Oklahoma, USA, regional Popular or citizen-initiated referendum [PCR] - Referendum

General Typology

Instrument
Popular or citizen-initiated referendum [PCR]
Location
Oklahoma, USA
Political level
regional
Local Name:
Referendum
Normative Level:
constitutional
Legally Binding:
yes
Legally Defined:

SECTION V-2
Designation and definition of reserved powers - Determination of percentages.
(..)
The second power is the referendum, and it may be ordered (except as to laws necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health, or safety), either by petition signed by five per centum of the legal voters or by the Legislature as other bills are enacted. The ratio and per centum of legal voters hereinbefore stated shall be based upon the total number of votes cast at the last general election for the Office of Governor.

SECTION V-3
Petitions - Veto power - Elections - Time of taking effect - Style of bills - Duty of legislature.
Referendum petitions shall be filed with the Secretary of State not more than ninety (90) days after the final adjournment of the session of the Legislature which passed the bill on which the referendum is demanded. The veto power of the Governor shall not extend to measures voted on by the people. All elections on measures referred to the people of the state shall be had at the next election held throughout the state, except when the Legislature or the Governor shall order a special election for the express purpose of making such reference. Any measure referred to the people by the initiative or referendum shall take effect and be in force when it shall have been approved by a majority of the votes cast thereon and not otherwise.
The style of all bills shall be: "Be it Enacted By the People of the State of Oklahoma."
Petitions and orders for the initiative and for the referendum shall be filed with the Secretary of State and addressed to the Governor of the state, who shall submit the same to the people. The Legislature shall make suitable provisions for carrying into effect the provisions of this article.

SECTION V-4

Referendum against part of act.
The referendum may be demanded by the people against one or more items, sections, or parts of any act of the Legislature in the same manner in which such power may be exercised against a complete act. The filing of a referendum petition against one or more items, sections, or parts of an act shall not delay the remainder of such act from becoming operative.

References: Constitution of the State of Oklahoma 1907 (accessed 8 August 2017)

Subject Matter:

To repeal an legislative measure

Actors

Author:
Legislature
Initiator:
Citizens
Decision maker:
Electorate

Requirements

Number Of Signatures:
5% of legal voters
Available Time:
90 days after final adjourment of session of the legislature
Turnout Quorum:
No turnout quorum found in legal source
Approval Quorum:
Majority of those voting
Geographical Quorum:
No geographical quorum found in legal source
Excluded Issues:

SECTION V-6
Subsequent proposal of rejected measure.
Any measure rejected by the people, through the powers of the initiative and referendum, cannot be again proposed by the initiative within three years thereafter by less than twenty-five per centum of the legal voters.

References: Constitution of the State of Oklahoma 1907 (accessed 8 August 2017)

Other Formal Requirements:

§34-1. Referendum petition - Form - Time for filing.
The referendum petition shall be substantially as follows:
PETITION FOR REFERENDUM
(..)

§34-3. Petitions and signatures.
Each initiative petition and each referendum petition shall be duplicated for the securing of signatures, and each sheet for signatures shall be attached to a copy of the petition. Each copy of the petition and sheets for signatures is hereinafter termed a pamphlet. On the outer page of each pamphlet shall be printed the word "Warning", and under§34€‘3. Petitions and signatures.
Each initiative petition and each referendum petition shall be duplicated for the securing of signatures, and each sheet for signatures shall be attached to a copy of the petition. Each copy of the petition and sheets for signatures is hereinafter termed a pamphlet. On the outer page of each pamphlet shall be printed the word "Warning", and underneath this in ten€‘point type the words, "It is a felony for anyone to sign an initiative or referendum petition with any name other than his own, or knowingly to sign his name more than once for the measure, or to sign such petition when he is not a legal voter". A simple statement of the gist of the proposition shall be printed on the top margin of each signature sheet. Not more than twenty (20) signatures on one sheet on lines provided for the signatures shall be counted. Any signature sheet not in substantial compliance with this act shall be disqualified by the Secretary of State.

§34-6. Verification of signatures.

Each sheet of every such petition containing signatures shall be verified on the back thereof, in substantially the following form, by the person who circulated said sheet of said petition, by his or her affidavit thereon and as a part thereof:

State of Oklahoma, )) ss. County of ________ ) I, ______, being first duly sworn, say: That I am at least eighteen (18) years old and that all signatures on the signature sheet were signed in my presence; I believe that each has stated his or her name, mailing address, and residence correctly, and that each signer is a legal voter of the State of Oklahoma and county of ______ or of the city of ______ (as the case may be). (Signature and mailing address of affiant.)

Subscribed and sworn to before me this ________ day of ________ A.D. 20__.

(Signature and title of the officer before whom oath is made, and his or her mailing address.)

§34-6.1. Physical count of signatures - Signatures not included.
A. The Secretary of State shall make or cause to be made a physical count of the number of signatures on the petitions. In making such count, the Secretary of State shall not include in such physical count:
1. All signatures on any sheet of any petition which is not verified by the person who circulated the sheet of the petition as provided in Section 6 of this title;
2. All signatures of nonresidents;
3. All signatures on a sheet that is not attached to a copy of the petition;
4. All multiple signatures on any printed signature line;
5. All signatures not on a printed signature line;
6. Those signatures by a person who signs with any name other than his own or signs more than once; and
7. All signatures on any sheet on which a notary has failed to sign, the seal of the notary is absent, the commission of the notary has expired or the expiration date is not on the signature sheet.
B. The Secretary of State shall notify the Attorney General of any and all violations of this title of which he has knowledge.

§34-8. Filing copy of proposed petition - Publication - Protest - Hearing and determination.

A. When a citizen or citizens desire to circulate a petition initiating a proposition of any nature, whether to become a statute law or an amendment to the Constitution, or for the purpose of invoking a referendum upon legislative enactments, such citizen or citizens shall, when such petition is prepared, and before the same is circulated or signed by electors, file a true and exact copy of same in the office of the Secretary of State and shall at the same time file a separate ballot title, which shall not be part of or printed on the petition.

B. It shall be the duty of the Secretary of State to cause to be published, in at least one newspaper of general circulation in the state, a notice of such filing and the apparent sufficiency or insufficiency of the petition, and shall include notice that any citizen or citizens of the state may file a protest as to the constitutionality of the petition, by a written notice to the Supreme Court and to the proponent or proponents filing the petition. Any such protest must be filed within ten (10) business days after publication. A copy of the protest shall be filed with the Secretary of State.

C. Upon the filing of a protest to the petition, the Supreme Court shall then fix a day, not less than ten (10) business days thereafter, at which time it will hear testimony and arguments for and against the sufficiency of such petition.

D. A protest filed by anyone hereunder may, if abandoned by the party filing same, be revived within five (5) business days by any other citizen. After such hearing the Supreme Court shall decide whether such petition is in the form required by the statutes. If the Court is at the time adjourned, the Chief Justice shall immediately convene the same for such hearing. No objection to the sufficiency shall be considered unless it has been made and filed as herein provided.

E. Signature-gathering Deadline for Initiative Petitions. When an initiative petition has been filed in the office of the Secretary of State and all appeals, protests and rehearings have been resolved or the period for such has expired, the Secretary of State shall set the date for circulation of signatures for the petition to begin but in no event shall the date be less than fifteen (15) days nor more than thirty (30) days from the date when all appeals, protests and rehearings have been resolved or have expired. Notification shall be sent to the proponents specifying the date on which circulation of the petition shall begin and that the signatures are due within ninety (90) days of the date set. Each elector shall sign his or her legally registered name, address or post office box, and the name of the county of residence. Any petition not filed in accordance with this provision shall not be considered. The proponents of an initiative petition, any time before the final submission of signatures, may withdraw the initiative petition upon written notification to the Secretary of State.

F. Signature-gathering Deadline for Referendum Petitions. All signed signatures supporting a referendum petition shall be filed with the Secretary of State not later than ninety (90) days after the adjournment of the legislative session in which the measure, which is the subject of the referendum petition, was enacted.

G. The proponents of a referendum or an initiative petition may terminate the circulation period any time during the ninety-day circulation period by certifying to the Secretary of State that:

1. All signed petitions have already been filed with the Secretary of State;

2. No more petitions are in circulation; and

3. The proponents will not circulate any more petitions.

If the Secretary of State receives such a certification from the proponents, the Secretary of State shall begin the counting process.

H. When the signed copies of a petition are timely filed, the Secretary of State shall file a copy of the proponent's ballot title with the Attorney General, and after conducting a count of the filed, signed petition, the Secretary of State shall certify to the Supreme Court of the state:

1. The total number of signatures counted pursuant to procedures set forth in this title; and

2. The total number of votes cast for the state office receiving the highest number of votes cast at the last general election.

The Supreme Court shall make the determination of the numerical sufficiency or insufficiency of the signatures counted by the Secretary of State.

I. Upon order of the Supreme Court it shall be the duty of the Secretary of State to forthwith cause to be published, in at least one newspaper of general circulation in the state, a notice of the filing of the signed petitions and the apparent sufficiency or insufficiency thereof, and shall also publish the text of the ballot title as reviewed and approved or, if applicable, as rewritten by the Attorney General pursuant to the provisions of subsection D of Section 9 of this title and notice that any citizen or citizens of the state may file an objection to the count made by the Secretary of State, by a written notice to the Supreme Court and to the proponent or proponents filing the petition. Any such objection must be filed within ten (10) business days after publication and must relate only to the validity or number of the signatures or a challenge to the ballot title. A copy of the objection to the count or ballot title shall be filed with the Supreme Court, the Attorney General and the Secretary of State.

J. The Secretary of State shall deliver the bound volumes of signatures to the Supreme Court.

K. Upon the filing of an objection to the signature count or ballot title, the Supreme Court shall resolve the objection with dispatch. The Supreme Court shall adopt rules to govern proceedings to apply to the challenge of a measure on the grounds that the proponents failed to gather sufficient signatures.

L. If in the opinion of the Supreme Court, any objection to the count or protest to the petition is frivolous, the Court may impose appropriate sanctions, including an award of costs and attorneys fees to either party as the Court deems equitable.

M. Whenever reference is made in this act to the Supreme Court, such reference shall include the members of the Supreme Court or any officer constitutionally designated to perform the duties herein prescribed.

References: Title 34, Oklahoma Statues (accessed 8 August 2017)

Procedural Elements

Collection Mode:
free
Specify Collection Mode:
Wording Of Ballot Question:
Interaction With Authorities:
Supervision And Support:
Transparency And Finance:

SECTION XXIX-3
Ethics Rules.
A. After public hearing, the Ethics Commission shall promulgate rules of ethical conduct for campaigns for elective state office and for campaigns for initiatives and referenda, including civil penalties for violation of these rules.
B. After public hearing, the Ethics Commission shall promulgate rules of ethical conduct for state officers and employees, including civil penalties for violation of these rules.
C. Newly promulgated rules shall be presented to each House of the Legislature and to the Governor on the second day of each session of the Legislature. If these rules are not disapproved by joint resolution, subject to veto by the Governor, during the same legislative session, they shall be effective. In the event the Governor vetoes a joint resolution disapproving any Ethics Commission's rules, the procedure shall be the same as for the veto of any other bill or joint resolution. Effective Ethics Commission rules shall be published in the official statutes of the State.
D. Effective Ethics Commission rules may be repealed or modified by the Commission, and the repeal or modification shall be submitted to the Legislature and the Governor in the same manner as newly promulgated rules. Effective Ethics Commission rules may also be repealed or modified by law passed by a majority vote of each House of the Legislature. If the Governor vetoes such a law, the procedure shall be the same as for the veto of any other bill or joint resolution.
Added by State Question No. 627, Initiative Petition No. 341, adopted at election held on Sept. 18, 1990.

References: Constitution of the State of Oklahoma 1907 (accessed 8 August 2017)

Practice

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Remarks: