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Initiated Ordinance Process


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Currently Tracked Initiatives

Pending Ballot Initiatives 2020
5280 Not 1984 - Approved Language/Sample Packet submitted November 5, 2019
Let Denver Vote 5280 - Approved Language/Sample Packet submitted April 20, 2020
Initiated Ballot Questions - Quick Guides and Rules
Initiated Ordinance Timeline

Review and comment hearing on initiated ordinances and charter amendments.

Prior to the submission to the clerk and recorder of any affidavit or statement of intent commencing the process for initiating any ordinance or charter amendment, the proponents of the initiated measure shall submit a typewritten draft of the text of the proposed ordinance or charter amendment to the director of the city council staff and to the city attorney for review and comment. Proponents are encouraged to write such drafts in plain, non-technical language and in a clear and coherent manner using words with common and everyday meaning which are understandable to the average reader. No later than ten days after the date of submission of the original draft, unless it is withdrawn by the proponents, the director or the city council staff and the city attorney, or their designees (Charter §8.3.7)

Deadline to File Completed Petition.

A completed petition for initiated ordinance must be filed with the clerk and recorder no later than one hundred eighty (180) days from the date of approval of the affidavit, ballot title, and petition sample

by the clerk and recorder. (C&R Election Rules 5.2, 5.3, 5.4, & 5.5)

Review and Approval of Affidavit, Ballot Title, and Petition Sample.

The clerk and recorder will have three (3) full

working days from the time of the filing of the affidavit, petition sample, and ballot title to review these materials. At the end of the three (3) working days, the clerk and recorder will either accept or reject the affidavit, petition sample, or ballot title. If the affidavit, petition sample, or ballot title is rejected, the clerk and recorder will make written findings specifying the defects (C&R Election Rule 5.5.1)

Notification of Sufficiency Decision for Initiated Ordinance Petitions, and Cure.


Once the twenty-five (25) day holding period has passed, if the petition is deemed to contain a sufficient number of valid signatures, the clerk and recorder will notify the petitioners’ committee in writing. (C&R Election Rule 5.9.1)


The clerk and recorder will record and hold any addendum for an additional period of twenty-five (25) days and will verify the signatures on the addendum in the same manner as provided for in the original petition (C&R Election Rule 5.9.1)

Protest of Petition for Initiated Ordinance

Within the twenty-five (25) day holding period of the petition or any addendum thereto, a protest subscribed and sworn to under oath may be filed by a registered elector of the City and County of Denver. The clerk and recorder will appoint a hearing officer who will consider the grounds of protest and may hear evidence, after giving notice of the hearings to the petitioners’ committee, the protestors, and others the clerk and recorder may require for the hearings. Hearings will be concluded and findings issued as soon as practicable but not more than fifty (50) days after the filing of a protest with the clerk and recorder. (C&R Election Rule 5.10)


Location & Hours
200 W. 14th Ave #100
Denver, CO 80204
Hours: 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.


Denver Elections Division

Call: 303-653-9668
Text: 56003
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