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House, Senate to debate major revamp of initiative process

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Posted at 7:02 AM, May 08, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-08 10:02:13-04

PHOENIX (AP) - The Arizona House and Senate have scheduled debate on a contentious plan to enact major changes in how citizen initiatives qualify for the ballot.

The twin proposals backed by majority Republicans would require initiative proponents to collect signatures from 10% of the voters in each of the state's 30 legislative districts. The Arizona Constitution now requires signatures from 10% of all voters statewide to qualify an initiative for the ballot.

If approved Wednesday, the measures would be put on the 2020 ballot for voters to approve.

Proponents argue the views of rural areas are ignored by initiative backers. Initiative backers say they would allow any single district to block a measure with broad support.

Proposals toughening petition circulator and voter registration drive rules are also scheduled for action.