Filing of Petition and Election Initiative and Referendum in Cities, Towns and Counties (Arizona)

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ARIZONA ARTICLE 4. INITIATIVE AND REFERENDUM IN CITIES, TOWNS AND COUNTIES

§ 19-141. Initiative and referendum in counties, cities and towns

  • A. The provisions of this chapter shall apply to the legislation of cities, towns and counties, except as specifically provided to the contrary in this article. The duties required of the secretary of state as to state legislation shall be performed in connection with such legislation by the city or town clerk, county officer in charge of elections or person performing the duties as such. The duties required of the governor shall be performed by the mayor or the chairman of the board of supervisors, the duties required of the attorney general shall be performed by the city, town or county attorney, and the printing and binding of measures and arguments shall be paid for by the city, town or county in like manner as payment is provided for by the state with respect to state legislation. The provisions of section 19-124 with respect to the legislative council analysis do not apply in connection with initiatives and referenda in cities, towns and counties. The printing shall be done in the same manner as other municipal or county printing is done.
  • B. Distribution of pamphlets shall be made to every household containing a registered voter in the city or county, so far as possible, by the city or town clerk or by the county officer in charge of elections by mail before the earliest date for receipt by registered voters of any requested early ballot for the election at which the measures are to be voted on. If the pamphlet is not mailed before the earliest date for receipt of a requested early ballot, the officer in charge of elections shall provide a notice with the early ballots stating when the pamphlets will be mailed and where and when the pamphlets may be accessed or viewed. Pamphlets shall not be mailed or carried less than ten days before the election at which the measures are to be voted upon.
  • C. Arguments supporting or opposing municipal or county initiative and referendum measures shall be filed with the city or town clerk or the county officer in charge of elections not less than ninety days before the election at which they are to be voted upon.
  • D. The procedure with respect to municipal and county legislation shall be as nearly as practicable the same as the procedure relating to initiative and referendum provided for the state at large, except the procedure for verifying signatures on initiative or referendum petitions may be established by a city or town by charter or ordinance.
  • E. References in this section to duties to be performed by city or town officers apply only with respect to municipal legislation, and references to duties to be performed by county officers apply only with respect to county legislation.
  • F. The duties required of the county recorder with respect to state legislation shall also be performed by the county recorder with respect to municipal or county legislation.

§ 19-142. Referendum petitions against municipal actions; emergency measures; zoning actions

  • A. The whole number of votes cast at the city or town election at which a mayor or councilmen were chosen last preceding the submission of the application for a referendum petition against an ordinance, franchise or resolution shall be the basis on which the number of electors of the city or town required to file a referendum petition shall be computed. The petition shall be filed with the city or town clerk within thirty days after passage of the ordinance, resolution or franchise.
  • B. A city or town ordinance, resolution or franchise shall not become operative until thirty days after its passage by the council and approval by the mayor, unless it is passed over the mayor's veto, and then it shall not become operative until thirty days after final approval and until certification by the clerk of the city or town of the minutes of the meeting at which the action was taken, except emergency measures necessary for the immediate preservation of the peace, health or safety of the city or town. An emergency measure shall not become immediately operative unless it states in a separate section the reason why it is necessary that it should become immediately operative, and unless it is approved by the affirmative vote of three-fourths of all the members elected to the city or town council, taken by ayes and noes, and also approved by the mayor.
  • C. At the time a person or organization intending to file a referendum petition against an ordinance or resolution applies for the issuance of an official number pursuant to section 19-111, the city or town clerk shall provide such person or organization with a full and correct copy of the ordinance or resolution in the form as finally adopted. If the copy of the ordinance or resolution proposed as a referendum is not available to such person or organization at the time of making application for an official number or on the same business day as the application is submitted, the thirty-day period prescribed in subsection A of this section begins on the day that the ordinance or resolution is available from the city or town clerk, and the ordinance or resolution shall not become operative until thirty days after the ordinance or resolution is available.
  • D. Notwithstanding subsection C of this section, a person or organization may file a referendum petition against the rezoning of a parcel of property on the approval by the city or town council of the ordinance that adopts the rezoning or on the approval of that portion of the minutes of the city or town council that includes the council's approval of the rezoning, whichever occurs first. The thirty-day period prescribed in subsection A of this section begins on the day that the rezoning ordinance or approved minutes or portion of the approved minutes are available from the city or town clerk and the ordinance is not operative until thirty days after the ordinance or minutes are available.

§ 19-143. Initiative petition in cities; action of council; amendment of charter

  • A. The whole number of votes cast at the city or town election at which a mayor or councilman was chosen last preceding the submission of the application for an initiative petition is the basis for computing the number of qualified electors of the city or town required to sign the petition unless the city or town by charter or ordinance provides an alternative basis for computing the number of necessary signatures.
  • B. If an ordinance, charter or amendment to the charter of a city or town is proposed by initiative petition, it shall be filed with the city or town clerk, who shall submit it to the voters of the city or town at the next ensuing election. The council may enact the ordinance or amendment and refer it to the people or it may enact the ordinance or amendment without referring it to the people, and in that case it is subject to referendum petition as other ordinances. The mayor shall not have power to veto either of such measures.
  • C. Amendments to a city or town charter may be proposed and submitted to the people by the council, with or without an initiative petition, but they shall be filed with the clerk for submission not less than sixty days before the election at which they are to be voted upon, and no amendment of a charter shall be effective until it is approved by a majority of the votes cast thereon by the people of the city or town to which it applies. The council may by ordinance order special elections to vote on municipal measures.

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