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28.06.2022, . 10:48


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Chapter II. The Purpose of Referenda in Russian Federation

Article 12. Mandatory Referenda

Article 13. Referendum Issues

Article 14. Circumstances under which a Referendum Shall not be Held

Article 15. Initiative to Hold a Referendum

Article 16. Announcement of a Referendum

Article 17. Registration of Voters, Referendum Participants

Article 18. Compiling Lists of Voters, Referendum Participants

Article 19. Formation of Electoral Districts

Article 20. Formation of Electoral Precincts, Referendum Precincts


Article 12. Mandatory Referenda

1. A referendum of the Russian Federation, a referendum of Subject of Russian Federation, a local referendum shall be announced and held as and when prescribed, respectively, by the Federal Constitutional Law On the Referendum of the Russian Federation, this Federal Law, a law of Subject of Russian Federation, a charter of the municipal unit.

2. Adoption by a body of state power or a body of local self-government of a resolution on the substance of the issue which may be submitted to a referendum under a federal constitutional law, a federal law, a law of Subject of Russian Federation, a charter of a municipal unit shall not prevent a possibility of a referendum being held on the given issue.

Article 13. Referendum Issues

1. Issues to be submitted to a referendum of the Russian Federation and issues which are not to be submitted to a referendum of the Russian Federation shall be specified by a federal constitutional law.

2. Issues may be submitted to a referendum of Subject of Russian Federation if they are within the jurisdiction of Subject of Russian Federation. Issues may be submitted to a local referendum if they are within the jurisdiction of the local self-government. The issues which are to be submitted to a referendum may be specified by laws of Subjects of Russian Federation, normative legal acts of the representative bodies of local self-government.

3. The following issues shall not be submitted to a referendum of Subject of Russian Federation:

    - premature termination, prolongation, suspension of powers of bodies of state power of Subject of Russian Federation, bodies of local self-government and the holding of early elections to bodies of state power of Subject of Russian Federation, bodies of local self-government or postponement of the said elections;

    - formation of bodies of state power of Subject of Russian Federation or bodies of local self-government, personal membership of bodies of state power of Subject of Russian Federation and bodies of local self-government;

    - election, confirmation, appointment or consent to the appointment to an office or removal from office of deputies and officials.

    - the adoption of and change in the relevant budget fulfillment of and change in internal financial commitments of the Russian Federation;

    - the adoption of extraordinary and urgent measures to ensure health and security of the population;

4. Neither shall issues be submitted to a referendum of Subject of Russian Federation if they are within the jurisdiction of the Russian Federation or within the joint jurisdiction of the Russian Federation and Subject of Russian Federation and to a local referendum if they are not within the jurisdiction of the corresponding municipal unit.

5. Issues submitted to a referendum in the Russian Federation shall not restrict or abolish the generally recognized human and civil rights and the constitutional guarantees for the realization thereof. The said issues shall be formulated so as to avoid any ambiguity in their interpretation.

6. An issue to be submitted to a referendum shall be formulated in such a manner that only an unambiguous answer may be given.

7. The issues submitted to a referendum of Subject of Russian Federation, a local referendum shall not conflict with Russian Federation law. Issues submitted to a local referendum shall not conflict with Russian Federation law and the law of the given Subject of the Russian Federation.

8. No restrictions shall be established for issues to be submitted to a referendum other than those set forth in this Article.

Article 14. Circumstances under which a Referendum Shall not be Held

1. A referendum shall not be held if a martial law or a state of emergency have been imposed in the territory of the Russian Federation or in the territory in which the referendum is to be held or within a part of this territory, or within three months after the martial law or the state of emergency have been lifted.

2. A law of a Subject of Russian Federation, a charter of a municipal unit may establish a period during which another referendum of Subject of Russian Federation, another local referendum with essentially the same formulation of the issue shall not be held. The said period shall not exceed two years from the date on which the results of the referendum were officially published (made public).

3. No circumstances under which a referendum shall not be held shall be established other than those indicated in this Article.

Article 15. Initiative to Hold a Referendum

1. Citizens of the Russian Federation eligible to participate in a referendum may put forward an initiative to hold a referendum in the Russian Federation. Federal constitutional laws, federal laws, laws of Subjects of Russian Federation may delegate the right to initiate a referendum to other subjects.

2. Each citizen or a group of citizens eligible to participate in a referendum as well as a public association, which is registered with the bodies of justice of the Russian Federation not later than 6 months prior to the date when the initiative to hold the referendum was submitted to the relevant body, the charter of which stipulates the participation in elections may form an initiative group for referendum, the number of members of which shall be set by this Federal Law, federal constitutional laws, federal laws, laws of Subjects of Russian Federation, in order to collect signatures of citizens of the Russian Federation eligible to participate in the referendum in support of the initiative regarding the referendum.

3. Signatures in support of the initiative regarding the referendum shall be collected in the procedure and in the amount set forth by laws of Subjects of Russian Federation, Charters of municipal units.

4. Laws of Subjects of Russian Federation, charters of the municipal units may provide that an initiative for holding a local referendum may be also realized in the form of a meeting of referendum participants.

Article 16. Announcement of a Referendum

1. A referendum of the Russian Federation shall be announced in compliance with the Constitution of the Russian Federation and the federal constitutional law.

2. A referendum of Subject of Russian Federation shall be announced by a body of state power of Subject of Russian Federation in compliance with this Federal law, the constitution, charter, law of Subject of Russian Federation.

3. A local referendum shall be announced by a body of local self-government in compliance with this Federal Law, the law of Subject of Russian Federation, the charter of the municipal unit.

4. A referendum shall be set only for a calendar day-off. A referendum shall not be set for an official holiday. A resolution to hold a referendum of the Russian Federation, a referendum of Subject of Russian Federation shall be officially published no less than 60 days prior to the day of voting, a resolution to hold a local referendum no less than 45 days prior to the day of voting.

5. Under the law of Subject of Russian Federation, the charter of a municipal unit no later than 25 days prior to the referendum day the day of voting in the referendum of Subject of Russian Federation, in the local referendum may be postponed until a later date (but by not more than 90 days) by the duly authorized body in order to hold the given referendum on the same day with another referendum or with elections to bodies of state power or bodies of local self-government.

6. A resolution to announce a referendum or to put off the referendum date in accordance with Clause 5 of this Article shall be published in mass media no later than 6 days after it was taken.

Chapter III. Registration of Voters, Citizens Eligible to Participate in a Referendum, Compiling Voter Lists, Lists of Referendum Participants, Formation of Electoral Districts, Electoral Precincts and Referendum Precincts

Article 17. Registration of Voters, Referendum Participants

1. All citizens of the Russian Federation eligible to vote shall be subject to registration.

2. The registration of voters, referendum participants shall be based on the fact of permanent or current active residence of a citizen of the Russian Federation in the relevant territory that shall be established by population registration bodies, in compliance with the federal law regulating the procedure for implementation of the right of citizens of the Russian Federation to free movement, choice of place of residence and stay within the territory of the Russian Federation.

3. The registration of voters, referendum participants residing outside the territory of the Russian Federation or staying abroad on long missions shall be based on their permanent residence or staying on long mission in the territory of a foreign state that shall be set by the diplomatic representation offices, consular establishments of the Russian Federation.

4. The registration of voters referendum participants shall be effected by the Head of a municipal unit, (if this office is not provided by the charter of the municipal unit, by a person duly authorized by a body of local self-government), the commander of a military unit, the Head of a diplomatic mission, consular establishment of Russian Federation as of January 1 and July 1 of each year with the utilization of the State Automated System of the Russian Federation.

5. The federal bodies of executive power, bodies of executive branch of Subjects of Russian Federation shall render assistance to the bodies of local self-government and election commissions in registering voters, referendum participants and updating the data on registered voters, referendum participants.

6. A voter, referendum participant shall be entitled to free access to documented information (personal file) regarding him/her including data on electronic media in order to correct inaccurate data and to insure its completeness and validity and shall be entitled to know who uses or used such data and for what purposes.

Article 18. Compiling Lists of Voters, Referendum Participants

1. In order to ensure the rights of voters during elections and referenda and to provide them with an opportunity to verify the validity of the data on themselves, and to conduct voting, the relevant election commission shall compile lists of voters, referendum participants on the basis of the data obtained by the utilization of the state voter and referendum participant registration and recording system and provided in compliance with the requirements of Clause 7 of this Article.

2. The procedure for compiling lists of voters, referendum participants shall be set by this Law, federal constitutional laws, other federal laws, and laws of Subjects of Russian Federation and Charters of municipal units.

3. Citizens of the Russian Federation who are eligible to vote on election, referendum day, unless otherwise stipulated in this Federal Law, shall be enrolled on the lists of voters, referendum participants in the electoral precincts, precincts for referendum.

4. Under the international treaties signed by Russian Federation and the corresponding federal laws, laws of Subjects of Russian Federation the lists of voters, referendum participants in the elections to the bodies of local self-government, for participation in a local referendum shall include foreign citizens who have attained the age of 18 and are not subject to the provisions of Clause 3 of Article 4 of this Federal law, permanently or currently residing in the territory of the municipal unit wherein the said elections, referendum are to be held.

5. The ground for enrollment of citizens of the Russian Federation to the voter list at a specific electoral precinct, precinct for the referendum shall be the fact of their permanent or current active residence in the precinct and, in cases provided by this Federal Law, federal constitutional laws, other federal laws - temporary stay in the territory of such electoral precinct.

6. Military servicemen at service as conscripts in military units, military organizations and establishments located in the territory of the relevant municipal unit shall not be enrolled on the lists of voters, referendum participants for elections to the bodies of local self-government and shall not be counted during the determination of the number of voters, referendum participants, unless they prior to the drafting resided permanently or currently in said municipal units.

7. Information about registered voters, referendum participants shall be filed and updated by an authorized body or official of local self-government; information about voters - servicemen in military units, their dependents and other voters, if they live in the territory where the military unit is stationed - by the commanding officer of the military unit. This information shall be forwarded by the authorized body or official of local self-government to territorial election commissions, referendum commissions and, in the absence of territorial commissions, to district election commissions and by the commanding officer of a military unit to territorial (district) or precinct election commissions, referendum commissions immediately after appointment of the voting date or after formation of these commissions. The list of voters, referendum participants shall be composed by the appropriate election commission, referendum commission, using, among other things, the State Automated System in accordance with procedures established by the federal constitutional laws, federal laws, laws of Subjects of Russian Federation, separately for each electoral precinct, referendum precinct on the basis of the information submitted in accordance with an established form by duly authorized bodies or officials or the commanding officer of the military unit.

8. A citizen of the Russian Federation enjoying an active electoral right who is staying as of the day of voting in elections to the federal bodies of state power, referendum of the Russian Federation outside the territory of the Russian Federation and who was not in a position to obtain absentee voting certificate or vote earlier shall be entered in the list of voters, referendum participants by the appropriate election commission, referendum commission when he/she comes for voting on the voting day to the premises of the precinct election commission, referendum commission.

9. A citizen of the Russian Federation shall be enrolled on the voter list only in one electoral precinct, precinct for referendum.

10. Lists of voters, referendum participants shall be compiled in two copies. The data regarding voters, referendum participants shall be arranged in an alphabetical or other order (by populated areas, streets, blocks of apartments on the basis of voters' addresses). The lists shall contain the family name, given name, patronymic name, date, month, year of birth (for voters at the age of 18 - the day, month and year of birth), address of residence (staying) of the voter, referendum participant. The lists of voters, referendum participants shall be signed by the chairman and the secretary of the territorial election commission, referendum commission and in case the territorial election commission is not available by the chairman and the secretary of the precinct election commission, referendum commission. In the electoral precincts, referendum precincts formed in the territory of a military unit the list of voters, referendum participants shall be signed by the chairman and the secretary of the precinct election commission, referendum commission. The list of voters, referendum participants shall be certified by seals of the territorial (district) and precinct election commissions, referendum commission respectively.

11. The relevant territorial (district) election commission, referendum commission shall transfer the lists of voters, referendum participants of a specific electoral precinct, precinct for the referendum to the precinct election commissions, referendum commissions in accordance with the transfer act not later than 25 days prior to election day or referendum day.

12. The precinct election commission, referendum commission shall update the lists of voters, referendum participants in compliance with the procedures established for organization of interaction and cooperation of election commissions and referendum commissions with the bodies of local self-government, establishments and organizations in charge of the registration of voters, referendum participants.

13. The lists of voters, referendum participants shall be displayed by the precinct election commission, referendum commission for public acquaintance and further updating not later than 20 days prior to election day or referendum day.

14. A citizen of the Russian Federation eligible to vote shall be entitled to apply to the precinct election commission, referendum commission regarding his/her non-enrollment on the list of voters, referendum participants or regarding any mistake or inaccuracy of the data on him/her on the list of voters, referendum participants. The precinct election commission, referendum commission shall review the applications and submitted documents within 24 hours of the submission or within 2 hours if submitted on election day, however, not later than the end of voting, and rectify the mistake or inaccuracy or issue a written response to the applicant with the reasons for the rejection of the application specified. A citizen may be excluded from the list of voters which has been signed by the chairman and the secretary of the territorial election commission only on the basis of information received from the appropriate authorities in charge of registration of voters, referendum participants. In this case, the date on which the citizen was excluded from the list and the reasons for excluding shall be indicated in the list of voters, referendum participants. This entry shall be certified by signature of the chairman of the precinct election commission. The decision of the precinct election commission, referendum commission may be appealed to a higher election commission, referendum commission (subject to the level of the election, referendum) or to a court of law (at the location of the precinct election commission, commission for referendum) that shall review the appeal within 3 days and if submitted on election day - immediately.

15. No modifications to the list of voters, referendum participants shall be allowed after the end of voting and the beginning of the vote count.

Article 19. Formation of Electoral Districts

1. When elections are to be held, electoral districts shall be formed on the basis of information about the number of voters registered in the given territory under Clause 4 of Article 17 of this Federal law, the said information to be submitted by executive bodies of state power or bodies of local self-government, depending on the level of the elections, and by commanding officers of military units no later than 5 days after setting the day of voting. No later than 70 days prior to the voting day the appropriate election commission shall determine the layout of electoral districts, indicating their boundaries, the list of localities (streets, houses) comprised in each electoral district, the number and center of each electoral district, the number of voters in each electoral district. The appropriate representative body of state power, body of local self-government shall approve the layout of electoral districts no later than 60 days prior to the voting day.

2. If there are no representative bodies of state power, bodies of local self-government in the territory where elections are to be held or these bodies fail to take a resolution on the formation of electoral districts during the term established by Clause 1 of this Article, the elections shall be held on the basis of the electoral districts whose layout was approved for elections of bodies of state power, bodies of local self-government of the previous convocation.

3. For the purposes of elections in the Russian Federation electoral districts shall be formed according to the following requirements:

    - approximately equal number of voters in the electoral districts with an acceptable deviation from the average representation quota not more than 10 percent and for remote areas and areas of difficult access not more than 15 percent. This requirement shall not apply to elections to federal bodies of state power, other federal state bodies if according to federal laws at least one electoral district shall be established in the territory of each Subject of the Russian Federation. The list of remote and hard-to-reach localities shall be established by a law of Subject of Russian Federation;

    - when establishing electoral districts in the areas populated by indigenous, small peoples, the permissible deviation from the average representation quota in accordance with laws of the Russian Federation, may not exceed the above limits by more than 30 percent;

    - an electoral district shall constitute a single territory; creation of electoral district consisting of non-adjacent territories shall not be allowed unless otherwise stipulated by federal laws and laws of Subjects of Russian Federation.

4. The requirements to the formation of electoral districts set forth in Clause 3 of this Article shall be met with due consideration for the administrative-territorial structure (division) of Subject of Russian Federation, territory of municipal units.

5. The layout of electoral districts, including its graphical representation, shall be published (made public) by the appropriate representative body of state power, body of local self-government no later than five days upon its approval.

6. When a multi-mandate electoral district is to be formed, the number of seats to be distributed in the district shall not exceed five.

Article 20. Formation of Electoral Precincts, Referendum Precincts

1. Electoral precincts, referendum precincts shall be formed for the purposes of voting and the vote counting.

2. Electoral precincts, referendum precincts shall be formed by the Head of a municipal unit upon agreement with the relevant election commissions, referendum commissions on the basis of the data concerning the number of voters, referendum participants registered in the territory of the electoral precinct, referendum precinct in accordance with Clause 4 of Article 17 of this Federal law, with not more than 3 thousand voters, referendum participants per precinct, no later than 45 days prior to the voting day in the referendum of the Russian Federation and 30 days prior to the voting day in elections, other referenda.

3. For citizens of the Russian Federation staying in the territory of a foreign state, electoral precincts, referendum precincts shall be formed by the Heads of diplomatic representation offices or consular establishments of the Russian Federation in the territory of the country where they stay. The requirements regarding the number of voters, referendum participants set forth in Clause 2 of this Article shall not apply to the formation of electoral precincts, referendum precincts formed beyond the territory of the Russian Federation.

4. Boundaries of electoral precincts shall not cross the boundaries of electoral districts. The procedures for assigning electoral precincts formed beyond the territory of the Russian Federation to electoral districts formed for elections of federal bodies of state power shall be set by federal constitutional laws and federal laws.

5. In places of temporary stay of voters, referendum participants (in hospitals, sanatoriums, rest houses, and other places of temporary stay of voters) in remote areas and areas with difficult access at ships at sea on election day, referendum day, at polar stations, electoral precincts, referendum precincts may be formed within the terms set forth in Clause 2 of this Article and in extraordinary cases not later than 5 days before election (voting) day, referendum day; such electoral precinct shall be assigned to electoral district at the place of its location or of the place of the vessel's registration.

6. Military servicemen shall vote in regular electoral precincts, referendum precincts. Electoral precincts, referendum precincts shall be formed in military units in cases and in a procedure and at the time established by federal constitutional laws, federal laws, laws of Subjects of Russian Federation.

7. Lists of electoral precincts, referendum precincts indicating their boundaries and numbers, location of precinct election commissions, referendum commissions, and voting premises shall be published by the Head of the relevant municipal unit no later than 30 days prior to the day of voting at referendum of the Russian Federation and 25 days prior to the day of voting at elections and other referenda.

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