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Many initiatives filed in Montana, but few make it to the ballot

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March 4, 2010

HELENA, Montana: As of March 1, 2010, there were 25 initiatives that were filed for the November 2, 2010 ballot in the state of Montana. According to reports, that is the highest number of filed initiatives since 1995-96. 32 proposals were filed that year, but as reports and numbers show, not many made it to the ballot. The reason, according to legislative attorney Greg Petesch, is that "People are not really organized to get signatures in large numbers. I don't think they realize the actual work it takes to qualify for the ballot. Sending it in to us on a piece of paper is the easy part."[1]

Numbers for previous years show that many initiatives have set out to seek ballot placement, with only a handful ever making it for voter approval:

This year, groups must submit signatures to the Montana Secretary of State by the June 18, 2010 petition drive deadline. 48,673 signatures are required for proposed constitutional amendments, while 24,337 signatures are needed for proposed statutes. Many proposed questions have already been withdrawn.[2]

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