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Voters to decide fate of 10 ballot measures

Voters will consider up to 10 ballot measures in November, including the constitutional protection for hunting and fishing, elimination of affirmative action and decriminalization of medical marijuana.

The Secretary of State’s Office on June 30 released the list of the nine legislative referrals and one citizens’ initiative that met the ballot measure requirements.

One of the measures, however, could be struck from the ballot by the courts. Proposition 108, which would amend the state Constitution to guarantee the use of secret ballots in public or union elections, is tied up in court. A trial court judge ruled that the referendum violates Arizona’s rule that constitutional ballot measures be limited to one question. The Goldwater Institute filed a notice of appeal on the issue July 1.

Other notable citizens’ initiatives, such as a proposed ban on traffic cameras and caps on property taxes didn’t gather enough signatures to make it to the ballot, despite the momentum those movements enjoyed earlier this year.

Proponents of dismantling the Clean Elections funding system and repealing term limits also didn’t muster enough votes in the Legislature to force ballot referrals.

The Secretary of State’s Office has not finished drafting the ballot language for each of the measures, which will then have to be approved by the Attorney General’s Office, but intends to have them ready by the end of July.

Here’s a full list of the measures that will appear on the November ballot, including the one in question:

Prop. 106: health care services; direct purchase

The health care services referral would prevent any law or rule from requiring a person, employer or health care provider to take part in any health care system. It would also provide that any purchase of health care made directly from a provider to a patient cannot be penalized or fined.

The measure is aimed squarely at the recently passed federal health care bill, and would likely be challenged as a violation of federal law if it is approved.

Prop. 107: discrimination; preferential treatment; prohibition

This constitutional amendment would eliminate any affirmative action programs for any public entity, except where gender plays a vital role in the normal activity of the job for which a person is being considered.

Prop. 108: secret ballot; fundamental right

If voters approve this measure, anyone taking part in a public or union vote would be guaranteed the right to a secret ballot. This measure is headed for appeal and may be removed from the ballot.

Prop. 109: hunting and fishing; constitutional rights

This referral would amend Arizona’s Constitution to provide that Arizona residents have the right to hunt, fish and harvest wildlife, and that no law or rule shall be made to “unreasonably restrict” that right.

The measure would also add to the state Constitution that hunting and fishing are the preferred means of managing and controlling wildlife.

Prop. 110: state lands; military installation preservation

This proposition would give the Legislature the ability to sell or lease Arizona’s 10.9 million acres of state trust lands without advertisement or auction, in order to enable military training facilities or to convert the trust land into public land. The measure also specifies particular appraisal procedures that would need to be followed in the case of sale or lease of the trust land.

Prop. 111: lieutenant governor; secretary of state

This referral would change the name of the Secretary of State’s Office to the lieutenant governor, beginning in 2015. A candidate for the newly renamed lieutenant governor position would run independent of gubernatorial candidates during the primary, but they would then run on a single ticket in the general election.

Prop. 112: initiatives; filing deadline

Proposition 112 would amend Arizona’s Constitution to require that initiative petitions be filed at least six months before the date on which they would be voted. Currently, only four months is required.

Prop. 203: Arizona Medical Marijuana Act

The Arizona Medical Marijuana Act would allow “qualifying patients” with “debilitating medical conditions” to obtain medical marijuana from nonprofit dispensaries. The qualifying patients would be allowed to possess and consume the marijuana, in accordance with a regulatory system that would be determined by the Arizona Department of Health Services. The costs of the regulatory system would be covered by application and renewal fees accrued from patients seeking the medical marijuana.

Prop. 301: land conservation fund; reversion

This referral would take any remaining money from the $20 million Land Conservation Fund and transfer it to the state general fund.

Prop. 302: early childhood development; health; repeal

If voters approve Proposition 302, money collected from an 80-cent per pack tobacco tax, which previously was given to the Early Childhood Development and Health fund, would be put into the state general fund, to be appropriated by the Legislature for health and human services for children. The Early Childhood Development and Health Board, also known as First Things First, would also be dismantled.

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