East Bay State Lawmaker Pushes To Reform Initiative System

CONCORD (KCBS)— The initiative system in California is 100 years old, and an East Bay lawmaker believes it’s time to change the system to help restore it to its intended purpose.

State senator Mark DeSaulnier of Concord said the initiative process has been around a long time in California, and he’d like to see it change. He currently has three bills in Sacramento, and one requires the top five donors of an initiative campaign whose contributions exceed $50,000 to identify themselves on a voter pamphlet.

The East Bay senator said he has nothing against direct democracy in action, but he thinks the initiative system is no longer doing what it was meant to do.

KCBS’ Dave Padilla Reports:

“An initiative system is a great thing, but in the initiative system, I believe money has hijacked the original intent and purpose,” he said.

Democratic governor Jerry Brown who favors the initiative process has already vetoed a bill that would have prevented signature gatherers from receiving payment for each name they secure. State Republicans have voiced strong opposition to attempts to change the process.

(© 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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