FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, October 02, 2013
Contact: Kevin Flannery, (573) 526-0949
Two Initiative Petitions Relating to the Repeal of the Nonpartisan Court Plan Approved for Circulation for 2014 Ballot
Jefferson City, Mo. — Secretary of State Jason Kander today announced that two initiative petitions relating to the repeal of the nonpartisan court plan met state standards for circulation.
The official ballot title for both of the initiative petitions reads:
Shall the Missouri Constitution be amended to:
- repeal the nonpartisan court plan used to select Missouri Supreme Court and Court of Appeals judges;
- require such judges to instead be elected in partisan elections, with political parties nominating party candidates in the primary election prior to the general election;
- allow judges or judicial candidates to solicit, receive and make any legal campaign contributions or expenditures that benefit their own campaigns;
- decrease Supreme Court and Appellate Court judges’ terms from 12 years to 8; and
- increase the number of Supreme Court judges from 7 to 9?
State Court officials estimate increased annual operating costs starting at $1.1 million and initial equipment costs and one time building construction and renovation costs of up to $6.2 million to establish work space for the additional judges and staff. Local governmental entities should experience limited or no increased election related costs.
Both petitions, which would amend Article V of the Missouri Constitution, were submitted by John Elliott, P.O. Box 328, Smithville, MO 64089.
Before any constitutional changes can be brought before Missouri voters in the November 2014 election, signatures must be obtained from registered voters equal to eight (8) percent of the total votes cast in the 2012 governor's election from six of the state's eight congressional districts.
Signatures on behalf of all initiative petitions for the 2014 ballot are due to the secretary of state’s office by no later than 5 p.m. on May 4, 2014.
Before circulating petitions, state law requires that groups must first have the form of their petition approved by the secretary of state and attorney general. The secretary of state then prepares a summary statement of no more than 100 words and the state auditor prepares a fiscal impact statement, both of which are subject to the approval of the attorney general. When both statements are approved, they become the official ballot title.
Visit www.sos.mo.gov to learn more about the Office of the Missouri Secretary of State.
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