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Oct. 20, 2014
Arkansas Ballot Issues

Early Voting Underway in Arkansas
Issue 4 Ok'd for Ballot


Arkansans had their first opportunity Monday to cast votes in the 2014 election, which included ballot issues such as the Arkansas Alcoholic Beverage Amendment that survived a court challenge. 


The Arkansas Supreme Court on Thursday rejected a request to remove the proposed amendment also known as Issue 4 from the 2014 ballot. Challengers had said signatures for Issue 4 were submitted after the Constitutional deadline for ballot issues. Sponsors submitted their petitions on July 7, the state's deadline for ballot signatures because July 4 was a national holiday and offices were closed.


Court justices sided with the Secretary of State and petition sponsors over the deadline in saying that July 7 was sufficient because of the holiday. The court also rejected concerns raised about the proposal's ballot title.


Challenges seeking to remove an ethics amendment and state minimum wage initiative are still in court. The remaining two disputed issues do appear on the 2014 ballot for early voters. If the court rules to remove an issue, votes already cast on that ballot proposal would not be counted. If the court rules that the issues should remain on the ballot, votes on the ballot proposal would be counted.


The Public Policy Center will continue to follow these issues and keep you updated on the 2014 ballot measures.

2014 Arkansas Ballot Issue Fact Sheets


Want to know more about the ballot issues? The Public Policy Center has put together easy-to-read fact sheets on each issue that include both supporter and opponent viewpoints.

  • Issue No. 1 - An amendment empowering the General Assembly to provide for legislative committee review and approval of state agencies' administrative rules and Distribution.
  • Issue No. 2 - An amendment allowing more time to gather signatures on a state-wide initiative or referendum petition only if the petition as originally filed contained at least 75 percent of the valid signatures required.
  • Issue No. 3 - An amendment regulating contributions to candidates for state or local office, barring gifts from lobbyists to certain state officials, providing for setting salaries of certain state officials, and setting term limits for members of the general assembly.
  • Issue No. 4 - The Arkansas Alcoholic Beverage Amendment.
  • Issue No. 5 - An Act to Increase the Arkansas Minimum Wage.

We're also on YouTube. Watch our 8-minute video on the ballot issues or stay for a while longer and watch a 30-minute discussion on the state ballot issues recorded by AETN. 


Take Our Survey


The Public Policy Center is evaluating its ballot issue education program, including its newsletters and fact sheets. You can participate by taking this quick and anonymous survey.



Legislative Ballot Issues
Read up on the three ballot issues referred by the legislature. We include links to legislative bills, sponsors and financial impact forms. 

Ballot Issues From the People
Click here to find background on ballot proposals from the people as well as links to supporters and opponents.

Ballot Proposal News
Here you will find mentions of ballot issues on news blogs and websites. 

NewsIn the News
News organizations from across the state have been reporting on ballot measures and Arkansas election/voting issues. Here are links to stories we have come across:

HouseBackground on Ballot Measures from the Legislature
Read the Legislative bill 


Sponsor: Sen. Dismang 

There are no proponent or opposition groups registered with the Arkansas Ethics Commission specifically for this proposed ballot measure.

Additional Information: 
Attorney General Opinion



Sponsor:  Sen. Sample

There are no proponent groups registered with the Arkansas Ethics Commission specifically for this proposed ballot measure.

Opponent Group(s) 
Ballot Question Committee Filing for Family Council Action Committee




Issue 3 - An Amendment Regulating Contributions to Candidates for State or Local Office, Barring Gifts from Lobbyists to Certain State Officials, Providing for Setting Salaries of Certain State Officials, and Setting Term Limits for Members of the General Assembly


Read the Legislative bill


Sponsor: Rep. Sabin

There are no proponent groups registered with the Arkansas Ethics Commission specifically for this proposed ballot measure.


Opponent Group(s)
Legislative Question Committee filing for Arkansas Term Limits
Ballot Question Committee filing for Family Council Action Committee

AGBackground on Ballot Measures from the Public

Issue 4 - Arkansas Alcoholic Beverage Amendment


Read the Attorney General's Opinion certifying the measure at Opinion No. 2014-049.


Ballot Issue Group 

"Let Arkansas Decide" website 

Ballot Question Committee Filing for Let Arkansas Decide


Opponent Group(s)

"Citizens for Local Rights" website

Ballot Question Committee Filing for Citizens for Local Rights/Let Local Communities Decide for Themselves

Ballot Question Committee Filing for Arkansas Beverage Retailers Association

Ballot Question Committee Filing for Conway County Line Liquor Association Fund



Issue No. 5 - An Act to Increase the Arkansas Minimum Wage


Read the Attorney General's Opinion certifying the measure at Opinion No. 2013-156


Ballot Issue Groups

"Give Arkansas A Raise Now" website

Ballot Question Committee Filing for Give Arkansas A Raise Now

Ballot Question Committee Filing for Arkansas Interfaith Alliance

Ballot Question Committee Filing for Give Us A Raise

Ballot Question Committee Filing for America Votes


Opponent Group(s)

There are no opposition groups registered with the Arkansas Ethics Commission specifically for this proposed ballot measure.

Looking Forward - 2016 Ballot

Attorney General Opinions



Oct. 17, 2014 - The Arkansas Hemp and Marijuana Amendment - A ballot measure to legalize the cultivation, manufacturing, distribution, sale, purchase, possession and use of the cannabis plant in Arkansas was rejected for the second time this month. Opinion No. 2014-113 cited ambiguities in the ballot title and grammatical issues such as "subject-verb disagreements; use of plural antecedents with singular nouns and pronouns; unconventional usage in a number written in words; unconventional rendering of "and/or"; and repetitive and adjacent use of both a punctuation mark and a word meaning the same thing." Mary L. Berry of Summit submitted the measure.



Approved for circulation


Aug. 5, 2014 - The Arkansas Hemp and Cannabis Amendment - A ballot measure to legalize the cultivation, manufacture, distribution, sale, possession and use of the cannabis plant in Arkansas was certified for signature gathering. Opinion No. 2014-079 said the proposed constitutional amendment was identical to a previously approved measure. Frederick W. Porter of Hot Springs submitted the measure.


Aug. 14, 2014 - The Arkansas Medical Cannabis Act - A ballot measure to legalize the use of medical marijuana, and a system for growing and selling medical marijuana was certified for signature gathering. The ballot measure was similar to a recent proposal that did not receive enough signatures for the 2014 ballot. In Opinion No. 2014-086, the Attorney General cautioned the group that "according to my experience there is a direct correlation between the length and complexity of initiated acts and their susceptibility to a successful ballot title challenge." Melissa Fults, campaign director of Arkansans for Compassionate Care 2016, submitted the measure.  

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The University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture is celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Smith-Lever Act, the law responsible for creating Extension. 

To learn more about Extension's history and role in Arkansas, watch this video.

The Public Policy Center was established in 2004 to provide Arkansans with timely, credible, unaligned and research-based information and education about public issues. Public issues are defined as pressing and emerging issues that involve multiple points of view and have widespread consequences. Our goals are to:

  • increase citizen knowledge, awareness and understanding of public issues;
  • enhance public participation in decisions regarding public issues and
  • help citizens craft, evaluate and implement alternative solutions to public issues.

University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture -


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