Published by the LA Times PolitiCal blog May 6, 2010
Written by Anthony York, editor of Capitol Weekly
Supporters of a proposal to eliminate the two-thirds requirement for the Legislature to pass a budget will begin submitting more than 1 million signatures to county election officials across the state Friday.
The measure, backed by a consortium of labor unions and Democratic leaders in both legislative houses, would allow budgets to be passed by a simple majority vote. Votes to increase taxes would still require a two-thirds vote.
Andrew Acosta, a spokesman for the initiative campaign, said they have until Monday to submit their signatures. In order to qualify for the ballot, they must submit more than 694,000 valid signatures.
Opponents of the measure say it would make it easier for Democrats to pass budgets full of new fee increases, which only require simple majority votes. A separate measure backed by business groups including the California Chamber of Commerce would require a two-thirds vote to raise fees as well. That measure began submitting signatures Thursday, according to initiative spokesman Rick Claussen.
When a measure is submitted to county officials, counties have eight working days to perform a hard count of the number of petitions submitted. The counties then have 30 working days to perform a random sampling of ballots to check for valid signatures.
Fri, May 7, 2010
by Anthony York