Citizen Initiated Charter Amendment
Initial Filing Process
The following describes the City Clerk’s process for citizen initiated charter amendments, as required by the Columbus City Charter, Section 234, and the Ohio Constitution, Article 18, Section 9. This procedural outline applies only to City Clerk processes between the time the petition is delivered to the City Clerk and the time a report on the number of valid signatures contained in the part-petitions is provided to the City Clerk by the Franklin County Board of Elections.
• When citizens deliver an initiated charter amendment petition to the City Clerk, the Clerk’s office will immediately process the part-petitions.
• Each part-petition will be reviewed, numbered and photocopied.
• The petitioner will receive a receipt for the part-petitions.
• Once the charter amendment part-petitions are delivered to the City Clerk, no alterations, corrections, or additions may be made to the part-petitions (ORC 3501.38(I)(1).
• A petitioner may withdraw the charter amendment petitions though a written request to the City Clerk prior to the sixtieth day before the election at which the question or issue is scheduled to appear on the ballot (ORC 3501.38(2)(b)).
• No charter amendment petition presented to or filed with the City Clerk may be resubmitted after it is withdrawn.
• Copies of the part-petitions will be delivered to the City Attorney’s office.
• The City Attorney’s office will review the legal sufficiency of the petitions as to form.
• The original part-petitions will be delivered to the Franklin County Board of Elections.
• The Franklin County Board of Elections will process the part-petitions and report to the City Clerk the number of valid signatures on the part-petitions.
DISCLAIMER: This procedural outline is not legal advice and should not be relied upon as the sole source of information. Petitioners must comply, at minimum, with all applicable sections of the Columbus City Charter, the Ohio Constitution and the Ohio Revised Code. Petitioners are urged to consult legal counsel.