Municipal Code References:
- Anchorage Municipal Charter Section 3.02 - Initiative and referendum.
- Anchorage Municipal Charter Section 3.03 - Recall.
- Anchorage Municipal Code Section 2.50 - Initiatives, Referenda, and Recall
For the Initiative and Referenda Application form, click HERE.
For the Recall Application form, click HERE.
Initiative Petition Packet - Initiative means a ballot proposition presented to the voters after submission of petitions signed by a specified number of qualified voters to determine whether an ordinance or resolution shall be enacted directly by popular vote. - AMC 2.50.010
Referendum Petition Packet - Referendum means a ballot proposition presented to the voters after submission of petitions signed by a specified number of qualified voters to determine whether an ordinance or resolution already approved shall be repealed by popular vote. - AMC 2.50.010
Recall Petition Packet - An elected official may be recalled by the voters after submission of petitions signed by a specified number of qualified voters. - Anchorage Charter Section 3.03
Basic Steps for Submitting an Initiative or Referenda Petition:
- Provide a primary sponsor or contact person and an alternate petition sponsor or contact person.
- Prepare petition language.
- Collect signatures of 10 qualified municipal voters who agree to act as sponsors.
- Submit petition application to the Municipal Clerk's Office for review.
Petition Application Review
- The Municipal Clerk verifies the sponsors are qualified municipal voters.
- The Municipal Attorney reviews petition language and prepares a memorandum to the Municipal Clerk to determine whether the measure proposed in the application may be submitted to voters by initiative or referendum; or whether the measure proposed must be denied. In making the determination, the Municipal Clerk may rely upon the legal counsel of the Municipal Attorney.
- If the Municipal Attorney determines the measure in the application may be submitted to voters, and if the two contact persons and ten sponsors are qualified voters in the municipality, the Municipal Clerk shall certify the application for a petition.
- The primary sponsor or contact person is notified in writing either (a) if the Municipal Clerk's determination that the application for a petition is certified; or (b) if the Municipal Clerk's determination that the application for a petition is denied.
Petition Circulation (… if the petition application is certified)
- The Municipal Clerk prepares a template that is the petition master form on legal size paper 8 1/2" x 14", which the sponsors must use to gather signatures. The Municipal Clerk shall not be responsible for reproducing copies of the master form.
- The petition master form shall include a short title for the petition and a fair and impartial summary that describes the measure proposed; and the verbatim text of the measure.
- The copies of the petition master form are circulated by the contact persons and sponsors and shall be signed by the number of qualified voters as required in the charter.
- Signatures must be secured on the petition master form and filed with the Municipal Clerk within 90 days from the date of first actual circulation or the date on which the petition master form was issued by the Municipal Clerk. The petition may not be supplemented.
- The Municipal Clerk verifies the signatures to determine if signers are qualified municipal voters and have provided required information.
- Within ten days from the filing of a petition, the Municipal Clerk shall determine whether the petition is sufficient; certification of the petition shall be granted or denied solely based on whether a sufficient number of signatures of qualified voters on the petition was timely submitted. The Municipal Clerk will notify the primary sponsor or contact person in writing if the petition is certified or denied.
The 2021 Regular Mayoral Election established the current number of qualified voters required to file a petition for initiative or referendum at 7,545.