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State government


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  • 1. State Government The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
  • 2. Focus:
  • 3. • Agenda: • Define powers of state • Explain the role of the state in our lives and vice versa • Summarize the branches of government on the state level
  • 4. Power of the States • Because of FEDERALISM both the states and national government share power. • As specified in the 10th Amendment of Constitution any power not delegated to the Federal Government is a reserved power of the states and the people • Establish rules for health, safety, and welfare of citizens • Education • Conduct elections
  • 5. •Concurrent Powers are powers given to both state and national (fed) government. 1.Taxes 2.Propose and pass laws 3.Enforce laws (state police) 4.Establish courts (state courts) •State Constitutions – All 50 states have their own Constitution (Pennsylvania’s is actually older than US.) 1.Each has a PREAMBLE or an introduction 2.Each has an establishment of three branches and articles that outline our rights as citizens 3.Each can be changed or AMENDED
  • 6. •States working together 1. Full faith and credit clause is an example of how states have to accept the decisions of courts in other states. a. Contracts b. Marriages c. Deeds 2. Extradition - Murderer found in Ohio is returned to PA to be prosecuted •States working w/ Federal government is common during times of crisis Hurrican Katrina and Gulf Oil Spill and more common ways like road and bridge building
  • 7. State Legislatures. Very Similar to US Congress (Only NEBRASKA has one house legislature or is unicameral) PA = Two houses/bi-cameral and is called the GENERAL ASSEMBLY Certain requirements of Representatives Age – H = 21; S - 25 Citizenship – US Citizen Residency – In state and in district for 1 year Pass bills the same way
  • 8. How Citizens participate in lawmaking Citizens are known as Constituents to the legislative and executive body officials. They can also help make laws. INITIATIVE - Introduce a bill by getting enough signatures on a petition RECALL - Allows voters to remove an elected official from office. REFERENDUM- The citizens vote directly on a bill introduced by Congress
  • 9. The State’s Executive Branch • The chief executive in each state is called the Governor • In most states he/she serves a 4 year term w/ some states limiting # of terms. PA = Two term limit • Just as the president appoints the head of offices (Secretary of Transportation, Education, Agriculture, etc.) so does the governor so that they can assist him in day to day operations. • Second in command is the Lieutenant Governor – Sometimes elected on a separate ticket/sometimes not. PA = Same ticket
  • 10. The State’s Judicial Branch The Court System • Small claims – (District Magistrate) Cases involving $5000 or less and no Lawyers are needed. • Trial Courts/Court of Common Pleas • Appeals Courts – Functions the same as the 12 Appellate Courts in Federal system – No juries just a panel of judges • State Supreme Court – These judges are either voted in or are picked from a list by the governor - Missouri Plan – non-partisan commission makes a list of suitable judges Judges can be replaced.