The initiative process has become a significant generator of local public policy throughout California. While initiatives at the state level have dealt with a myriad of policy issues, the primary focus of local initiatives has been land use and local development. These initiatives have fundamentally reshaped local planning procedures. There are signs of countervailing trends that may empower the local initiative process. Local initiative proponents are becoming more familiar with the procedural requirements; information technology has assisted in educating voters about local initiatives; and business and union interests are beginning to find more at stake at the local level, prompting their attention to local initiatives. Today is the opportune time to establish a set of reforms to make local initiatives a meaningful but supplementary form of governance, a useful tool that can increase confidence in local government but avoid overwhelming representative democracy.