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INITIATIVE, REFERENDUM, AND RECALL: A RESUME OF STATE PROVISIONS

Introduction

This report summarizes constitutional and statutory provisions which permit the voters of a given State to take direct popular political action; i.e., to conduct initiative, referendum, and recall elections whenever it has been demonstrated that sufficient popular support exists for such action.

Specifically, initiative refers to the process whereby voters may propose laws and/or constitutional amendments and enact them independent of the legislature; referendum is the process whereby voters may express their judgment on measures enacted by the legislature; and the recall permits voters to express their views on retaining or removing an elected official from office.

This report discusses only those provisions which permit these actions to be taken at the statewide level. Several additional States permit such activity at the local or municipal level; however, due both to their volume and their limited applicability, such statutes have not been included in the

survey.

The following depicts in chart form which States have adopted

such procedures:

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ALASKA

Unless otherwise indicated, references are to the Alaska Constitution of 1959 and to the Alaska Statutes Annotated (August 1971 main volume and October 1975 Supplement).

Initiative

1.

Constitutional amendments

No (see discussion under referendum, in

fra).

2.

3.

4.

Statutes Yes (Const., Art. XI, §1; Stats., §15.45.010).

Signatures required on petition - 10% of total vote in preceding general election, of persons resident in at least two-thirds of the election districts of the State (Const., Art. XI, §3; Stats., §15.45.140).

Filing provisions - With Lieutenant Governor, at any time (Const.,
Art. XI, §4; Stats., $15.45. 140).

Preliminary filing before soliciting signatures - Yes (Stats., §§15.45. 020 15.45.080).

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7.

8.

9.

10.

11.

12.

Vote necessary for adoption - majority of votes cast on the proposition (Stats., $15.45.220).

Effective date of law - 90 days after certification by Lieutenant Governor of results of vote (Stats. $15.45.220).

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Amendment or repeal by legislature after approval by voters - No repeal within two years of effective date; amendment at any time (Const., Art. XI, $6).

Availability of information to voters - Display by election boards of copies of the proposal in voting rooms (Stats. $15.45.200).

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No revenue measures, appropriations, acts affecting the judiciary, local or special legislation, or laws necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health or safety (Const. Art. XI, §7).

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Referendum

1. On statutes enacted by the legislature Yes (Const., Art. XI, $1; Stats., $15. 45. 250). [Note constitutional amendments submitted by the legislature to the people, and a decennial determination by the voters for the holding of a constitutional convention, may also be submitted by the legislature for decision by a majority of voters voting thereon (Const., Art. XIII).]

2.

3.

Signatures required on petition See "Initiative," supra (Stats., $15. 45.370).

Filing provisions With Lieutenant Governor within 90 days after adjournment of legislative session (Stats., $$15.45.260, 15.45.370).

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7.

8.

9.

10.

Majority of votes cast on the

Statute voided if majority vote rejects - 30 days after certification of result of vote by Lieutenant Governor (Stats., $15.45.440).

Availability of information to voters display by election boards of copies of the statute in voting rooms (Stat., §15.45.430).

Restrictions on the use of the referendum - Not against revenue measures, appropriations, local or special laws, or emergency legislation necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health, or safety (Const., Art. XI, §7; Stats., $15.45.250).

Amendment or repeal by legislature after approval by voters
ly at any time.

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