Two Washington state initiatives are one step closer to the ballot after being certified by newly elected Secretary of State Kim Wyman.
How would you vote on I-522 and I-517? Tell us in the comments section.
Initiative 522, which would require labeling for food containing genetically modified organisms (GMOs), was certified Thursday. The measure would require any food sold in Washington state and made with genetically engineered crops to be labeled.
Tim Eyman's Initiative 517, the so-called initiative on initiatives, was verified Jan. 23. I-517 lengthens the amount of time signatures can be gathered from six to 12 months and broadens the legal definition of disorderly conduct to include interference or retaliation against a signature-gatherer. It also requires that all valid initiatives appear on the ballot.
Initiatives to the legislature currently require at least 241,153 valid signatures; the number is equal to 8 percent of the votes cast for governor in 2008. A threshold of 246,372 will apply to initiatives filed in 2013-2016.
After initiatives are certified, the legislature can pass the law as it stands, take no action and send the measure to the November ballot, or send the initiative and an alternative measure to the ballot and allow voters to choose their preferred option.
Historically, most initiatives have been sent to the ballot without an alternative, according to the secretary of state's office.