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Idaho bill that would toughen requirements to get initiatives on ballot is back on track

The Idaho Senate, pictured in this file photo, at work at the Statehouse in Boise.
The Idaho Senate, pictured in this file photo, at work at the Statehouse in Boise. Darin Oswald/Idaho Statesman

A bill that would dramatically toughen the requirements to get an initiative or referendum on the Idaho ballot is back on track after being amended in the Senate.

The Senate on Thursday approved three technical amendments to the bill from Eagle Republican Sen. C. Scott Grow.

The amendments involved clarifying when the 180-day deadline starts for initiative sponsors to get signatures.

Another amendment changed that initiatives be done by county rather than by legislative district. The final amendment involved the timing of fiscal impact information.

The bill would require those seeking ballot initiatives to get signatures from 10 percent of voters in 32 of Idaho’s 35 districts, compared to current rules that require signatures from 6 percent of voters in 18 districts. The bill would also cut the time allowed to gather the signatures from 18 months to about six months.

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