The Idaho Senate State Affairs Committee heard testimony on a proposal to make it more difficult to qualify ballot initiatives in the state, but delayed a vote on the bill to Friday.
If passed and signed by Gov. Brad Little, the bill would make it far tougher to gather signatures to get measures on statewide ballots. Last fall, voters passed Proposition 2, which will expand Medicaid in Idaho, with more than 60 percent support.
The new bill, sponsored by Sen. Scott Grow, R-Eagle, would require campaigns to gather signatures from 10 percent of registered voters in 32 of Idaho’s 35 legislative districts.
That’s almost double the current requirement of gathering signatures from 6 percent of the registered voters in 18 of the 35 legislative districts. The bill would also reduce the time available to qualify initiatives from 18 months to 180 days.
The hearing will be continued at 8 a.m. Friday.
The Idaho Senate approved a budget Monday that included $9.3 million to fund Medicaid expansion, which will now move to the House. Last Friday, the House Health and Welfare Committee held a hearing on a bill to add work requirements to Medicaid expansion, among other proposals, but delayed a vote on the legislation.