CZ:Election July-August 2013/Referenda/3

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Only the proposer of the referendum and Election Committee members may modify this page. Substantive modifications after the referendum has been formally proposed will invalidate it. Comments should be placed on the Talk page.

This page contains a proposed referendum question, the existing Charter article(s) or rule(s) which the proposer and any supporters of the referendum wish to change, and the proposed new text. A further section elaborates on the proposal.

Nomination and Election of the Ombudsman, July-August 2013

Proposed by the Management Council here (part 5)

A proposed referendum on part of the Charter follows. If it is voted on, Citizens can support or oppose the question by indicating 'Yes' or 'No'. Under Article 37, a two-thirds majority is required to modify the Charter.

Proposed referendum

The position of Ombudsman shall be elected through nomination of an unlimited number of candidates in good standing by the Citizendium community. All valid nominations that are accepted by their nominees shall appear on the ballot.



The current text of Article 28 of the Charter restricts the nomination process for Ombudsman by requiring the Combined Councils to control who appears on the ballot: one candidate only may appear, and this single name is then subject to an 'approval vote'. (An 'approval vote' is one where voters are asked to indicate 'yes' or 'no' to one candidate, rather than choose between several.) This means that the community itself has no power to field multiple candidates for a position that is supposed to be independent of other offices. It is therefore inappropriate to allow the Councils to select and put forward one person for the role. The current election method is also inconsistent with how Council members are elected.

Proposed solution

For consistency and to maintain the office of Ombudsman as an independent role, an unlimited number of valid, accepted nominees should be allowed to appear on the ballot, i.e. it should not be restricted to one.


This referendum, if passed, would require a rewrite of part of the Charter. The following changes would be applied to the current Charter (i.e. this version).

Original text

Article 28 currently reads in full:

The Ombudsman shall be nominated by the Combined Councils and appointed by majority Citizen vote at the same time that the Editorial Council elections occur. Any citizen in good standing may be nominated for Ombudsman.

Changes to existing wording

  • Delete the wording of Article 28 of the current Charter in its entirety and replace with The Ombudsman shall be elected by a simple majority of the voting citizenry during the same election period as the Management Council. Any Citizen in good standing may be nominated for the position, and all valid, accepted nominations must appear on the ballot.

Other referenda

If one or more other Charter-modifying referenda are passed in the July-August 2013 special election, the changes to the Charter imposed by this referendum, if successful, shall be applied after Referendum 1. Wording changes imposed by other successful referenda may be modified only in the interests of overall readability and as long as new changes are not included.