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22.10.2020, . 22:27


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Chapter V. Nomination and Registration of Candidates, Realization of the Initiative to Hold a Referendum

Article 28. Right to Nominate Candidates

Article 29. Nomination of Candidates Directly by Voters

Article 30. Nomination of Candidates by Electoral Associations, Electoral Blocs

Article 31. Collection of Signatures of Voters in Favor of Candidates (List of Candidates)

Article 32. Registration of Candidates (Lists of Candidates)

Article 33. Realization of the Initiative to Hold a Referendum


Article 28. Right to Nominate Candidates

1. Candidates may be nominated by voters of the given electoral district and by way of self-nomination. Candidates (list of candidates) may be also nominated by electoral associations, electoral blocs.

2. Nomination of candidates (lists of candidates) shall be possible provided the nominated person (each of the nominated persons) has submitted a written statement expressing his/her consent to the nomination. This statement shall indicate the biographical data (the first, middle and last name, date of birth, education, the main place of employment or service (or the nature of occupation in the absence of any main place of employment or service), the present position, information concerning the convictions that have not been annulled or cancelled, the number (numbers) and the name (names) of the article (articles) of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation on the basis of which the candidate was convicted and the article (articles) of the criminal code adopted in pursuance of the Fundamental Criminal Legislation of the USSR and the Union Republics, the article (articles) of the law of a foreign state if the candidate was convicted under these legislative acts for actions qualified as crimes by the current Criminal Code of the Russian Federation, the citizenship, including foreign citizenship with the indication of the date when it was received and on what grounds) and has confirmed the obligation to terminate the activities incompatible with the status of a deputy or holder of other elective offices should he/she be elected. This statement together with the notice of the beginning of signature collection shall be submitted to the relevant election commission. If a candidate, registered candidate uses a pseudonym in his/her creative activity or if there are persons bearing the same surnames among the candidates, the said candidate may, not later than 5 days after the deadline for submission of registration documents, register his/her creative pseudonym with the relevant election commission and, if there is another person bearing the same surname, any pseudonym which he/she may use in the course of the election campaign along with his/her true first, middle and last name and which shall be indicated, along with the true first, middle and last name, in all official documents (including information documents) and in other materials issued by the given election commission and the lower election commissions. Such a pseudonym shall not be a name or the already registered pseudonym of some other candidate nominated or registered in the same electoral district or in an electoral district which has common boundaries with the given electoral district.

3. The period for nomination of candidates (lists of candidates) set by the relevant law shall be at least 45 days for elections of President of the Russian Federation, deputies of the State Duma of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation and other federal state bodies stipulated by the Constitution of the Russian Federation and elected directly by citizens, and at least 30 days for elections of the bodies of the state power of Subjects of the Russian Federation, and at least 20 days for elections of the bodies of the local self-government, Heads and other officials of municipal units.

4. All candidates shall have equal rights and bear equal obligations. Candidates holding state and municipal offices shall not take advantage of their official position or status.

5. In this Federal Law taking advantage of an official position or status shall mean:

    - involving persons who are subordinate or dependent in the line of duty, other state and municipal employees in the activity conducive to nomination and/or election during the working hours;

    - using premises occupied by state bodies or bodies of local self-government for carrying on the activity conducive to nomination and/or election if other candidates or registered candidates cannot use the same premises on the same terms and conditions;

    - using telephone, fax and other types of communication, information services, office equipment of state organizations or bodies of local self-government for conducting signature collection and election campaign;

    - using state- or municipality-owned transport facilities free of charge or on privileged terms for carrying on the activity conducive to nomination and/or election. This provision shall not apply to persons using the said transport facilities in accordance with the federal law on state security;

    - collection of signatures or election campaigning by state or municipal employees in the course of business trips paid for from the state or municipal funds;

    - privileged access (compared to other candidates, registered candidates) to mass media indicated in Clause 1 of Article 39 of this Federal Law for collecting signatures or carrying on election campaigning.

Compliance with the aforementioned restrictions must not interfere with the performance by deputies, elective officials of their obligations to voters.

As amended 3/30/99.

Article 29. Nomination of Candidates Directly by Voters

1. Nomination of candidates directly by voters shall be effected by self nomination or on an initiative of a voter, group of voters eligible to vote for such candidate through notifying the election commissions, where the candidates are to be registered, thereof, and through consequent collection of signatures in favor of the candidates.

2. Laws of Subjects of the Russian Federation shall not require that meetings of voters with a definite number of participants be held for voters to directly nominate a candidate (candidates).

Article 30. Nomination of Candidates by Electoral Associations, Electoral Blocs

1. Electoral associations, electoral blocs shall be entitled to nominate candidates (lists of candidates).

2. Candidates (lists of candidates) of all-Russia electoral associations shall be nominated by secret ballot at federal congresses (conferences) of said associations at elections to federal bodies of state power, at conferences (meetings) of their regional branches at elections to bodies of state power of Subjects of the Russian Federation and at meetings of local branches at elections of local self-government. The procedure for nomination of candidates (lists of candidates) of public associations registered with the bodies of justice of Subjects of the Russian Federation shall be set forth by the laws of Subjects of the Russian Federation on the basis of provisions on this Federal Law.

3. Electoral blocs shall be formed by electoral associations. A decision regarding entering an electoral bloc shall be made at congresses (conferences) of each electoral association after which the authorized representatives of such electoral associations shall sign a joint statement on the formation of an electoral bloc. The decision regarding the nomination of candidates (lists of candidates) by an electoral bloc shall be made at the congress (conference) of such bloc and signed by the authorized representatives of the electoral associations constituting the bloc. Electoral blocs shall be registered with the relevant election commission either earlier or simultaneously with submission of a joint list of candidates to the election commission. Electoral associations constituting an electoral bloc may not enter other electoral blocs at the same election or act as independent electoral associations. A political public association which is a founder, a member or a participant of another political public association taking part in the elections as an electoral association or participating in the formation of an electoral bloc shall not take part in the same elections as an electoral association either nominating a candidate (candidates) independently or participating in the formation of an electoral bloc.

4. The name of an electoral association shall be the name indicated in the registered charter of the corresponding political public association.

5. The name of an electoral bloc shall be determined at the congress (conference) of the representatives of electoral associations which formed the given bloc. The name of an electoral bloc shall not make use of the name of a public association which has been registered at the given or a higher level and has not joined the given electoral bloc as an electoral association or the name of another electoral bloc which has already been registered. The first and the last name of a natural person may be used in the name of an electoral bloc only with a written consent of the given natural person.

6. In cases provided by the federal constitutional law, a federal law, law of a Subject of the Russian Federation when submitting lists of candidates an electoral association, electoral bloc may submit its emblem to the relevant election commission. An electoral association may submit only its own emblem registered in accordance with a procedure established by Russian Federation law. An electoral bloc may submit an emblem of any of the electoral associations comprised in the given electoral bloc or any other emblem with the exception of registered emblems of other public associations, electoral blocs which have nominated candidates (lists of candidates) in the given or previous elections of the given or a higher level. Symbols of an electoral association, electoral bloc shall not infringe the right of citizens to intellectual property, insult or denigrate state symbols (flags, coats-of-arms, anthems) of the Russian Federation, subjects of the Russian Federation, other states, religious symbols and national sentiments, violate the generally recognized moral norms.

7. The names and symbols of electoral associations, electoral blocs shall not be changed in the course of the election campaign.

8. The list of candidates nominated by an electoral association, electoral bloc shall be submitted to the relevant election commission together with statements of candidates expressing their consent to nomination by the given electoral association, electoral bloc in the electoral district and/or in the list of candidates, the said statements to be drawn up in accordance with Clause 2 Article 28 of this Federal Law. Within three days, the election commission shall certify the list of candidates nominated by an electoral association, electoral bloc. After this collection of voter signatures begins in support of the nominated candidate (list of candidates).

9. After the list of candidates has been submitted to the election commission, the candidates on the list and their ranging shall not be changed other than due to withdrawal of the candidates. In cases provided by the federal constitutional law, a federal law, law of a Subject of the Russian Federation this rule shall not be applied in the conduct of the elections in single-mandate electoral districts.

10. In a multi-mandate electoral district an electoral bloc may nominate a candidate for each deputy mandate to be awarded in the given district.

As amended 3/30/99.

Article 31. Collection of Signatures of Voters in Favor of Candidates (List of Candidates)

1. Signatures of voters in favor of candidates (lists of candidates) nominated directly by voters, electoral associations, electoral blocs shall be collected in the procedures and in the amount set forth by federal laws, laws of Subjects of the Russian Federation. The maximum amount of signatures required for candidates (lists of candidates) to be registered may not exceed 2 percent of the total number of voters in the relevant electoral district in compliance with Clause 4 of Article 17 of this Federal Law.

2. The maximum number of signature for registration of candidates in a multi-mandate electoral district established by a federal constitutional law, federal law, law of a Subject of the Russian Federation shall not exceed 2 percent of the number of voters of the given electoral district, divided by the number of mandates.

3. Federal laws, laws of Subjects of the Russian Federation may set a quota for the number of voter signatures to be collected in the territory of one Subject of the Russian Federation at elections to the federal bodies of state power. In this case, signatures collected in access of the established number shall not be counted by the relevant election commission.

4. No quotas shall be established for the collection of signatures of voters in the election to bodies of state power of Subjects of the Russian Federation, bodies of local self-government for separate parts of the said territories.

5. For elections to the bodies of local self-government held in municipal units where the number of voters registered in compliance with Clause 4 Article 17 of this Federal Law is less than 10,000 voters the collection of voter signatures in favor of candidates may not be effected if stipulated otherwise by the law of the Subjects of the Russian Federation.

6. Signatures may be collected only among voters enjoying an active electoral right in the electoral district wherein the candidate consents to his/her nomination. Participation of the management of enterprises of all forms of ownership, institutions and organizations in the collection of signatures, coercion in the course of signature collection or solicitation of voter signatures for a remuneration shall not be allowed. Signatures shall not be collected when and where wages and salaries are paid. Gross or repeated violation of these restrictions may serve as a ground for the appropriate election commission or a court to invalidate the collected signatures and/or withdraw registration of a candidate (list of candidates).

7. The right to collect voter signatures shall belong to any adult competent citizen of the Russian Federation. A candidate, electoral association may sign a contract with a signature collector for collection of signatures. Payments for performance of work shall be effected only through the electoral fund of the candidate, electoral association, electoral bloc.

8. A voter, referendum participant shall put his/her signature on the signature list indicating his/her first, middle and last name, year of birth (at the age of 18 - the day and month of birth), residential address, series and number of the passport or equivalent identity paper and date of its issuance as well as the date on which the signature was put on the list. The data of voters who put their signatures in support of a candidate, list of candidates may be entered in the signature list by the person collecting signatures in support of the candidate, list of candidates. All such data shall be hand-written.

9. If a candidate has a conviction that has not been annulled or cancelled, the signature list shall indicate the number (numbers) and the name (names) of the article (articles) of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation on the basis of which the candidate was convicted and the article (articles) of the criminal code adopted in pursuance of the Fundamental Criminal Legislation of the USSR and the Union Republics, the article (articles) of the law of a foreign state if the candidate was convicted under these legislative acts for actions qualified as crimes by the current Criminal Code of the Russian Federation. If the candidate has foreign citizenship the signature list shall indicate the name of the corresponding foreign state.

10. Each electoral association, electoral bloc, group of voters, a voter that nominated the same candidate and notified the election commission of the nomination in writing shall collect the required number of voter signatures in support of the nomination. Voter signatures collected by different initiators of a candidate's nomination in support of the same candidate shall not be added up.

As amended 3/30/99.

Article 32. Registration of Candidates (Lists of Candidates)

1. If the required number of signatures has been collected in their support candidates (lists of candidates) shall be registered with the relevant election commission upon submission of statements from the candidates expressing their consent to nomination in the given electoral district, these statement to be drawn up in accordance with Clause 2 Article 28 of this Federal Law. A federal law, law of a Subject of the Russian Federation may provide that for registration of candidates (lists of candidates) the election commission shall also be supplied with information concerning the income of the candidate (each candidate from the list of candidates) and the property owned by them. The information concerning the amount and sources of income shall be presented in the form of a copy of the tax return (endorsed by the tax authorities) of the citizen who is a candidate (each candidate) for the year preceding the year in which the elections were set. If, under the tax laws of the Russian Federation the citizen who is a candidate does not have to file a tax return, information concerning his/her earnings in the year preceding the year in which the elections were set shall be submitted from the organization where these earning were received. Information concerning the property owned by a candidate shall be presented in the form shown in the annex to this Federal Law.

2. An election commission may request that the appropriate authorities verify the accuracy of the information submitted under Clause 2 Article 28 of this Federal Law and Clause 1 of this Article.

3. The number of voter signatures collected in support of a candidate (list of candidates) and submitted for the registration of a candidate (list of candidates) may exceed the number of signatures required for the registration by not more than 15 percent. A federal law, law of a Subject of the Russian Federation shall not establish any other maximum number of voter signatures to be submitted for the registration of a candidate (list of candidates).

4. A federal constitutional law, federal law, law of a Subject of the Russian Federation shall provide for a procedure to verify the authenticity of voter signatures collected in support of candidates (lists of candidates). Such verification may cover either all submitted signatures or a part thereof randomly sampled for the verification, however not less than 20 percent of the number of signatures set by law and required for registration. If some proportion of signatures subjected to verification is found to be inauthentic, the size of this proportion to be established by a constitutional law, federal law, law of a Subject of the Russian Federation, however it may not be less than 10 and more than 20 percent of the number of verified signatures, or if the number of authentic signatures is insufficient for the registration of the given candidate (list of candidates), the election commission shall refuse to register the candidate (list of candidates). All candidates, representatives of the electoral associations, electoral blocs which nominated lists of candidates shall be informed about each case of such verification provided they have submitted the required number of signatures for the registration of the candidate (list of candidates). All candidates, representatives of the candidates, electoral associations. electoral blocs nominating candidates (lists of candidates), representatives of voters who have realized the initiative to nominate a candidate, if they have submitted the established number of signatures, may be present during verification of signatures submitted by each electoral association, electoral bloc, candidate, including sampling of signatures for verification. Signatures on the signatures lists shall not be verified if they had been eliminated (crossed out) by the nominators of the candidate (list of candidates) before the signatures were submitted to the election commission provided they made a special note to this effect.

5. A federal law, law of a Subject of the Russian Federation may provide that at the option of a candidate, electoral association, electoral bloc registration of a candidate (list of candidates) shall be carried out by the relevant election commission on the basis of an electoral deposit paid to the election commission by this candidate, electoral association, electoral bloc which nominated a list of candidates, rather than on the basis of the submitted voter signatures. The fact that voter signatures have been submitted to an election commission for registration by a candidate, an electoral association, electoral bloc in support of this candidate, the relevant list of candidates shall not be used as a reason to refuse registration if the candidate, the electoral association, electoral bloc pay an electoral deposit. The electoral deposit shall be paid from the resources of the electoral fund. If a registered candidate has not been elected and according to voting returns has polled a number of votes less than the number established by a federal law, law of a Subject of the Russian Federation, if the electoral association, electoral bloc has not taken part in the distribution of deputy mandates and has polled a number of votes less than the number established by a federal law, law of a Subject of the Russian Federation, the electoral deposit paid by the candidate, the electoral association, electoral bloc shall be forfeited for the benefit of the appropriate budget. The aforementioned number of votes shall not exceed 5 percent of the number of votes of voters who took part in the voting in the given electoral district for registered candidates and 3 percent for electoral associations, electoral blocs. The amount of the electoral deposit established by a federal law, law of a Subject of the Russian Federation shall not exceed 15 percent of the maximum sum to be spent from the electoral fund of the given candidate, the electoral association, electoral bloc in accordance with this law. The rules to be followed by an election commission to open and maintain a special account to accept and keep electoral deposits shall be laid down by a federal law, law of a Subject of the Russian Federation.

6. Within a period not longer than 10 days for elections to the federal bodies of state power and 5 days for elections to the bodies of state power of Subjects of the Russian Federation and bodies of local self-government the appropriate election commission shall make sure that that the candidate (list of candidates) has been nominated in conformity with the provisions of a federal law, law of a Subject of the Russian Federation and take a resolution to register the candidate (list of candidates) or refuse the registration.

7. A candidate may be registered only in one electoral district. This rule shall not apply to registration of a candidate simultaneously nominated by an electoral association, electoral bloc in a single-mandate electoral district and in a list of candidates in the same elections.

8. When registering a candidate nominated by an electoral association, electoral bloc the appropriate resolution of the election commission shall note the fact of his/her nomination by the given electoral association, electoral bloc. A candidate nominated by voters may announce his/her membership in not more than one public association registered not later than a year before voting day in accordance with a procedure established by law and announce his/her status in this public association. When a candidate is simultaneously registered in a list and in a single-mandate electoral district, the appropriate resolution of the district election commission must point out the fact that the candidate has also been registered in a list of candidates.

9. In the event of a refusal to register a candidate (list of candidates) the relevant election commission shall within 24 hours upon adoption of its resolution issue a copy of the resolution stating the reasons for the refusal to the candidate or an authorized representative of the electoral association, electoral bloc, the group of voters or the voter that nominated the candidate. The reasons for such refusal may be

serious violation of the signature-collection rules established by the federal constitutional law, a federal law, law of a Subject of the Russian Federation;

insufficient number of authentic voter signatures submitted in support of a candidate (list of candidates) or the proportion of unauthentic signatures among the verified signatures exceeding the maximum proportion established by law unless the candidate, electoral association, electoral bloc has paid an electoral deposit;

inaccuracy of the information submitted by the candidate under Clause 2 Article 28 of this Federal Law and Clause 1 of this Article, if this inaccuracy is of essential nature;

serious violation of the rules for the establishment of the electoral fund and expenditure of its resources;

other reasons provided by this Federal Law.

10. If the inaccuracy of the information submitted by the candidate under Clause 2 Article 28 of this Federal Law and Clause 1 of this Article has been established after registration of the candidate (list of candidates) and this inaccuracy is of essential nature, the election commission may, not later than 16 days before voting day, annul the resolution to register the given candidate (exclude the given candidate from the list of candidates) and 15 - 1 days before voting day apply to a court for annulling registration of this candidate (exclusion of the candidate from the list of candidates).

11. A candidate shall be entitled to withdraw any time, however, not later than three days before election day.

12. An electoral association, electoral bloc shall be entitled to withdraw the list of candidates or refuse to participate in the election upon decision of the body that nominated the candidates any time, however, not later than three days before election day.

13. After submitting a list of candidates together with voter signatures collected in its support an electoral association in accordance with its charter, an electoral bloc by a resolution of representatives duly authorized by electoral associations forming the given bloc may eliminate some candidates from the list certified by the appropriate election commission for the collection of signatures.

Candidates may also be eliminated after registration but no later than five days prior to the voting day. The total number of candidates eliminated from the list shall not exceed 25 percent of the total number of candidates on the certified list, the first three candidates on the list not being subject to elimination. No new persons shall be put on the list and the order in which the candidates appear on the list shall not be changed unless such a change is necessitated by the removal of some candidates. The election commission shall not refuse to register a list of candidates which was changed in accordance with a procedure established by this Federal Law, the charter of an electoral association, agreement for the formation of an electoral bloc.

14. If by the voting day no candidates remain in the electoral district or the number of registered candidates is smaller than or equal to the established number of mandates or only one list of candidates has been registered, elections in the given electoral district shall be postponed by a resolution of the appropriate election commission for not longer than six months to allow additional candidates (list of candidates) to be nominated and subsequent electoral actions to be taken.

15. If the circumstances indicated in Clause 11 of this Article result from the fact that a candidate withdrew his/her candidature without compelling reasons or his/her registration was canceled in accordance with Clause 6 of Article 45 of this Federal Law in the elections to federal bodies of state power, bodies of state power of Subjects of the Russian Federation, bodies of local self-government, all expenses incurred by the appropriate election commission in the preparation and holding of the elections shall be charged to this candidate. A law of a Subject of the Russian Federation may provide that in the event of circumstances indicated in Clause 11 of this Article voting may be conducted on one candidate in the elections of deputies of bodies of local self-government and the candidate shall be deemed to have been elected if no less than 50 percent of voters who took part in the voting voted for this candidate.

16. When repeated elections and by-elections are held to fill a vacancy in the existing legislative (representative) body of state power, body of local self-government a candidate shall not be registered if he/she is a deputy (member) of this body.

As amended 3/30/99.

Article 33. Realization of the Initiative to Hold a Referendum

1. Each voter or group of voters entitled to participate in an appropriate referendum as well as a public association may form an initiative group for holding a referendum, the number of members in the group being no less than 20 for holding a referendum of Subject of the Russian Federation and no less than 10 for holding a local referendum. An electoral association registered with a juridical body of the level at which a referendum is to be held or a higher level may likewise act as an initiator of a referendum. In this case, the governing body of the electoral association or the governing body of its regional, local division, local organization shall act as a referendum initiative group regardless of the number of its members.

2. The referendum initiative group shall file a request for registration of the group with an election commission of the appropriate level acting as a referendum commission. If there is no permanent election commission of the municipal unit, the functions of a local referendum commission, until such a referendum commission is formed, shall be performed by a representative body of local self-government and, if there is no representative body of local self-government, by the election commission of a Subject of the Russian Federation.

3. The request of a referendum initiative group shall contain the issue (issues) or the text of a draft law, a draft of some other normative legal act proposed by the initiative group for the referendum and indicate the first and last names and patronymics, places of residence, series and numbers of passports or equivalent IDs of the members of the initiative group and persons authorized to act on behalf of the initiative group in the territory of the proposed referendum.

4. Attached to the request shall be the minutes of the meeting of the referendum initiative group at which a resolution was taken to put forward an initiative to hold a referendum.

5. If the formulation of the issue proposed by the referendum initiative group for a referendum does not meet the requirements set forth in this Federal Law the appropriate election commission (referendum commission) to which the request for the referendum was submitted may agree with the referendum initiative group a new formulation which does not change the substance of the issue. The right to change the formulation of the issue put to the referendum shall belong only to the referendum initiative group. The formulation of the issue to be put to the referendum shall not be changed upon registration of the initiative group.

6. Within 15 days upon receipt of the request of the referendum initiative group the body indicated in Clause 2 of this Article shall consider this request and the attached documents and if the request and the documents meet the requirements of this Federal Law, the constitution, charter, law of a Subject of the Russian Federation, charter of the municipal unit - send the request and the attached documents to the body of state power of a Subject of the Russian Federation or to the body of local self-government authorized by the constitution, charter, law of the Subject of the Russian Federation, the charter of a municipal unit to set a referendum.

7. The body of state power of a Subject of the Russian Federation, the body of local self-government authorized by the constitution, charter, law of the Subject of the Russian Federation, charter of the municipal unit to set a referendum shall check the issue proposed for a referendum of the Subject of the Russian Federation, local referendum for compliance with the requirements of Article 13 of this Federal Law in accordance with a procedure and within a period established by a law of the Subject of the Russian Federation, charter of the municipal unit. This period shall not exceed 20 days from the day on which a request for a referendum and the attached documents were submitted to the relevant body by the referendum initiative group in accordance with a procedure set forth in Clause 6 of this Article.

8. Within 5 days upon receipt of a request of an initiative group for calling a referendum in a Subject of the Russian Federation and the attached documents filed in accordance with the procedure set forth in Clause 6 of this Article the body of state power of the Subject of the Russian Federation authorized by the constitution, charter, law of the Subject of the Russian Federation to set a referendum of the Subject of the Russian Federation shall notify of this initiative the President of the Russian Federation, the Federation Council of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation, the State Duma of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation, the Government of the Russian Federation and the Central Election Commission of the Russian Federation.9. If the body indicated in Clause 7 of this Article establishes that the issue to be put to the referendum meets the requirements of Article 13 of this Federal Law, the body indicated in Clause 2 of this Article shall register the referendum initiative group, issue a registration certificate to the group and inform the mass media about this. A decision to register an. initiative group calling for a referendum in a Subject of the Russian Federation shall be taken within 15 days after expiration of 45 days from the day on which a request of an initiative group calling for a referendum in a Subject of the Russian Federation and the attached documents were received by the body indicated in Clause 7 of this Article.

10. If a dispute arises over the competence in connection with the initiative to hold a referendum of a Subject of the Russian Federation, the President of the Russian Federation, the Federation Council of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation, the State Duma of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation, the Government of the Russian Federation may suggest that the body which established that the issue to be put to a referendum meets the requirements of Article 13 of this Federal Law form a conciliatory commission. Representatives of the initiative group calling for a referendum in a Subject of the Russian Federation may participate in the work of the conciliatory commission. The period indicated in Clause 9 of this Article shall be suspended for as long as the conciliatory commission is working.

11. If the body indicated in Clause 7 of this Article establishes that the issue to be put to a referendum does not meet the requirements of Article 13 of this Federal Law, the body indicated in Clause 2 of this Article shall refuse to register the referendum initiative group.

12. In the event of the refusal of registration the referendum initiative group shall be issued a resolution of the relevant body indicating the reasons for the refusal.

13. The reason for the refusal to register a referendum initiative group may only be violation by the initiative group of the Constitution of the Russian Federation, federal constitutional laws, federal laws, the constitution, charter, laws of a Subject of the Russian Federation, the charter of a municipal unit. The refusal of registration may appealed in a court.

14. If an election commission (referendum commission) of the appropriate level is non-existent, the body which registered a referendum initiative group shall, within 14 days of the date on which the initiative group was registered, form a referendum commission in accordance with a procedure set forth in Article 23 of this Federal Law.

15. Upon receipt of a registration certificate the referendum initiative group shall be entitled to organize collection of signatures in support of the initiative to hold a referendum. In this case, only those signatures shall be reckoned, which were collected after the date of registration of the initiative group. The registration certificate, the format of which is to be approved by the election commission of a Subject of the Russian Federation and which is issued to the referendum initiative group shall be valid for the period established by a federal constitutional law, law of a Subject of the Russian Federation, the charter of a municipal unit. The expenses incurred in the collection of signatures shall be borne by the initiative group.

16. Signatures of citizens in support of the initiative to hold a referendum shall be collected by the referendum initiative group in accordance with a procedure and in the number established by a federal constitutional law, federal law, law of a Subject of the Russian Federation, the charter of a municipal unit. The maximum number of signatures which has to be collected in support of the initiative to hold a referendum shall not exceed 2 percent of the number of citizens who have the right to participate in the referendum for a referendum of a Subject of the Russian Federation and 5 percent of the number of citizens who have the right to participate in the referendum for a local referendum. The number of citizens who have the right to participate in a referendum shall be determined on the basis of registration of referendum participants as of January 1 or July 1 of the appropriate year.

17. Signatures shall be collected on signature lists containing the formulation of the issue put to the referendum. If a referendum is to be held on a draft law, a draft of a normative legal act of a body of local self-government, the person collecting signatures shall produce the text of this draft to a referendum participant upon his/her first request.

18. Signatures may be collected among referendum participants over the entire territory of the proposed referendum. No quotas shall be established for the collection of signatures in support of an initiative to hold a referendum of a Subject of the Russian Federation, a local referendum in separate parts of the territory of a Subject of the Russian Federation, a municipal unit.

19. The period established by a federal constitutional law, federal law, law of a Subject of the Russian Federation, charter of a municipal unit for the collection of signatures in support of an initiative to hold a referendum shall be no less than 30 days for a referendum of a Subject of the Russian Federation, no less than 20 days for a local referendum.

20. After the end of signature collection but no later than the end of the period for which the registration certificate is valid the referendum initiative group shall count the total number of the collected voter signatures and draw up a final protocol. An authorized representative of the referendum initiative group shall hand over the numbered and stitched signature lists and a copy of the final protocol of the initiative group to the election commission (referendum commission) which issued the registration certificate.

21. The election commission (referendum commission) shall verify compliance with the requirements of the federal constitutional law, federal law, law of a Subject of the Russian Federation, charter of a municipal unit during collection of signatures and, among other things, shall verify the authenticity of the collected signatures in accordance with a procedure set forth in Clause 3 of Article 32 of this Federal Law and take a resolution on the basis of the verification results. In the event of violation of the said requirements the election commission (referendum commission) shall take a resolution to refuse the referendum. A copy of this resolution shall be forwarded to the referendum initiative group. For two years after adoption of this resolution members of the given initiative group shall not put forward another initiative to hold a referendum.

22. If the initiative to hold a referendum has been put forward in compliance with the requirements of a federal constitutional law, federal law, law of the Subject of Russian Federation, charter of a municipal unit the election commission (referendum commission) shall, within 15 days after the referendum initiative group has submitted documents indicated in Clause 20 of this Article, forward the signature lists, a copy of the final protocol of the initiative group and a copy of its resolution to a body of state power of a Subject of the Russian Federation or a body of local self-government authorized to announce a referendum in compliance with the constitution, charter, law of the Subject of the Russian Federation, the charter of a municipal unit. A copy of the resolution of the election commission (referendum commission) shall also be given to the initiative group.

23. If a dispute arises over the competence in connection with the setting of a referendum of a Subject of the Russian Federation, this dispute shall be settled by the Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation. In this case the preparation of the referendum shall be suspended pending the decision of the Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation.

As amended 3/30/99.

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