Montgomery, Ala., October 11, 2006 - The Alabama State Bar has announced the release of a new public education brochure titled, "Constitutional Revision in Alabama."
Alabama State Bar President Fournier J. "Boots" Gale, III (Maynard, Cooper & Gale, P.C., Birmingham) said, "Lawyers are stewards of the constitution and the rule of law. The state bar supports the efforts to rewrite the Alabama Constitution to more effectively govern the state. We prepared this material to so that voters can make an informed decision as to both the pros and cons of a constitutional convention and the merits of the proposed reforms."
Last February, legislation was introduced to allow citizens to call for a Constitutional Convention to revise the state's 1901 Constitution. That legislation never made it to the floor for a vote.
Gale noted that the 105-year old document has 743 amendments (dealing with such items as bingo, mosquito control, catfish, soybeans, dead farm animals, beaver tails, and prostitution), while the national average is 116. The constitution itself is easily the longest in the nation and is 12 times longer than the typical state constitution. "I doubt even Harry Potter could find his way out of this maze. It likely deters citizens from reading and understanding their own governing document," he said.
Single copies of the 12-page booklet which was prepared by the state bar's Public Relations Committee are available by sending a stamped, self-addressed envelope with the words "Constitutional Reform" on the front to: Alabama State Bar, P.O. Box 671, Montgomery AL 36101, or downloaded as a PDF at the bar’s Web site: www.alabar.org/Constitutional-Revision-for-web.pdf.
The Alabama State Bar is dedicated to promoting the professional responsibility, competence and satisfaction of its members; improving the administration of justice, and: increasing public understanding and respect for the law.