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2-1 INITIATIVE AND REFERENDUM
CHAPTER 2-1

INITIATIVE AND REFERENDUM

2-1-1      Initiative petitions--Number of signatures required.
2-1-1.1      Petition to be circulated for initiated constitutional amendment--Time for signatures and filing.
2-1-1.2      Petition to be circulated for initiated measure--Time for signatures and filing.
2-1-1.3      Petition circulator and petition sponsor defined.
2-1-2, 2-1-2.1. Repealed.
2-1-2.2      Withdrawal of initiated constitutional amendment.
2-1-2.3      Withdrawal of initiated measure.
2-1-3      Referendum--Laws subject to petition--Form.
2-1-3.1      Petition to be circulated for referred law--Time for filing.
2-1-3.2      Withdrawal of petition for referred law.
2-1-4      Repealed.
2-1-5      Total vote used to determine number of signers required in petitions.
2-1-6      Persons qualified to sign petitions--False or unqualified signing as misdemeanor.
2-1-6.1      Repealed.
2-1-6.2      Repealed.
2-1-6.3      Repealed.
2-1-7      Petitions to be signed in person.
2-1-8      Repealed.
2-1-9      Separate papers constituting single petition.
2-1-10      Verification of persons circulating initiative or referendum petitions--Form and content--Violation as misdemeanor.
2-1-11      Petitions liberally construed.
2-1-12      Effective date of measures approved by voters.
2-1-13      Repealed.
2-1-14      Signatures secured contrary to chapter not to be counted.
2-1-15      Examination of petition by secretary of state--Signatures not to be counted unless persons are registered voters and information is complete.
2-1-16      Signatures to be verified by random sampling--Rules.
2-1-17      Certification of results of random sampling--Notification of petition sponsors.
2-1-18      Court challenge of validity of signatures.
2-1-19      Cost estimate for legislation or ballot initiative that may impact state prison or county jail population.
2-1-20      Contents of cost estimate.


2-1-1 Initiative petitions--Number of signatures required.
     2-1-1.   Initiative petitions--Number of signatures required. All measures proposed by initiative shall be presented by petition. The petition shall be signed by not less than five percent of the qualified electors of the state.

Source: SDC 1939, § 55.0401; SL 1957, ch 278, § 1; SL 1976, ch 105, § 76; SL 1978, ch 19, § 1; SL 1989, ch 23, § 1.


2-1-1.1 Petition to be circulated for initiated constitutional amendment--Time for signatures and ...
     2-1-1.1.   Petition to be circulated for initiated constitutional amendment--Time for signatures and filing. The petition as it is to be circulated for an initiated constitutional amendment shall be filed with the secretary of state prior to circulation for signatures and shall:
             (1)      Contain the full text of the initiated constitutional amendment;
             (2)      Contain the date of the general election at which the initiated constitutional amendment is to be submitted;
             (3)      Contain the title and explanation as prepared by the attorney general;
             (4)      Be accompanied by a notarized affidavit form signed by each person who is a petition sponsor that includes the name and address of each petition sponsor; and
             (5)      Be accompanied by a statement of organization as provided in § 12-27-6.
     The petition circulator shall provide to each person who signs the petition a form containing the title and explanation of the initiated constitutional amendment as prepared by the attorney general; the name, phone number, and email address of each petition sponsor; and a statement whether the petition circulator is a volunteer or paid petition circulator and, if a paid circulator, the amount the circulator is being paid. The form shall be approved by the secretary of state prior to circulation.
     For any initiated constitutional amendment petition, no signature may be obtained more than twenty-four months preceding the general election that was designated at the time of filing of the full text. The initiated constitutional amendment petition shall be filed with the secretary of state at least one year before the next general election. A notarized affidavit form, signed by at least two-thirds of the petition sponsors, stating that the documents filed constitute the entire petition and to the best of the knowledge of the sponsors contains a sufficient number of signatures shall also be filed with the secretary of state. The form of the petition and affidavit shall be prescribed by the State Board of Elections.

Source: SL 2012, ch 18, § 2; SL 2016, ch 23, § 1; SL 2016, ch 24, § 1.


2-1-1.2 Petition to be circulated for initiated measure--Time for signatures and filing.
     2-1-1.2.   Petition to be circulated for initiated measure--Time for signatures and filing. The petition as it is to be circulated for an initiated measure shall be filed with the secretary of state prior to circulation for signatures and shall:
             (1)      Contain the full text of the initiated measure;
             (2)      Contain the date of the general election at which the initiated measure is to be submitted;
             (3)      Contain the title and explanation as prepared by the attorney general;
             (4)      Be accompanied by a notarized affidavit form signed by each person who is a petition sponsor that includes the name and address of each petition sponsor; and
             (5)      Be accompanied by a statement of organization as provided in § 12-27-6.
     The petition circulator shall provide to each person who signs the petition a form containing the title and explanation of the initiated measure as prepared by the attorney general; the name, phone number, and email address of each petition sponsor; and a statement whether the petition circulator is a volunteer or paid petition circulator and, if a paid circulator, the amount the circulator is being paid. The form shall be approved by the secretary of state prior to circulation.
     For any initiated measure petition, no signature may be obtained more than twenty-four months preceding the general election that was designated at the time of filing of the full text. The initiated measure petition shall be filed with the secretary of state at least one year before the next general election. A notarized affidavit form, signed by at least two-thirds of the petition sponsors, stating that the documents filed constitute the entire petition and to the best of the knowledge of the sponsors contains a sufficient number of signatures shall also be filed with the secretary of state. The form of the petition and affidavit shall be prescribed by the State Board of Elections.

Source: SL 2012, ch 18, § 3; SL 2016, ch 23, § 2; SL 2016, ch 24, § 2.


2-1-1.3 Petition circulator and petition sponsor defined.
     2-1-1.3.   Petition circulator and petition sponsor defined. Terms used in this chapter mean:
             (1)      "Petition circulator," any resident of the State of South Dakota who is at least eighteen years of age and who circulates a nominating petition or other petition for the purpose of placing a candidate or issue on any election ballot;
             (2)      "Petition sponsor," any person who proposes the placement of a statewide ballot measure on the ballot.

Source: SL 2016, ch 24, § 4.


2-1-2 Repealed by SL 2012, ch 18, §§ 4, 5.
     2-1-2, 2-1-2.1.   Repealed by SL 2012, ch 18, §§ 4, 5.


2-1-2.2 Withdrawal of initiated constitutional amendment.
     2-1-2.2.   Withdrawal of initiated constitutional amendment. A petition of the voters proposing an amendment to the Constitution may be withdrawn within the meaning of section 3 of article XXIII of the Constitution not later than one hundred twenty days prior to the next general election, if not less than two-thirds of the named sponsors file with the secretary of state, in writing, their request for withdrawal of the question from the ballot. The secretary of state shall attach to the petitions on file the request for withdrawal and shall take no other action thereon.

Source: SL 1974, ch 118, § 50.


2-1-2.3 Withdrawal of initiated measure.
     2-1-2.3.   Withdrawal of initiated measure. A petition of the voters proposing an initiated measure may be withdrawn not later than one hundred twenty days prior to the next general election, if not less than two-thirds of the named sponsors file with the secretary of state, in writing, their request for withdrawal of the question from the ballot. The secretary of state shall attach to the petitions on file the request for withdrawal and shall take no other action thereon.

Source: SL 2009, ch 64, § 9, eff. July 1, 2010.


2-1-3 Referendum--Laws subject to petition--Form.
     2-1-3.   Referendum--Laws subject to petition--Form. Any law which the Legislature may have enacted, except one which may be necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health, or safety, or support of the state government and its existing public institutions, shall, upon the filing of a petition as hereinafter provided, be submitted to a vote of the electors of the state at the next general election. Such petition shall be signed by not less than five percent of the qualified electors of the state. The form of the petition shall be prescribed by the State Board of Elections.

Source: SDC 1939, § 55.0402; SL 1957, ch 278, § 2; SL 1976, ch 105, § 77.


2-1-3.1 Petition to be circulated for referred law--Time for filing.
     2-1-3.1.   Petition to be circulated for referred law--Time for filing. The petition as it is to be circulated for a referred law shall be filed with the secretary of state prior to circulation for signatures and shall:
             (1)      Contain the title of the referred law;
             (2)      Contain the effective date of the referred law;
             (3)      Contain the date of the general election at which the referred law is to be submitted;
             (4)      Be accompanied by a notarized form that includes the names and addresses of the petition sponsors; and
             (5)      Be accompanied by a statement of organization as provided in § 12-27-6.
     The petition shall be filed with the secretary of state within ninety days after the adjournment of the Legislature which passed the referred law. A sworn affidavit, signed by at least two-thirds of the petition sponsors, stating that the documents filed constitute the entire petition and to the best of the knowledge of the sponsors contains a sufficient number of signatures shall also be filed with the secretary of state. The form of the petition and affidavit shall be prescribed by the State Board of Elections.
     The petition circulator shall provide to each person who signs the petition a form containing the title of the referred law; the name, phone number, and email address of each petition sponsor; and a statement whether the petition circulator is a volunteer or paid petition circulator and, if a paid circulator, the amount the circulator is being paid. The form shall be approved by the secretary of state prior to circulation.

Source: SL 2012, ch 18, § 1; SL 2016, ch 23, § 3.


2-1-3.2 Withdrawal of petition for referred law.
     2-1-3.2.   Withdrawal of petition for referred law. A petition of the voters referring a law to the vote of the electors pursuant to § 2-1-3 may be withdrawn no later than one hundred twenty days prior to the next general election, if no less than two-thirds of the petition sponsors file with the secretary of state, in writing, their request for withdrawal of the question from the ballot. The secretary of state shall attach to the petitions on file the request for withdrawal and shall take no other action thereon.

Source: SL 2012, ch 19, § 1.


2-1-4 Repealed by SL 2012, ch 18, § 6.
     2-1-4.   Repealed by SL 2012, ch 18, § 6.


2-1-5 Total vote used to determine number of signers required in petitions.
     2-1-5.   Total vote used to determine number of signers required in petitions. The total number of votes cast for Governor at the last preceding gubernatorial election, shall for the purposes of this chapter, be the basis for determining the number of petitioners required.

Source: SDC 1939, § 55.0404; SL 1976, ch 105, § 78.


2-1-6 Persons qualified to sign petitions--False or unqualified signing as misdemeanor.
     2-1-6.   Persons qualified to sign petitions--False or unqualified signing as misdemeanor. Every person who is a qualified voter may sign a petition to initiate a constitutional amendment or other measure or to refer a law. If a person, knowing he or she is not a qualified voter of the state or knowing that he or she has already signed the same petition, signs a petition for initiation of a constitutional amendment or other measure or for referral of legislation or if any person signs a name other than his or her own, that person is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.

Source: SDC 1939, §§ 55.0404, 55.9901; SL 1980, ch 24, § 15; SL 2007, ch 15, § 2.


2-1-6.1 Repealed by SL 1989, ch 23, § 3.
     2-1-6.1.   Repealed by SL 1989, ch 23, § 3.


2-1-6.2 Repealed by SL 2012, ch 18, § 7.
     2-1-6.2.   Repealed by SL 2012, ch 18, § 7.


2-1-6.3
     2-1-6.3.   Repealed by SL 2009, ch 64, § 6, eff. July 1, 2010.


2-1-7 Petitions to be signed in person.
     2-1-7.   Petitions to be signed in person. Every petition proposing a measure shall be signed in person by the petitioners.

Source: SDC 1939, § 55.0403; SL 1957, ch 278, § 3; SL 2009, ch 64, § 7, eff. July 1, 2010.


2-1-8 Repealed by SL 1990, ch 104, § 1.
     2-1-8.   Repealed by SL 1990, ch 104, § 1.


2-1-9 Separate papers constituting single petition.
     2-1-9.   Separate papers constituting single petition. A single petition may be made up of one or more papers, each having the requisite heading and verification.

Source: SDC 1939, § 55.0403; SL 1957, ch 278, § 3; SL 1986, ch 114, § 2.


2-1-10 Verification of persons circulating initiative or referendum petitions--Form and content--...
     2-1-10.   Verification of persons circulating initiative or referendum petitions--Form and content--Violation as misdemeanor. Each person, who circulates and secures signatures to a petition to initiate a constitutional amendment or other measure or to refer legislation to the electors, shall sign a verification before filing the petition with the officer in whose office it is by law required to be filed. The verification shall prescribe that the circulator made reasonable inquiry and, to the best of the circulator's knowledge, each person signing the petition is a qualified voter of the state in the county indicated on the signature line and that no state statute regarding the circulation of petitions was knowingly violated. The State Board of Elections shall prescribe the form for the verification. The verification shall be complete and the affixing of the circulator's signature shall be witnessed and notarized by a notary public commissioned in South Dakota or other officer authorized to administer oaths pursuant to § 18-3-1. Any person who falsely swears to the verification provided for in this section is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.

Source: SDC 1939, § 55.0405; SL 1957, ch 278, § 4; SL 1974, ch 22; SL 1976, ch 105, § 79; SL 1989, ch 23, § 4; SL 2000, ch 19, § 1; SL 2007, ch 15, § 1; SL 2010, ch 74, § 1.


2-1-11 Petitions liberally construed.
     2-1-11.   Petitions liberally construed. The petitions herein provided for shall be liberally construed, so that the real intention of the petitioners may not be defeated by a mere technicality.

Source: SDC 1939, § 55.0406.


2-1-12 Effective date of measures approved by voters.
     2-1-12.   Effective date of measures approved by voters. The constitutional amendments and initiated and referred measures that have been approved by a majority of all votes cast become effective the day after the completion of the official canvass by the State Canvassing Board.

Source: SL 1979, ch 11, § 2.


2-1-13 Repealed by SL 1989, ch 23, § 5.
     2-1-13.   Repealed by SL 1989, ch 23, § 5.


2-1-14 Signatures secured contrary to chapter not to be counted.
     2-1-14.   Signatures secured contrary to chapter not to be counted. All signatures secured in a manner contrary to the provisions of this chapter may not be counted.

Source: SL 1988, ch 23, § 2; 1st SS 1991, ch 1, §§ 3, 4.


2-1-15 Examination of petition by secretary of state--Signatures not to be counted unless persons...
     2-1-15.   Examination of petition by secretary of state--Signatures not to be counted unless persons are registered voters and information is complete. Upon the receiving of any initiative petition, referred law petition, or initiated constitutional amendment petition, the secretary of state shall examine the petition. No signature of a person may be counted by the secretary of state unless the person is a registered voter in the county indicated on the signature line. No signature of a person may be counted if the information required on the petition form is not complete.

Source: SL 2007, ch 16, § 1.


2-1-16 Signatures to be verified by random sampling--Rules.
     2-1-16.   Signatures to be verified by random sampling--Rules. The secretary of state shall verify the signatures pursuant to § 2-1-15 by random sampling. The random sample of signatures to be verified shall be drawn so that every signature received by the secretary of state shall be given an equal opportunity to be included in the sample. The secretary of state shall calculate the number of valid signatures by multiplying the total number of signatures received by the percentage of successfully verified signatures from the random sample. The secretary of state shall, by rules promulgated pursuant to chapter 1-26, establish the methodology for conducting the random sample. The random sampling shall be an examination of five percent of the signatures received.

Source: SL 2007, ch 16, § 2.


2-1-17 Certification of results of random sampling--Notification of petition sponsors.
     2-1-17.   Certification of results of random sampling--Notification of petition sponsors. If the random sample indicates that a sufficient number of qualified electors have signed the petition, the secretary of state shall certify that the petition has been signed by the required number of qualified electors and shall place the proposed measure or amendment on the next general election ballot. If the random sample indicates that an insufficient number of qualified electors have signed the petition, the secretary of state shall certify that the petition has not been signed by the required number of qualified electors and may not place the proposed measure or amendment on the next general election ballot. The secretary of state shall, within five days of certifying, notify the petition sponsors of the secretary of state's action pursuant to this section.

Source: SL 2007, ch 16, § 3.


2-1-18 Court challenge of validity of signatures.
     2-1-18.   Court challenge of validity of signatures. Nothing in §§ 2-1-15 to 2-1-18, inclusive, prohibits any person from challenging in circuit court the validity of signatures or other information required on a petition by statute or administrative rule.

Source: SL 2007, ch 16, § 4.


2-1-19 Cost estimate for legislation or ballot initiative that may impact state prison or county ...
     2-1-19.   Cost estimate for legislation or ballot initiative that may impact state prison or county jail population. A prison or jail population cost estimate shall be attached to any bill, amendment, or measure proposed by ballot initiative that may impact the state prison or county jail population. The requirement for a cost estimate includes each bill or amendment that increases the period of imprisonment authorized for an existing crime, that adds a new crime for which imprisonment is authorized, that imposes a minimum or mandatory minimum term of imprisonment, or that modifies any law governing release of a prisoner from imprisonment or supervision.
     The sponsor of the legislation, amendment, or ballot initiative shall request and allow sufficient time to prepare a cost estimate from the Bureau of Finance and Management or the Legislative Research Council. The cost estimate shall be completed for a bill before the bill is considered by any standing committee of the Legislature. Any ballot initiative shall have a cost estimate attached to the Attorney General's statement required pursuant to § 12-13-9 or 12-13-25.1.

Source: SL 2013, ch 101, § 71; SL 2015, ch 15, § 1.


2-1-20 Contents of cost estimate.
     2-1-20.   Contents of cost estimate. A cost estimate pursuant to § 2-1-19 shall include the following:
             (1)      An analysis of the specific components of the bill or the ballot initiative that will impact the prison and jail population;
             (2)      The projected cost of the impact of the bill on the state prison system and the aggregate cost to county jails on an annual basis and cost of the bill over a ten year period; and
             (3)      Operational costs and capital costs including all manner of construction.

Source: SL 2013, ch 101, § 72; SL 2015, ch 15, § 2.


Title 2

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