Voice Staff Report
Voters in Kentucky will be asked to decide on two amendments to the state constitution. The proposed amendments are Marsy’s Law, Constitutional Amendment 1 and terms of judicial offices, Constitutional Amendment 2.
Amendment 1: Marsy’s Law is designed to give victims of crime greater protections and rights. Voters in Kentucky passed Marsy’s Law in 2018 with 63% of the vote. It was struck down or invalidated by the Supreme Court in June, 2019 because the full text of the law was not on the ballot. The full text of Marsy’s Law will appear on the ballot following the question:
Constitutional Amendment 1 (Marsy’s Law)
Section 1: Are you in favor of creating a new section of the Constitution of Kentucky relating to crime victims?
Section 2: It is proposed that a new section be added to the Constitution of Kentucky to read as follows:
“To secure for victims of criminal acts or public offenses or public offenses justice and due process and to ensure crime victims a meaningful role throughout the criminal and juvenile justice systems, a victim, as defined by law which takes effect upon the enactment of this section and which may be expanded by the General Assembly, shall have the following rights, which shall be respected and protected by law in a manner no less vigorous than the protections afforded to the accused in the criminal and juvenile justice systems,” the amendment reads. The ballot with the full amendment is on page 3A of The Voice.
The second amendment to the Constitution of Kentucky would lengthen the terms of the Commonwealth’s Attorneys and district judges from six year terms to eight year terms. The judiciary currently qualifies for retirement benefits after 8 years of service.
Constitutional Amendment 2 (terms of judicial offices)
Section 1. “Are you in favor of changing the term of Commonwealth’s Attorneys from six year terms to eight year terms beginning in 2030, changing the terms of judges of the district court from four year terms to eight year terms beginning in 2022, and requiring district judges to have been licensed attorneys for at least eight years beginning in 2022, by amending the Constitution of Kentucky to read as stated below?” The full text of the proposed amendment is on the ballot on page 3A of The Voice.