Edited by Brittany Clingen
There are now eight measures confirmed for the 2014 ballot in Louisiana. As previously reported, the Louisiana Hospital Stabilzation Fund Amendment, the Louisiana Medical Assistance Trust Fund Amendment and the Louisiana Redemption of Blighted Property Amendment are all set to appear on the ballot as legislatively-referred constitutional amendments in 2014. Joining them are five more legislatively-referred constitutional amendments that cover topics ranging from taxes to administration of government.
14 measures for 2013
The Louisiana Artificial Reef Development Fund Protection Amendment, as its title suggests, would protect the Artificial Reef Development Fund from being used for other purposes. The fund, which is used to maintain artificial reefs in the area, is supported by oil companies that save money by transforming their deactivated platforms into the faux reefs. Lawmakers have raided the fund in the past to supplement their budgets, hence the concerns regarding the misuse of funds. Those supporting the measure want to make it crystal clear that the fund is not to be raided anymore, unless the money is put toward the reefs.
Several of the proposed amendments address tax-related issues, including one that would exempt permanently disabled homeowners from certifying their income each year in order to retain a tax break. Currently, certain classifications of homeowners, including the elderly and disabled, are eligible for an assessment level that guarantees their property taxes will not surpass the value that was determined during the homestead's initial assessment. Elderly homeowners whose adjusted gross income is less than $69,463 are already exempted from certifying their income annually; this amendment would extend the same exception to permanently disabled homeowners. Both the Louisiana House and Senate passed this measure without opposition.
For the full list of Louisiana measures set to appear on the 2014 ballot, see here.
In North Dakota, five measures were approved for the 2014 ballot, one for the June primary election and four for the general election in November. All of the measures will appear on the ballot as legislatively-referred constitutional amendments. Measure 1 will appear on the ballot in June and will ask voters whether or not the state constitution should be amended to increase the number of days before an election that initiative petition signatures are due from 90 to 120. If approved, this measure would also require any legal challenges leveled against the secretary of state's decision regarding petitions be filed with the North Dakota Supreme Court no later than 75 days before the election.
The four measures that will appear on the November 2014 - Measures 1, 2, 3 and 4 - address more controversial topics, including taxes and abortion. Measure 1, which states "the inalienable right to life of evry human being at any stage of development must be recognized and protected," will ask voters to decide whether or not the state constitution should be amended to determine that life begins at conception. If it is approved, the measure could render abortions illegal in the state, thereby banishing North Dakota's sole abortion clinic. Predictably, this measure has received significant attention from media outlets and activists across the nation and will likely spur a contentious campaign in the months leading up to the 2014 election.
For the full list of North Dakota measures set to appear on the 2014 ballot, see here.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 Nola.com, "Louisiana voters to decide on eight constitutional amendments in 2014," June 12, 2013
- ↑ Nola.com, "Voters will decide whether to protect Louisiana's artificial-reef fund," June 13, 2013
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 Inforum.com, "ND ballot measures listed for 2014 election," June 11, 2013
- ↑ LifeNews.com, "North Dakota Passes Personhood Amendment Abortion Ban," March 22, 2013