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July 3, 2013

Contact: Nicole Winger
(916) 653-6575

Public Assistance Initiative Enters Circulation

Public Assistance Benefits. Eligibility. Initiative Statute.

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

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 ASSISTANCE BENEFITS. ELIGIBILITY. INITIATIVE STATUTE. Requires adult applicants for public assistance benefits to have California driver’s license/identification card and child applicants to have birth certificate and social security card. Prohibits a parent from applying for benefits for a child if the parent is a minor or received any benefits within five years prior to the child’s birth. Restricts electronic benefits transfers while beneficiaries are outside the state. Requires certain beneficiaries to seek employment for three months before becoming eligible for employment-related services. Requires additional state and county steps to identify and facilitate employment for those beneficiaries. Summary of estimate by Legislative Analyst and Director of Finance of fiscal impact on state and local government: State and local savings, potentially in the hundreds of millions of dollars annually, from reduced public social services caseloads in some programs, potentially partially offset by increased local costs for general assistance. One-time state costs in the tens of millions of dollars for various automation changes. Ongoing state and local costs in the tens of millions of dollars to implement an expanded employment outreach program for California Work Opportunity and Responsibility to Kids recipients and administer additional documentation requirements. (13-0004.)

The Secretary of State's tracking number for this measure is 1594 and the Attorney General's tracking number is 13-0004.

The proponent for the measure, Ted Hilton, 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 ballot. The proponent has 150 days to circulate petitions for the measure, meaning the signatures must be collected by December 2, 2013. The initiative proponent can be reached at P.O. Box 9985, San Diego, California 92169. No phone number was provided.

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