17-52a-303.  Registered voter initiation of adoption of optional plan — Procedure.

(1) 

Terms Used In Utah Code 17-52a-303

  • County: means a unit of local government that is a body corporate and politic and a legal subdivision of the state, with geographic boundaries as described in Section 17-50-104, and powers as provided in Part 3, County Powers. See Utah Code 17-50-101
  • County legislative body: means :Utah Code 68-3-12.5
  • Donor: The person who makes a gift.
  • Executive: when used to describe the powers, duties, or functions of a person or body elected as the county executive or a person appointed as the county manager or administrative officer, refers to:
(a) the power and duty to carry laws and ordinances into effect and secure their due observance; and
(b) those powers, duties, and functions that, under constitutional and statutory provisions and through long usage and accepted practice and custom at the federal and state level, have come to be regarded as belonging to the executive branch of government. See Utah Code 17-50-101
  • Legislative: when used to describe the powers, duties, or functions of a county commission or council, refers to:
    (a) the power and duty to enact ordinances, levy taxes, and establish budgets; and
    (b) those powers, duties, and functions that, under constitutional and statutory provisions and through long usage and accepted practice and custom at the federal and state level, have come to be regarded as belonging to the legislative branch of government. See Utah Code 17-50-101
  • Optional plan: means a plan establishing an alternate form of government for a county as provided in Section 17-52a-404. See Utah Code 17-52a-102
  • Process: means a writ or summons issued in the course of a judicial proceeding. See Utah Code 68-3-12.5
  • Signature: includes a name, mark, or sign written with the intent to authenticate an instrument or writing. See Utah Code 68-3-12.5
  • Study committee: means the committee that has five members appointed and charged with the duties as provided in Section 17-52a-403. See Utah Code 17-52a-102
  • Writing: includes :Utah Code 68-3-12.5
  • (a)  Registered voters of a county may initiate the process of adopting an optional plan by filing with the county clerk a notice of intent to gather signatures for a petition:

    (i)  for the establishment of a study committee described in Section 17-52a-403; or

    (ii)  to adopt an optional plan that:

    (A)  accompanies the petition during the signature gathering process and accompanies the petition in the submission to the county clerk under Subsection (2)(b); and

    (B)  complies with the requirements described in Sections 17-52a-404 and 17-52a-405.

    (b)  A notice of intent described in Subsection (1)(a) shall:

    (i)  designate five sponsors for the petition;

    (ii)  designate a contact sponsor to serve as the primary contact for the petition sponsors;

    (iii)  list the mailing address and telephone number of each of the sponsors; and

    (iv)  be signed by each of the petition sponsors.

    (c)  Registered voters of a county may not file a notice of intent to gather signatures in bad faith.
  • (2) 

    (a)  The sponsors of a petition may circulate the petition after filing a notice of intent to gather signatures under Subsection (1).

    (b) 

    (i)  Except as provided in Subsection (2)(b)(ii), the petition is valid if the petition contains the number of legal signatures required under Subsection 20A-7-501(2).

    (ii)  For a county of the fifth or sixth class, the petition is valid if the petition contains at least the number of legal signatures equal to 30% of the number of active voters, as defined in Section 20A-7-501, in the county.

    (iii)  The county clerk may not count a signature that was collected for the petition before the petition sponsors filed a notice of intent under Subsection (1)(a).

    (iv)  Notwithstanding any other provision of law, an individual may not sign a petition circulated under this section by electronic signature as defined in Section 20A-1-202.

    (c)  Except as provided in Subsection (4)(b)(ii), the sponsors of the petition shall submit the completed petition and any amended or supplemental petition described in Subsection (4) with the county clerk not more than 180 days after the day on which the sponsors file the notice described in Subsection (1).

    (d) 

    (i)  Within 30 days after the day on which the sponsors submit a petition, the sponsors shall submit financial disclosures to the county clerk that include:

    (A)  a list of each contribution received by the sponsors and the name of the donor; and

    (B)  a list of each expenditure for purposes of furthering or sponsoring the petition and the recipient of each expenditure.

    (ii)  The county clerk shall publish the financial disclosures described in Subsection (2)(d)(i).

    (iii)  All sponsors of a petition shall date and sign each list described in Subsection (2)(d)(i).

    (3)  Within 30 days after the day on which the sponsors submit a petition under Subsection (2)(c) or an amended or supplemental petition under Subsection (4), the county clerk shall:

    (a)  determine whether the petition or amended or supplemental petition has been signed by the required number of registered voters;

    (b) 

    (i)  if the petition was signed by a sufficient number of registered voters:

    (A)  certify the petition;

    (B)  deliver the petition to the county legislative body and county executive; and

    (C)  notify the contact sponsor in writing of the certification; or

    (ii)  if the petition was not signed by a sufficient number of registered voters:

    (A)  reject the petition; and

    (B)  notify the county legislative body and the contact sponsor in writing of the rejection and the reasons for the rejection; and

    (c)  for a petition described in Subsection (1)(a)(ii), no later than 10 days after the day on which the county clerk certifies the petition under Subsection (3)(b)(i), the county clerk shall send a copy of the optional plan that accompanied the petition to the county attorney for review in accordance with Section 17-52a-406.

    (4)  The sponsors of a petition circulated under this section may submit supplemental signatures for the petition:

    (a)  if the county clerk rejects the petition under Subsection (3)(b)(ii); and

    (b)  before the earlier of:

    (i)  the deadline described in Subsection (2)(c); or

    (ii)  20 days after the day on which the county clerk rejects the petition under Subsection (3)(b)(ii).

    (5)  With the unanimous approval of petition sponsors, a petition filed under this section may be withdrawn at any time within 90 days after the day on which the county clerk certifies the petition under Subsection (3)(b)(i) and no later than 45 days before an election under Section 17-52a-501 if the petition included a notification to petition signers, in conspicuous language and in a conspicuous location, that the petition sponsors are authorized to withdraw the petition.

    Amended by Chapter 47, 2020 General Session

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