Signature requirements for ballot measures in Florida
|Laws • History|
|List of measures|
To place a constitutional amendment on the ballot, proponents must collect signatures equal to 8% of the total number of votes cast in the last Presidential election. To place a call for a constitutional convention on the ballot, proponents must collect signatures equal 15% of that total.
Basis of calculation
- 2013-2016: In 2012, 8,474,179 Florida voters cast a presidential vote, providing the signature requirements for ballot measures until the 2016 presidential election.
- 2009-2012: In Florida, 8,460,133 voters cast a presidential vote in 2008, setting the basis for signature requirement calculation until after the 2012 presidential election. .
- See also: Distribution requirement
Proponents must obtain signatures equaling at least 8% of the district-wide vote (in the most recent presidential election) in at least half (14) of the state's 27 congressional districts.
The deadline for signatures to be certified by the Florida Secretary of State in order to qualify initiatives and constitutional amendments for the Florida ballot is set by law to be February 1, 2014. Petitioners must submit signatures long enough before this date to allow state elections officials to validate the signatures. State officials are allowed a maximum of 30 days to investigate signatures.
- See also: Petition drive deadlines, 2012
- See also: Laws governing recall in Florida
Signatures must be collected at two points in the recall process in Florida, once before the recall target has provided a 200-word defense and one after that.
First round of signatures
The number of signatures required to force a local recall election in Florida varies depending on the number of registered voters residing in the relevant political subdivision (city, district or charter county), as per this chart:
|Number of registered voters in jurisdiction||Signature requirement|
|Fewer than 500||50 registered voters, or 10%|
|500-1,999||100 registered voters, or 10%, whichever is greater|
|2,000-4,999||250 registered voters, or 10%, whichever is greater|
|5,000-9,999||500 registered voters, or 10%, whichever is greater|
|10,000-24,999||1,000 registered voters, or 10%, whichever is greater|
|25,000 or more||1,000 registered voters, or 5%, whichever is greater|
Second round of signatures
If the first set of signatures is found to be sufficient, the recall target is then invited to write a statement of defense. This must be done within 5 days of the time that it is determined that the initial signatures were sufficient. If the recall target provides a defense statement, the clerk of the relevant jurisdiction creates a document known as a "Recall Petition and Defense." Once this document is created and provided to the recall committee, the recall committee must then collect more signatures, equalling "15% of the electors" in the relevant jurisdiction within 60 days after the time that the "Recall Petition and Defense" was delivered by the jurisdiction's clerk to the chair of the recall committee.
Once collected, the second set of signatures are given to the county's supervisor of elections, along with 10 cents for each name to be checked.
The supervisor of elections must inspect the second set of signatures within 30 days.
- Laws governing the initiative process in Florida
- History of Initiative & Referendum in Florida
- Ballot access requirements for political candidates in Florida
- Florida Department of State, "Candidate petition handbook," December 2011
- Florida Department of State, "2012 Federal Qualifying Handbook," October 2011
- Florida Department of State, "2012 State Qualifying Handbook," November 2011
- Florida Department of State, Congressional District Requirements 2010 & 2012
- Florida Division of Elections, "Congressional District Requirements"
- Florida Department of State, "2014 Dates to Remember," accessed December 26, 2013
- Confirmed with Florida Elections Division on 01-27-2011, via phone
State of Florida
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