The League of Women Voters of Montezuma County encourages its members and the public to be cautious during this period of circulation of initiative petitions.
Voters will be asked to sign a variety of initiative petitions “just to get it on the ballot so people can vote on it”. The League is telling voters: "Your signature is valuable, more valuable than your vote considering that far fewer signatures are required to qualify a petition for the ballot than voters to pass it on the ballot. Only sign an initiative petition that you believe belongs on the ballot."
LWVMZC lists these six questions voters can ask themselves to help them determine whether or not to sign an initiative petition:
Is it complex? Some issues can be decided by a simple yes or no vote. Complex issues may need to be thoroughly examined and debated in a legislative arena.
Is it confusing? Some initiatives are not well written or contain conflicts that may require court resolution or interpretation. This costs the taxpayers additional money to resolve these issues.
Does it belong in the Constitition? If an initiative amends the Constitution, consider whether it really belongs there. Is it a fundamental law that should be protected from change? Correcting a constitutional amendment requires another constitutional amendment – another vote of the people – and is cumbersome and costly.
How will it be funded? Is it an “unfunded mandate” that would require the Legislature to take funds from other essential programs? Consider the effect on the overall flexibility of a government budget with already limited revenue. An initiative should generally create its own revenue source, and not earmark, restrict or obligate a specific percentage of the General Fund revenues.
Who is behind it? You can find out who are the real sponsors and opponents of a petition drive. Contribution and expenditure reports are available through the Election Center at the Secretary of State’s Office at 303-894-2200 or at http://www.sos.state.co.us.
The League of Women Voters of Montezuma County is a grassroots, nonpartisan political organization that encourages informed and active participation in government in order to build better communities statewide.