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Arkansas is neither vibrant New York nor sunny California. Located in the South-Mid of the United States, Arkansas’ facts are average: Inhabited by 2,949,132 people, Arkansas ranks 32nd with regards to population and 29th in geographical size. At the same time, the “Natural State” - Arkansas is called due to its enduring image - has produced extraordinary figures: Bill Clinton (born in Hope in 1946) made Arkansas famous when the Governvor was elected US President in 1993. Singer songwriter Johnny Cash and former NATO US General Wesley Clark also grew up in the state, which was inhabited by the Caddo, Osage, and Quapaw indigenous people prior to European Settlement.

When Alaskans vote next Tuesday, they’ll decide not just on a governor and a senator, but also on whether to legalize recreational marijuana use, hike the state’s minimum wage, and require the Legislature to approve any future large-scale mining in one the world’s most productive salmon fisheries.

“These are not just side dishes. They are a big part of Tuesday’s ballot,” said Alaska Democratic Party Chairman Mike Wenstrup on Monday. Not only do they represent major policy decisions, he said, but Democrats who might otherwise skip the election may turn out on these issues. And with the both the governor and Senate races so tight, “every little bit helps,” he said.

A petition circulating throughout Orem carries legal responsibilities that those signing it may not fully understand.

Just this year, Sen. Margaret Dayton, R-Orem, and Rep. Jon Stanard, R-St. George, sponsored an addendum to state code concerning petitions and the people who sign them. Gov. Gary Herbert signed it into law in April.

The bill added the inclusion of a statement to a statewide or local initiative petition signature sheet stating that a signer has read and understands the law proposed by the petition. It also adds a statement to a statewide or local referendum petition signature sheet stating that a signer has read and understands the law the petition seeks to overturn. The bill also made some technical corrections.

In 2011, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that California’s prisons, which were then at nearly two-hundred-per-cent capacity, were so overcrowded that detaining anyone in them was a form of cruel and unusual punishment and a violation of constitutional rights. The state legislature passed a law, which was signed by Governor Jerry Brown, requiring that sentences for certain low-level felonies be served in county jails rather than state prisons; today, the prisons house about a hundred and seventeen thousand inmates, down twenty per cent from this time four years ago.

In this state, more than most others, voters make big policy decisions through the ballot, like the legalization of marijuana and the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights.

But ballot measures can be difficult to understand, and so a nonprofit organization from Oregon, called Healthy Democracy, launched a pilot project to help Colorado voters better educate themselves. A small group of Coloradans, representing the state’s voter demographics, got together to study up on one initiative, and to share findings with other voters.

Read More: Here

Three of the five measures that are likely to be on the November 4th ballot are polling with different degrees of voter support, according to a new battery of surveys from Talk Business & Politics and Hendrix College.

The new polling of 2,075 likely Arkansas voters was conducted on Wednesday, Oct. 15 and Thursday, Oct. 16. The poll has a margin of error of +/- 2.2% and includes live cell phone calls and automated landline respondents.

n just a few weeks we will again head to the election booth to make our voices heard on the candidates and issues we support or oppose. Your vote does matter, and the decision you make in the voting booth will have an impact on our state. In addition to the candidates you will choose to support in November, you also will consider a number of statewide initiatives that have the potentially to make significant changes to the way our state operates. Below are brief descriptions of each of the ballot measures that will appear on the November ballot.

Read More: Here

Term limits deter corruption

Tue, Oct 14 2014 — Source: The Post and Courier

Insiders say more political scandal is in the offing, according to a Thursday story by Statehouse reporter Jeremy Borden. Swapping votes for judges and the misuse of so-called Super PAC money were among the possibilities cited in Mr. Borden’s article.

Our reporter was assured by one lawmaker that if there is wrongdoing, it won’t be on the scale of Lost Trust, the vote-buying scandal in the early ’90s.

But we’d feel more relief if it were a federal prosecutor providing that assurance.

A City Council committee Monday approved allowing more time to gather signatures for a recall election and widening the window during which a special election would be held.

The recommendations green-lighted by the Economic Development and Intergovernmental Relations Committee and sent to the City Council for its consideration are part of a larger effort to streamline the recall process, stemming from last year’s effort to remove then-Mayor Bob Filner from office.

“This is something we’ve been cleaning up over the last year bit-by-bit,” Councilman Mark Kersey said. The Filner recall effort revealed “inconsistencies in the city’s own rules,” he said.

By word and deed, the state’s politically dominant Democrats have demonstrated that they want to substantially alter California’s century-old initiative system that allows voters to legislate directly through the ballot box.

They say they want to improve the system. A few years ago, the Democratic Party’s executive board declared that it’s “being abused … to create laws and programs that benefit a very few people at the expense of the many.”

But the Democrats’ many bills have mostly tried to make it more difficult for their conservative political rivals to place measures on the ballot, while preserving the system for their allies, such as labor unions.