Group gathers signatures against referendum-proof measures

Apr 19, 2013

DETROIT, MI (AP)--   A group is collecting signatures for a ballot measure that would let Michigan voters repeal laws made referendum-proof with appropriations.  

Ferndale-based Voters for Fair Use of Ballot Referendum kicked off its signature gathering at Detroit-area post offices Thursday.  Backers need nearly 323,000 valid signatures to put the constitutional amendment on the November 2014 ballot.

Michigan currently doesn't permit referendum drives if a law includes an appropriation, or spending measure.  Lawmakers have added appropriations to legislation such as the recent right-to-work and revised emergency manager laws.

Critics say laws that have very little to do with spending money are being purposely shielded from a public vote.

The founder of the ballot committee says he has approached larger organizations for support, but they have declined.