No pending Vermont legislative referrals for 2011 or 2012

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April 15, 2011


BURLINGTON, Vermont: There's a month left in the 2011 Vermont legislative session and thus far, no referrals to the statewide ballot have been made. However, this isn't a rare occurrence in the northeastern state.

Just last year, in 2010, voters cast their ballot on Proposal 5 which allowed for 17-year-olds to vote in the primary election provided they turn 18 before the general election. Previously, voters voiced their opinion on measure in 2002.

In the state's history, ballot measures have appeared on statewide ballots a total of 22 times since 1785. The first ballot measure to appear on the Vermont ballot was known as the Vermont "Quieting Ancient Settlers" Act (1785).

Vermont is not a state with the initiative and referendum process. Currently, only legislatively-referred constitutional amendments are allowed to be referred to the ballot. Constitutional amendments in Vermont must be considered in two successive sessions of the Vermont General Assembly. In the first legislative session where an amendment is considered, it must win a majority vote of the state house but a 2/3rds vote of the Vermont State Senate. The second time they are considered, they need to win only a majority vote. From 1785-1976, Vermont voters were also able to vote on legislatively-referred state statutes.

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