Alaska Legislature passes campaign disclosure bill for initiative campaigns

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April 29, 2010

JUNEAU, Alaska: The Alaska Legislature approved new legislation that would increase campaign disclosure requirements for those who support initiative campaigns.

The Alaska House of Representatives on April 18, 2010, passed House Bill 36, which would require mandatory disclosure on persons or groups who will plan to donate $500 or more in support or opposition of an initiative on a 36-0-4 vote[1][2]. Also, the bill bans paid signature collectors along with changing how many required public hearings must be held for qualified initiatives. The Alaska State Senate later on the same day passed the bill on a 19-1 vote[1].

Representative Peggy Wilson, who was one of three lead sponsors of the bill, said in an interview with Alaska Public Radio: "people do not really know a lot of information when they sign an initiative...they don't always know what the details are, who is backing it, and where its coming from. We just thought its very important for people who sign an initiative that they need to know what is going on."[3]. A lot of opposition of the bill came from citizen activists who oppose greater campaign disclosure from individual donors[4].

The bill has been sent to the Governor's desk awaiting the signature of Governor Sean Parnell to either sign the bill into law or to veto the bill[4].

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