Petition Organizers Satisfied With Supreme Court Ruling

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COLUMBIA - A Missouri Supreme Court ruling on Tuesday cleared the way for three November ballot initiatives to proceed as scheduled. If passed in the November elections, the ballot initiatives will raise the state minimum wage, raise tobacco taxes, and put caps on payday lending.

The court ruled in favor of ballot language for the initiatives used by Missouri Secretary of State Robin Carnahan, and approved by State Auditor Tom Schweich. If the court had ruled against the ballot language, the initiatives could have been removed from the ballot even if they had enough petition signatures.

"It was just a huge victory, a 100 percent victory for the people," Grass Roots Organizing (GRO) Director Robin Acre said. "I also think that it was an opportunity, too, for us to really test out whether or not the ballot initiative is still going to be a good process for our democracy to work." GRO has joined other organizations from around the state to collect petition signatures for two of the ballot initiatives. "This was really a good win, so that we can begin to really re energize our base and move forward toward the November 6 election," Acre said. "We're going to have to do it with volunteers, but never underestimate the power of a small group of people."

Carnahan's office will now count petition signatures for the three initiatives to determine if they have enough signatures to appear on the November ballot. That process is expected to be completed by August 7th.