Contentious bill would put referendums on November ballots

A voter places her ballot into a ballot box in Los Angeles, California.
A voter places her ballot into a ballot box in Los Angeles, California. Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

The California Assembly has approved legislation that would move all initiatives and referendums to the general election ballots in November. It would also postpone the June vote on the state's rainy day fund.

Statewide initiatives now can appear on the general election or June primary ballots.

The last-minute bill proposed by Democratic Sen. Loni Hancock of Berkeley squeaked through the Assembly Friday after an embattled 41-28 vote. The bill will not proceed to the Senate.

The bill would postpone the scheduled June 2012 vote on whether to strengthen California's rainy day fund, pushing it to November 2014.

Democrats placed it on the ballot last year as part of a budget deal with Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. Democratic Assemblyman Mike Gatto of Los Angeles authored that measure and opposed the switch, saying lawmakers need to keep their commitments.

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