[HISTORY: Adopted by the Village Board of the Village of Grafton by Ord. No. 023, Series 2003 (Title 1, Ch. 1.20, of the 1979 Code). Amendments noted where applicable.]
The purpose of this chapter is to establish specific guidelines and procedures for an advisory referendum in the Village of Grafton and to authorize measures for matters of substantial public interest and discussion while respecting the principles of representative democracy and the decisionmaking responsibilities of the Village Board and other municipal offices as provided by state law.
[Amended by Ord. No. 023, Series 2009]
Except where an advisory referendum procedure is otherwise established by law, an advisory referendum shall be conducted only in accordance with the procedures of this chapter. The provisions of the chapter shall not apply to an advisory referendum presented by the Village Board of Trustees to the electorate of the Village of Grafton. Any advisory referendum referred to the electorate by the Village Board shall require a two-thirds' majority (5 of 7) vote of the members-elect to proceed.
An advisory referendum may be held upon the filing of a "Notice of Intent to Circulate an Advisory Referendum Petition," signed by a committee of electors of the Village of not less than 10 Village of Grafton registered voters, with the Village Clerk prior to a legislative decision of the Village Board on the matter to be submitted for advisory referendum.
Prior to the submission of any question for advisory referendum pursuant to this chapter, the question to be submitted for an advisory referendum shall be submitted to the Village Clerk for forwarding to the Village Attorney. The Village Attorney shall review the question and determine if the question(s) involves an administrative or legislative matter. The Village Attorney shall submit a report to the Village Board which shall review said report and make a final determination as to whether or not the question(s) involves an administrative or legislative matter. If the question is found to be legislative, it shall be submitted to the voters upon compliance with § 1.20.050 of this chapter. If the question is found to be administrative, the question shall not be submitted to the electors of the Village of Grafton.
Submission of the notice of intent to circulate an advisory referendum petition for an advisory referendum shall proscribe a final legislative decision on the proposed advisory question by the Village Board until:
The proposed advisory question is found to be an administrative not legislative matter; or
The allotted time for filing a verified petition has elapsed without a petition being filed; or
A petition is filed within the allotted time but is found to be insufficient; or
A sufficient petition is filed and the advisory question has been submitted to the voters.
A referendum petition signed by the number of electors equal to a minimum of 30% of the votes cast for Governor at the last general election in the Village of Grafton must be submitted within 20 calendar days of the filing of the notice of intent to circulate a referendum petition.
Each page of the petition to be circulated shall contain at its head, or attached thereto, the names and addresses of the persons submitting the notice of intent to circulate petition and the exact text of the advisory referendum question.
Each page of the petition shall include a certificate by the circulator, verified by oath, that each signature subscribed in the petition was made in his presence and that the circulator believes it to be the genuine signature of the person whose name it purports to be.
Within 15 working days, the Village Clerk shall examine the petition for its sufficiency and issue a written report to the Village Board. If the petition is found sufficient, the Village Board shall submit the advisory referendum question to the voters pursuant to the requirements of § 1.20.060 of this chapter. If the petition is not sufficient, the advisory referendum question shall not be submitted to the voters.
The Board of Trustees shall, without alteration, submit the question to the electors at the next spring or general election, if the election is more than six weeks after the date the order is given. If six weeks or less before the election, the question shall be voted on at the next election thereafter. The Board of Trustees, by a three-fourths' vote of the members-elect, may order a special election for the purpose of submitting the question to the electorate at any time prior to the next election.
Not more than three weeks or less than one week before the election, the Village Clerk shall cause the question that is being submitted to a vote to be published once in the official Village newspaper.
The vote on the question shall be used only as a guideline to the Board of Trustees from their electors and shall be advisory only.