Results from the Citizens' Initiative Review of Measure 73

Oregonians from all walks of life, Republicans and Democrats, from Klamath Falls to Portland, came together over five days to study Ballot Measure 73, which deals with mandatory minimum sentencing. Together they drafted the following Citizen Statement detailing their evaluation of the Measure.

This panel of 24 voters heard from advocates for and against Measure 73, and called upon policy experts during the first legislatively empowered Citizens' Initiative Review. Additional details from the the Citizens' Initiative Review pilot project, including video from presentations and materials presented to the panel, will be made available as part of an online archive of the Citizens' Initiative Review soon.

Note: The following information will be included in the statewide Voters' Pamphlet this Fall as part of the Citizen Statement on Measure 73.

Citizen Statement of a Majority of the Panel:

Key Findings: The following are statements about the measure and the number of panelists who agree with each statement:

  1. M73 shifts the balance of power in court proceedings, giving the prosecution additional leverage in plea bargaining and limiting the judge's discretion in sentencing individual cases. (21 agree)
  2. Passed in 1994, Measure 11 (ORS 137.700) provides mandatory minimum sentencing of 70-300 months for the major felony sex crimes defined in Measure 73. (24 agree)
  3. Mandatory minimum sentencing has not proven a significant deterrent to future DUII or sex crimes. (21 agree)
  4. An unintended consequence of M73 is that juveniles aged 15 to 17 are subject to 25 year mandatory minimum sentences. (20 agree)
  5. Oregon spends over 10.9% of its general funds on corrections - a greater percentage than any other state. (19 agree)

Citizen Statement Opposed to the Measure:

POSITION TAKEN BY 21 OF 24 PANELISTS

We, 21 members of the Citizens' Initiative Review, oppose Ballot Measure 73 for the following reasons:

  1. Longer mandatory sentencing has little or no effect as a deterrent and has not been proven to increase public safety. Furthermore mandatory sentences are already in effect under Measure 11.
  2. Measure 73 takes discretion and power away from judges giving leverage to the prosecution. People charged under this measure may be forced to plea bargain whether they are guilty or not, depriving them of their right to trial by jury.
  3. Measure 73 requires projected expenditures of $238 million over the next 10 years which must come from cuts in other programs or new taxes.
  4. This initiative leads to unintended consequences. Sexting falls under the definition of explicit material. No one convicted for felony sex offenses would receive the opportunity for treatment.

Citizen Statement in Favor of the Measure:

POSITION TAKEN BY 3 OF 24 PANELISTS

We, 3 members of the Citizens' Initiative Review, support Ballot Measure 73 for the following reasons

  1. This is a public safety measure.
  2. This measure will take minimum mandatory sentences (70-100 months) on four major sex crimes to mandatory 300 months (25 years).
  3. This measure changes a third conviction DUII from a misdemeanor to a Class C felony.
  4. Measure 73 specifically targets only repeat serious sex offenders and repeat (third conviction) intoxicated drivers.
  5. Statistics support that mandatory sentencing is effective on reduction of violent crime rate.
  6. Measure 73 will cost only 1/5 of 1% of the General Fund.

Summary: Measure 73 is carefully targeted at repeat violent sex offenders and third time DUII convictions. If passed it would make all Oregonians safer.

Shared Agreement Statement

Public policy impacts all citizens, we have had the opportunity to closely review material not readily available to voters, and have tried to examine both sides of this measure in an unbiased manner.