Group Ends Referendum Bid And Seeks New Laws Instead
Arkansans for a Unified Natural State ended their effort last week to ask voters whether three new state laws should take effect, and instead vowed to collect signatures for 10 new state laws.
In a Facebook post on July 27, Kwami Abdul-Bey said volunteers collected nearly 10,000 voter signatures in 52 counties for referendums on Acts 250, 626, and 736. The citizen group needed 53,491 valid voter signatures by July 28 to qualify their three proposals for the November 2022 ballot.
Referendum groups have a shorter time frame to submit voter signatures when challenging new state laws. Petitions must be filed within 90 days after the session ends. Legislators recessed this spring with plans to come back this fall to handle redistricting. The laws they passed without emergency clauses or specific dates took effect July 28.
Arkansans for a Unified Natural State was out of time.
Citizen groups wanting to place a constitutional amendment or state law on the November 2022 ballot have just under a year to go before they must submit voter signatures. The deadline to submit petitions is July 8, 2022.
In that social media post, Abdul-Key said he would soon file citizen initiative paperwork for 10 state laws the group would seek instead. Last week, Attorney General Leslie Rutledge said she planned to work on a constitutional amendment to eliminate individual income tax.
As of July 28, the Secretary of State's Office has received seven proposed amendments and state laws for the November 2022 ballot.
Proposals from the legislature and those filed by citizen groups so far can be found at https://conta.cc/3l6sOIv.
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