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Petition signature bill moves to senate committee

Posted at 9:30 AM, Dec 19, 2018

LANSING, Mich. (WSYM) — A bill moving through the lame duck session could put a cap on the number of signatures collected for ballot proposals.

The lawmaker who sponsored it says it's all about bringing more rural voters into the legislative process,

Opponents claim it limits the will of the voters.

Republican State Representative James Lower says rural residents are being cut out of participating in some ballot initiatives.

The 70th district representative says out-of-state groups are paying collectors to push their agendas in heavily populated areas and skip rural regions.

Now a bill is being pushed to require collectors to gather signatures in rural communities and only qualify 15 percent of signatures gathered from each congressional district.

Opponents of the bill say the changes are unconstitutional and restrains the will of the public.

Democratic Representative Jeremy Moss says he believes the bill is a bad deal that's being rushed by the majority.

Sponsors say the bill will also require people who collect signatures to register and disclose if they're being paid or it they're volunteering their time.

Wednesday the bill moves to the Senate Elections Committee for consideration.