- Associated Press - Thursday, April 13, 2017

PHOENIX (AP) - The Latest on legislation that makes major changes to law affected citizen initiatives in Arizona (all times local):

6:54 p.m.

Republicans in the Arizona House have approved two measures that tighten rules on citizen initiatives after a lengthy debate.

Democrats opposed the measures passed Thursday and say they’re designed to make it harder if not impossible for citizens to write their own laws.

Republicans say the changes are needed to ensure the process if free of fraud and abuse and that measures that can’t be changed are fully vetted.



One measure adds a slew of registration and penalty provisions on citizen initiative petition circulators and initiative backers. The other makes it easier to keep citizen initiatives off the ballot by tightening the legal standard proponents must meet.

The two components were stripped from an earlier bill already signed by Gov. Doug Ducey that bars paying circulators per signature.

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11:00 p.m.

The Arizona House is set to debate legislation that will add a slew of registration and penalty provisions on citizen initiative petition circulators and initiative backers.

Thursday’s schedule also shows the House plan to vote on a proposal that already has Senate approval making it easier to keep citizen initiatives off the ballot by tightening the legal standard proponents must meet.

The two components were stripped from an earlier bill already signed by Gov. Doug Ducey that bars paying circulators per signature.

Democratic critics and voting rights groups call the proposals a full-out assault on the citizen initiative process. Republicans who back the measures call them needed reforms.

The Arizona Chamber of Commerce began pushing the proposals after voters approved a minimum wage increase last year.

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