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Voter ID question will not be on April ballot

Dec. 30, 2009

Wauwatosa residents won't see an advisory referendum on whether Wisconsin should require all voters to show a state-issued ID on the April election ballot.

Organizers of a petition said the holiday season turned out to be a bad time to collect signatures.

"This is not a time conducive for people to be politically active," Alderwoman Jacqueline Jay said.

From the start, she said the timeframe would be tight. Today is the deadline to get the referendum on the April ballot, and doing so would require having collected 3,656 signatures.

Jay said there is not a lack of interest, just a lack of time, to pursue direct legislation, a resident-initiated procedure to compel the Common Council to put a proposed ordinance or resolution before the public for a popular vote.

Even though the voter ID measure won't make it on the April ballot, the group can still collect signatures through January. If they reach their goal, the measure could appear on the November ballot.

But if the group just can't get enough signatures this winter, they'll try the process again this summer, Jay said.

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