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House defeats bill that would make it easier to overturn new laws

Published February 1, 2016 4:00 pm

Temporary? • Sponsor hopes to resurrect bill with some changes.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2016, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

The House voted down a bill Monday that sought to make it a little easier for voters to overturn newly enacted laws that they dislike.

But its sponsor hopes some changes may allow a speedy resurrection.

The House killed, at least temporarily, HB11 by a 42-29 margin. It is designed to give residents a little extra time to launch referendums seeking to overturn any new laws enacted by the Legislature.



Rep. Fred Cox, R-West Valley City, the bill's sponsor, had sought to change current law that requires residents to file initial paperwork for such a referendum within five days of the legislative session's end.

He said the governor usually hasn't decided whether to sign many bills by then — he may wait until 20 days after the session to decide. So if critics of a newly passed bill wait to see if the governor will veto it, they could miss the deadline to file their paperwork.

HB11 would have allowed filing as late as five days after the governor signs a bill, or five days after a bill become law without the governor's signature. Then residents would have 60 days to collect the 100,000 signatures needed to put the issue on the ballot.

He said that would still take a miracle. "But it we do something that ticks off enough people, it's possible."

However, the House adopted amendments proposed by Rep. LaVar Christensen, R-Draper, that he said would smooth the bill's wording.

Cox said that inadvertently left out some language. He said the result was that for any bill passed early in a session, HB11 might actually give people a little less time to file paperwork than now.

Cox said he feels that it why it was voted down. He said he will make changes, and try to bring it back.

He said he will also talk to other House members to see if other reasons exist for opposition. He said he does not know if his support for opponents to moving the prison last year could have played a role.

The bill, without Christensen's amendments, earlier passed in committee on a 9-0 vote.

 

 

 

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