Running the Table: Governance
The state government features seven constitutional officers: Governor, Lieutenant-Governor, Attorney-General, Secretary of State, Treasurer, Auditor, Commissioner of State Lands. The Lieutenant-Governor serves as President of the State Senate. Amendment 63 0f the State Constitution sets a term length of four years for constitutional officers. Amendment 73 stipulates that they may serve no more than two terms in a particular office but does not disqualify term-limited constitutional officers from seeking other constitutional offices following their tenure.
The state’s bicameral General Assembly or Legislature is made up of one hundred Representatives and thirty-five Senators. The legislature meets in sessions lasting at least sixty days every odd-numbered year. The Governor is empowered to convene Extraordinary, or “special” sessions when circumstances require attention. Each senator is assumed to represent approximately 76,000 constituents; each representative stands for about 27,000. Representatives are elected for two-year terms and are limited to three terms. Senators may serve two four-year terms.
The governments of Arkansas’ seventy-five counties are each presided over by nine elected officials: County Judge, Circuit Clerk, County Clerk, Sheriff, Collector, Treasurer, Assessor, Surveyor and Coroner. In many Arkansas counties, the Sheriff also serves as collector.