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A process of a participatory democracy that empowers the people to propose legislation and to enact or reject the laws at the polls independent of the lawmaking power of the governing body.

The purpose of an initiative, which is a type of election commenced and carried out by the people, is to permit the electorate to resolve questions where their elected representatives fail to do so or refuse to proceed with a change that the public desires.

See: initial, original, overture, preparatory, rudimentary

INITIATIVE, French law. The name given to the important prerogative given by the charte constitutionelle, art. 16, to the late king to propose through his ministers projects of laws. 1 Toull. n. 39. See Veto.

References in periodicals archive ?
In late March, The Washington Post reported, "Under the auspices of its religion-based initiatives and other federal programs, the administration has funneled at least $157 million in grants to organizations run by political and ideological allies.
Currently, most listed transactions are settled outside of Appeals through the Service's published settlement initiatives.
The easy-to-implement performance initiatives have been done, and top management teams must now implement a complex series of key initiatives to take their organizations to the next level.
The participants all agreed the state's current political climate is not good, blaming an ineffectual Legislature, meddling interest groups and an rush to resort to direct democracy through initiatives.
Much of the public attention paid to the visit focused on the civil nuclear energy agreement, but I would also like to draw the Committee's attention to the other initiatives that were agreed to by the two leaders.
Divest of Low Dollar Value Government Property in Possession of Contractors: This initiative seeks to establish management processes or policies to divest government furnished equipment with an acquisition cost of less than $5,000 by giving the contractor the option to purchase the goods from the government or another source.
To improve coverage, the IRS is expanding its scope of compliance initiatives by (1) introducing pilot programs, which will help it to learn more about compliance; and (2) standardizing audit procedures for the future.
According to Dushanka Kleinman, the assistant director for NIH Roadmap coordination, implementation of All 27 initiatives will begin in 2004.
Successful change initiatives are always driven by a handful of people who have a private, shared vision of what they want to do.
Anyone who wanted to develop an understanding of recordkeeping and records management for the' purpose of advancing any professional initiatives, either globally or in a particular country, had basically nowhere to turn.
By votes of 65 percent and 54 percent, respectively, Nevada and Colorado approved initiatives permitting the medical use of marijuana, raising to nine the number of states with such laws.
Initiatives were introduced in Oregon and California at the turn of the century as a way of bypassing legislatures overrun by corruption.

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