GANT APPROVES HB 1234 PETITIONS.
Today, Secretary of State Jason Gant announced that the petitions submitted for the referral of House Bill 1234 passed the signature certification process. The measure, “an act to provide incentives to teach in critical need areas, to provide for rewards for the best teachers and those teaching in math and science subject areas, to revise certain provisions regarding evaluation of teachers, to create a system for evaluating principals, to distinguish between tenured and nontenured teachers, to revise certain provisions regarding the employment of teachers, and to repeal provisions regarding the teacher compensation assistance program,” was signed by the Governor in March, and was submitted for the ballot by officials of the South Dakota Education Association.
“Petition circulators submitted approximately 30,096signatures to refer the measure to a vote. According to State law and administrative rule, we drew a random sample of 1,505 signature lines to check for validation, which comprised the required audit of 5% of the signatures,” Gant said.
“From our sample of 1,505 signatures, we validated 1,289 and invalidated 216 for various reasons, including lack of voter registration, as well as other errors such as blank lines, printing the name and an improper signature date. Invalid signatures comprised 14.35% of the total signatures sampled, and under state law, the number of valid signatures sampled was sufficient for the measure to pass validation for the ballot,” Gant said. “If we extrapolate the valid signatures, as per South Dakota Law, they were considered to have 25,777, significantly greater than the 15,855 needed.”
According to state law, a referral measure or an initiative petition shall be signed by at least five percent of the total votes cast for Governor in the last gubernatorial election (15,855), and a constitutional amendment requires a petition signed by at least ten percent of the total votes cast for Governor in the last gubernatorial election (31,709).
Gant noted, “The 14.35% invalidation rate was among the lowest of any ballot measure proposed for the November 2012 ballot.” Recent measures submitted for the ballot included the one cent sales tax measure which had an 18.66% invalidation rate, and last years’ House Bill 1230 measure, which had a 19.74% invalidation rate.
The referral of House Bill 1234 will be found on the ballot as Referred Law 16, and joins Referred Law 14, Initiated Measure 15, and Constitutional Amendments M, N, O, and P. For more information on this election’s ballot measures, visit the Secretary of State’s website at sdsos.gov.