The Popular Initiative

All residents have the right to submit certain items of political decision-making to the Landtag within the framework of its competence. They may also table bills and motions to dissolve the Landtag. This initiative must be signed by at least 20,000 residents and motions to dissolve the Landtag by at least 150,000 persons entitled to vote.

The initial aim of Popular Initiatives is to prompt the Landtag to address a specific item of political decision-making. The Landtag is obliged to take a decision on a Popular Initiative within four months of its having been received by the Landtag President. The initiators have the right to be heard by the responsible committee before the decision is taken by the Landtag.

All residents of the Land may take part in Popular Initiatives who

  • have attained the age of 16 and
  • have had a habitual residence in the Land of Brandenburg for at least one month.

EU citizens and citizens of a state that is not a member of the European Union may also participate in Popular Initiatives if they have proof of possession of an EU residence permit or a residence authorisation. This does not apply to motions to dissolve the Landtag however.

All the political responsibilities that lie within the framework of competence of the Landtag may be made the subject of a Popular Initiative. Initiatives on the Land budget, official emoluments and pensions, taxes and personnel decisions are not permitted.

The Popular Initiative must include:

  • the wording of a draft bill or other bill stating the reasons on which it is based
  • the names of five representatives of the initiative and their deputies
  • the requisite verifiable signatures of supporters on separate sheets

The signature sheets must include:

  • a heading to explain the cause for which signatures are collected
  • the full wording of the draft bill or other bill
  • consecutively numbered signatures on each sheet
  • the name, forename, date of birth, place of residence and address of all signatories in a clearly legible form
  • personal signatures and date of each signature

It is up to the initiators to decide how the signatures of support are collected, whether on street stands, in shops, during events and so on. The collection of signatures must not exceed a period of one year, however.

Popular Initiatives must be submitted to the President of the Landtag.

The Land Election Supervisor first checks the official criteria for the initiative. When the inspection report is available, the Main Committee assesses the formal and substantive admissibility of the popular initiative. The initiators are informed of its decision by the President in writing.

In the event of an adverse decision, the representatives may appeal to the Land Constitutional Court within one month.

If the initiative is admissible, the Landtag must rule on it within four months of its receipt. The representatives of the popular initiative have the right to be heard by the responsible committee before the final decision is taken.

Should an initiative not come about due to formal and substantive reasons, however, the documents are returned to the initiators or passed on to the Petition Committee with their consent for further revision.

Landtag Brandenburg
President of Landtag Brandenburg
Alter Markt 1
14467 Potsdam


Landtag Brandenburg
Alter Markt 1
14467 Potsdam
Phone: (0331) 966-0
Fax: (0331) 966-1210