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January 18, 2012

Contact: Nicole Winger
(916) 653-6575

Third Measure Qualifies for November California Ballot

SACRAMENTO - California Secretary of State Debra Bowen today certified the second initiative for the November 6, 2012, General Election ballot. The initiative would change state law regarding auto insurance pricing. The measure joins two others already on the November ballot:

  • A water bond measure, which was placed on the ballot by the Legislature; and
  • A political contribution measure, which qualified through the initiative process.

In order to qualify for the ballot, the initiative needed 504,760 valid petition signatures, which is equal to five percent of the total votes cast for governor in the November 2010 gubernatorial election. A measure 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 auto insurance initiative needed at least 555,236 projected valid signatures to qualify by random sampling, and it exceeded that threshold today.

County elections officials have 30 working days to verify the validity of the signatures filed with their offices using a random sampling method. The state Elections Code requires county elections officials to verify 500 signatures or three percent of the number of signatures filed in the county, whichever is greater. Counties receiving fewer than 500 petition signatures are required to verify all the signatures filed in their elections offices.

The auto insurance initiative is the second ballot measure to qualify under the rules of SB 202 (Chapter 558, Statutes of 2011), which requires that all state ballot measures approved after July 1, 2011, only appear on November general election ballots.

The Attorney General's official title and summary of the initiative is as follows:

CHANGES LAW TO ALLOW AUTO INSURANCE COMPANIES TO SET PRICES BASED ON A DRIVER’S HISTORY OF INSURANCE COVERAGE. INITIATIVE STATUTE. Changes current law to permit insurance companies to set prices based on whether the driver previously carried auto insurance with any insurance company. Allows insurance companies to give proportional discounts to drivers with some prior insurance coverage. Will allow insurance companies to increase cost of insurance to drivers who have not maintained continuous coverage. Treats drivers with lapse as continuously covered if lapse is due to military service or loss of employment, or if lapse is less than 90 days. Summary of estimate by Legislative Analyst and Director of Finance of fiscal impact on state and local government: Probably no significant fiscal effect on state insurance premium tax revenues.(11-0013.)

The proponent of this initiative, Mike D'Arelli, can be reached at (916) 283-9473.

For more information about the initiative process and history in California, go to

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