Elections for municipality heads, mayors, and county prefects and their deputies
Municipality heads, mayors and county prefects are elected by direct vote, by secret ballot for the mandate of four years. Municipality head, mayors and county prefects deputies are elected simultaneously and under same terms and in the same procedure.
The regular elections for the municipality heads, mayors and county prefects and their deputies are held on the third Sunday in May every fourth year, at the same time as the elections for members of the representative bodies of units. The Croatian Government calls for the elections.
All citizens over the age of eighteen, having their residence in the areas of local and regional self-government in which the election takes place, have the right to elect.
All citizens over the age of eighteen, having their residence in the areas of local and regional self-government in which the election takes place on the day of announcing the elections, have the right to be elected for municipality heads, mayors and county prefects or their deputies.
Candidates should not be police officers, active military personnel, as well as officers and employees of the Armed Forces. No one can simultaneously be a candidate for the municipality head, that is, mayor and county prefect, or their deputies.
The municipality heads, mayors and county prefects and their deputies cannot simultaneously perform any of duties specified in the Article 89 of the Local Elections Act. A person holding an incompatible office can be a candidate, and, if elected, should resign from the incompatible office within 8 days of the publication of final election results.
Candidates for municipality heads, mayors and county prefects and their deputies may be proposed by political parties registered in the Republic of Croatia. Two or more political parties can propose a joint candidate.
Bodies carrying out these elections are: the State Electoral Commission of the Republic of Croatian, municipal electoral commissions, electoral commissions of cities and electoral commissions.
The electoral campaign begins on the date of publishing the aggregate list, and ends 24 hours before the Election Day. The election silence begins together with the expiry of the electoral campaign, and ends on the Election Day at 7 p.m. hours. During the election silence it is prohibited to publicly present and explain the electoral program to voters, coax voters to vote for a particular candidate, publish estimates of election results as well as the publication of previous, unofficial election results, statements and interviews of participants of the electoral campaign and voting of their statements or written work.
Municipality heads, mayors and county prefects and their deputies are elected by the proportional electoral system, so that the entire area of the municipality or city, county or City of Zagreb makes one constituency. The candidate that has more than 50% of the total votes is elected for the municipality head, mayor or the county prefect. If no candidate receives the required majority in the first round, a further selection is carried out in the second, and under certain legal conditions, in the third round. If still no candidate receives the required majority, the electoral process is repeated in its entirety.
General supervision of the constitutionality and legality of the election of municipality heads, mayors and county prefects and their deputies is performed by the Constitutional Court in accordance with the Constitutional Law on the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Croatia.
Electoral campaign financing is regulated by the Political Activity and Election Campaign Financing Act.