Now Playing:

About

News | Politics | NW Life | local

Activists Ask Oregon To Allow Online Signing For Initiatives


Supporters of the initiative petition to fund Outdoor School programs statewide submitted signatures June 30, 2016 in Salem.

Supporters of the initiative petition to fund Outdoor School programs statewide submitted signatures June 30, 2016 in Salem.

Chris Lehman/OPB

Frustrated at seeing their priorities die year after year in the Oregon Legislature, some left-wing political activists are pushing for a big change in the state’s citizen initiative system.

They want to make Oregon the first state in the nation to give registered voters the option of signing initiative petitions online, via electronic signature on a state-run website, in addition to the current system, where paid and volunteer gatherers, often standing on busy sidewalks, collect them with pen and paper.

Oregon’s century-old initiative process allows residents to bypass the Legislature, ­propose new public policies and vote them directly into state law or the constitution. But that happens only if ­backers can collect a set number of signatures to qualify a measure for the ballot.

That has proved to be ­a serious hurdle in recent years: Of 415 initiative petitions filed since the ­November 2006 election, only 27 — or 6.5 percent — have qualified to go to voters, usually with significant financial backing from advocates to pay for ­signature gatherers.

Read more at The Register Guard.

Oregon Citizen Initiative System grassroots online petition

More About

More OPB

Related Content