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Ballot measures

Backers of another shot at a 'Calexit' ballot measure can now gather signatures

Supporters of a plan for California to become independent from the United States are now allowed to gather signatures for their ballot measure.

On Tuesday afternoon, Atty. Gen. Xavier Becerra's office released an official title and summary for the initiative, now called the "California Autonomy From Federal Government" initiative.

The proposal, scaled back from an initially more aggressive version, would direct California's governor to negotiate more autonomy from the federal government, including potentially putting forward a ballot measure to declare independence.  

The initiative wouldn't necessarily result in California exiting the country, but could allow the state to be a “fully functioning sovereign and autonomous nation” within the U.S.

Backers of the plan, known informally as "Calexit" have 180 days to collect nearly 600,000 valid signatures for the initiative to go on the 2018 ballot.

Backers of an effort for California independence gathered outside the Capitol before turning in their initiative on May 19. (Liam Dillon / Los Angeles Times)
Backers of an effort for California independence gathered outside the Capitol before turning in their initiative on May 19. (Liam Dillon / Los Angeles Times)

The initiative's fiscal analysis says it would cost the state at least $1.25 million a year for an advisory commission to assist the governor on California's independence plus "unknown, potentially major, fiscal effects if California voters approved changes to the state’s relationship with the United States at a future election after the approval of this measure."

The earlier effort for a more aggressive ballot measure was pulled by its backers less than three months after it got the green light to start gathering signatures.

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