SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — A bill that would have restricted paying for signatures to get an initiative on the ballot has been vetoed.

Gov. Jerry Brown vetoed Assembly Bill 1947 on Tuesday, echoing his previous veto of a similar measure in 2018.

As I stated in my veto message to an almost identical bill — SB 168 of 2011 — “per signature payment is often the most cost-effective method for collecting the hundreds of thousands of signatures needed to qualify a ballot measure. Eliminating this option will drive up the cost of circulating ballot measures, thereby further favoring the wealthiest interests.”

While I understand the potential abuses of the current per-signature payment system, my perspective has not changed since 2011.

The bill would have made it against the law to pay people based on the number of signatures they collect. It would not have prohibit payments if the signature-gathering isn’t based on the amount of names collected.

AB1947 was introduced in January 2018. It passed the Assembly in April with a 50-26 vote and later passed the Senate.

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