The state’s Elections Division has issued petition booklets for an initiative that aims to make applications for Permanent Fund dividends double as voter registration forms, clearing the way for signature gathering to begin. It has set an Aug. 22 deadline for the petition booklets to be submitted. The petition sponsors have received training from state elections officials on how to comply with state signature gathering rules since the July certification of the measure by Lt. Gov. Byron Mallott. The initiative sponsors will now have about a year to collect 28,545 valid signatures, according to elections officials, a task made more complicated by a requirement that minimum numbers of signatures must come from 30 of the state’s 40 House of Representatives districts.
A political group has also been formed to support the initiative, giving additional clues as to who will be backing the initiative.
The group, PFD Voter Registration, is chaired by Kim Reitmeier, president of the ANCSA Regional Association, made up of the chief executive officers of the state’s regional Native corporations. She was one of the initiative’s three original sponsors.