[JURIST] Nevada citizens on Tuesday voted to approve the creation of an appellate court in Nevada [amendment text]. Previously, the state’s 10 district courts could hear appeals from municipal and justice courts, but the Nevada Supreme Court [official website] was required to hear appeals from cases originating in district courts, because Nevada’s constitution [text] protects its citizens’ right to appeal. Nevada’s legislature [official website] approved the text of the amendment [materials] for the ballot in May. Although all appeals will still be filed with Nevada’s Supreme Court [AP report], the court will then have the discretion to assign cases to the newly formed appellate court.
Voters across the US faced a number of ballot initiatives this election day. Alabama voters approved the Foreign Laws in Court Amendment, a ballot measure that prohibits the use of foreign law [JURIST report] to make decisions in Alabama courts. Colorado voters rejected Proposition 105, a measure that would have required companies to label foods containing genetically modified organisms [JURIST report]. Tennessee, Colorado and North Dakota voted on abortion measures [JURIST report]. While Colorado voters rejected an amendment which would extend “personhood” to unborn fetuses and North Dakota voters rejected an amendment which would specify that life begins at conception, Tennessee voters approved an amendment clarifying that the right to an abortion is neither secured nor protected by the state’s constitution. Washington and Alabama voted on gun laws, with Washington voters approving a measure requiring background checks for all gun purchases, and Alabama voters approved a measure stating “that every citizen has a fundamental right to bear arms and that any restriction of this right would be subject to strict scrutiny.” Voters in Alaska, Oregon and Washington, DC, all voted to legalize recreational marijuana [JURIST report].