SENATE BILL NO. 56
AN ACT PROPOSING AN AMENDMENT TO ARTICLE 4, SECTIONS 2, 3 AND 12 OF THE CONSTITUTION OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE BY INCREASING THE SUPREME COURT TO FIVE JUSTICES AND PROVIDING FOR A QUORUM OF THE SUPREME COURT.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Delaware (two-thirds of the members elected to each b_ranch thereof concurring therein):
Section 1. Article 4, Section 2 of the Constitution of the State of Delaware 1897 is amended by striking the word "three" as it appears after the words "shall be" and before the word "Justice" in the first line of said section, and substituting in lieu thereof the word "five".
Section 2. Article 4, Section 3, paragraph 3 of the Constitution of the State of Delaware of 1897, as amended, is amended to read as follows:
"First, three of the five Justices of the Supreme Court in office at the same time, shall be of one major political party, and two of said Justices shall be of the other major political party."
Section 3. Article 4, Section 3, paragraph 5 of the Constitution of the State of Delaware of 1897, as amended, is amended by striking the word "three" as it appears in Article 4, Section 3, paragraph 5.
Section 4. Article 4, Section 12 of the Constitution of the State of Delaware of 1897, as amended, is amended to read as follows:
"§12. Composition of Supreme Court; designation of Justices, quorum; opening and adjourning court.
Section 12. A quorum of the Supreme Court shall consist of not less than three Justices. The entire Court shall sit in any criminal case in which the accused has been sentenced to death and in such other civil and criminal cases as the Court, by rule, or the General Assembly, upon the concurrence of two-thirds of all the members elected to each house, shall determine. In case of a lack of quorum by reason of vacancies in their number, incapacity, or disqualification to sit by reason of interest, or to constitute a three-member panel of the Court, the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, or if he is disqualified or incapacitated or if there is a vacancy in that office, the Justice, who by seniority is next in rank to the Chief Justice, shall have the power to designate judges from among the judges of the constitutional courts to sit in the Supreme Court temporarily to fill up the number of Justices required by law. It shall be the duty of the judges of the consitutitional courts so designated to sit accordingly. No judge shall be so designated to sit in the Supreme Court in any cause in which he sat below. Any one of the Justices of the Supreme Court may open and adjourn court."
Approved June 24, 1976