Despite having a study adopted in 1984 and an update in 1999, the LWVC is unable to speak to various Initiative and Referendum-related issues that have been suggested in recent years. These include limiting paid signature gatherers, changing the time or number of signatures required to qualify an initiative for the ballot and considering various ideas which define how the content of an initiative should be limited. League could not speak on the concept of the pay-go initiative (an initiative that requires money to be spent must also detail where the money comes from) because we have nothing in our positions that gives clear guidance about where we stand.
Sections of the current LWVC position have been identified for update as a result of the consensus we’ll undertake in March. On our website (link below) see the LWVC Position with sections for possible update in bold-faced type and Consensus Questions, which also include the LWVC Position aligned with the questions.
But look at the consensus questions! They deal with drafting, pre-review, titling and summary before signatures are gathered, what it takes to qualify for the ballot, how much the Legislature should be integrated in the process, whether the constitution should be allowed to be amended by the initiative, and how reform ideas should be prioritized by principles and attitudes.
Our meetings for the Initiative and Referendum study will illuminate some of the most interesting, and most useful, suggestions made in recent years to re-vitalize, streamline, or improve California’s very own form of direct democracy. Assuming, of course, that we want to do any of those things: the first and the last of the consensus questions ask if we want to keep the Initiative and Referendum process.
Visit the website to review the consensus questions in preparation for our consensus meetings this March.
Stay tuned for our next post: Historic Summary
Read the previous post: An Initiative and Referendum Primer
Thank you again to the League of Women Voters of North County San Diego for sharing these summaries with us!
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