The Senate Committee on Government Operations, Public Works and Telecommunications voted, 4-3, along party lines to approve AJR 48 on Wednesday. AJR 48, which deletes the state treasurer position and replaces the office with the lieutenant governor on the Board of Commissioners of Public Lands, could be scheduled for a floor vote as early as March 11—the next time the Senate is in session.
The Assembly previously passed AJR 48 on a bi-partisan vote of 67-32 in February. If the Senate passes AJR 48 before adjourning for the 2013-14 session, the proposal must still be introduced again and passed by both houses of the legislature during the 2015-16 session; voters will then be able to vote on the proposal in a statewide referendum. If the Senate does not pass AJR 48 before adjourning, the process of amending the state constitution starts over and any proposal to delete the state treasurer position must be approved in two consecutive sessions of the legislature and receive the approval of voters in a statewide referendum.
Representative Michael Schraa (R-Oshkosh), AJR 48’s author, said he plans on introducing a proposal next session that would delete the secretary of state from the state constitution and replace the office with the state superintendent of public instruction on the Board of Commissioners of Public Lands.