KEEPING VOTERS INFORMED

From The Eugene Resgister-Guard:

A year ago, the Oregon Legislature wisely chose to institutionalize a promising pilot project that convenes panels of citizens to weigh the merits and deficiencies of ballot measures and report back to voters. This week, the project has hit a speed bump — one that shouldn’t affect its long-term success, but which reflects poorly on the sponsors of a union-backed ballot measure to repeal “kicker” tax rebates for corporations.

The concept behind the citizen review process is simple: A representative panel of two dozen people from across the state spends a full week studying and discussing an initiative, and then it publishes its findings in the Voters’ Pamphlet. Those findings include statements both for and against initiatives, as well as the panel’s recommendation on how Oregonians should vote.

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