Letters to the Editor

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INITIATIVES: Bill is sensible consumer protection

Letter by Erika Hitt-Haws, Olympia on Feb. 22, 2011 at 2:58 pm | 1 Comment »
February 22, 2011 3:04 pm

Re: “Initiative reform: First, show us the problem” (editorial, 2-17).

If you knew a storm was coming, would you board up your house? Would you go to the store beforehand to make sure you had provisions?

That’s exactly what state Rep. Chris Reykdal’s bill on ballot measures is doing.

Oregon has seen terrible abuses to its initiative system. It’s caught paid signature gatherers holding fraud parties. Just last year, three signature gatherers were charged with ID theft. A quick search found that Montana, Arizona, Missouri, Nebraska, Colorado, Florida and Maine have all seen similar cases of fraud and forgery.

After last year – with six initiatives on the ballot and paid signature gatherers at every big box store – Reykdal is just preparing for what may be the big storm.

What’s to stop signature gatherers from coming to Washington to gather signatures, stealing ID and then leaving after turning in what they collected? Reykdal’s bill makes sure we can track people down and hold them accountable.

I’m on the side of consumer protection. This bill makes me more feel more comfortable that my information is safe and secure when I sign a petition.

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