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Volunteers open homes to gather tax referendum signatures

Posted at 9:50 PM, Dec 28, 2019

SOUTH JORDAN, Utah — In a quiet South Jordan neighborhood, Daniel McClellan sat with his pen ready, waiting for Utah voters.

The volunteer, along with many others across the state, is working to gather signatures on the tax referendum. The goal is to put the newly passed massive tax overhaul bill up to a public vote. The bill failed to pass with a two-thirds majority, making it subject to a citizen referendum.

The grassroots effort to get the signatures has been organized mainly in a Facebook group. Volunteers have opened their homes and set up times at libraries and other local spots to gather signatures.

The group needs at least 116,000 verified signatures from at least 15 different Utah counties. The group hopes to get closer to 170,000 signatures, McClellan said. They have until Jan. 21 to collect all the necessary signatures to get the referendum on the November ballot.

Each packet costs around $5 to print and holds 49 signatures. The group is raising money to cover the cost of printing.

Utah Governor Gary Herbert responded to the grassroots movement Monday saying, "People can have a counterbalance to the legislature, so I understand that."

Tax reform is an issue that should be decided by the voters, McClellan said.

“It felt to me like they were basically saying, 'We will decide what is best for you,'" McClellan said. "And so that has been my pitch: Let’s let them know that we decide what’s best for us. It’s not to tell us what we need, it’s their job to listen to what we need."

Several people stopped by to show their support and sign the citizen referendum Saturday.

“We are going to vote at the ballot box and we are going to vote here as well,” Scott Sherman said as he and his wife signed the referendum.

For more information on the tax overhaul bill, click here.