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October 10, 2014

Contact: Nicole Winger
(916) 653-6575

Proposed Referendum Enters Circulation

SACRAMENTO - Secretary of State Debra Bowen announced today that the proponent of a proposed referendum may begin collecting signatures for his measure.

The Attorney General prepares the legal title and summary that is required to appear on referendum petitions. When the official language is complete, the Attorney General forwards it to the proponent and to the Secretary of State, and the referendum may be circulated for signatures. The Secretary of State then provides calendar deadlines to the proponent and to county elections officials.

The Attorney General’s official title and summary for the measure is as follows:

REFERENDUM TO OVERTURN BAN ON SINGLE-USE PLASTIC BAGS. If signed by the required number of registered voters and timely filed with the Secretary of State, this petition will place on the statewide ballot a challenge to a state law previously approved by the Legislature and the Governor. The challenged law must then be approved by a majority of voters at the next statewide election to go into effect. The law prohibits grocery and certain other retail stores from providing single-use bags but permits sale of recycled paper bags and reusable bags. (14-0011.)

The Secretary of State's tracking number for this measure is 1660 and the Attorney General's tracking number is 14-0011.

The proponent for this measure, Doyle L. Johnson, must collect signatures of 504,760 registered voters – the number equal to five percent of the total votes cast for governor in the 2010 gubernatorial election – in order to qualify it for the statewide ballot. The proponent has 90 days from the date the bill is chaptered to request and receive a title and summary from the Attorney General, and circulate petitions for a referendum. SB 270 (Chapter 850, Statutes of 2014) was chaptered on September 30, 2014. The proponent has until December 29, 2014, to submit petition signatures to county election officials.

The referendum proponent can be reached at (916) 446-6752. To sign up for regular ballot measure updates via email, RSS feed or Twitter, go to