California Code, Elections Code - ELEC § 9210

The petition shall be filed by the proponents or by any person or persons authorized in writing by the proponents.  All sections of the petition shall be filed at one time.  Once filed, no petition section shall be amended except by order of a court of competent jurisdiction.

When the petition is presented for filing, the elections official shall do all of the following:

(a) Ascertain the number of registered voters of the city last reported by the county elections official to the Secretary of State pursuant to Section 2187 effective at the time the notice specified in Section 9202 was published.

(b) Determine the total number of signatures affixed to the petition.  If, from this examination, the elections official determines that the number of signatures, prima facie, equals or is in excess of the minimum number of signatures required, he or she shall accept the petition for filing.  The petition shall be deemed as filed on that date.  Any petition not accepted for filing shall be returned to the proponents.

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