2010 Initiative Petition Process Begins September 1st
Secretary of State Ross Miller’s Office announces the number of signatures required to qualify a petition amending the Nevada Constitution
(Carson City, NV; August 31, 2009) – Copies of initiative petitions to amend the Nevada State Constitution may be filed with Secretary of State Ross Miller’s office beginning Tuesday, September 1st. Supporters may then begin circulating the petitions for signatures under new requirements adopted by the 2009 State Legislature.
The legislature changed the method for collecting signatures of registered voters. Previously, petitioners were required to collect a minimum number of signatures from voters in each county. Under Senate Bill 212, petitioners must now collect a minimum number of signatures in each of three petition districts. The boundaries of the petition districts are the same as Nevada’s three Congressional Districts.
Deputy Secretary for Elections Matt Griffin said the parameters that determine the number of required signatures have not changed, but because of extraordinarily high voter turnout in the last general election, the real number of signatures that will be required to get an initiative petition on the ballot has increased by 60%. Circulators must still collect a number of signatures from registered voters that equals at least 10% of the turnout in the most recent general election. In the 2008 election cycle, 58,628 signatures were required. In the 2010 cycle, 97,002 signatures will be required, an increase of 38,374 signatures.
Under the new requirements of SB 212, 24,943 signatures must be collected in Congressional District 1; 34,479 signatures in CD 2; and 37,560 in CD 3. An additional 20 signatures must be gathered in Clark County in any of the petition districts. These numbers were determined by the Secretary of State’s Office in consultation with the Attorney General’s office.
Supporters of petitions to amend the State Constitution have until August 4, 2010 to collect signatures before submitting the petitions to the respective county clerks and registrars for verification.
Initiative petitions to propose a new state statute or amend an existing one will be accepted by Secretary of State Ross Miller’s office beginning January 1, 2010.