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Opinion » Editorial

Election 2008: State Measures

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Measure 54: Yes

Amends Constitution: Does away with a non-enforceable law that requires voters to be 21 years of age to vote in a school board election.

Measure 55: Yes

Amends Constitution: Changes operative date of redistricting plans by allowing affected legislators to finish their terms in their original district.

Measure 56: Yes

Amends Constitution: Repeals Oregon's double majority law making it easier to pass local tax measures. Specifically, it provides that May and November property tax elections are decided by a majority of voters.

Measure 57: No

Increases sentences for drug trafficking, theft against elderly and specified repeat property and identity theft crimes; requires addiction treatment for certain offenders.

Measure 58: No

Prohibits teaching public school students in a language other than English for more than two years.

Measure 59: No

Creates an unlimited deduction for federal income taxes on individual taxpayers' Oregon income-tax returns, creating a tax break for upper income earners.

Measure 60: No

Requires that teacher "classroom performance," not seniority, determines pay raises. Also requires that schools maintain the most qualified teachers retained, regardless of seniority. Yet another Sizemore initiative aimed at toppling unions.

Measure 61: No

Kevin Mannix's get tough on crime proposals creates mandatory minimum prison sentences for certain theft, identity theft, forgery, drug, and burglary crimes. It also comes at a time when the rates of these crimes are at a historic low and carries a hefty price tag: $2 billion by some estimates.

Measure 62: No

Amends Constitution: Allocates 15% of lottery proceeds to public safety fund for crime prevention, investigation, prosecution. But these funds are already allocated to other key state programs, like health care and education, at the legislature's discretion.

Measure 63: No

Exempts specified property owners from building permit requirements for improvements valued under $35,000 dollars. No building inspections, really? Talk about structurally unsound.

Measure 64: No

Penalizes person, entity for using funds collected with public resource for political purposes. Another swipe at public employee unions from Bill Sizemore. The measure would prevent unions from collecting payroll dues. Don't be fooled by this cagily worded initiative.

Measure 65: No

This would do away with the exclusive "party" primaries that can hamper independents. But it would also create an untested run off system. This mirrors a recent change in Washington state, let's see how it works there before adopting it here.


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