Ann Arbor Area Community News
Yesterday, the Board of State Canvassers voted unanimously to reject the “Stop Overspending” petition from the November ballot. SOS fell approximately 20,000 valid signatures short of the needed 317,000, despite handing in more than 500,000.
Defend Michigan, the coalition opposed to the SOS measure, are breathing a sigh of relief; they had said the measure would have “devastating effects on the ability of state and local government to provide essential services” by preventing both the creation of new tax levies and user fees or increases in existing ones by local entities.
SOS’s backers have appealed the Board of Canvassers’ decision. Over 100,000 duplicate signatures appeared on the petition, and the Board rejected all copies of these signatures, rather than keeping one and rejecting only those past the first. While the Board claims that this is in keeping with a 1940 Michigan Supreme Court decision, and is intended to discourage reckless petition drives, SOS feels that there is no statutory requirement to reject all copies.
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