BOISE, Idaho (KIFI/KIDK)-Reclaim Idaho says it is ready to proceed with an online petition drive in favor of its K-12 Education Initiative.
According to Reclaim Idaho, U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill ruled last week the group could collect electronic signatures, saying the state violated its First Amendment rights by failing to provide a safe means of signature collection in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Winmill ordered the state to help Reclaim Idaho develop a plan by July 9. If there isn’t an agreement, Reclaim Idaho says it may implement its own plan, if it meets “highest available standards.”
Reclaim Idaho Co-Founder Luke Mayville said the group plans to move forward with a plan and start collecting signatures online next week. The drive needs 33,000 electronic signatures.
"After weeks of work and multiple discussions with the state, we’ve developed a detailed, industry-standard plan for the collection of electronic signatures in compliance with the judge’s order," Mayville said. "We’ve made every effort to solicit the state’s feedback and adjust our design accordingly. We're confident the system in place will indeed meet the highest available standards for electronic signature gathering."
Under the judge’s order, Reclaim Idaho has 48 days to collect electronic signatures, beginning July 9.
The initiative’s “Invest in Idaho” plan would increase the amount of funding for public schools that comes from the state of Idaho, lessening the need for property tax levies at the local level.