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Encyclopedia > New York State Constitutions
Wikisource has original text related to this article:
New York Constitution

The New York State Constitution establishes the structure of the government of the state of New York, and enumerates the basic rights of the citizens of New York. Like most state constitutions in the United States, New York's constitution's provisions tend to be more detailed, and amended more often than its federal counterpart. Because the history of the state constitution differs from the federal constitution, the New York Court of Appeals has seen fit to interpret analogous provisions differently from United States Supreme Court's interpretation of federal provisions. Image File history File links Wikisource-logo. ... The original Wikisource logo. ... This article is about the state. ... Citizenship is membership in a political community (originally a city but now a state), and carries with it rights to political participation; a person having such membership is a citizen. ... In the context of the United States of America, a state constitution is the governing document of a U.S. state, comparable to the U.S. Constitution which is the governing document of the United States. ... Page I of the Constitution of the United States of America Page II of the United States Constitution Page III of the United States Constitution Page IV of the United States Constitution The Syng inkstand, with which the Constitution was signed The Constitution of the United States is the supreme... The Court of Appeals is New Yorks highest appellate court, created in 1847, replacing the Court for the Trial of Impeachments and the Correction of Errors. ... The Supreme Court Building, Washington, D.C. The Supreme Court Building, Washington, D.C., (large image) The Supreme Court of the United States, located in Washington, D.C., is the highest court (see supreme court) in the United States; that is, it has ultimate judicial authority within the United States...


Currently, the New York State Constitution has 55,326 words, omitting the title.

Contents

Constitution of New York, 1777

New York was established by its colonial charter. This constitution was framed by a convention which assembled at White Plains, New York on July 10, 1776, and after repeated adjournments and changes of location, terminated its labors at Kingston, New York on Sunday evening, April 20, 1777, when the constitution was adopted with but one dissenting vote. It was not submitted to the people for ratification. It was drafted by John Jay. [1] The first Constitution of New York was ratified April 20, 1777. ... A Colonial Charter is a document that gave colonies the legal rights to exist. ... A constitutional convention is a gathering of delegates for the purpose of writing a new constitution or revising an existing constitution. ... For other places with the same name, see White Plains (disambiguation). ... is the 191st day of the year (192nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1776 (MDCCLXXVI) was a leap year starting on Monday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a leap year starting on Thursday of the 11-day slower Julian calendar). ... Kingston is a city in Ulster County, New York, United States. ... is the 110th day of the year (111th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1777 (MDCCLXXVII) was a common year starting on Wednesday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Sunday of the 11-day slower Julian calendar). ... John Jay (December 12, 1745 – May 17, 1829) was an American politician, statesman, revolutionary, diplomat, and jurist. ...


This constitution was a combination document, containing its Declaration of Independence from Great Britain, and its Constitutional Law. It called for a weak bicameral legislature and a strong executive branch. It retained provisions from the colonial charter such as the substantial property qualification for voting and the ability of the governor to prorogue the legislature. This imbalance of power between the branches of state government kept the elite firmly in control, and disenfranchised most New Yorkers who were fighting the Revolutionary War. Slavery was legal in New York until 1827. The French Declaration of the Rights of the Man and of the Citizen, whose principles still have constitutional value Constitutional law is the study of foundational or basic laws of nation states and other political organizations. ... In government, bicameralism is the practice of having two legislative or parliamentary chambers. ... Disfranchisement or disenfranchisement is the revocation of, or failure to grant, the right of suffrage (the right to vote) to a person or group of people. ... John Trumbulls Declaration of Independence, showing the five-man committee in charge of drafting the Declaration in 1776 as it presents its work to the Second Continental Congress in Philadelphia The American Revolution refers to the period during the last half of the 18th century in which the Thirteen...


Under this constitution, the Assembly had a provision for a maximum of 70 Members, with the following apportionment:

  1. For the city (at the time, New York City included only what is today Manhattan) and county of New York, nine.
  2. The city and county of Albany, ten
  3. Dutchess County, seven.
  4. Westchester County, six.
  5. Ulster County, six.
  6. Suffolk County (eastern Long Island), five.
  7. Queens County (now Queens and Nassau Counties), four.
  8. Orange County (now Orange and Rockland Counties), four.
  9. Kings County (Brooklyn), two.
  10. Richmond County (Staten Island), two.
  11. Tryon County (now Montgomery County), six.
  12. Charlotte County (now Washington County), four.
  13. Cumberland County (partitioned January 15, 1777 for the creation of the State of Vermont), three.
  14. Gloucester County (partitioned January 15, 1777 for the creation of the State of Vermont), two.

This apportionment stood unchanged until seven years after the end of the Revolution, whereupon a census was held to correct the apportionment. Location in the state of New York Formed November 1, 1683 Seat Albany Area  - Total  - Water 1,381 km² (533 mi²) 25 km² (10 mi²) 1. ... Dutchess County is a county located in the U.S. state of New York. ... Westchester County is a primarily suburban county with about 940,000 residents located in the U.S. state of New York. ... Ulster County is a county located in the state of New York, USA. It sits in the states beautiful Mid-Hudson Region of the Hudson Valley. ... Suffolk County is a county located in the U.S. state of New York. ... Queens is geographically the largest of the five boroughs of New York City in the United States, and the most ethnically diverse county in the U.S. It is coterminous with Queens County in the State of New York and is located on western Long Island. ... The Orange County Government Center in Goshen, N.Y., designed by Paul Rudolph. ... For other meanings, see Brooklyn (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Staten Island (disambiguation) Staten Island, shown in an enhanced satellite image Staten Island is one of the five boroughs of New York City, located on an island of the same name on the west side of the Narrows at the entrance of New York Harbor. ... Tryon County, New York was a county in New York, part of the Province of New York, named after Governor William Tryon. ... Montgomery County is a county located in the state of New York. ... Charlotte County in the colonial Province of New York was created in 1772 from Albany County. ... Washington County is a county located in the state of New York. ... Cumberland County, New York was a former county in the Province of New York that became part of the state of Vermont. ... is the 15th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1777 (MDCCLXXVII) was a common year starting on Wednesday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Sunday of the 11-day slower Julian calendar). ... Gloucester County, New York is a former county in New York that became part of the state of Vermont. ... is the 15th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1777 (MDCCLXXVII) was a common year starting on Wednesday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Sunday of the 11-day slower Julian calendar). ...


On the subject of Disenfranchisement, Article VII of the new constitution had the following to say: Disenfranchising refers to the removal of the ability to vote from a person or group of people. ...


VII. That every male inhabitant of full age, who shall have personally resided within one of the counties of this State for six months immediately preceding the day of election, shall, at such election, be entitled to vote for representatives of the said county in assembly; if, during the time aforesaid, he shall have been a freeholder, possessing a freehold of the value of twenty pounds, within the said county, or have rented a tenement therein of the yearly value of forty shillings, and been rated and actually paid taxes to this State: Provided always, That every person who now is a freeman of the city of Albany, or who was made a freeman of the city of New York on or before the fourteenth day of October, in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and seventy-five, and shall be actually and usually resident in the said cities, respectively, shall be entitled to vote for representatives in assembly within his said place of residence.


Constitutional Convention 1801

History

The Constitutional Convention of 1801 had its origin in differences of opinion concerning the proper construction of §23 of the Constitution, which provided for a Council of Appointments. Governor Jay sent a special message to the New York State Assembly on February 26, 1801, and the same message to the New York State Senate on the following day, in relation to the Council of Appointment, reciting the differences which had existed between council and governor, not only during his own term, but during the term of his predecessor, Governor Clinton. Governor Jay claimed that under the Constitution the governor had the exclusive right of nomination. Some members of the Council of Appointment claimed a concurrent right of nomination. This the Governor denied, and in this message he recommends that it be settled in some way. On April 6, the legislature passed an act recommending a convention for the purpose of considering the question of the construction of §23 of the Constitution, and also that part of the Constitution relating to the number of members of senate and assembly. The senate was originally composed of twenty-four members, and the assembly of seventy members, and provision was made for an increase in each branch at stated periods, until the maximum should be reached, which was fixed at one hundred senators and three hundred members of assembly. The increase in membership had apparently been more rapid than was at first anticipated. At that time the senate had increased to forty-three members, and the assembly to one hundred and twenty-six members. The Convention ended on October 27, 1801. From 1777 to 1821, there existed in the state of New York a Council of Appointments. ... John Jay (December 12, 1745 – May 17, 1829) was an American politician, statesman, revolutionary, diplomat, and jurist. ... The floor of the NYS Assembly Chamber during session 2007. ... The New York State Senate is one of two houses in the New York State Legislature and has members each elected to two-year terms. ... George Clinton (July 26, 1739 – April 20, 1812) was an American soldier and politician. ...


Delegates

Among the delegates were DeWitt Clinton, James Clinton, William Floyd, Ezra L'Hommedieu, Smith Thompson, Daniel D. Tompkins. Tompkins was one of the 14 who voted against the right of nomination being given to the members of the Council of Appointments, a minority which was defeated by 86 votes for this compromise. Previously, both motions, to vest the right of nomination either exclusively in the gorvernor or exclusively in the council members, were defeated. DeWitt Clinton. ... James Clinton (August 9, 1733 – September 22, 1812) was a American Revolutionary War soldier who obtained the rank of major general. ... William Floyd in a 1792 portrait This article is about the signer of the Decleration of Independence. ... Ezra LHommedieu (August 30, 1734–September 27, 1811) was an American lawyer and statesman from Southold, New York. ... Smith Thompson (January 17, 1768 - December 18, 1843) was a United States Supreme Court Associate Justice from 1823 until his death in 1843. ... Daniel D. Tompkins (June 21, 1774 – June 11, 1825) was an entrepreneur, jurist, Congressman, Governor of New York, and the sixth Vice President of the United States. ...


Changes

  • The number of senators was permanently fixed at thirty-two.
  • The assembly was given one hundred members, and provision was made for a possible increase to one hundred and fifty, by additions to be made after each census.
  • The right of nomination, formerly vested in the governor only (as John Jay, the author of the Constitution, meant it), was given now to each member of the Council of Appointments and the Governor concurrently.

[2]


Constitutional Convention 1821

History

In 1821, the power struggle between Governor DeWitt Clinton and the Bucktails faction of the Democratic-Republican Party led to the call for a constitutional convention by the Bucktail members of the legislature, against Clinton's fierce opposition, with the intention to transfer powers from the executive to the legislative branch of the government. In November 1820, the legislature passed a bill which authorized the holding of a convention with unlimited powers. Governor Clinton cast the deciding vote in the Council of Revision to veto the bill. The Bucktails had not a majority of two thirds in the legislature to override the veto. During the regular session of the legislature which began in January 1821, a new bill was passed that put the question to the people. At the state election in April the people voted for the convention, and it convened between August and November at Albany. U.S. Vice President Daniel D. Tompkins presided. In February 1822, the amendments were put before the voters for ratification as a whole, and were accepted: for 74,732; against 41,402. DeWitt Clinton. ... The Bucktails may refer to one of two organizations that were particularly characterized and identified by the wearing of a bucktail in their headgear. ... The Democratic-Republican Party, also known as the Republican Party , was founded by Thomas Jefferson and James Madison in 1792. ... Dick Cheney 46th and current Vice President (2001- ) The Vice President of the United States is the second-highest executive official of the United States government, the person who is a heartbeat from the presidency. ... Daniel D. Tompkins (June 21, 1774 – June 11, 1825) was an entrepreneur, jurist, Congressman, Governor of New York, and the sixth Vice President of the United States. ...


Delegates

Chancellor James Kent, Chief Justice Ambrose Spencer, U.S. Vice President Daniel D. Tompkins, Justice William W. Van Ness, Jacob R. Van Rensselaer, Stephen Van Rensselaer, James Tallmadge, Jr., Jonas Platt, and Peter A. Jay disapproved of the amendments, and did not sign the new Constitution. The Court of Chancery was the court with jurisdiction on cases of equity in the state of New York between 1777 and 1847. ... James Kent (1763-1847) James Kent (July 31, 1763–December 12, 1847), American jurist and legal scholar, was born at New York. ... Ambrose Spencer (December 13]], 1765 - March 13, 1848) was a United States Representative and New York State Attorney General. ... Daniel D. Tompkins (June 21, 1774 – June 11, 1825) was an entrepreneur, jurist, Congressman, Governor of New York, and the sixth Vice President of the United States. ... Stephen Van Rensselaer III (November 1, 1764–January 26, 1839) was an American statesman, soldier, and land-owner, the heir to one of the greatest estates in the New York region at the time. ... James Tallmadge, Jr. ... Jonas Platt was an American politician and a member of the United States House of Representatives from New York. ...


Martin Van Buren, Erastus Root, Samuel Nelson, Nathan Sanford, Samuel Young, Ogden Edwards approved and signed. Martin Van Buren (December 5, 1782 – July 24, 1862), nicknamed Old Kinderhook, was the eighth President of the United States from 1837 to 1841. ... Erastus Root was an American politician from New York. ... Samuel Nelson (10 November 1792 - 13 December 1873) was an American attorney and U.S. Supreme Court justice. ... Nathan Sanford (November 5, 1777–October 17, 1838) was an American statesman. ...


Changes

  • State elections were moved from the last week in April to the first week in November. Since then, the governor's term begins on January 1, and ends on December 31. The legislator's term coincided now with the calendar year, senators and assemblymen being elected the previous November.
  • The Council of Appointment was abolished, the vast majority of the formerly appointive offices became elective, the state offices by joint ballot of assembly and senate, the others by local popular or legislative elections.
  • The Council of Revision was abolished. Its power of veto to new legislation was transferred to the governor, whose veto could be overcome by a two-thirds vote of the legislature.
  • The governor's right to prorogue the legislature at his will was abolished.
  • The white voters were given extended franchise, property qualifications were removed.
  • The Negroes were given limited suffrage.
  • A Canal Board took the place of the Canal Commissioners

[3] The governor of New York is elected for a four-year term on a joint ticket with the lieutenant governor. ... From 1777 to 1821, there existed in the state of New York a Council of Appointments. ... The floor of the NYS Assembly Chamber during session 2007. ... The New York State Senate is one of two houses in the New York State Legislature and has members each elected to two-year terms. ...


External links

  • New York State Constitution, As Amended and in Force Since January 1, 2002, Current through January 1, 2004 (PDF - text)
  • The Constitutional History of New York (Google Book)
  • Reports of the Proceedings and Debates of the Convention of 1821

Notes

  1. ^ (1842) "". Journals of the Provincial Congress, Provincial Convention Committee of Safety and Council of Safety of the State of New York, 1775, 1776 1777 Vol. I. Albany: 892-898. Printed by Thurlow Weed, printer to the State. 
  2. ^ [1] New York court history
  3. ^ [2] New York History

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