Idaho Organization of Resource Councils (IORC) is deeply disappointed in Governor Little’s decision to sign Senate Bill 1110 into law. This legislation is clearly a retaliatory measure in response to Idahoans who voted to expand Medicaid in 2019—a ballot initiative that was needed after the Idaho Legislature failed to pass legislation that would allow more Idahoans to access necessary healthcare services. Medicaid expansion is the only ballot initiative to be passed in Idaho in the last 18 years. Prior to that, citizen initiatives led to good legislation establishing the Fish and Game Commission, requiring disclosure of campaign contributions, and lowering property taxes.
Senate Bill 1110 requires petitions to obtain signatures of at least 6% of eligible voters in all 35 voting districts in Idaho in order to qualify to be added to the ballot. This is a change from the previous requirement to obtain the same percentage of signatures in only 18 of the 35 districts. Requiring petition campaigns to meet these nearly impossible thresholds takes even more power from Idahoans and opens the door for out-of-state special interests to more easily interfere with the voices of Idaho voters. The Idaho Constitution states “the people reserve to themselves the power to propose laws, and enact the same at the polls independent of the legislature” (ID Const. Article III, § 1). Any attempts to limit this right are done so by circumventing the constitutional amendment process and put Idaho at unnecessary risk of costly litigation.
IORC stands behind the team at Reclaim Idaho who are pursuing both litigious and ballot initiative measures to fight back against this unconstitutional law. You can learn more about their efforts at reclaimidaho.org.