August 30, 2016

Take a deep breath in, and breathe out a sigh of relief, Weld County!

The Colorado Secretary of State’s office announced on Monday, August 29 that the two remaining anti-oil and gas ballot initiatives—Initiatives 75 and 78—both failed to gather enough valid signatures to qualify for the November ballot.

To make the ballot, an initiative must have 98,492 valid signatures.  In the process of confirming signatures, the Secretary of state takes a random sample of 5% of the signatures submitted to check their validity.  They then project a total number of valid signatures based on that sample, and if the number projected exceeds 110% of the needed 98,432, the measure qualifies for the ballot.  The process is the same for ALL initiatives.

The proponents of 75 and 78 submitted approximately 107,000 signatures for each initiative.  Based on the 5% random sample, it was projected that Initiative 75 would have 79,634 valid signatures and 78 would have 77,109.  In other words, both initiatives came up short by around 20,000 valid signatures, despite receiving funds from national organizations like Food and Water Watch, Greenpeace, the Sierra Club, and San Francisco billionaire activist Tom Steyer.  Additionally, the proponents of the initiatives are under investigation by the Colorado Attorney General for potential fraudulent activity in section 2109 of the petitions for Initiative 78.

This marks a huge win for Weld County and for the State of Colorado.  If either of these initiatives had passed, the economic impacts would have been absolutely devastating, with more than 100,000 Coloradoans losing their jobs almost overnight.  By refusing to sing the petitions, Coloradoans made it clear that the oil and gas industry is welcome to keep thriving in Colorado.

SoS initiative numbers

This image appeared in the press release issued by the Colorado Secretary of State’s office on Monday, August 29, 2016 retarding Initiatives 75 and 78.