Filed: March 14, 2002

IN THE SUPREME COURT OF THE STATE OF OREGON

STEVEN NOVICK,

Petitioner,

v.

HARDY MYERS,
Attorney General,
State of Oregon,

Respondent.


STEVEN NOVICK,

Petitioner,

v.

HARDY MYERS,
Attorney General,
State of Oregon,

Respondent.

(SC S49020; S49022)
(Consolidated for Opinion)

En Banc

On petition objecting to modified ballot titles.*

Submitted February 26, 2002.

Margaret S. Olney, of Smith, Gamson, Diamond & Olney, Portland, filed the petition for petitioner.

Judy C. Lucas, Assistant Attorney General, Salem, filed the response for respondent. With her on the response were Hardy Myers, Attorney General, and Michael Reynolds, Solicitor General.

BALMER, J.

Modified ballot titles referred to Attorney General for modification.

*333 Or 314, __ P3d __ (2002) (referring ballot titles for modification).

BALMER, J.

In these ballot title review proceedings, which we consolidated for opinion, this court determined that the Attorney General's ballot titles for two proposed initiative measures, which the Secretary of State denominated as Initiative Petitions 120 (2002) and 121 (2002), failed to comply substantially with statutory standards. Novick v. Myers, 333 Or 314, P3d (2002). The court referred the ballot titles to the Attorney General for modification. See ORS 250.085(8) (describing procedure). The Attorney General filed modified ballot titles for the proposed initiative measures, and, under ORS 250.085(9), petitioner objected to the modified ballot titles.

Petitioner initially objected to the "yes" vote result statements in the certified ballot titles, because those statements failed to state that adoption of either proposed measure would reduce state revenues. This court determined that those objections were well taken. In response to this court's decision, the Attorney General modified the "yes" vote result statements as follows:

"RESULT OF 'YES' VOTE: 'Yes' vote taxes corporate and personal capital gains differently from other income, lowers that tax rate to four percent, reducing revenue for other state expenditures."

Petitioner contends that use of the word "other" to modify "state expenditures" is inaccurate because the proposed initiative measures would reduce the revenue available for all public services funded through the State General Fund. Petitioner asserts that the reduction does not relate to any specific state expenditure and, thus, that the use of the term "other" is inaccurate. We agree. If either proposed initiative measure were to pass, then revenues for state expenditures generally would be reduced. The use of the word "other" to modify "state expenditures" is inaccurate.

We have considered petitioner's other objections to the modified ballot titles and conclude that they are not well taken.

For the foregoing reasons, the Attorney General must modify the "yes" vote result statements of the modified ballot titles for Initiative Petitions 120 (2002) and 121 (2002).

Modified ballot titles referred to Attorney General for modification.


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