Venture capitalist Tim Draper’s plan to break California into six different states has gotten the green light to collect signatures to put the initiative on the California ballot.
The managing partner of Draper Fisher Jurvetson needs roughly 800,000 signatures by the middle of July before he leaves it up to voters to decide whether Silicon Valley should indeed be a separate state.
Draper will most likely have to pay people to gather signatures outside parking lots and bus stations, TechCrunch reports.
These campaigns usually pay around $3 for every signature attained, but Draper told TechCrunch that he’s willing to pay a lot more than that to make his vision a reality.
The state of California put out an official analysis earlier this year explaining what would happen if Silicon Valley became its own state. The area’s tremendous concentration of wealth would strip a significant amount of funding for schools and social services away from the less financially-successful parts of the state.
Draper, however, insists that California needs to be decentralized because it has become too complex to be kept in order by a single state government.
He cites addressing the different needs of residents from different regions as well as the potential for price-slashing competition as the plan’s most fruitful benefits.
His proposed six new states would be Silicon Valley, West California, Jefferson, South California, Central California and North California.
Los Angeles would be located in West California, and San Diego would become South California’s largest city.
If the signatures are attained, the ballot could reach voters as soon as November.
But it’s not like the federal government will let this fly even if enough votes are garnered. The Constitution states that Congress must approve of the creation or division of any states, and the new states would add 10 senators to California’s already-divided political mix.
This would give California 12 Senate seats. Draper has yet to truly highlight the benefits of this part of the plan.