Mar 05 2013

Ohio Omnibus Election Law Bill

Source: Ballot Access News

The Ohio Secretary of State’s omnibus election law bill, SB 47, has a few provisions that impact ballot access. The bill repeals the ban on out-of-state circulators, for all types of petition. The only remaining requirement for a circulator would be that the circulator is at least 18 years old.

However, it makes it somewhat more difficult for initiatives and referendum to appear on the ballot. Currently, when election official determine that such a petition lacks enough valid signatures, the proponents have ten days to collect more signatures. The bill eliminates the ability to get new signatures during the ten-day period. Instead, the only supplemental signatures that could be submitted would be those that had been collected before the ten-day period, but (for some reason) had not been submitted already.

Also, the bill says that petitions to place a candidate on the ballot must be completed within one year. This is not a serious restriction, because no candidate petition in Ohio requires more than 5,000 signatures. The provision does not relate to petitions for a newly-qualifying party. Thanks to Will Klatt for news of this bill.

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