Woodland Preservation Initiative

Proponents of an initiative to limit development in woodlands and watersheds submitted petitions to get the measure on the June ballot to the Election Office on Friday morning. Co-author of the initiative Jim Wilson, right, hands over boxes of signed petitions to Registrar of Voters John Tuteur, center, and Jennie Keener, assessment records assistant.

J.L. Sousa, Register

Proponents for a proposed oak woodland and watershed protection measure are hoping that the second time is the charm.

On Friday morning, they turned in more than 7,000 signatures to the county Election Division on a petition to qualify the measure for the June 5 ballot. They need about 3,800 to be from registered, local voters to succeed.

It seems like a slam dunk. And yet …

Last year, proponents collected enough valid signatures, only to have the measure disqualified on a technicality. County officials said the initiative referenced a county policy appendix, so signature gatherers should have carried that document with them in case potential signers wanted to read it.

Measure co-author Mike Hackett noted that the new version doesn’t reference that county appendix on voluntary oak preservation practices.

Registrar of Voters John Tuteur will now examine the petitions to make certain enough signatures are valid. If he determines this is so, he will forward the measure to the county Board of Supervisors to place on the June 5 ballot.

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