Categories:Other,United States

Opt-in privacy regime in the pipeline for a California ballot initiative

On 17 July 2013, former California state senator Steve Peace (director of the film Attack of the Killer Tomatoes) and trial lawyer Michael Thorsnes filed a potentially revolutionary draft ballot initiative with the California Attorney General’s Office.

If approved by voters, it would amend the California Constitution to establish a broad opt-in privacy regime with narrow exceptions. If supporters are able to collect the requisite number of signatures, the initiative would face a vote in November 2014 and, if approved in that election, it would take effect less than two months later, bringing to California a very different set of privacy rules than apply anywhere else in the US.

After the Attorney General’s Office reviews this initiative and decides, among other things, whether it requires a fiscal note (which appears likely), the initiative proponents will have 150 days to gather 807,615 petition signatures to place the initiative on the November 2014 ballot. This signature process is burdensome and expensive, and many proposed initiatives fail to clear its hurdle…

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