initiative to be certified to the legislature for its action.
When is an initiative formally before the legislature?
An initiative is formally before the legislature only when it has been certified to the legislature as aforesaid. Accord,State ex rel. Evich v. Superior Court,supra.
Prior to the time that an initiative is formally certified to the legislature by the secretary of state, may the legislature enact a statute relating to the same subject as a prospective, but as yet uncertified, initiative without having it become affected by the initiative?
Since, underState ex rel. Evich v. Superior Court, supra, the legislature is without jurisdiction over an initiative until it is certified by the secretary of state, it is technically arguable that until that time occurs, the legislature remains totally free to enact any constitutionally permissible [[Orig. Op. Page 6]] legislation on any subject without being required to submit it to the voters as an alternative to some later certified initiative.
However, we regard it considerably more probable that a court would consider the effective date of the certification of an initiative, once it occurs, as relating back to the first day of the regular session when, under the directives of both the Constitution and statute, supra, it was supposed to have occurred. Cf., the equitable maxim which regards as done that which the law requires to be done.1/ We therefore answer this question in the negative. Basically, we are of the opinion that the mechanical problems of checking the signatures on initiative petitions cannot be effective to give the legislature a "free period" in which it can pass substantive measures and avoid having those measures submitted to the people as alternatives for an initiative.
In essence, this question relates to the ability of the legislature to enact a substitute for an initiative which will be effective prior to its submission to the voters as an alternative for the initiative. We have paraphrased this question so as to cause it to encompass all of your questions 10-12 and 14. The question to be considered is as follows:
If the legislature enacts a measure relating to the same subject as an initiative but rejects the initiative ‑
(a) What test is to be applied in determining whether an act passed by the legislature during the same session at which an initiative is certified to it constitutes a substitute measure?
(b) Does the substitute measure take effect prior to a vote by the people on the initiative?
(c) If yes, does the substitute measure become inoperative in the event that the initiative, rather than the substitute, [[Orig. Op. Page 7]] is approved by the voters?
(d) If a substitute measure cannot take effect until approved by the voters (in lieu of the initiative), may the legislature nevertheless enact a law on the same subject as the initiative and specify that it shall be in effect only during the interim between its enactment and the election at which the initiative is to be voted upon?
No Washington cases have considered any of the aspects of this question; nor, so far as our research has disclosed, have any cases from other jurisdictions done so ‑ save only one, Farris v. Goss, 143 Me. 227, 60 A.2d 908 (1948), briefly noted in answering question (1), above.
On March 25, 1947, an initiative to the Maine legislature was duly certified and transmitted to both houses where, instead of being enacted, it was submitted to the voters under Article XXXI, § 18 of the Maine Constitution providing that:
"Any measure thus proposed by not less than twelve thousand electors, unless enacted without change by the Legislature at the session at which it is presented, shall be submitted to the electors together with any amended form, substitute, or recommendation of the Legislature, and in such manner that the people can choose between the competing measures or reject both."
The title of this initiative (identifying its subject matter) was "'An Act to Protect the Right to Work and to Prohibit Secondary Boycotts, Sympathetic Strikes, and Jurisdictional Strikes.'" During this same session, however, the legislature also had under consideration a number of other bills relating to labor relations. One of these was a bill, known as the "Tabb Bill" which, although apparently already under consideration before the initiative was transmitted to the legislature, was not enacted until afterwards (and then, it was the only one of the several which was passed by the legislature).
[[Orig. Op. Page 8]]
Following adjournment, an action was brought by the attorney general (Farris) against the secretary of state (Goss) to require the latter to place the "Tabb Bill" on the September, 1948 election ballot as a substitute for the initiative (also known as the "Barlow Bill") in accordance with Article XXXI, § 18 of the state Constitution, supra. The trial judge before whom the case was tried ruled in favor of the attorney general and issued a writ of mandamus, and an appeal followed.
On appeal the Maine Supreme Court, with one judge dissenting, affirmed the trial court's ruling. Its opinion to this effect reads, in pertinent part, as follows:
"If the 'Tabb Bill' is a substitute for the 'Barlow Bill,' the writ of mandamus was properly issued. . . .2/
". . .
"The right of the people, as provided by Article XXXI of the Constitution,to enact legislation and approve or disapprove legislation enacted by the legislature is an absolute one and cannot be abridged directly or indirectly by any action of the Legislature. . . .
"There is a clear distinction between a provision abridging the power of the Legislature to enact certain classes of legislation pending an initiated measure, and a provision requiring that if such class of legislation be enacted, the same be submitted to the people, together with the initiated measure. As we have said, Sec. 18 places no curb on the enactment of legislation; but a bill enacted which is a substitute for the initiated measure must go to the electors with the initiated measure, and does not become a law until they approve it under the provisions of Sec. 18.
[[Orig. Op. Page 9]]
". . .
"Is the 'Tabb Bill' a substitute for the 'Barlow Bill'? In answering this question we are not concerned, as we have tried to point out above, with how the Legislature may have regarded it. We must decide only what it is in fact.
"A bill which deals broadly with the same general subject matter, particularly if it deals with it in a manner inconsistent with the initiated measure so that the two cannot stand together, is such a substitute as was referred to in Article XXXI. This is the test laid down in Starbird v. Brown, 84 Me. 238, to determine whether one statute may either have amended or repealed an existing law. The court there said, page 240: 'Can the new law and the old law be each efficacious in its own sphere?' . . . The 'Tabb Bill,' . . . did cover the same subject matter as the 'initiated measure' and was inconsistent with it in essential respects. By parity of reasoning with thePalmyra opinion, the 'Tabb Bill' must be regarded as a substitute for the 'initiated measure' and must be submitted to the people as a 'competing measure' in accordance with Article XXXI.
". . .
"In other words, the effective parts of the two measures cannot stand together. Under these circumstances, the ruling of the sitting justice that the 'Tabb Bill' was a substitute for the 'Barlow Bill' was correct, and the order that the peremptory writ issue was not error." (Emphasis supplied.)
In view of this case, together with the pertinent language of our own Constitution, we answer part (a) of this question (concerning the test to be applied in determining whether an act of the legislature is a substitute for an initiative) by simply repeating the critical language of [[Orig. Op. Page 10]] the court's decision, as follows:
"A bill which deals broadly with the same general subject matter, particularly if it deals with it in a manner inconsistent with the initiated measure so that the two cannot stand together, is such a substitute as was referred to in Article XXXI. . . ."
Parts (b) ‑ (d) we answer as follows:
If the legislature simply enacts a substitute measure, and says nothing more in terms of when it is to be effective, then it will not be effective until and unless it is approved by the voters.
However, we see nothing in the Maine decision ‑ or in the language of our own Constitution ‑ which forecloses the legislature from effectively expressing an intent to have the substitute measure become effective prior to the election.3/ Manifestly, such an answer to your question is in no way foreclosed by the decision inFarris v. Goss, supra, for there the legislature had made no attempt, by appropriate limiting language, to limit the effectiveness of the substitute measure to the period between its enactment and the election. Moreover, if the substitute measure were to "die" on the basis of its own terms with the ultimate adoption by the people of the initiative it could hardly be characterized as being in conflict with the initiative because the two could never be in effect at the same time.
Likewise, there would be no conflict if, instead, the substitute measure were to contain language making it effective prior to the election but further providing that it would continue in effect thereafter only if approved by the voters in lieu of the initiative.
[[Orig. Op. Page 11]]
Either of these two approaches ‑ that of a strictly interim measure or that of an interim measure with continuing effect on the basis of voter approval ‑ would serve to avoid the "hand-tieing" effect which the single dissenting judge inFarris v. Goss, feared the majority opinion therein would produce. The legislature would be free to deal, immediately, with an emergent matter which was also the subject of an initiative ‑ but without in any way curtailing or undermining the right of the people to choose which version to enact on a more permanent basis at the next regular election.
However, going now to the point raised by part (c) of this question, it seems clear to us thatboth the initiative and the substitute must be submitted to the voters (if the substitute is to have any continuing effect). The legislature could not provide for continuation of the substitute solely on the basis of voter rejection of the initiative, for under the Constitution the voters have the right to reject both the initiative and the substitute. Further, if the initiative is approved, then the substitute must become inoperative.
Questions (9) and (10):
These two questions we devise from your questions 8 and 13. Divided and paraphrased, these questions are as follows:
(9) Do the provisions of Article II, § 41 (Amendment 26) of the state Constitution, requiring a two-thirds majority of both houses of the legislature in order to amend an initiative measure approved by the voters during the initial two-year period following its enactment, apply to an initiative to the legislature which is enacted into law by the legislature?
(10) If question (9) is answerable in the negative, may an initiative which has been enacted by the legislature be amended prior to the expiration of the time for filing of a referendum petition against the enactment?
We answer both of these questions in the negative, as follows:
[[Orig. Op. Page 12]]
The first of these two questions assumes that upon transmittal to it of an initiative to the legislature for which the requisite number of signatures have been obtained, the legislature pursues the first of the several alternatives which are open to it under subsection (a) of Article II, § 1, supra; namely, it enacts the measure into law. Under this circumstance, you ask whether the enactment in question is subject to those limitations upon the amendatory powers of the legislature stated in that portion of Article II, § 41 (Amendment 26) which we have underscored in quoting it in the Appendix to this opinion. Our negative answer to this question is based upon the plain, clear and unambiguous language of this constitutional provision. By its own terms, these limitations are applicable only to an ". . . act, law, or bill approved by a majority of the electors voting thereon. . . ." Yet under the facts contemplated by your question, the enactment which you have in mind would not have ever been submitted to, or approved by a majority of the voters prior to its becoming law. Therefore, the limitations upon the amendatory process which are set forth in this constitutional provision are inapplicable to an enactment such as you have described.
This does not mean, however, that the legislature's power to amend an initiative which it has previously enacted is totally unlimited, as our answer to the second of the foregoing two questions dealing with this subject will now indicate.
If the legislature enacts an initiative measure as contemplated by your question, subsection (a) of Article II, § 1, supra, states that ". . . it shall be subject to the referendum petition . . ." Therefore, in accordance with the first sentence of Article II, § 41 (Amendment 26), such an enactment takes no effect ". . . until ninety days after the adjournment of the session at which it was enacted." In addition, if during this period a referendum petition complying with the requirements of the Constitution is, in fact, filed against the measure its operative effect is further suspended until the thirtieth day after the election at which it is approved by the voters. See,Wynand v. Dept. of Labor & Ind., 21 Wn.2d 805, 153 P.2d 302 (1944).
The "thing" which is the subject of all these procedures is, of course, the specific and exact proposed law in support of which the initiative to the legislature was first filed ‑ and not some legislatively enacted alternative proposal. If the legislature rejects it or takes no [[Orig. Op. Page 13]] action upon it, it automatically goes to the people for their approval or rejection; and if the legislature approves it, the people may still "veto" it through the referendum process if a majority of them are not in favor of the measure.
Thus, if the legislature were entitled to amend the measure after enacting it but before the time period for filing a referendum petition against it had elapsed, it could by so doing place the people in a position of either commencing a referendum campaign against the original measure or allowing not the original but an altered version thereof to become law.4/ This, however, is simply not the set of alternatives between which the framers of the governing constitutional provisions intended the people to be requested to choose at this stage in the proceedings.
Accordingly, while we have discovered no cases from this or any other state which are squarely in point, we believe that from the standpoint of reason ‑ and in order to give effect to the apparent intent of the framers ‑ it must be concluded in response to question (10) that an initiative measure which has been enacted by the legislature, while not being subject to the amendatory limitations which apply to a measure enacted by the people under Article II, § 41 (Amendment 26),supra, is, nevertheless, immune from amendment prior to the expiration of the time for filing a referendum petition against it.
After an initiative, having been rejected by the legislature, has been submitted to and approved by the people, may the legislature then amend the initiative?
Having been approved by the people, the initiative at this juncture will be amenable to amendment only to the extent of, and in the manner provided by, the "two-thirds majority" requirements of Article II, § 41 (Amendment 26),supra, for the first two years following its approval.
[[Orig. Op. Page 14]]
Your final question (numbered 15 in your letter) reads as follows:
What happens when the title of an initiative is defective if the legislature cannot amend?
Presumably, this question involves a possibility of a "defect" under the provisions of Article II, § 19 of the Constitution, which provides that:
"No bill shall embrace more than one subject, and that shall be expressed in the title."
However, the Washington court has held that this constitutional provision is inapplicable to initiatives. See,Senior Citizens League Inc. v. Dept. of Soc. Sec., et al., 38 Wn.2d 142, 228 P.2d 478 (1951).5/
We trust the foregoing will be of assistance to you.
Very truly yours,
PHILIP H. AUSTIN
Deputy Attorney General
§ 1 LEGISLATIVE POWERS, WHERE VESTED. The legislative authority of the state of Washington shall be vested in the legislature, consisting of a senate and house of representatives, which shall be called the legislature of the state of Washington, but the people reserve to themselves the power to propose bills, laws, and to enact or reject the same at the polls, independent of the legislature, and also reserve power, at their own option, to approve or reject at the polls any act, item, section or part of any bill, act or law passed by the legislature. (a) Initiative: The first power reserved by the people is the initiative. TEN PER CENTUM, BUT IN NO CASE MORE THAN FIFTY THOUSAND, OF THE LEGAL VOTERS SHALL BE REQUIRED TO PROPOSE ANY MEASURE BY SUCH PETITION, and every such petition shall include the full text of the measure so proposed. [Note: Signature requirements superseded by Art. 2 Sec. 1 (A), AMENDMENT 30.] Initiative petitions shall be filed with the secretary of state not less than four months before the election at which they are to be voted upon, or not less than ten days before any regular session of the legislature. If filed at least four months before the election at which they are to be voted upon, he shall submit the same to the vote of the people at the said election. If such petitions are filed not less than ten days before any regular session of the legislature, he shall transmit the same to the legislature as soon as it convenes and organizes. Such initiative measure shall take precedence over all other measures in the legislature except appropriation bills and shall be either enacted or rejected without change or amendment by the legislature before the end of such regular session. If any such initiative measures shall be enacted by the legislature it shall be subject to the referendum petition, or it may be enacted and referred by the legislature to the people for approval or rejection at the next regular election. If it is rejected or if no action is taken upon it by the legislature before the end of such regular session, the secretary of state shall submit it to the people for approval or rejection at the next ensuing regular general election. The legislature may reject any measure so proposed by initiative petition and propose a different one dealing with the same subject, and in such event both measures shall be submitted by the secretary of state to the people for approval or rejection at the next ensuing regular general election. When conflicting measures are submitted to the people the ballots shall be so printed that a voter can express separately by making one cross (X) for each, two preferences, first, as between either measure and neither, and secondly, as between one and the other. If the majority of those voting on the first issue is for neither, both fail, but in that case the votes on the second issue shall nevertheless be carefully counted and made public. If a majority voting on the first issue is for either, then the measure receiving a majority of the votes on the second issue shall be law. (b) Referendum. The second power reserved by the people is the referendum, and it may be ordered on any act, bill, law, or any part thereof passed by the legislature, except such laws as may be necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health or safety, support of the state government and its existing public institutions, either by petition signed by the required percentage of the legal voters, or by the legislature as other bills are enacted. SIX PER CENTUM, BUT IN NO CASE MORE THAN THIRTY THOUSAND, OF THE LEGAL VOTERS SHALL BE REQUIRED TO SIGN AND MAKE A VALID REFERENDUM PETITION. [Note: Signature requirements superseded by Art. 2 Sec. 1 (A), AMENDMENT 30.] (C) NO ACT, LAW, OR BILL SUBJECT TO REFERENDUM SHALL TAKE EFFECT UNTIL NINETY DAYS AFTER THE ADJOURNMENT OF THE SESSION AT WHICH IT WAS ENACTED. NO, ACT, LAW OR BILL APPROVED BY A MAJORITY OF THE ELECTORS VOTING THEREON SHALL BE AMENDED OR REPEALED BY THE LEGISLATURE WITHIN A PERIOD OF TWO YEARS FOLLOWING SUCH ENACTMENT. BUT SUCH ENACTMENT MAY BE AMENDED OR REPEALED AT ANY GENERAL REGULAR OR SPECIAL ELECTION BY DIRECT VOTE OF THE PEOPLE THEREON. [Note: Subsection (c) is expressly superseded by Art. 2 Sec. 41, AMENDMENT 26.] (d) The filing of a referendum petition against one or more items, sections or parts of any act, law or bill shall not delay the remainder of the measure from becoming operative. Referendum petitions against measures passed by the legislature shall be filed with the secretary of state not later than ninety days after the final adjournment of the session of the legislature which passed the measure on which the referendum is demanded. The veto power of the governor shall not extend to measures initiated by or referred to the people. All elections on measures referred to the people of the state shall be had at the biennial regular elections, except when the legislature shall order a special election. Any measure initiated by the people or referred to the people as herein provided shall take effect and become the law if it is approved by a majority of the votes cast thereon: PROVIDED, That the vote cast upon such question or measure shall equal one‑third of the total votes cast at such election and not otherwise. Such measure shall be in operation on and after the thirtieth day after the election at which it is approved. The style of all bills proposed by initiative petition shall be: "Be it enacted by the people of the State of Washington." This section shall not be construed to deprive any member of the legislature of the right to introduce any measure. THE WHOLE NUMBER OF ELECTORS WHO VOTED FOR GOVERNOR AT THE REGULAR GUBERNATORIAL ELECTION LAST PRECEDING THE FILING OF ANY PETITION FOR THE INITIATIVE OR FOR THE REFERENDUM SHALL BE THE BASIS ON WHICH THE NUMBER OF LEGAL VOTERS NECESSARY TO SIGN SUCH PETITION SHALL BE COUNTED. [Note: Cf. Art. 2 Sec. 1 (A), AMENDMENT 30.] All such petitions shall be filed with the secretary of state, who shall be guided by the general laws in submitting the same to the people until additional legislation shall especially provide therefor. This section is self-executing, but legislation may be enacted especially to facilitate its operation. THE LEGISLATURE SHALL PROVIDE METHODS OF PUBLICITY OF ALL LAWS OR PARTS OF LAWS, AND AMENDMENTS TO THE CONSTITUTION REFERRED TO THE PEOPLE WITH ARGUMENTS FOR AND AGAINST THE LAWS AND AMENDMENTS SO REFERRED, SO THAT EACH VOTER OF THE STATE SHALL RECEIVE THE PUBLICATION AT LEAST FIFTY DAYS BEFORE THE ELECTION AT WHICH THEY ARE TO BE VOTED UPON. [Note: This paragraph is expressly superseded by subsection (e) of this section, which was added by AMENDMENT 36.] (e) The legislature shall provide methods of publicity of all laws or parts of laws, and amendments to the Constitution referred to the people with arguments for and against the laws and amendments so referred. The secretary of state shall send one copy of the publication to each individual place of residence in the state and shall make such additional distribution as he shall determine necessary to reasonably assure that each voter will have an opportunity to study the measures prior to election. These provisions supersede the provisions set forth in the last paragraph of section 1 of this article as amended by the seventh amendment to the Constitution of this state. [AMENDMENT 7, approved Nov. 1912 (L. 1911 p. 136 § 1): Subsection (e) added by AMENDMENT 36, approved Nov. 1962 (L. 1961 p. 2751, S.J.R. No. 9).] Original text‑-Art. 2, § 1. Legislative Powers, Where Vested‑-THE LEGISLATIVE POWERS SHALL BE VESTED IN A SENATE AND HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, WHICH SHALL BE CALLED THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF WASHINGTON. Note: Art. 2, Sec. 31 was also stricken by AMENDMENT 7.
§ 1A INITIATIVE AND REFERENDUM, SIGNATURES REQUIRED. Hereafter, the number of valid signatures of legal voters required upon a petition for an initiative measure shall be equal to eight percentum of the number of voters registered and voting for the office of governor at the last preceding regular gubernatorial election. Hereafter, the number of valid signatures of legal voters required upon a petition for a referendum of an act of the legislature or any part thereof, shall be equal to four percentum of the number of voters registered and voting for the office of governor at the last preceding regular gubernatorial election. These provisions supersede the requirements specified in section 1 of this article as amended by the seventh amendment to the Constitution of this state. [Added by AMENDMENT 30, approved Nov. 1956 (L. 1955 p. 1860, S.J.R. No. 4.)]
§ 41 LAWS, EFFECTIVE DATE. INITIATIVE, REFERENDUM ‑-AMENDMENT OR REPEAL. No act, law, or bill subject to referendum shall take effect until ninety days after the adjournment of the session at which it was enacted. No act, law, or bill approved by a majority of the electors voting thereon shall be amended or repealed by the legislature within a period of two years following such enactment: PROVIDED, That any such act, law or bill may be amended within two years after such enactment at any regular or special session of the legislature by a vote of two-thirds of all the members elected to each house with full compliance with section 12, Article III, of the Washington Constitution, and no amendatory law adopted in accordance with this provision shall be subject to referendum. But such enactment may be amended or repealed at any general regular or special election by direct vote of the people thereon. These provisions supersede the provisions of subsection (c) of section 1 of this article as amended by the seventh amendment to the Constitution of this state. [Added by AMENDMENT 26, approved Nov. 4, 1952 (L. 1951 p. 959, Sub. S.J.R. No. 7.)] (Emphasis supplied.)
*** FOOTNOTES ***
1/27 Am.Jur.2d, Equity, § 126.
2/I.e., requiring the "Tabb Bill" to go on the ballot as an alternative to the initiative.
3/As stated in Clark v. Dwyer, 56 Wn.2d 425, 431, 353 P.2d 941 (1960), it is, of course, fundamental
". . . that the state Constitution is not a grant, but a restriction on the law-making power, and the power of the legislature to enact all reasonable laws is unrestrained except where, either expressly or by fair inference, it is prohibited by the state and federal Constitutions. . . ."
4/Subject only to the possibility of a referendum against the amendatory act to the extent that it is subject thereto under Article II, § 1 (b) of the Constitution dealing with the referendum.
5/Under this decision, a legislative title to an initiative (as distinguished from the official ballot title prepared by the attorney general) is mere surplusage without any legal significance or effect.