SACRAMENTO — Giving the Legislature a chance to shape citizen ballot initiatives, disclosing the backers of initiative campaigns and allowing voters a do-over years after an initiative passes are among changes recommended in a report released Tuesday.
The report by the nonpartisan Public Policy Institute of California comes amid increasing criticism that California’s 102-year-old ballot initiative process has been hijacked by wealthy individuals and well-funded special interest groups pushing their own narrow agendas.
Nearly three-quarters of Californians support letting voters make laws and change public policies at the ballot box, the institute said, but a similar margin recognizes that the initiative system has flaws that could be corrected.
Tuesday’s report recommends giving state lawmakers time to negotiate changes to initiatives after they have qualified for the ballot but before they go before voters. A majority of Californians also support lowering the two-thirds margin it takes for lawmakers to put tax increases on the ballot, but most also oppose making it easier for the Legislature to raise taxes without a public vote.