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Ohio Supreme Court sides with Kent citizens group on ballot initiative
Local citizens group wins a spot on the November ballot to try to force hearings on corporate influence 

Lauren Blue
Lee Brooker is with Kent Citizens for Democracy. He says the group will start its grassroots campaign for the amendment in October.
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A local citizens group has won a victory in its effort to get a charter amendment referendum on the November ballot.

Kent Citizen’s for Democracy is backing an amendment that would require the city to have annual public hearings about the influence of money and corporations on politics.

The city denied the group’s measure, claiming they needed to collect more than 1,700 signatures, which the Ohio Supreme Court says is higher than the level set by the Ohio Constitution.

Lee Brooker with Kent Citizens for Democracy says they realized they didn’t need that many signatures while working on a previous charter amendment.

LISTEN: Booker on the court decision

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“You don’t need to get the same number of people or approximating the same number of people you would need to actually vote for the thing to sign a petition to get it on the ballot. That’s just very unusual, and now -- as we know thanks to the Supreme Court --illegal, Brooker says.  

The city had been insisting backers of the measure needed the signatures of 10 percent of all registered voters in Kent, not 10 percent of those who voted in the last statewide election. Brooker says the group will start their grassroots campaign for the amendment in October. 

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