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From: Libertas Institute
To: Sen. Weiler, T.,
Subject: 2000 citizen initiative was gutted by the legislature in 2013
Date: 2013-12-17T15:18:06Z

2000 citizen initiative was gutted by the legislature in 2013

Senator Weiler,

You likely didn't know it happened, but every Utah legislator voted for a bill in the 2013 general session that gutted a 2000 citizen initiative that restrained the government's power to take people's property. The initiative passed by 69% but was stripped of key provisions—unanimously and unknowingly—by the legislature this past year.

Initiative B curtailed the financial incentive that existed for law enforcement officers to seize property and use the resulting funds for their own department budget. House Bill 384, pitched to you and other lawmakers as a simple "re-codification," gutted many of the key protections that had been in place to protect property owners' rights and restrain the government's ability to profit from seizures.

In a new policy analysis (PDF), we analyze the key changes made and offer insight as to how this took place. We've spoken with several lawmakers about this already, all of whom were alarmed when they realized what happened. We suspect that you'll react similarly.

Click here to read the policy analysis.

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