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Ballot Issues

The Eighty-Ninth General Assembly has referred three items to the 2014 ballot. Farm Bureau does not yet have a position on any of these specific issues.

Legislators can refer up to three ballot issues to voters each election cycle. Initially, they had 37 different proposals to consider. The General Assembly settled on these three.

HJR 1009 - The Arkansas Elected Officials Ethics, Transparency, and Financial Reform Amendment of 2014. This 21-page proposal involves three different issues. 1) It would allow legislators to serve 16 years total in the House or Senate, whereas they are now limited to specific number of years in each chamber. 2) It would create an independent commission to set salaries of state elected officials. The commission would be appointed by certain legislators. 3) It would place limits on lobbying by former legislators and set limits on campaign donations and gifts from corporations and lobbyists.This issue is the most complex of the three and voters will have to carefully review it before making their decision.

Summary of HJR 1009 and how it could alter current law

SJR 7 - An Amendment Concerning the Review and Approval of Administrative Rules by a Legislative Committee. This proposal would give legislative committees prior review of new state agency rules before they go into effect.

Summary of SJR 7 and how it could alter current law

SJR 16 - An Amendment Concerning Initiative and Referendum. The proposal would establish a signature threshold for ballot issue groups to meet if they want more time to collect additional signatures after turning in petitions to the Secretary of State. Petitions would need to contain at least 75 percent of valid signatures for a group to receive more time. Groups are usually given 30 additional days after submitting their original petitions to gather more signatures in case they fall short on the required number to place an issue on the ballot. (A previous version of this bill set the threshold at 90 percent.)

Summary of SJR 16 and how it could alter current law

The Attorney General has also approved a ballot title for a citizen initiative to legalize "medical marijuana."  A similar measure reached the ballot in the last election cycle but narrowly failed with the voters. Approval of the ballot title by the AG is not an endorsement of the initiative. If supporters get enough valid signatures, the issue will appear on the 2014 ballot.


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