OPB - July 8, 2016
Friday was the deadline to turn in signatures for initiative campaigns hoping to place a measure on the November ballot in Oregon. Statutory initiatives need 88,184 valid signatures to qualify for the ballot. Constitutional initiatives require 117,578 valid signatures.
The Oregon Secretary of State’s office has until early August to determine the validity of signatures. Generally, campaigns submit more than the minimum number of signatures, since some signatures are determined to be invalid for a variety of reasons.
Here’s a look at what’s in the running to qualify:
• IP 49 - No More Fake Emergencies Act: This constitutional measure would require a two-thirds supermajority for Oregon lawmakers to attach an emergency clause to most legislation that accelerates the law’s effective date. Emergency clauses also prevent citizens from gathering signatures to force a referendum on the law. That’s what happened in 2013, when lawmakers approved a bill that would have allowed driver cards for Oregonians who can’t prove they’re in the country legally. The bill did not have an emergency clause, and that allowed opponents to gather enough signatures to put the law on hold and force a vote in the 2014 general election. Voters overturned the measure, which never took effect. The IP 49 campaign has submitted 158,456 signatures.
• IP 50 - Voter Privacy Act: This statutory measure would prohibit the release of certain voter information, such as addresses and phone numbers, without the voter’s written consent. Sponsors say it would “reduce unwanted attention during election periods.” The measure would limit campaigns’ ability to determine which eligible voters have cast a ballot during an election. The campaign has submitted 122,968 signatures.
Update on July 15, 2016:
• IP 65 - Oregonians for High School Success Initiative: This statutory measure would require the state to fund dropout-prevention, career and college readiness programs in Oregon high schools. The fund would allocate $800 per high school student per year and would come from the state’s general fund. Its sponsors include former Oregon Gov. Ted Kulongoski. The campaign has submitted a total of 126,058 signatures.
• IP 67 - Outdoor School for All: This statutory measure would create the “Outdoor School Education Fund,” funded through lottery income. The fund’s purpose would be to provide Oregon public school fifth- and sixth-graders a weeklong outdoor school program. The campaign has submitted 135,538 signatures.
• IP 68 - Save Endangered Animals: This statutory measure would prohibit the purchase or sale of parts or products from certain wildlife species, including elephant ivory. There would be exceptions for certain antique items such as weapons or musical instruments. The campaign has submitted 148,726 signatures.
Already qualified for the November ballot:
• IP 28 - A Better Oregon VI: This statutory measure would increase taxes on companies with more than $25 million in annual sales in Oregon. It’s backed by public employee unions and opposed by a coalition of business groups. The initiative qualified for the ballot on June 6.