Arizona, USA, regional Popular or citizens initiative [PCI] - Initiative

General Typology

Popular or citizens initiative [PCI]
Arizona, USA
Political level
Local Name:
Normative Level:
Legally Binding:
Legally Defined:

Arizona Constitution

1. Legislative authority; initiative and referendum
Section 1. [...]
(2) Initiative power. The first of these reserved powers is the initiative. Under this power ten per centum of the qualified electors shall have the right to propose any measure, and fifteen per centum shall have the right to propose any amendment to the constitution.
(4) Initiative and referendum petitions; filing. All petitions submitted under the power of the initiative shall be known as initiative petitions, and shall be filed with the secretary of state not less than four months preceding the date of the election at which the measures so proposed are to be voted upon. [...]
(7) Number of qualified electors. The whole number of votes cast for all candidates for governor at the general election last preceding the filing of any initiative or referendum petition on a state or county measure shall be the basis on which the number of qualified electors required to sign such petition shall be computed.

Source: Arizona Constitution of 1912 (current as of 15 Dec. 2016)

Subject Matter:

Enacting laws via initiative


Electorate : 10% of the total number of voters in the last gubernatorial election
Decision maker:


Number Of Signatures:
10% of the total number of voters in the last gubernatorial election
Available Time:
20 months (initiative petition may be issued for circulation up to 24 months before election and filed up to 4 months before election (See Arizona Constitution, Article IV, Part 1, Section 1 and Arizona Revised Statutes Title 19, Ch. 1, Art. 3, 19-121))
Turnout Quorum:
Legal source does not mention turnout quorum
Approval Quorum:
Legal source does not mention specific approval quorum
Geographical Quorum:
Legal source does not mention geographical quorum
Excluded Issues:

Constitutional amendments (See Arizona PCI regarding constitutional amendments)

Other Formal Requirements:

Procedural Elements

Collection Mode:
Specify Collection Mode:

Signatures must be signed in presence of circulator. Circulator must qualify to register to vote in Arizona. Out-of-state residents must register with the Secretary of State to circulate.

Arizona Revised Statutes
19-112. Signatures and verification; attachment; registration of circulators
C. The person before whom the signatures, names and addresses were written on the signature sheet shall, on the affidavit form pursuant to this section, subscribe and swear before a notary public that each of the names on the sheet was signed and the name and address were printed by the elector and the circulator on the date indicated, and that in his belief each signer was a qualified elector of a certain county of the state, or, in the case of a city, town or county measure, of the city, town or county affected by the measure on the date indicated, and that at all times during circulation of the signature sheet a copy of the title and text was attached to the signature sheet. All signatures of petitioners on a signature sheet shall be those of qualified electors who are registered to vote in the same county. However, if signatures from more than one county appear on the same signature sheet, only the valid signatures from the same county that are most numerous on the signature sheet shall be counted.. [...]

Source: Arizona Revised Statutes (retrieved  as of 31 January 2017)

Wording Of Ballot Question:

The Secretary of State will write a summary ("descriptive title") which will be approved by the Attorney General and printed along with the official title. The effect of a "yes" or "no" vote is also explained.

Arizona Revised Statutes
19-125. Form of ballot
D. There shall be printed on the official ballot immediately below the number of the measure and the official title of each measure a descriptive title containing a summary of the principal provisions of the measure, not to exceed fifty words, which shall be prepared by the secretary of state and approved by the attorney general and that includes the following or the ballot shall comply with subsection E of this section:
A "yes" vote shall have the effect of ______________________.
A "no" vote shall have the effect of _______________________.
The blank spaces shall be filled with a brief phrase, approved by the attorney general, stating the essential change in the existing law should the measure receive a majority of votes cast in that particular manner. [...]

Source: Arizona Revised Statutes (current as of 31 January 2017)

Interaction With Authorities:

Arizona Revised Statutes
19-123. Publicity pamphlet; printing; distribution; public hearings
A. [... The] secretary of state shall cause to be printed, at the expense of the state, except as otherwise provided in this article, a publicity pamphlet, which shall contain:
1. A true copy of the title and text of the measure [...]
3. The arguments for and against the measure or amendment. [...]
6. The summary of a fiscal impact statement prepared by the joint legislative budget committee staff pursuant to subsection D of this section. [...]

Source: Arizona Revised Statutes (current as of 31 January 2017)

Supervision And Support:

Arizona Revised Statutes
19-111.01. Text review; legislative council; recommendations
A. At any time before filing an application for initiative petition or referendum petition and after filing a statement of organization pursuant to section 16-902.01, a political committee that intends to submit an application for initiative petition or referendum petition for a proposed law or constitutional amendment may submit a copy of the text of the proposed law, referral or constitutional amendment to the director of the legislative council.
C. The person or organization proposing the law or constitutional amendment may accept, modify or reject any recommendations made by the legislative council staff regarding the text of the measure solely in its discretion.

Source: Arizona Revised Statutes (current as of 31 January 2017)

Transparency And Finance:



Text of an initiative regarding legalizing medicinal marijuana (Prop 203) (2010):

Article written about the passage of Prop 203 (14 Nov 2010):


(Data retrieved 31 January 2017)