McGeorge Adjunct Professor Chris Micheli

Most capitol observers are only aware of the majority vote and the two thirds super majority vote requirements for California legislation. However, there are actually several other categories of vote requirements on bills that come before the Legislature. The other categories are the three fourths vote, the 70% vote, and the four fifths vote.

The three fourths vote – which requires 30 votes in the Senate and 60 votes in the Assembly – is required to waive the requirement in the California Constitution that a bill may not be heard or acted upon until the 31st day after its introduction. This vote threshold also applies to a motion to postpone the reconsideration of a vote beyond the first legislative day succeeding the day the motion to reconsider was made.

The 70% vote requirement – 28 votes in the Senate and 56 votes in the Assembly – applies to:

  • Bills amending the statutory provisions – other than the bond provisions – of the California Stem Cell Research and Cures Act, which was known as Prop 71 when voters approved it
  • Bills amending the statutory provisions of the Victim’s Bill of Rights.

The final category, the four fifths vote – requiring 32 votes in the Senate and 64 votes in the Assembly – applies to the following measures:

  • Bills to amend the Tobacco Tax and Health Restoration Act of 1988, also known as Prop 99
  • Any bill to amend the Clean Air and Transportation Act of 1990, also known as Prop 116 and
  • Any bill to amend the California Wildlife Protection Act of 1990, also known as Prop 117.

You can find a full transcript of today’s podcast here.

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