June 16, 2014
Contact: Shannan Velayas
SACRAMENTO - Secretary of State Debra Bowen today certified the sixth measure for the November 4, 2014, General Election ballot. The initiative, which relates to criminal sentencing, joins five other measures already on the November state ballot:
The ballot measure qualification deadline for the November 4 election is today, June 26.
To qualify for the ballot, the initiative needed 504,760 valid petition signatures, which equals five percent of the total votes cast for governor in the November 2010 gubernatorial election. An initiative can qualify via random sampling of petition signatures if the sampling projects a number of valid signatures greater than 110 percent of the required number. The criminal sentencing initiative needed at least 555,236 projected valid signatures to qualify by random sampling, and it exceeded that threshold today.
The Attorney General's official title and summary of the initiative is as follows:
CRIMINAL SENTENCES. MISDEMEANOR PENALTIES. INITIATIVE STATUTE. Requires misdemeanor sentence instead of felony for petty theft, receiving stolen property, and forging/writing bad checks when value or amount involved is $950 or less. Requires misdemeanor sentence instead of felony for certain drug possession offenses. Allows felony sentence for these offenses if person has previous conviction for crimes such as rape, murder or child molestation or is a registered sex offender. Requires resentencing for persons serving felony sentences for these offenses unless court finds unreasonable public safety risk. Applies savings to mental health and drug treatment programs, K-12 schools, and crime victims. Summary of estimate by Legislative Analyst and Director of Finance of fiscal impact on state and local government: Net state criminal justice system savings that could reach the low hundreds of millions of dollars annually, which would be spent on truancy prevention, mental health and substance abuse treatment, and victim services. Net county criminal justice system savings that could reach the low hundreds of millions of dollars annually. (13-0007.)
The proponents of this initiative are William Lansdowne and George Gascon. The proponents can be reached at (510) 346-6200.
For more information about how an initiative qualifies for the ballot in California, go to www.sos.ca.gov/elections/ballot-measures/how-to-qualify-an-initiative.htm.
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