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House OKs second ballot initiatives bill easing requirements

The House has passed legislation involving ballot initiatives that’s described as a trailer bill to a previous bill that critics say makes the process so difficult that it violates Idaho’s Constitution.

The House on Friday voted 47-22 to send to the Senate the legislation that, compared to the previous bill passed just minutes earlier, increases how long signature gathers have and reduces the number of legislative districts where signatures must be collected.

The new legislation gives signature collectors 270 days to collect signatures from two-thirds of the legislative districts.

The earlier bill allows only six months and requires signatures from 32 of 35 districts.

The new legislation still requires signatures from 10 percent of voters.

The current law requires 6 percent of voters in 18 districts and 18 months to collect the signatures.

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