Latvia

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Question Value
Legal provisions for mandatory referendums at national level
  • Yes
Legal provisions for optional referendums at national level
  • Yes
Legal provisions for citizens' initiatives at national level
  • Yes
Legal provisions for agenda initiatives at national level
  • Yes
Legal provisions for recall at national level
  • No
Legal provisions for direct democracy at the regional level
  • No
Legal provisions for direct democracy at the local level
  • Optional referendum
  • Citizens' initiative
  • Agenda initiative
Legal basis for direct democracy at the national level
  • Constitutional
  • Specific laws/legislation
Legal basis for administrative requirements at the national level
  • Specific laws/legislation
Who administers direct democracy mechanisms at the national level?
  • Independent electoral commission
First referendum/initiative held
  • 1923
Has there been a national referendum since 1980?
  • Yes

Question Value
Issues in relation to which referendums are mandatory at the national level
  • Constitutional amendments
  • Adoption of international treaties
  • Transfer of authority to international bodies
  • Dissolution of the Parliament
Issues in relation to which referendums are optional at the national level
  • Adoption of a law
Issues excluded from being the subject of referendums at the national level
  • Adoption of international treaties
  • Taxes and public expenditure commitments
  • See also quote
Issues of sub-national referendums regulated at the national level
  • None
Who can initiate an optional referendum at the national level?
  • Registered electors
Who drafts the referendum question?
  • Mandatory referendum - Independent electoral commission
  • Mandatory referendum - Legislature
  • Optional referendum - Independent electoral commission
Who decides on the final form of the ballot text?
  • Mandatory referendum - Independent electoral commission
  • Optional referendum - Independent electoral commission
Quorum requirements for a referendum to be valid
  • Mandatory referendum - turnout quorum
  • Mandatory referendum - approval quorum
  • Optional referendum - turnout quorum
Requirements for a referendum to pass
  • Mandatory referendum - simple majority
  • Optional referendum - simple majority
Are referendum results binding?
  • Mandatory referendum - always
  • Optional referendum - always

Question Value
Issues that can be proposed by citizens using the initiative process at the national level
  • Citizens' initiatives - constitutional amendments
  • Citizens' initiatives - legislative proposals
  • Citizens' initiatives - other issues
  • Agenda initiatives - constitutional amendments
  • Agenda initiatives - legislative proposals
Issues excluded from being the subject of an initiative at the national level
  • Adoption of international treaties
  • Taxes and public expenditure commitments
  • See also quote
Who may propose the registration of an initiative?
  • Citizens' initiative - a number of individuals
  • Citizens' initiative - registered committee
  • Agenda initiative - a number of individuals
  • Agenda initiative - registered committee
Materials to accompany an application for registration
  • Full proposed text
Who determines the title of an initiative?
    What disqualifies a proposed title of an initiative?
    • Inconsistency with proposed content
    • The fact that initiative is proposed by a group other than prescribed by law
    Who is responsible for checking the legality of initiatives?
    • Independent electoral commission
    At which stage legality check is conducted?
      Who decides the final ballot text when the initiative is put to a vote?
      • Agency which administers direct democracy mechanisms
      When does voting take place once an initiative is qualified for ballot?
      • Within a certain time limit

      Question Value
      Which individuals/positions may be subject to the recall?
        What are the grounds for recall?
          What restrictions are there in relation to the time period in which an individual or position can be recalled?
            When is the recall put to the vote?
              When does the election to replace an individual who has been recalled take place?
                Can an individual who is the subject of a recall stand on the ballot for his/her own replacement?

                  Question Value
                  How many signatures are required to start the formal decision making stage of a direct democracy mechanism?
                  • Referendum - proportion of the electorate
                  • Citizens' Initiative - proportion of the electorate
                  • Agenda Initiative - proportion of the electorate
                  What is the deadline for collecting required number of signatures?
                  • Referendum - fixed time period
                  Restrictions in relation to the individuals who can sign the proposal
                  • Referendum - signatories must be registered electors in a specified electoral district
                  • Citizens' Initiative - signatories must be registered electors in a specified electoral district
                  • Agenda Initiative - signatories must be registered electors in a specified electoral district
                  Where can proposals be signed?
                  • At specified places
                  What information must signatories provide when signing the proposal?
                  • Identity or voting card number
                  Restrictions in relation to signature collection
                  • Not specified by legislation
                  What forms of checks are undertaken to verify signatures?
                  • All signatures are checked
                  Who checks the signatures?
                  • Local authorities