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October 28, 2015

CONTACT: Sam Mahood

(916) 653-6575


Proposed Initiative Enters Circulation

Federal Elections. Campaign Advertisements. Initiative Statute.


SACRAMENTO – Secretary of State Alex Padilla announced the proponent 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: 

FEDERAL ELECTIONS. CAMPAIGN ADVERTISEMENTS. INITIATIVE STATUTE. Permits political advertisers in federal elections for President, Vice-President, United States Senate, or House of Representatives to certify voluntarily, under penalty of perjury, the truth of their advertisement. Provides for certification to be filed with the county elections office where the advertisement is published via Internet, radio, television, or bulk mailing. Requires advertisements and accompanying certifications to be publicly available on a State-protected Internet site. Punishes false certifications with up to four years imprisonment. Delays prosecutions for false certifications until after the general election. Summary of estimate by Legislative Analyst and Director of Finance of fiscal impact on state and local government: Increased costs to state and local governments. These costs include (1) one-time costs—possibly tens of millions of dollars—to develop new information technology systems and (2) ongoing costs to state and local governments of possibly millions of dollars each year to administer and enforce the new certification process. (15-0051.) 

The Secretary of State’s tracking number for this measure is 1713 and the Attorney General’s tracking number is 15-0051. 

The proponent for the measure, Timothy D. Geist, must collect the signatures of 365,880 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 proponent has 180 days to circulate petitions for the measure, meaning the signatures must be submitted to county elections officials by April 25, 2016.  The proponent can be reached at (805) 319-9768.