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LAW OF UKRAINE

ON ALL-UKRAINIAN AND LOCAL REFERENDUMS

(Vidomosti Verkhovnoyi Rady (VVR), 1991, #33, p.443)

(Enacted by VR Resolution #1287-XII of July 03, 1991, VVR, 1991, N33, p.444)

(Changed and amended according to Law of Ukraine #2481-XII of June 19, 1992, Vidomosti Verkhovnoyi Rady (VVR), 1992, #35, p. 5; #2628-III of July 11, 2001)

(According to the Law of Ukraine #2481-XII of June 19, 1992, words "Ukrainian SSR", "Crimean ASSR" have been replaced with words "Ukraine" and "Republic of Crimea" respectively in the title and text of the Law)

CHAPTER I. GENERAL PRINCIPLES

ARTICLE 1. Notion and Types of Referenda.

With the purpose to ensure democracy and citizen's direct participation in State and Local management, the referenda should be conducted in Ukraine. Referendum - is a method for the citizens of Ukraine to vote in order to adopt Laws of Ukraine and other resolutions on important issues of State and local significance.

According to the Constitution of Ukraine, All- Ukrainian, Republic of Crimea, and local (within administrative and territorial units) referenda shall be conducted.

Laws and other decisions adopted through All-Ukrainian referendum have superior judicial power over legislative acts of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine, Supreme Council of Republic of Crimea, as well as over Normative acts of the President of Ukraine, Cabinet of Ministries of Ukraine, high executive and administrative State bodies of Republic of Crimea, and over ancillary acts of Ministries and Department of Ukraine, and Republic of Crimea, as well as over local Councils of peoples' deputies resolutions. Decisions adopted through local referenda have superior judicial power over councils of peoples' deputies resolutions on the territory the referendum is conducted.

Laws and other decisions adopted by the referendum shall not require ratification by state bodies and may be abolished or altered only according to the procedure stipulated by this Law.

ARTICLE 2. Legislation on Referenda.

The procedure of preparation and conduct of All-Ukrainian and local referenda shall be regulated by the Constitution of Ukraine, by this Law, and other legislative acts of Ukraine.

The procedure of preparation and conduct of Republican and local Referenda in the Republic of Crimea, on questions relevant to its authority, shall be regulated by this Law and Republic of Crimea legislation.

(Paragraph 2, Article 2 in the wording of Law of Ukraine #2481- 12 of June 19, 1992)

ARTICLE 3. Subject - Matter of All-Ukrainian Referendum.

The subject-matter of All-Ukrainian referendum can be:

confirmation of the Constitution of Ukraine, its separate provisions, as well as introduction of changes and amendments to the Constitution of Ukraine;

adoption, change or cancellation of Laws of Ukraine or their separate provisions;

adoption of decisions which determine the principal content of the Constitution of Ukraine, Laws of Ukraine, and other legislative Acts.

ARTICLE 3-1. Subject - Matter of Republican and Local Referenda in Republic of Crimea.

The subject - matter of Republican (Republic Crimea) referendum can be: adoption, change or cancellation of decisions on questions, handed over by legislation of Ukraine to Republic of Crimea authority.

The subject-matter of local referendum in the Republic of Crimea is determined by Republic of Crimea legislation.

(Article 3-1 added to Law according to Law of Ukraine #2481-12 of June 19, 1992)

ARTICLE 4. Subject - Matter of Local Referendum.

The subject-matter of a local referendum can be:

adoption, change or cancellation of decisions on questions handed over by legislation of Ukraine to local self-governance and appropriate administrative and territorial units' authority;

adoption of decisions, which determine local Councils of Peoples' deputies and their executive and administrative bodies' resolutions.

ARTICLE 5. Questions Submitted to All-Ukrainian Referenda.

Questions attributed by the Constitution of Ukraine to Ukrainian jurisdiction can be submitted to All-Ukrainian referendum.

Questions on realization of Ukrainian people' s right to self-determination and joining federative or confederative state formations, as well as leaving them may be submitted to All-Ukrainian referendum only.

Questions attributed by legislation of Ukraine to a Court or Prosecutor's jurisdiction shall be not submitted to All-Ukrainian referendum, amnesty and pardon questions, as well as questions of extraordinary and urgent steps taken by State bodies of Ukraine to protect public order, health and security of citizens also may not be submitted to All-Ukrainian referendum

Questions related to the election, appointment and exemption of officials under the jurisdiction of the Verkhovna Rada, the President and Cabinet of Ministries of Ukraine shall not be submitted to the mentioned referendum as well.

ARTICLE 6. Questions Submitted to Local Referenda.

Questions attributed by legislation of Ukraine to local self-government jurisdiction of appropriate administrative and territorial unites, as well as questions on pre-term termination of appropriate Council of Peoples' deputies and its Chairperson's authorities may be submitted to local referendum.

The following questions within appropriate administrative and territorial units may be resolved exclusively by local Referenda: name and renameing of village Councils, settlement towns, rayons and regions (oblasts); merging in a simple unit of administrative and territorial units of the same, which have a common administrative center; alteration of local self-government's base level in rural districts (rayons), the questions of the reorganisation or liquidation of community-owned pre-school educational establishments, as well as pre-school educational establishments set up by the former agricultural collective and state-owned farms. (The Paragraph changed and amended according to Law of Ukraine #2628-III of July 11, 2001)

Questions on disaffirmation of higher state and self-government bodies' legal resolutions; questions attributed to the jurisdiction of a Court or Prosecutor's office; questions related to election, appointment, and exception of officials under the jurisdiction of an appropriate local Council of peoples' deputies, and their executive, as well as administrative bodies may not be submitted to local referendum.

ARTICLE 6-1. Restrictions for Conduct of Referenda.

Referenda on questions, not attributed to the Republic of Crimea, as well as local and regional self-governance bodies of administrative and territorial units' jurisdiction, are not allowed in Ukraine. The results of such referenda shall be considered as legally invalid.

(Article 6-1 added to Law according to Law of Ukraine #2481-12 of June 19, 1992)

ARTICLE 7. Principles of Citizens' Participation in Referenda.

Citizens of Ukraine, who are 18 years of age on referendum day and who have their permanent residence in a territory of Ukraine or appropriate region, district, city, city district, settlement, and village Council, have the right to participate in All-Ukrainian and local referenda.

Any direct or indirect restrictions of rights of citizens of Ukraine to participate in a referendum due to birth, social or property status, race and nationality, sex, education, language, religious preferences, political convictions, type and character of occupation, are prohibited.

Those citizens found mentally ill and incompetent by a court, as well as persons incarcerated, shall not participate in referenda.

Citizens participate in referenda on an equal basis. Each citizens has one vote.

The referendum is direct: citizens shall participate in a referendum directly.

Voting in a referendum is by secret ballot: control over citizens' freedom of choice is prohibited.

ARTICLE 8. Democratic Grounds of Referenda Preparation and Conduct.

Citizens, political parties, public organizations, mass movements, and labor collectives shall have the right to free campaign publicity "for" a proposal to declare the Referenda, to adopt a law or other decision submitted for referendum, as well as against proposals to declare the referendum, to adopt a law or a decision.

To implement this right, the interested persons and organizations shall be provided with premises for meetings, ensured with the possibility to use mass media. The draft of a law or decisions submitted to referendum shall be discussed within boundaries of Ukraine or the administrative and territorial unit, where the referendum shall be conducted.

The activity of State and public bodies, participating in the preparation and conduct of a referendum, shall be open and public.

All decisions concerning a referendum, as well as drafts of laws and other resolutions submitted to the referendum shall be published by mass media.

The mass media shall publicize the preparation and conduct of the referendum and representatives of the mass media shall be guaranteed unrestricted access to all assemblies and meetings related to the referendum, and be provided with information.

Any campaign publicity on the day of a referendum is prohibited.

ARTICLE 9. The Conduct of a New Referendum.

A new referendum on a question, earlier submitted to referendum, can be conducted not earlier than 5 years, the local referendum - no earlier than 1 year, after the day of referendum on these questions was conducted.

ARTICLE 10. Responsibility for Violations of Legislation on Referendum.

The adoption of resolutions to conduct Referenda on questions not attributed to the Republic of Crimea jurisdiction or to local and regional self-governance bodies jurisdiction is fraught with responsibilities envisaged by Law.

(Paragraph 1 added to Article 10 according to Law of Ukraine #2481-12 of June 19, 1992)

Persons who interfere with the rights of the citizens of Ukraine to participate in a referendum or to conduct a pre-voting publicity, by means of violence, fraud, threat or other means, as well as members of referendum commissions, officials who forge referendum documents, deliberately miscalculate votes, or who violate the secrecy of voting, or otherwise violate this Law, shall be accountable before the laws of Ukraine.

ARTICLE 11. Financing of Referenda.

Preparation and conduct of All-Ukrainian referendum shall be financed at the expense of the state budget, local elections - at the expense of appropriate local budgets.

The procedure of preparation and conduct of Referenda is determined by the Cabinet of Ministries of Ukraine and by the appropriate local Councils of peoples' deputies.

CHAPTER II. PROCEDURES FOR CALLING REFERENDA

ARTICLE 12. Calling of Referenda.

All-Ukrainian referenda shall be called by the Verkhovna Rada of Peoples' deputies.

ARTICLE 13. Calling of Referenda on Citizens of Ukraine and People Deputies' demand.

The Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine shall call All-Ukrainian referendum

1) on questions of approval or abolition of the Constitution of Ukraine as well as on questions of pre-termination of the Verkhovna Rada and the President of Ukraine, in case it shall be demanded by not less than three million of citizens of Ukraine, who have the right to participate in a referendum;

2) on questions of approval or abolishing of the Constitution of Ukraine or other legislative acts of Ukraine, which, according to this Law may be submitted to All-Ukrainian referendum, except questions on the pre-term termination of the authorities of the Verkhovna Rada and the President of Ukraine, if this shall be demanded by not less that one-half of peoples' deputies of Ukraine.

The local council of the peoples' deputies shall also call a local referendum if not less than one-half of the total number of Council peoples' deputies demand or if the demand is signed by ten percent of the citizens of Ukraine, who permanently reside in the territory of appropriate administrative and territorial unit, and who have the right to participate in the referendum.

ARTICLE 14. Realization of Peoples' Deputies Right to Demand Referendum.

The demand of no less than one-half of all peoples' deputies of Ukraine, or peoples' deputies of a local council to call a referendum shall be realized by a role-call at a plenary meeting of the appropriate council or by the collection of peoples' deputies signatures. Collected signatures of peoples' deputies of Ukraine shall be certified by the signature of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine, and collective signatures of local council deputies - by the Chairperson of an appropriate local council of peoples' deputies.

ARTICLE 15. Realization of Citizens' of Ukraine Right to Demand Referenda.

The right to initiate the collection of the signatures in favor of demand to conduct an All-Ukrainian referendum shall belong to the citizens of Ukraine, eligible to participate in a referendum, and the demand to call a local referendum - shall belong to the citizens of Ukraine, who permanently reside in the territory of an appropriate administrative and territorial unit, and who are eligible to participate in a referendum. The collection of signatures shall be organized and conducted by the initiative groups of the referendum, formed according to this Law.

ARTICLE 16. Formation of Referenda Initiative Groups.

The All-Ukrainian referendum initiative group shall be formed by citizens of Ukraine meeting, if no less than 200 persons, with the right to take part in a referendum, participate in it.

The region (oblast), city (cities of republican or oblast subordination), rayon and city rayon referendum initiative group shall be formed by citizens of Ukraine meeting, if no less than 200 citizens, and the city (cities of rayon subordination), settlement, and village referendum initiative group - by meetings, if no less than 50 citizens of Ukraine, eligible to participate in a referendum, and who permanently reside in the appropriate territory.

The initiators of an All-Ukrainian referendum meeting must inform in written form a Chairperson of rayon, city (cities of republican or oblast subordination) Council of peoples' deputies, on which the territory the meeting shall take place, and the initiators of a local referendum meeting - a Chairperson of a local Council of peoples' deputies, on which the territory the local referendum is proposed to be conducted, about the time, place, and purpose of the meeting no later than 10 days before the meeting shall take place.

Before the beginning of the meeting its participants shall be registered, and the list of the participants, which includes then surname, patronymic, and address shall be compiled.

A Chairperson and a Secretary of the meeting shall be elected by its participants. The further agenda of the meeting must contain a discussion of both the advisability to conduct a referendum, and a draft of the question proposed to be submitted to it.

In case the proposal to conduct a referendum, and a wording of the question proposed to be submitted to this referendum, shall be supported, the initiative group entrusted with collection of citizens signatures, shall be elected.

The All-Ukrainian referendum initiative group shall consist of no less than 20 citizens of Ukraine, who have the right to participate in a referendum. The local referendum initiative group shall consist of no less than 10 citizens of Ukraine, who have the right to participate in a referendum and permanently reside in the territory of an appropriate administrative and territorial unit.

Minutes of the meeting shall be compiled which must include information on results of voting of all agenda items.

Meeting documents - participants list, minutes of the meeting, and the exact wording of the question proposed to be submitted to a referendum, as well as the list of an initiative group, which includes dates of documents to establish their identities, shall be certified be the signatures of the Chairperson and the Secretary of the meeting.

ARTICLE 17. Registration of Initiative Groups.

The all-Ukrainian referendum initiative groups shall be registered by the Central Commission of all-Ukrainian referendum upon the submission of Chairperson of rayon, city (cities of republican and oblast subordination) Councils of peoples' deputies on which the territory citizens meeting were held and initiative groups elected.

The local referendum initiative groups shall be registered by the Chairperson of the local Council of peoples' deputies within which the territory the conduct of local referendum is proposed.

To register the initiative group, the documents of the citizens meeting, foreseen by Article 16 of this Law, as well as the obligation, certified by the signatures of initiative group members, to observe the law of Ukraine on Referenda, shall be submitted to the Chairperson of the appropriate Council of peoples' deputies.

If the submitted documents meet the requirements of this Law, the Chairperson of the appropriate local Council of peoples' deputies, within 10 days term, shall submit the all-Ukrainian referendum initiative group documents to the Central Commission on all-Ukrainian referendum or shall register the local referendum initiative group. After that, he or she, within three days term, shall give the local referendum initiative group the required registration certificate and the accreditation of initiative group members, on a form established by the Presidium of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine.

The certificate on registration of the local referendum initiative group shall indicate the exact number of citizens' signatures (based upon list of citizens participated in the latest referendum or upon the list of voters of the latest elections) necessary to support the demand to conduct the local referendum, and the terms for signature collection.

If the submitted documents on all-Ukrainian referendum initiative group meet the requirements of this Law, the Central Commission on all-Ukrainian referendum shall register the All- Ukrainian referendum initiative group within 15 days, and after that, within three days, shall give the all-Ukrainian referendum initiative group the certificate on registration and the accreditation of initiative group members of a form established by the Presidium of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine. The term for signature collection shall be indicated on the certificate of registration.

When all-Ukrainian referendum initiative groups are being registered, ordinal numbers shall be given to them, as for local referendum initiative groups, in addition to ordinal numbers, they shall also be given with names corresponding to the names of the appropriate Council of peoples' deputies.

Information on registered all-Ukrainian referendum initiative groups shall be submitted to the Presidium of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine.

Information on registration of initiative groups shall be published in the press.

The central number of initiative groups on such referendum is not limited.

The registration number of initiative groups shall not be charged. The organization and activity of initiative groups shall not be paid by Council of peoples' deputies or other state bodies and institutions of Ukraine.

A denial of registration of the initiative group or absence of a decision on registration may be appealed by members of the initiative group to the rayon (city) court located within the territory of the Central Commission on all-Ukrainian referendum or the appropriate Council of peoples' deputies.

ARTICLE 18. Procedures and terms for collection of signatures by initiative groups.

The day the initiative group has received the certificate of registration, it has the right to organize and unrestrictedly collect the signatures on forms for citizens signatures demanding the conduct of the referendum (petition forms).

The total term for collection of signatures on the question of all-Ukrainian referendum conduct, should not exceed three months, as for local referendum - one month from the day the first initiative group on an appropriate referendum was certified on registration.

Every petition form must have a name, the ordinal number of the initiative group, the ordinal number of the petition form, as well as the wording of the question, suggested to submit to referendum. A sample of the petition forms of all-Ukrainian and local referenda shall be approved by the Central Commission on all-Ukrainian referendum.

Members of the initiative group must notify the citizens of Ukraine that they may sign only one petition form with a given demand to conduct the referendum.

The citizen of Ukraine, who supports the demand to conduct the referendum, shall place his signature on the petition form, indicating at the same time his surname, name, patronymic and the date of the signature. According to documents of the citizen, the member of the initiative group shall indicate in the petition form the date of his birth and place of permanent residence.

If a document to establish the identity of a citizen is absent, his signature is deemed void and shall not be counted. When the petition form is completed, the total number of citizens' signatures shall be counted. The correctness of information in the petition form shall be certified by signatures of two members of the initiative group.

During 10 days after the last day the citizens' signatures were placed in the petition form, and no later than the fixed term designated to collect signatures under the given demand to conduct a referendum, the signatures of the members of the initiative group in the petition form must be certified by a signature of an official person specially authorized for that by the Chairperson of rayon, city (cities of republican and oblast subordination) Council of peoples' deputies which registered the local referendum initiative group. The petition form may be copied.

ARTICLE 19. Responsibility for Violation of Signatures Collecting Procedures.

During the collection of signatures, the Chairperson of an appropriate Council of peoples' deputies, where signatures of the initiative group members are certified, shall organize the checking of the authenticity of records on petition forms. In case of violations of signature collecting procedures and petition forms execution are revealed, the Chairperson of rayon, city (cities of republican and oblast subordination) Councils of people deputies, in the territory which the all-Ukrainian referendum initiative group carries out its activity, shall submit a presentation to the Central Commission on all- Ukrainian referendum.

Within 10 days after the filing of the presentation, the Central Commission on all-Ukrainian referendum may adopt a resolution on suspension of the activity of the initiative group members who committed the violation, on recognition of their accreditation, as well as petition forms or signatures of the separate citizens, placed on the petition form with violation of procedure foreseen by this Law, as void.

If a violation is committed during the collection of signatures for conducting the referendum, the decision on suspension the activity of the initiative group members, who committed the violation, on recognition of their accreditation, as well as petition forms or signatures of the separate citizen, placed on the petition form with violation of procedure, foreseen by this Law, as void, shall be adopted during 10 days term by the Chairperson of that local Council of peoples' deputies where the local referendum initiative group is registered.

In case the violation of signature collecting procedure shall be repeated by the initiative group, the Central Commission on all- Ukrainian referendum or the Chairperson of local Council of peoples' deputies, where the local referendum initiative group is registered, may adopt the appropriate resolutions on halting the initiative group's activity, and recognize the certificate of its registration, the members' group accreditation and a petition form, as invalid. In so doing, the all-Ukrainian referendum initiative group's documents and collected petition forms shall be submitted to the Central Commission on all-Ukrainian referendum.

Local referendum initiative group's documents and collected petition forms shall be submitted to the appropriate Council of peoples' deputies. Citizens' signatures on the submitted petition forms, excluding those recognized as void, shall be taken into account, when final tabulation of a total number of Ukrainian citizens' signatures, demanding the conduct of the referendum, shall be executed.

ARTICLE 20. Tabulation of signatures of Ukrainian Citizens, who demand to conduct the Referendum

When the collection of signatures is ended, the initiative group within three days shall compile a protocol, containing the information on the total number of citizens' signatures collected on the territory of an appropriate Council of peoples' deputies, as well as the date of initiative group registration, and the date when collection of signatures is completed.

Petition forms on all-Ukrainian referendum shall be officially handed over for safe-keeping to the Chairperson of rayon, city (cities of the republican and oblast subordination) Council of peoples' deputies, on the territory which the collection of signatures was conducted. Petition forms on local referendum in the same manner shall be handed over to the Chairperson of the local Council of peoples' deputies, within the territory where the referendum is proposed. Petition forms shall be preserved for two months after the referendum. The total number of petition forms and signatures of citizens shall be indicated in the record. Three copies of the record shall be certified by the signatures of no less than three members of the initiative group, as well as by the Chairperson of an appropriate Council of peoples' deputies, or by the Deputy Chairperson.

After the signing of the record, the all-Ukrainian referendum group within one week, shall hand over the final protocol, as well as a record, together with a demand to conduct a referendum, to the Central Commission on all-Ukrainian referenda.

The Central Commission on all-Ukrainian referenda shall ensure the registration of the documents submitted by all the all-Ukrainian referendum initiative groups; during one month after the day the appropriate documents were submitted, the Central Commission shall partially or fully check the authenticity of submitted documents; the Commission shall sum up the general results of signatures' collection throughout Ukraine and compile a protocol.

If two or more signatures of one and the same citizen are revealed in petition forms, his signatures shall not be counted.

The protocol and documents on verification, shall be handed over within one week by the Central Commission on all-Ukrainian referenda to the Presidium of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine, and shall be examined by the Presidium within two weeks term from the day of their submission.

The Presidium of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine may commission the peoples' deputies of Ukraine as well as local Councils of peoples' deputies to partially or fully check the submitted documents. After that, the Presidium of the Verkhovna Rada shall pose a question on all-Ukrainian referendum for consideration by the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine session.

The Chairperson of the local Council of peoples' deputies, within which territory which the local referendum is proposed, shall secure the registration of the documents on the given question submitted by all local referendum initiative groups; during 15 days after the day the appropriate documents were submitted, he or she, with the participation of all local referendum initiative groups, shall organize the partial or full check of the authenticity of these documents, as well as the tabulation of the general results of signature collection. The protocol shall be certified by the Chairperson of the Council of peoples' deputies and by the representatives of initiative groups. After that, the question on local referendum shall be submitted to discussion at the session of the appropriate Council of peoples' deputies.

In case the required number of signatures of citizens of Ukraine in support of the referendum is not collected in terms defined by this Law, the all-Ukrainian or local referendum shall not be conducted. The appropriate resolution shall be adopted accordingly by the Presidium of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine or by the Chairperson of the local Council of peoples' deputies, on the territory which the referendum was proposed.

ARTICLE 21. Adoption of Resolution on question to Conduct the Referendum.

Having received the properly validated proposal, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine or the appropriate local Council of peoples' deputies at its session, within one month, shall adopt one of the following resolutions:

1.On calling the referendum;

2.On rejection of the proposal to conduct a referendum, if considerable violations of this Law, which substantially influence the grounds to call the referendum, were revealed;

3.On adoption of the resolution, which is proposed in demand to call a referendum, without conducting the referendum itself.

If the question on the pre-term termination of the authority the President of Ukraine shall be submitted to the all-Ukrainian referendum, an appropriate resolution shall be adopted by a majority of no less than 2/3 of all peoples' deputies of Ukraine.

ARTICLE 22. The Content of the Resolution on calling the Referendum.

On the resolution on calling the referendum the following shall be defined: date of the referendum; the title of the draft of the Law or resolution; the content of the question for referendum.

The date for the all-Ukrainian referendum shall be appointed no earlier than 3 and no later than 4 months before its conduct.

The local referendum shall be appointed no earlier than one month and no later than two months from the day the resolution on its conduct was adopted.

The information on the appointment of the referendum, the content of the draft of the Law, resolution and other questions submitted to the referendum shall be announced correspondingly through republican and local mass media during 10 days term after the decision on its calling was adopted.

CHAPTER III. PREPARATION AND CONDUCT OF REFERENDA

ARTICLE 23. Voting Divisions.

The territory of rayons, cities, city rayons, settlements, and village councils shall be divided into voting divisions for the purpose of voting and tabulation of votes during the referendum.

Voting divisions shall also be formed at military units, for hospitals and other stationary health care facilities, for people in regions with difficult access, for vessels at sea on referendum day. If there are proper conditions, such divisions may be formed for representational officers of Ukraine located abroad.

Voting divisions shall be formed by rayon, city, city rayons, village, and settlement Councils of peoples' deputies or by their Chairpersons. The voting divisions for military units shall be formed by appropriate Councils of peoples' deputies or their Chairpersons on the submission of commanders of those military units.

Voting divisions for vessels at sea on referendum day shall be formed by appropriate councils of peoples' deputies or their Chairpersons at the vessels' port. Such divisions for representational officers, of Ukraine located abroad shall be formed by Councils of peoples' deputies or their Chairpersons on commission from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine.

Voting divisions shall be formed no later than one-and-a-half months prior to the All-Ukrainian referendum, and 20 days prior to the local referendum. Voting divisions for military units, regions with difficult access, and vessels at sea on the referendum day shall be formed on the same terms, but in exceptional cases - no later than five days before the referendum.

Voting divisions shall be formed where 20 to 3000 citizens, who have the right to participate in the referendum, are present and in exceptional cases, with fewer or greater numbers.

The appropriate council of peoples' deputies or its Chairperson shall inform citizens about boundaries of each voting division with indication of the location of voting division commission, and premises for voting.

ARTICLE 24. Voting Commissions.

For the purpose of the preparation and conduct of the All- Ukrainian referendum the following commissions shall be formed:

Central Commission on All-Ukrainian referendum;

Commission of the Republic of Crimea on All-Ukrainian referendum;

Oblast, rayon, city, city rayon, settlement, and village commissions on referendum;

Division commissions on referendum.

Before the Central Commission on All-Ukrainian referendum is formed, its functions shall be executed by the Central Electoral Commission on the elections of peoples' deputies of Ukraine.

For the purpose of preparation and conduct of local referendum within administrative and territorial units the following commissions on the referendum shall be formed:

Oblast, rayon, city, city rayon, settlement, and village commissions on referendum;

Division commissions on referendum.

In case two or more Referenda shall be announced and conducted simultaneously, the commissions formed in accordance with this law shall be common for all simultaneously announced referendum.

Commissions on the referendum may be formed on the basis of the existing electoral commissions.

If the referendum and the elections of peoples' deputies or the President of Ukraine shall be conducted at the same time, common commissions on referendum and elections may be formed.

ARTICLE 25. The Formation of the Central Commission on All-Ukrainian Referendum.

With the consideration of suggestions of committees of political parties, mass movements, public organizations, labor collectives or their councils, professional and technical middle-level and higher educational institutions, meetings of citizens at their place of domicile, and servicemen in military units, the Central Commission on All-Ukrainian referendum shall be formed by the Supreme Council of the Republic of Crimea, oblast, Kyiv and Sevastopol city Councils of peoples' deputies or their Chairpersons, as well as on submissions from republican bodies of political parties, mass movements, public organizations, and All-Ukrainian referendum initiative groups no later than one-and-a-half months prior to the referendum, and includes a Chairperson, Deputy Chairpersons, Secretary and 27 members.

ARTICLE 26. Authority of the Central Commission on All-Ukrainian Referendum.

The Central Commission on All-Ukrainian referendum:

1. registers the All-Ukrainian referendum initiative groups;

2. organizes the preparation and conduct of All-Ukrainian referendum;

3. exercises control over implementation of this law within the entire territory of Ukraine and secures its uniform application, provides explanations on application of the Law, and in case of necessity, applies to the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine for interpretations of this Law;

4. directs the activity of the Commission of the Republic of Crimea on All-Ukrainian referendum, of oblast, rayon, city, city rayon, settlement, and village commission on the referendum, defines the procedure of their membership changes;

5. distributes funds among commissions on referendum; exercises control over provision of referendum commissions with premises, means of transportation and communication, and considers other issues of material and technical support for the referendum;

6. determines forms of lists of citizens, who have the right to participate in the referendum, of protocols of the sessions of referendum documents, samples of ballot boxes and seals of referendum commissions, and approves procedures for the safekeeping of referendum documents;

7. gathers information from state and public bodies of Ukraine on issues related to the preparation and conduct of the referendum;

8. forms groups for the tabulation of votes and determination of referendum results, determines referendum results throughout Ukraine, publishes referendum results in the press;

9. considers applications and complaints regarding decisions and actions of referendum commissions, and makes final decisions regarding these issues;

10. administers other authorities in accordance with this Law.

ARTICLE 27. The Formation of the Commission of the Republic of Crimea on the All-Ukrainian Referendum, and Oblast, Rayon, City, City Rayon, Settlement, and Village Commissions on the Referendum.

The commission of the Republic of Crimea on the All-Ukrainian referendum shall be formed by the Supreme Council of the Republic of Crimea or by its Presidium no later than one-and-a-half months prior to the All-Ukrainian referendum, and includes 9-19 members.

Oblast, rayon, city, city rayon, settlement, and village commissions on the referendum shall be formed by an appropriate Council of peoples' deputies or by its Chairperson, no later than one-and-a-half months prior to the All-Ukrainian referendum, and 25 days prior to the local referendum, and includes 9-19 members.

The representatives of the referendum commission shall be nominated by the Crimea Republic, oblast, rayon, city, city rayon bodies of political parties, mass movements, public organizations, or their executive bodies, by grass root party organizations, labor collectives or their councils, professional and technical middle-level and higher educational institutions, by village, settlements, street, block, house committees, by meetings of citizens at their place of domicile, and servicemen in military units.

The representatives of the membership of voting division referendum commissions in labor collectives, professional and technical middle-level and higher educational institutions with more than 200 persons on the list may be nominated by the shop, department, sector, team of workers or other subdivisions meeting if there are no less than 20 persons on their list.

The Chairperson, Deputy Chairperson and Secretary of the voting division referendum commission shall be elected at its first session.

ARTICLE 28. Authority of the Republic of Crimea Commissions on All-Ukrainian Referendum, and Oblast, Rayon, City, City Rayon, Village, and Settlement Commission on Referendum.

The Republic of Crimea commissions on All-Ukrainian referendum, the oblast, rayon, city, city rayon, village, and settlement commissions on referendum:

1. organize the preparations and conduct of All-Ukrainian referendum or appropriately of local referendum, exercise within the territory of Republic of Crimea, oblast, rayon, city, city rayon, settlement and the village Council the control over implementation of this law, and secure its uniform application;

2. direct the activity of lower standing commissions on referendum;

3. distribute funds among commissions on referendum; exercise control over provision of referendum commissions with premises, means of transportation and communication, and consider other issues of material and technical support for the referendum;

4. hear the reports of voting division referendum commissions, of heads of local state power bodies, managers of enterprises, establishments and organizations on issues, regarding the preparation and conduct of referendum;

5. exercise control over the timely presentation by voting division referendum commissions the lists of citizens to general public;

6. secure the printing of ballots and their supply to voting division referendum commissions;

7. form groups for tabulation of voters and determination of referendum results, determine referendum results throughout the territory of the Republic of Crimea and an appropriate Council of peoples' deputies;

8. determine the local referendum results, conducted within the administrative and territorial unit, where an appropriate commission on referendum exercises activity;

9. consider applications and complaints regarding decisions and actions of referendum commissions, and make the final decisions regarding these issues;

10. administer other authorities in accordance with this Law.

ARTICLE 29. The Formation of Voting Division Referendum Commission.

The voting division referendum commissions shall be formed by rayon, city, city rayon, settlement and the village Councils of peoples' deputies or by their Chairpersons no later than 40 days prior to an All-Ukrainian referendum and 15 days prior to a local referendum, and includes 5-19 members. In case of necessity, the number of members of voting division referendum commission may be increased or reduced by the decision of an appropriate Council of peoples' deputies or its Chairperson.

The representatives of the voting division referendum commission shall be nominated by rayon, city, city rayon committees of political parties, mass movements, public organizations or their executive bodies, by labor collectives or their councils, by collectives of professional and technical, middle-level, and higher educational institutions, by settlement and village, street, block and house committees, by meetings of citizens at their place of domicile, and servicemen in military units.

The representatives of the voting division referendum commissions in labor collectives, professional and technical, middle-level, and higher educational institutions with more than 200 persons on the list may be nominated by the shop, department, sector, team of workers or other subdivisions meetings, if there are no less than 20 persons on their list.

The Chairperson, Deputy Chairpersons and Secretary of the voting division referendum commission shall be elected at its first session.

ARTICLE 30. Authority of the Division Commission on Referendum.

The Division Commission on referendum:

1. posts the text of the draft law, resolution, submitted to the Referenda, on the premises of the voting station; provides citizens with the possibility to inform them of the time of preparation and conduct of the referendum, and the day of voting;

2. compiles the list of citizens, eligible to participate in the referendum, in the voting division;

3. presents the voter list to the general public, accepts and considers applications regarding errors in the list and resolves questions of making appropriate changes in the list;

4. accepts ballots in closed envelopes and secures the freedom of secret choice of those citizens who have changed their place of domicile in the period between presenting the lists to the general public and the day of the referendum;

5. notifies the citizens of the date of the referendum and of the voting station location;

6. ensures the preparation of premises for voting and ballot boxes;

7. organizes voting in the voting station during the day of the referendum;

8. forms the groups for tabulation of votes, tabulates votes in the voting division;

9. considers and resolves applications and complaints regarding preparation of referendum and organization of voting;

10. fulfills other duties in accordance with this law.

ARTICLE 31. Organization of the Work of Referendum Commissions.

Meetings of the referendum commissions have legal authority if no less than two-thirds of the commission are in attendance.

Decisions shall be adopted by over majority vote of those on the list. Members of the commission who disagree with the adopted decisions have the right to voice a separate opinion which shall be attached to the written minutes of the referendum commission meeting.

Decisions of the referendum commission, if made within its authority, are binding upon all state and public organization bodies, enterprises, institutions and organizations.

Decisions and actions of the referendum commission can be appealed to the higher referendum commission, and in those cases, envisaged by this Law, also to the court.

In accordance with the decision of the referendum commission a person, who is its member, can be exempted from work or fulfillment of duties at his principal place of work during the preparation and conduct of the referendum period while retaining his average pay or salary at the expense of the referendum fund.

ARTICLE 32. Assistance to be Provided to Referendum Commissions in Administering their Authority.

State and public bodies, enterprises, organizations and officials must render all assistance to referendum commissions in implementing their authority, provide them with information and materials necessary for their work.

On questions regarding the preparation and conduct of the referendum, the referendum commission has the right to seek assistance from state and public organizations, enterprises, institutions, agencies, and officials who must consider the requests and respond to referendum commissions within a three-day period.

ARTICLE 33. List of Citizens Having the Right to Participate in the Referendum.

Chairpersons of city, city rayon, settlement, and village Council of peoples' deputies ensure the registration of citizens, who have the right to participate in the referendum, the compilation of the appropriate lists, and provide these lists to referendum division commissions.

List of citizens, who have the right to participate in the referendum, shall be compiled in every voting division and shall be certified with signatures by the Chairperson and the secretary of the division referendum commission.

List of individuals currently serving in units of the Armed Forces and who have the right to participate in the referendum, as well as their family members and other citizens residing within military districts shall be compiled from information supplied by commanders of those military units, and servicemen who live outside military districts shall be included in lists of their place of residence.

Citizens' Lists in voting divisions of hospitals and other stationary health-care facilities, as well as for vessels at sea on referendum day or for representational offices of Ukraine abroad shall be compiled from the information supplied by the administration of those institutions or captains of those vessels.

All citizens of Ukraine who have the right to participate in the referendum can be included in the citizens list of only one division.

Citizens who live in the territory of a given voting division who for any reason are omitted from the list, shall be included in it by the decision of the division referendum commission.

ARTICLE 34. Access of Citizens to Lists and the Right to Appeal Inaccuracies in the List of Citizens, who have the Right to Participate in the Referendum.

Citizen lists shall be announced to the general public no later than 10 days prior to the referendum. Citizen lists for hospitals and other stationary health-care facilities and, in exceptional cases, for military units and for vessels at sea or referendum day, shall be presented to the general public two days prior to referendum day.

On the premises of the division referendum commission citizens shall have the guaranteed opportunity to acquaint themselves personally with the list and to check it for inaccuracies.

Every citizen has the right to file a complaint regarding any omission, exclusion, or erroneous inclusion in the list or other inaccuracies concerning him or her personally. The complaint regarding errors shall be considered by the referendum division commission, which must make appropriate corrections in the list or provide the complainant with a formal letter of explanation within 2 days and, or the eve or day of the referendum. Such a decision may immediately be appealed to a rayon (city) court, which must consider it within a 3- day period. In accordance with the rayon (city) court decision, the referendum division commission shall correct the voter list immediately.

ARTICLE 35. Guarantee of the Citizens' Right to Participate in the Referendum when Place of Residence is Changed.

If the citizen changes his or her place of residence during the period between the submission of the lists for publication and the referendum day, the division referendum commission at his or her request shall issue a ballot to the citizen, who has the right to participate in referendum, upon presentation of a passport or other document verifying his or her identity. The completed or stamped ballot box shall be kept by the division referendum commission until the referendum day.

ARTICLE 36. The Ballot.

The ballot shall contain the title of the draft (drafts) of the law or resolution submitted to the referendum, and the suggestion to answer "yes" or "no" the question about adoption or declining of this draft (drafts).

If two or more questions shall be submitted to the referendum, each of these questions shall be on a separate ballot.

If two or more referenda shall be conducted simultaneously, the ballot for each of them shall be of a different color.

The content and the form of ballots for All-Ukrainian or local referendum shall be determined respectively by the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine and by oblast, rayon, settlement and may not contradict the content of the draft question, formulated in peoples' deputies or citizens' demand to conduct a referendum.

Ballots should be printed in Ukrainian, and in case of necessity, in other languages which citizens of the voting division, who have the right to participate in the referendum, speak.

Ballots shall be handed over to the division referendum commissions no later than 15 days before All-Ukrainian referendum, and no later than 10 days before the local referendum.

CHAPTER IV. PROCEDURES OF VOTING AND DETERMINING THE REFERENDUM RESULTS

ARTICLE 37. Date and Place of Voting.

Voting shall be conducted on the day of the referendum from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. The division referendum commission shall inform citizens of the date and place of voting no later than 10 days prior to the date of the referendum.

The division referendum commission may complete voting earlier than 8:00 p.m. in voting divisions for military units, remote areas, and vessels at sea on the referendum day, if all citizens on the list have voted.

ARTICLE 38. Voting Organization.

Voting shall be conducted in specially allocated premises equipped with an adequate number of cabins or rooms for secret voting, designated places for issuing ballots and designated places for ballot boxes. Ballot boxes shall be placed so that the citizens, in approaching them, shall be obliged to walk through the cabins or rooms for secret voting.

The division referendum commission shall be responsible for organizing voting, ensuring the secrecy of the citizens' vote, and supplying and maintaining the equipment of the premises.

On referendum day, before voting commences, the Chairperson of the division referendum commission, in the presence of the other members of the commission, shall inspect and seal the ballot boxes.

Every citizen shall vote personally; voting for another individual is not permitted. Ballots shall be used by members of the division referendum commission, in accordance with citizens list for the appropriate voting division, when a citizen produces a passport or other document to establish their identity. Upon issuance of a ballot, a citizen who has the right to participate in referendum shall confirm the issuance of the ballot by placing his/her signature on the list.

In cases where a citizen cannot personally come to the voting station due to health or other reasons, the division referendum commission, on the citizen's request, shall authorize a separate member of the commission to organize voting for those citizens at their place of residence.

ARTICLE 39. Voting Procedure.

Ballots shall be completed by citizens in secret cabins or rooms. The presence of any other person while the citizen completes the ballot is prohibited. A citizen who cannot complete the ballots personally has the right to invite another person of his choice into the cabin or room, except members of the referendum commission.

While completing the ballot, the citizen shall strike out one of two words: "yes" or "no".

When two or more referenda are conducted simultaneously, or when two or more questions are submitted to the referendum, the citizens shall receive and complete ballots separately for each referendum and each question.

The completed ballots shall be dropped by the citizen into the ballot box.

ARTICLE 40. The Tabulation of Votes at the Voting Station.

Tabulation of votes at the voting station shall be performed by the division referendum commission.

After the Chairperson's announcement of completion of the voting, the division referendum commission shall open ballot boxes, as well as closed envelopes handed over to the commission by the citizens, who changed the place of their residence. The opening of ballot boxes and envelopes before the completion of the voting is prohibited. Before ballot boxes and envelopes shall be opened, the division referendum commission cancels and counts all unused ballots.

The division referendum commission on the basis of the list of citizens, who have the right to participate in the referendum, shall calculate the general number of citizens, as well as the number of citizens who received ballots. On the basis of ballots in the ballot boxes and in closed envelopes the commission shall determine the general number of citizens who participated in the referendum; the number of citizens who voted "for" the draft of the law or resolution submitted to the referendum, and the number of citizens, who voted against and the number of void ballots.

Ballots which are unidentified, as well as those where the intent of the voter is not clear are deemed void. Any doubts as to the authenticity of the ballot shall be resolved by a vote of the division referendum commission.

The division referendum commission shall review at its session the results of the tabulation of the votes which are entered into the minutes of the session. If two or more referenda were conducted simultaneously, minutes shall be compiled separately for each of them. The minutes shall be signed by the Chairperson, Deputy Chairperson, Secretary and members of the commission and shall be sent immediately to the appropriate rayon, city, city rayon, settlement and village commission on the referendum.

ARTICLE 41. Determining the Results of the Referendum.

On the basis of the minutes from division referendum commissions, the city, (cities without rayon subdivisions), city rayon, settlement, and village referendum commission determines:

the general number of citizens who have the right to participate in a referendum, the number of citizens who received ballots;

the number of citizens who participated in voting;

the number of citizens who voted for approval of the draft of the law or resolution, and the number of citizens who voted against its approval;

the number of invalid ballots.

The appropriate commission shall review the results of the tabulation and enter them into the minutes and send them to the higher standing referendum commission. On the basis of submitted minutes the commission of the Republic of Crimea on the All-Ukrainian referendum, and oblast, rayon, city (cities with rayon subdivisions) referendum commissions shall tabulate votes within the administrative and territorial unit and enter the results into the minutes, and then shall send them to the higher standing referendum commission.

On the basis of minutes from oblast referendum commissions, the Central Commission on All-Ukrainian referendum determines the results of the All-Ukrainian referendum and enters them into the protocol.

When a local referendum is conducted within the oblast, rayon, city, city rayon, settlement and village council territory the appropriate referendum commission at its session shall determine its results and enter them into the protocol. The protocol with the vote tabulation results or referendum results shall be signed by the Chairperson, Deputy Chairperson, Secretary and members of the appropriate referendum commission.

The appropriate referendum commission can announce referendum results void if violations of this Law have taken place during the voting or the tabulation of votes.

The draft of the law or resolution shall be considered approved if more than fifty percent of those citizens who participated in the referendum, voted for this law or resolution.

The referendum shall be considered not to be conducted if less than 50% of the citizens on the voter list participated in voting, and a referendum on pre-term termination of the authority of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine and the President of Ukraine shall be considered not conducted if less than two-thirds of the citizens on the voter list participated in it.

The results of the referendum shall be published by the appropriate commission no later than ten days after the referendum. The announcement shall include: the legal number of citizens who voted for support of the draft of the law, the resolution submitted to the referendum; and the number of citizens who voted against its approval; the number of void ballots.

ARTICLE 42. Openness During the Determination of Referendum Results.

The representatives from labor collectives, public organizations, political parties, mass movements, professional technical mid-level and higher educational institutions, citizens meetings on the territory of their domicile and servicemen in the military units, and state bodies have the right to be present at referendum commission meetings, during tabulation of votes and determining the voting results. The authority of these designated representatives shall be certified by written order or certificate.

The appropriate commissions shall be informed regarding the intention of representatives to be present at voting station premises or at referendum commission meetings no later than two days prior to the voting day. The interference by representatives with the work of the referendum commissions is prohibited. The representatives can be deprived the right to be present at referendum commission meetings only when they have no appropriate written order or certificate.

Representatives can be present at premises for the voting or voting division commission meetings formed in military districts, with the exception of those cases when their activity is conducted in secrete military units. The list of such voting divisions and commissions shall be determined by the Central Commission on All-Ukrainian referendum together with commanders of the appropriate military districts.

Representatives of the mass media shall be guaranteed unrestricted access to all assemblies and meetings related to referendum. Referendum commissions, and state bodies shall provide them with information about the conduct of the referendum.

ARTICLE 43. Repeat Referenda.

The Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine within a month, and the appropriate local Council of peoples' deputies - within 15 days, may declare a repeat All-Ukrainian or local referendum on the whole territory of Ukraine, the appropriate administrative and territorial unit or its part, if during the course of All-Ukrainian or local referendum there were serious violations of this law. In such a case the decision to appoint new members of the referendum commission may be adopted.

CHAPTER V. PUBLICATION, IMPLEMENTATION, CHANGE OR DISAFFIRMATION OF LAWS, AND OTHER DECISIONS ADOPTED BY REFERENDUM

ARTICLE 44. Publication, Implementation of Laws, Decisions Adopted by the Referendum.

The law and other decisions, adopted by the referendum, shall be published in accordance with the procedure foreseen by the laws of Ukraine for the publication of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine and local Councils of peoples' deputies legislative acts, and shall be implemented from the time of their publication, unless the law calls for a different date of implementation.

The day of referendum shall be considered as the date of the adoption of the law.

ARTICLE 45. The Change or Disaffirmation of Laws, Decisions Adopted by the Referendum.

The change or disaffirmation of laws and other decisions, adopted by the referendum, shall be conducted also by referendum.

The change or disaffirmation of laws and other decisions can be carried out also by the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine, Supreme Council of Republic of Crimea, and local Council of peoples' deputies correspondingly, if a majority of no less than two-thirds of the total number of peoples' deputies vote in support thereof. Such a decision must be approved by a referendum, which shall be conducted during six months after the introduction of the change or disaffirmation.

CHAPTER VI. ADVISORY QUESTIONING OF CITIZENS OF UKRAINE

ARTICLE 46. Advisory Questioning of Citizens of Ukraine. (Consultative Referendum)

With the purpose to reveal the citizens' will, when important issues of the national and local significance are to be resolved, the All-Ukrainian and local advisory questioning of citizens of Ukraine (consultative referendum) can be conducted according to procedures stipulated by this Law. The results of the advisory questioning shall be considered and taken into account when decisions are adopted by the appropriate state bodies. If drafts of laws and other decisions of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine or decisions of the local Council of peoples' deputies do not correspond with the results of the All-Ukrainian or an appropriate local advisory questioning, such laws, decisions could be adopted only by the majority of no less than two-thirds of all peoples' deputies of Ukraine or deputies of an appropriate local Council of peoples' deputies.

Provisions of part one, three, and four of Article 1, as well as Articles 3, 4, 9, 44 of this Law shall not be applied to advisory questioning of the citizens of Ukraine (consultative referendum).

ARTICLE 47. Public opinion Polls.

Public opinion polls conducted according to procedures other than those stipulated by this Law, or polls on other questions, which according to the law can not be submitted to All-Ukrainian and local Referenda, do not have the status of the advisory questioning of the citizens of Ukraine (consultative referendum) with ensuring legal consequences.

Leonid Kravchuk, Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine

City of Kyiv, July 3, 1991

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