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Revision as of 15:38, 28 January 2014

Ballotpedia News



News headlines

News about: elections, politicians and candidates at all levels of government: elections, congress, state executive officials, state legislatures, recall elections, ballot measures and school boards. You can find a full list of projects here.

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Deadline to submit signatures for initiatives in California is April 18

By Ryan Byrne

California
Over 60 citizen's initiatives were filed in California for the general election ballot in November 2014. Today, April 18, 2014, is the deadline for initiative and referendum proponents to submit their collected signatures with county election officials, as suggested by the California Secretary of State.[1] The deadline, however, has operated in the past as a date of assured consideration. Signatures for initiatives, such as 2012's Proposition 30 and Proposition 31, have been submitted upwards of eighteen days after the deadline and still qualified for the general election ballot for that year. Proponents of initiatives who submit their signatures after the April 18 deadline for 2014, but by their initiative's petition circulation deadline, will likely have their initiative placed on the 2016 ballot, rather than the 2014 ballot, upon signature verification and certification.

So far only one initiative and one referendum have been qualified for the ballot. The Insurance Companies Required to Justify Their Rates to the Public Initiative was qualified for the 2014 ballot on August 23, 2013. The initiative's campaign was shooting to get their measure on the 2012 ballot, but submitted signatures 28 days after the 2012 signature deadline. The Referendum to Overturn Indian Gaming Compacts was qualified for the 2014 ballot on November 20, 2013.

Currently, county officials across California are counting signatures for the Increase in Cap on Medical Malpractice Lawsuits Initiative. The measure would increase the state's cap on damages that can be assessed in medical negligence lawsuits to over $1 million from the current cap of $250,000, as well as require drug and alcohol testing of doctors and reporting of positive tests to the California Medical Board.[2] About 830,000 signatures were filed by supporters with election officials on March 24, 2014.[3] 504,760 valid signatures are required to qualify the measure for the ballot.

The Office of the California Secretary of State will issue updates in the coming week noting which initiative campaigns submitted signatures for verification.


Battleground Friday: California's 36th Congressional District


Legislative Lowdown: Identifying competitive Tennessee elections in 2014

Seal of Tennessee.jpg
2014 Tennessee Legislative Lowdown

Table of Contents
Majority control
Margin of victory
Competitiveness

Other 2014 Election coverage
Ballot measuresState executive officialsSchool boards
State legislaturesU.S. HouseU.S. Senate

By Ballotpedia's State legislative team

Two former legislators defeated in 2012 are running to regain their seats in 2014. Jim Cobb (R), who held the District 31 seat from 2007 to 2012, will face current incumbent Ron Travis (R) in a Republican primary rematch. Travis won his party's nomination in 2012 by just 103 votes, or 1.2% of the total votes cast. District 60 representative from 2010 to 2012, Jim Gotto (R), will get a general election rematch with current incumbent Darren Jernigan (D) barring unforeseen circumstances with each unopposed in his respective primary. Jernigan won in 2012 by only 95 votes, which was just 0.4% of all votes cast. A former state senator, Kerry Roberts (R), is running for election this year. He represented District 18 from March 2011 until the 2012 election, when he chose not to run for re-election. He is challenging incumbent Jim Summerville (R) for his District 25 seat.

April 3 was the signature filing deadline for candidates wishing to run for Tennessee State Senate and Tennessee House of Representatives. Elections in 17 Senate districts and 99 House districts will consist of a primary election on August 7, 2014, and a general election on November 4, 2014.

See also: 2014's state legislative elections, Tennessee State Senate elections and Tennessee House of Representatives elections

Brawling in Newark headlines New Jersey school board elections

By Daniel Anderson

New Jersey school districts will hold their first round of 2014 school board elections on April 23, 2014. Three of the largest school districts in New Jersey are holding elections for a total of nine seats. In Passaic Public Schools, three of the four candidates running in the at-large race are incumbents attempting to retain their positions. The election in Edison Township Public Schools is significantly more competitive and features six newcomers challenging incumbents Jerry Shi and Frank Heelan for the three seats. Edison Township Board President Gene I. Maeroff decided not to run for re-election, thereby leaving his seat vacant and ensuring that at least one of the challengers will join the board.

Spotlight: Newark Public Schools

The school board for Newark Public Schools has served in an advisory capacity since the state government took over administration of New Jersey's largest school district in 1995.[4] However, recent board elections have still featured both competitive races and endorsements from prominent politicians such as former Newark mayor and current United States Senator Cory Booker.[5]

Superintendent Cami Anderson, Governor Chris Christie's appointee, proposed a systematic overhaul of the school district in 2013 titled "One Newark." The reform plan includes school closures, teacher layoffs, Teach for America hirings and changes to the district's enrollment system for both traditional and charter schools.[6] "One Newark" has garnered significant criticism from a variety of sources. American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten sent a letter to Governor Christie criticizing an element of the plan that would use teacher performance evaluations instead of seniority in deciding which teachers to layoff. At a rally in the state capital of Trenton, Newark mayoral candidate and City Councilman Ras Baraka stated, "We have the right to govern our own lives. We have the right to govern our own school system. We have a right to keep our school buildings open. [...] No one wants this One Newark plan, and no one wants Cami Anderson. One of the first steps that we make sure happens is that she gets the first ticket on the first train out of town. We've had enough."[7]

Baraka has endorsed incumbents Antoinette Baskerville-Richardson and Philip C. Seelinger, Jr. and newcomer Reginald Bledsoe as his "Children First" slate for the three at-large seats on the Newark Advisory Board.[8] From 2011 to 2013, Baraka's "Children First" slates won seven of the nine seats on the board.[9][10] Advisory Board Chairperson Baskerville-Richardson and fellow members of the "Children First" governing majority on the board have advocated for local control of Newark Public Schools and have opposed Superintendent Anderson's "One Newark" plan.[11]


Legislative Lowdown: Identifying competitive South Carolina elections in 2014

Seal of South Carolina.jpg
2014 South Carolina Legislative Lowdown

Table of Contents
Majority control
Margin of victory
Competitiveness

Other 2014 Election coverage
Ballot measuresState executive officialsSchool boards
State legislaturesU.S. HouseU.S. Senate

By Ballotpedia's State legislative team

March 30 was the signature filing deadline for candidates wishing to run for South Carolina House of Representatives. Elections in all 124 House districts will consist of a primary election on June 10, 2014, and a general election on November 4, 2014. The South Carolina State Senate will not hold elections this year.

Looking at the current partisan breakdown in the South Carolina House, because there will be very few actual general elections, the election should be unremarkable. Two races in particular should be interesting to watch, as the seats were won by a margin of victory of less than 5 percent in 2012. The primaries may prove more eventful, featuring seven challengers from 2012 seeking office again, one challenger from 2010 and Curtis Brantley (D), the former District 122 incumbent who was defeated in the 2012 Democratic primary.

See also: 2014's state legislative elections and South Carolina House of Representatives elections, 2014



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