Abruzzo, Italy, regional Popular or citizen-initiated referendum [PCR] - Referendum abrogativo

General Typology

Instrument
Popular or citizen-initiated referendum [PCR]
Location
Abruzzo, Italy
Political level
regional
Local Name:
Referendum abrogativo
Normative Level:
statutory
Legally Binding:
yes
Legally Defined:

TITLE VII
REFERENDUM
Art. 74
Participation in the referendum
1. All citizens who, on the day of the referendum, are voters of the Region shall participate in the referendum.

Art. 75
The call of the abrogative referendum and the persons entitled to apply for it
1. The President of the Regional Government shall hold a referendum for the total or partial repeal of a regional law, a regional regulation, a general administrative act or a programming act, when a fiftieth of the voters, (..) apply for it.
2. The regional law establishes the modalities of the abrogative referendum.

Art. 76
The limits of the abrogative referendum
1. The request for an abrogative referendum may not concern the rules of the Statute, the laws provided for in Title II, and fiscal and budgetary laws, rules and acts which constitute fulfilment of constitutional, international or European obligations of the region or fulfilment of necessary legislative obligations.
2. The referendum may not be held in the six months preceding the end of the Regional Council and in the six months following the election of the Council.

Art. 77
The procedure of the abrogative referendum
1. The request for a repeal referendum, formulated in a clear and homogeneous manner, is submitted by the eligible parties to the College for the Statutory Guarantees. The Board assesses the eligibility under the Constitution of the Republic and the Statute; it verifies the regularity of the request and the procedure under the Statute and the regional law; it communicates the result of the referendum to the President of the Government who proclaims it. The act of proclamation is published in the Official Bulletin of the Region.
2. The referendum is valid if the majority of those entitled to vote has participated in the vote and if the majority of the validly cast votes has been reached.
3. In the event of approval, the rule or administrative act shall lose its validity on the sixtieth day after the publication of the proclamation of the result. The deadline may be extended up to one hundred and twenty days by law.
4. In the event that the proposal does not reach one or other of the prescribed majorities, it may not be formulated again during the legislature.

Art. 80
The functions of the Regional College for Statutory Guarantees
1. The Regional College for Statutory Guarantees performs the functions provided for in the Articles of Association; it expresses opinions:
(..)
(b) on the admissibility of referendums and citizens' initiatives;
(..)
2. The Regional Council may deliberate against the opinions of the College by an absolute majority.
3. The Regional College for Statutory Guarantees is entrusted by the electoral law with administrative tasks relating to the conduct of elections.

Art. 87
Revision of the Statutes
1. The Statute is amended by the Regional Council by an absolute majority of its members, with two successive resolutions adopted at intervals of no less than two months.
2. The law revising the Statute shall be submitted to a popular referendum if, within three months of its publication, one fiftieth of the voters of the Region, or one fifth of the members of the Regional Council, so requests.
3. The law revising the statute submitted to popular referendum shall not be promulgated unless it is approved by a majority of the valid votes.
4. The total abrogation of the Statute shall not be permitted unless a new Statute is passed.

References:  Statuto della Regione Abruzzo, (accessed April 14, 2020)

Art. 4
Submission of the request for a referendum
1. In order to exercise the abrogative referendum initiative, at least three of the Region's voters, who assume the role of promoters of the collection, shall deposit their names with the Bureau of the Regional Council:
(a) the text of the referendum question, formulated in accordance with Article 5, on sheets bearing the signatures of the promoters authenticated in accordance with Article 7;
(b) an explanatory report on the proposal for a repealing referendum;
(c) certificates proving the registration of the promoters on the electoral roll of a municipality in the region;
(d) the sheets of paper to be stamped, needed to collect the signatures necessary for the referendum to be held, containing the information referred to in Article 6(1).
2. At the time of filing, the promoters shall indicate their names, domicile and any other postal, telephone and telematic addresses, if any, of telefax of three subjects, which may be the promoters themselves or others, who assume the function of delegates:
(a) receive all communications concerning the referendum process;
(b) intervene in the stages of the referendum procedure;
(c) exercise the actions, appeals and any other initiative for the protection of the referendum. In the absence of different clarifications, to be reported in the minutes referred to in paragraph 5, the delegates may act severally.
3. Any communications to delegates shall be made by registered letter with acknowledgement of receipt; in case of urgency, they shall be made by fax or telematic means, ensuring receipt of the communication.
4. A Regional Manager designated by the Bureau of the Regional Council or an official delegated by him/her shall be responsible for the proceedings.
5. The person responsible for the procedure referred to in paragraph 4 shall draw up minutes of the submission of the request for a referendum, which shall be authentic of the day and time of the deposit. The minutes, which shall give an account of the information referred to in paragraph 2, shall be signed by the promoters and the person responsible. A copy of the report shall be issued to the promoters.
6. The person responsible for the proceedings referred to in paragraph 4 shall send a copy of the minutes to the Chairman within two working days of filing. the President of the Region and the President of the Regional College for Statutory Guarantees.

Art. 8
Prior examination of the admissibility of the request for a referendum
1. The subscriptions for the submission of the referendum request are collected and authenticated, under penalty of nullity, within one hundred and twenty days following the date of the sheet stamped with the number one.
2. Within the twenty days following the expiry of the term referred to in paragraph 1, under penalty of forfeiture, at least one of the delegates, of which in paragraph 2 of Article 4 shall deposit with the Bureau of the Regional Council the sheets containing the signatures together with the certificates or declarations in place referred to in paragraph 6 of Article 7. The forfeiture shall be declared ex officio by the person in charge of the proceedings and shall be communicated to the delegates.
3. The person responsible for the proceedings referred to in Article 4(4) shall draw up minutes in which he or she shall record the filing. and collect depositors' statements, made under their responsibility, in order:
(a) the number of signatures collected within the period referred to in paragraph 1 and deposited;
(b) the regularity of the authentication of signatures;
(c) the regularity and number of certifications attached;
(d) the absence of double signatures.
4. Within 40 days of the deposit referred to in paragraph 2, the person responsible for the proceedings shall verify:
(a) whether the number of signatures declared by the depositors corresponds to the number of signatures actually present on the endorsed sheets and whether these signatures are equal to those of one fiftieth of the electors, calculated in accordance with Article 2;
(b) if the signatures of at least one fiftieth of the electors, calculated in accordance with Article 2, are collected within the time limit of referred to in paragraph 1;
(c) if the signatures of at least one fiftieth of the electors, calculated in accordance with Article 2, are authenticated in accordance with Article 7;
(d) if the signatures of at least one fiftieth of the electors, calculated in accordance with Article 2, are accompanied by the signatory's certificate of registration on the electoral roll of a municipality in the Region or by the substitute declarations referred to in paragraph 6 of Article 7.
5. The person responsible for the procedure shall declare the signatures null and void:
a) without the indications referred to in paragraph 1 of article 7, or with indications that do not correspond to what is requested by the same norm;
(b) authenticated after the deadline referred to in paragraph 1;
c) not duly authenticated, or not accompanied by the certification of registration on the electoral roll of a municipality of the Region or the declaration in lieu referred to in paragraph 6 of Article 7.
6. The person responsible for the proceedings shall draw up minutes in which the result of the findings made in accordance with paragraphs 4 and 5 and of their consequences. The minutes shall be sent to the Regional College for statutory guarantees and shall be communicated to the delegates referred to in paragraph 2 of Article 4.

Art. 10
Obtaining an opinion on the admissibility and procedurality of the referendum
1. Within forty-five days of the deposit of the decision on the admissibility of the request for a referendum referred to in Article 9, the Regional College for Statutory Guarantees issues reasoned opinion on the admissibility of the request for a repealing referendum based:
(a) compliance with the limits laid down in Article 3;
(b) the clarity and unambiguity of the wording of the question, so as to enable voters to make an informed choice; and the homogeneity and consistency of the provisions referred to in the question, in accordance with Article 5.
(..)
3. The Regional College for Statutory Guarantees shall also verify whether, after the submission of the request for referendum referred to in Article 4:
(a) the repeal, in whole or in part, of the law, regional regulation, general administrative act or programming act which was the subject of the referendum;
(b) the total or partial repeal referred to in point (a) is accompanied by other legislation on the same subject.
4. In the event of the total abrogation of the discipline subject to referendum, the College shall give a reasoned opinion on the impossibility of a referendum.
5. In the event of the partial repeal of the rules submitted to a referendum, the College shall verify whether the provisions that remain in force may still be submitted to a referendum and shall amend the question if necessary. To this end, the College acquire, in the manner set out in paragraph 2, the opinion and comments of the delegates.
6. In the event of repeal, in whole or in part, accompanied by other legislation on the same subject, or amendment of provisions subject of the referendum, the Board of Statutory Auditors ascertains whether the new legislation has modified the principles inspiring the overall pre-existing discipline or the essential contents of the individual precepts. To this end, it shall acquire, in the manner set out in paragraph 2, the opinion and comments of the delegates.
7. If it appears from the feedback that the provisions referred to in paragraph 5 remain in force or the new legislation referred to in paragraph 6 substantially modify the pre-existing discipline, the College expresses a reasoned opinion on the impossibility of the referendum.
8. If the feedback shows that the provisions referred to in paragraph 5 remain in force or the new regulations referred to in paragraph 6 do not substantially modify the pre-existing rules, the College expresses its opinion on the procedability of the referendum and modifies, as far as necessary, the referendum question.
9. The President of the College shall communicate, within five days of adoption, the opinions referred to in paragraphs 1, 4, 7 and 8 to the President of the Regional Council, the President of the Region and the delegates referred to in Article 4, paragraph 2.

Art. 11
Admissibility and procedurality of the abrogative referendum
1. The Regional Council, on the basis of the opinions referred to in paragraphs 1, 4, 7 and 8 of Article 10, shall decide on the admissibility and procedurality of the referendum.
2. The resolution referred to in paragraph 1 shall be sent to the President of the Region who, within ten days, shall arrange for its publication in the Official Bulletin of the Region.

Chapter III
Indication, holding of the referendum and proclamation of the results
Art. 13
Referendum call
1. Referendums for abrogation shall be held in one annual part-session. The President of the Region shall declare by 15 March of each year the holding of referendums with reference to decisions on procedure and admissibility received by 15 February, setting the date for calling voters on a Sunday between 15 April and 30 June. (..)

Art. 16
Suspension of the referendum
1. The operations and activities governed by this Chapter, relating to the calling, carrying out and announcing of results, are suspended:
(a) in the six months preceding the expiry of the Regional Council and in the six months following the election of the new Regional Council;
(b) in case of early dissolution of the Regional Council in the period between the publication of the decree of the election meetings and the six months following the election of the new Regional Council;
(c) in the three months preceding and in the three months following the date fixed for general or local elections by at least half of the Municipalities or Provinces of the Region].
2. The President of the Region, by decree published in the official bulletin of the Abruzzo Region, postpones the abrogative referendums already called to the first useful round for a Sunday included in one of the periods mentioned in paragraph 1 of art. 13.

Art. 17
Repeal before the referendum took place

1. If, before the date of the referendum, there is a total abrogation of the regulation subject to referendum, the President of the Region shall declare by decree that the referendum no longer takes place.
2. In the event of the partial abrogation of the rules submitted to referendum, the President of the Region, with the assent of the President of the Region, shall, in the event of the partial abrogation of the rules submitted to referendum Regional College for statutory guarantees, establishes by decree whether the referendum consultation also takes place with reference to the provisions that remain in force, i.e. if the referendum no longer takes place.
3. In the event of total or partial repeal, accompanied by other provisions on the same subject, or amendment of the provisions which are the subject of the referendum, the President of the Region, with the assent of the Regional College of Statutory Guarantees, shall determine by decree whether the referendum also takes place and what provisions are the subject of the referendum. To these effects, if the new legislation does not change the principles underlying the existing discipline or the essential contents of the individual precepts, the referendum shall be held only or also on the new provisions.
4. The President of the Region, if he considers that in the cases referred to in paragraphs 2 and 3, the referendum will in any case take place, he shall provide for the reformulation of the referendum question by means of the decree calling the referendum and with the assent of the Regional College for statutory guarantees.
5. The Regional College for statutory guarantees shall express the opinions referred to in paragraphs 2, 3 and 4 within twenty days of the request of the President of the Region.
6. The decrees referred to in paragraphs 1, 2, 3 and 4 shall be published in the Official Bulletin of the Abruzzo Region.

Art. 23
Proclamation of the result
1. The President of the Region, within ten days of receipt of the communication referred to in paragraph 6 of Article 22, with decree published immediately in the Official Bulletin of the Region, proclaims the result of the referendum.
2. If the result of the vote is in favour of repeal, the President of the Region, by the decree referred to in paragraph 1, shall also declare the repeal of the provision subject to referendum, which shall take effect from the sixtieth day following that of publication.
3. The President of the Region, after consulting the Government can delay, with the decree referred to in paragraph 1, expressly indicating the grounds, the effectiveness of the repeal for a period not exceeding 120 days from the date of publication.
4. If the result of the referendum is contrary to the abrogation, the President of the Region, by the decree referred to in paragraph 1, shall provide for publication in the Official Bulletin of the Region.
5. The rejected referendum proposal cannot be resubmitted unless five years have elapsed from the date of publication. the result of the referendum on the Official Bulletin of the Region.
6. If the proposed referendum does not reach one or other of the majorities prescribed in Article 22(5), it cannot be re-formulated during the same legislature

References: Disciplina del referendum abrogativo, consultivo e dell’iniziativa legislativa. (accessed April 14, 2020)

Subject Matter:

To repeal a regional law, regulation or administrative act; revision of the statute.

Actors

Author:
Regional Parliament
Initiator:
Citizens
Decision maker:
Electorate

Requirements

Number Of Signatures:
1/15th of the electorate
Available Time:
120 days
Turnout Quorum:
Majority of those entitled to vote participated (Laws, regulations, administrative acts).
Approval Quorum:
Majority of valid votes
Geographical Quorum:
None
Excluded Issues:

Art. 76
The limits of the abrogative referendum
1. The request for a repealing referendum may not concern the rules of the Statute, the laws provided for in Title II, and fiscal and budgetary laws, rules and acts which constitute fulfilment of constitutional, international or European obligations of the Region or fulfilment of necessary legislative obligations.

References: Statuto della Regione Abruzzo, (accessed April 14, 2020)

Other Formal Requirements:

Time period: See also Art. 76 2. (Statute), Art. 16 (Disciplina).

Procedural Elements

Collection Mode:
free
Specify Collection Mode:

Art. 6

Endorsement of signature collection sheets

1. Signatures for the request for a popular referendum shall be collected exclusively on plain paper of the same size as stamped paper, signed and stamped in accordance with paragraph 2. Each sheet to be stamped shall contain, printed in epigraph, the text of the referendum question as determined in Article 5.
2. Within twenty days of the lodging of the minutes referred to in Article 4(5), the person in charge of the proceedings referred to in Article 4(4) shall be responsible:
(a) proceed with the endorsement of the sheets intended for the collection of signatures. For this purpose he shall affix to each sheet the serial number, the stamp, the date and his signature
(b) notify the delegates referred to in Article 4(2) of the endorsement, at least one of whom shall collect the sheets.
3. Minutes of the delivery of the stamped sheets of paper shall be drawn up and signed by the delegates and the person responsible for the proceedings.

Art. 7
Collection and authentication of signatures
1. The request for a referendum shall be made by the elector by affixing his or her signature on the stamped sheet referred to in Article 6. Next to each signature, the full name and surname, the place and date of birth and the municipality of the region on whose electoral roll the voter is registered, as well as the details of the identification document, shall be clearly and legibly indicated. Signatures without such indications, or with indications that do not correspond to what is required, are null and void.
2. Signatures may not be collected on sheets separate from those on which the referendum question is printed.
3. The signatures shall be authenticated by one of the subjects indicated by Article 14, paragraph 1, of Law no. 53 of 21 March 1990 (Urgent measures to ensure greater efficiency in the electoral process), as amended by Article 4 of Law no. 120 of 30 April 1999 (Provisions on the election of the bodies of local authorities, as well as provisions on the fulfillment of obligations in electoral matters), or by the Regional Councillors who declare their availability to the President of the Regional Council.
4. The authentication shall bear an indication of the date on which it is carried out; it may be unique for all the signatures affixed on each sheet and, in this case, it shall indicate the number of signatures authenticated in total.
5. The public official who carries out the authentication shall acknowledge that the voter is illiterate or unable to sign.
6. Entry on the electoral rolls of a Municipality of the Region shall be proven by the relevant certificates, including collective ones, of the signatories or by a substitute declaration of certification pursuant to article 46 of the Decree of the President of the Republic of 28 December 2000, no. 445.

References: Disciplina del referendum abrogativo, consultivo e dell’iniziativa legislativa. (accessed April 14, 2020)

Wording Of Ballot Question:

Art. 5
Referendum question
1. The referendum question, which is intended to be submitted to an abrogative referendum, consists of the formula: "you want it to be repealed ...' followed by the date, number and title of the law, regulation or administrative act on which the referendum is requested.
2. The referendum question for the partial repeal of a law, regulation or administrative act shall indicate, in addition to the elements referred to in paragraph 1, the number of the article or articles, or the parts of the administrative act on which the referendum is requested.
3. The referendum question for the partial repeal of one or more articles of a law or regulation or of one or more parts of an administrative act shall indicate, in addition to the elements referred to in paragraphs 1 and 2, the paragraph and the wording of the provisions whose repeal is requested.
4. The referendum question shall contain a summary of the subject-matter of the referendum in order to promote the clarity and unambiguity of the question. The summary, which forms an integral part of the question, is a prerequisite for the formula referred to in paragraph 1.
5. The referendum question is formulated in simple and clear terms. Provisions contained in various legislative, regulatory or administrative acts may also be the subject of the same referendum request, in compliance with the criteria of homogeneity and consistency.

References: Disciplina del referendum abrogativo, consultivo e dell’iniziativa legislativa. (accessed April 14, 2020)

Interaction With Authorities:
Supervision And Support:
Transparency And Finance:

Chapter VIII
Financial provisions
Art. 48
Contribution for signature authentication
1. The Region shall provide the reimbursements to the extent referred to in paragraph 2 to cover flat-rate costs for the authentication of the number minimum prescribed signatures provided that:
(a) the admissibility and admissibility of the proposed citizens' initiative has been determined in accordance with Articles 43 and 44;
(b) the repealing referendum has been duly held and the majority of those entitled to vote have participated in it.
2. The Region shall pay the following sums:
(a) one euro for each signature in the case of a repealing referendum;
(b) seventy (70) euro cents in the case of a proposed citizens' initiative.
3. In order to obtain the reimbursement referred to in paragraph 1, promoters shall submit, at the same time as filing the documents referred to in Article 4 and 39, written request indicating the name of the delegate to collect the total sum, with discharge.

References: Disciplina del referendum abrogativo, consultivo e dell’iniziativa legislativa. (accessed April 14, 2020)

Practice

Archive:
Remarks:

The English version here is a courtesy translation only.