Proposed Amendments to the Constitution of Pennsylvania on May 18, 2021
Ballot Questions on May 18, 2021
Vote: Yes, Yes, No, No
Ballot Question #1
Shall the Pennsylvania Constitution be amended to change existing law and increase the power of the General Assembly to unilaterally terminate or extend a disaster emergency declaration – and the powers of Commonwealth agencies to address the disaster regardless of its severity pursuant to that declaration – through passing a concurrent resolution by simple majority, thereby removing the existing check and balance of presenting a resolution to the Governor for approval or disapproval?
>> ✅ Context for Ballot Question #1
Limits the Governor's power to shut down PA.
This proposed amendment comes in response to the governor’s veto of House Resolution 836 of 2020, which would have put an end to the COVID-19 disaster declaration and the governor’s unilateral authority to handle it. While state law authorizes the General Assembly to end disaster declarations with a resolution, the governor insisted – and the court agreed – that resolution was subject to his approval or veto. Under this constitutional amendment, a concurrent resolution terminating or extending a disaster emergency declaration need not be presented to the governor for his signature.
Ballot Question #2
Shall the Pennsylvania Constitution be amended to change existing law so that: a disaster emergency declaration will expire automatically after 21 days, regardless of the severity of the emergency, unless the General Assembly takes action to extend the disaster emergency; the Governor may not declare a new disaster emergency to respond to the dangers facing the Commonwealth unless the General Assembly passes a concurrent resolution; the General Assembly enacts new laws for disaster management?
>> ✅ Context for Ballot Question #2
Also limits the Governor's power to shut down PA.
This proposed amendment comes in response to the TWO extended disaster emergency declarations under which we are currently operating. Under this constitutional amendment, disaster declarations would be limited to no more than 21 days, allowing time for the General Assembly to be called into session and meet possible emergency needs. If a governor believes the declaration should last longer, he or she would have to gain approval of the General Assembly by sharing information and data to prove the need for extending the declaration. Under current law, a governor can declare a disaster emergency for a period of up to 90 days and can renew it as often as he or she likes.
Ballot Question #3 (this question is unrelated to emergency declarations)
Shall the Pennsylvania Constitution be amended by adding a new section providing that equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged because of an individual’s race or ethnicity?
>> ❌ Context for Ballot Question #3
If approved by the voters, this amendment would add a new section to Article I of the Pennsylvania Constitution creating a constitutional prohibition against restricting or denying an individual’s equal rights under Pennsylvania law because of race or ethnicity. This will be used against religious beliefs, force non straight people into day care centers and school positions. We have a 14th Amendment for equal treatment so this ballot question is a
🆘 liberal trick. 🆘
Ballot Question #4 (this referendum question is unrelated to emergency declarations)
Do you favor expanding the use of the indebtedness authorized under the referendum for loans to volunteer fire companies, volunteer ambulance services and volunteer rescue squads under 35 pa.c.s. § 7378.1 (relating to referendum for additional indebtedness) to include loans to municipal fire departments or companies that provide services through paid personnel and emergency medical services companies for the purpose of establishing and modernizing facilities to house apparatus equipment, ambulances and rescue vehicles, protective and communications equipment and any other accessory equipment necessary for the proper performance of the duties of the fire companies and emergency medical services companies?
>> ❌ for Ballot Question #4
Vote No. Volunteer fire departments are already eligible for these loans. Extending the program to paid departments will allow major cities like Philadelphia to borrow more with no one watching where the money is going, while they put PA deeper into debt.
Gov. Tom Wolf's explanation of the ballot questions
PA State Rep. David Rowe
Rep. David Rowe tried to post an objective infographic in response to Wolf's infographic about the ballot questions. See below for what happened.