Special Election Could Include Three Health Care-Related Measures
A special election in November could have as many as 10 "highly controversial" propositions on the ballot, including three health care-related measures, the San Diego Union-Tribune reports (Marelius, San Diego Union-Tribune, 5/4).
Margita Thompson, press secretary for Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R), on Tuesday said, "It's the governor's intention to have a special election."
Schwarzenegger said he believes he will have to decide whether to call a special election by June 10 for it to be held in November. Election officials have told initiative supporters to submit signatures by Friday to qualify measures for the ballot (Martin/Gledhill, San Francisco Chronicle, 5/4).
The ballot could include a measure that would require health care professionals to notify a parent or guardian before performing an abortion on a minor (San Diego Union-Tribune, 5/4).
Under the measure, physicians would be required to notify a parent or guardian 48 hours before they perform an abortion on an unmarried minor. In addition, the Department of Health Services would be required to maintain detailed records of abortions performed on minors, although the records would exclude names. The measure also would impose civil penalties on individuals who coerce a minor to have an abortion.
Supporters of the measure last month submitted more than 950,000 signatures to qualify the measure for the statewide ballot (California Healthline, 4/15).
A proposed ballot measure sponsored by labor unions and Democrats would provide discounts on prescription drugs to some low-income state residents (San Diego Union-Tribune, 5/4).
Under the proposal, pharmaceutical manufacturers would be required to provide discounts on drugs for low-income residents or face exclusion from Medi-Cal. Supporters of the proposal say it would help the state use its purchasing power to negotiate lower drug prices under the plan (California Healthline, 4/15).
In addition, the pharmaceutical industry is supporting an alternative to the labor-supported measure (San Diego Union-Tribune, 5/3).
The measure, drafted by the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, would create a voluntary drug discount program for pharmaceutical companies modeled on Schwarzenegger's California Rx proposal (California Healthline, 4/15). The Senate Health Committee last week rejected a bill (SB 19) that would have enacted the proposal (California Healthline, 4/28).