December 2020
2022 Ballot Process Underway
Legislative Session Begins in January
Now that the 2020 election is over, our attention shifts to potential 2022 ballot issues.

Arkansas lawmakers convene next month and during the 93rd General Assembly, they'll propose constitutional amendments for the 2022 ballot.

Legislators have the ability to refer up to three constitutional amendments to voters, and a fourth if it is for proposed changes to salaries of elected state officials. A fourth proposal is less likely with the passage of Amendment 94 in 2014 that created an independent citizens commission to set salaries.

Calendar
The first day of the legislative session is set for Jan. 11.

Historically, lawmakers have proposed up to four dozen different amendments though some were similar with minor differences.

Bill filing began Nov. 16 and legislators have until Feb. 10 to file proposed amendments. The joint rules the House and Senate follow say no proposed amendments can be filed after the 31st day of the session.

As of Dec. 10, no proposed amendments have been filed.

How to Follow Along
It's unclear whether the pandemic will affect the public's ability to be at legislative meetings in the Capitol. Below are some ways to follow along from home or the office:

Want to read the text of new bills being filed? All of the bills filed in the session can be found online.

Wondering when committees meet? The calendar shows upcoming meetings and agendas.


2022 Citizen Initiative Process
Arkansas is one of 15 states where citizens have the right to put constitutional amendments, state laws and referendums on the ballot for voters to decide.

The citizen initiative process involves filing a ballot title with the Secretary of State's Office, collecting voter signatures across the state and submitting the petitions for verification. The Board of Election Commissioners also must approve the ballot title.

Referendums require voter signatures equaling 6% of the number of people who voted in the last governor's election. State laws require 8%, and constitutional amendments require 10%.
Submitted to the Secretary of State
Act 376 of 2019 requires ballot issue groups to submit a copy of their ballot title to the Secretary of State's Office before collecting voter signatures.

Ballot titles that have been filed for the 2022 ballot include:

May 22, 2020 - The Arkansas Recreational Marijuana Amendment of 2022 - A proposal to legalize adult marijuana use and to allow certain marijuana convictions to be expunged was submitted by Arkansas True Grass.
2020 Election Stats
After all 75 counties submitted their certified election results, the Arkansas Secretary of State's Office reported 1,223,675 ballots cast in the November 2020 general election.

That number represents a turnout of 66.91% of Arkansas' registered voters.

Cleveland County reported the highest voter turnout with 78% of its registered voters casting a ballot. Find your county's voter turnout.
#ARballot
University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture, Cooperative Extension Service
2301 S. University Ave., Little Rock, AR 72204
501-671-2160 | Publicpolicycenter@uaex.edu | uaex.edu/ballot