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August 12, 2015

Contact: Sam Mahood
(916) 653-6575


Proposed Initiative Enters Circulation

Public Employees. Pension and Retiree Healthcare Benefits. Initiative Constitutional Amendment.


SACRAMENTO – Secretary of State Alex Padilla today announced the proponents of a new initiative may begin collecting petition signatures.  

The Attorney General prepares the legal title and summary that is required to appear on initiative petitions. When the official language is complete, the Attorney General forwards it to the proponent and to the Secretary of State, and the initiative 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: 

 PUBLIC EMPLOYEES. PENSION AND RETIREE HEALTHCARE BENEFITS. INITIATIVE CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT. Eliminates constitutional protections for vested pension and retiree healthcare benefits for current public employees, including those working in K-12 schools, higher education, hospitals, and police protection, for future work performed. Adds initiative/referendum powers to Constitution, for determining public employee compensation and retirement benefits. Bars government employers from enrolling new employees in defined benefit plans, paying more than one-half cost of new employees’ retirement benefits, or enhancing retirement benefits, unless first approved by voters. Limits placement of financial conditions upon government employers closing defined benefit plans to new employees. Summary of estimate by Legislative Analyst and Director of Finance of fiscal impact on state and local government: Significant effects—savings and costs—on state and local governments relating to compensation for governmental employees. The magnitude and timing of these effects would depend heavily on future decisions made by voters, governmental employers, and the courts. (15-0033.) 

The Secretary of State’s tracking number for this measure is 1696 and the Attorney General’s tracking number is 15-0033. 

The proponents for the measure, Chuck Reed, Stephanie Gomes, Carl DeMaio, Pat Morris, Bill Kampe, and Tom Tait, must collect signatures of 585,407 registered voters (five percent of the total votes cast for governor in the November 2014 general election) in order to qualify it for the November 2016 ballot. The proponents have 180 days to circulate petitions for the measure, meaning the signatures must be submitted to county elections officials by February 8, 2016.  The proponents can be reached at (415) 732-7700.