Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a federal law "On Amendments to the Federal Law "On Political Parties" and the Federal Law "On Basic Guarantees of Electoral Rights and the Right to Participate in Referendum in the Russian Federation."
The law states that the day of voting in elections to the bodies of state power of the subjects of the Russian Federation and the bodies of local self-government is the second Sunday of September of the year in which the authorities of the above-mentioned bodies expire; and in the year of the elections of deputies of the State Duma of the next convocation - the day of voting in the elections.
Holding elections in the state authorities of the Russian Federation and local self-government on other days is allowed in cases of early termination of the powers of the bodies, the election of the newly formed governmental agencies of the subjects of the Russian Federation and local self-government agencies of the newly formed municipalities; in case of holding repeated or additional re-election and in other cases stipulated by the federal law.
In connection with the transition to the new election day, if the term, for which a body of state or local authorities of the Russian Federation was elected, expires after December 31, 2012, the next elections shall be held on the second Sunday of September of the year, in which the specified term expires, and in the year of the election of deputies of the State Duma of the next convocation - the day of voting in this election.
The terms of the powers of the bodies or deputies, whose election was postponed to a later date, shall be extended. The terms of the powers of the bodies or deputies, whose elections are moved to an earlier date, shall be reduced.
In addition, the law lifts ban to combine the voting days at the elections of different levels, if, as a result of such a combination, voters may vote on more than four ballots.
Single-mandate and multi-mandate districts shall be formed for a period of ten years, not for one election cycle, as currently stipulated. The new scheme of electoral districts shall be determined not later than 80 days before the expiration of the term, for which the previous scheme was approved.
Polling stations and referendum precincts shall be formed for a period of five years taking account of local and other conditions based on the need to provide maximum convenience for voters, referendum participants. Polling stations or referendum precincts shall be the same for all elections held on the adequate territory, as well as for all referendums of the subjects of the Russian Federation, local referendums.
PECs shall be formed for a period of five years, except for the election commissions, which are formed at the polls, referendum precincts formed outside of the Russian Federation, in hard-to-reach areas, in places of temporary stay of voters, and in other places stipulated by the Federal Law.