Voting age not lowered in local elections after all
Earlier this year, the Estonian Parliament decided to lower the voting age in local government elections from 18 to 16 years. For the constitutional change to take effect, it needed the approved of two consecutive Parliaments, received in February and May. However, MPs have now pulled on the brakes, rejecting the bill that should have seen the change implemented.
The plan was to allow 16 and 17-year-olds to vote in local government elections. The change in the constitution came into effect on August 13, 2015. However, the relevant amendments to the Local Government Council Election Act and Associated Acts were rejected in the Parliament today.
The bill had the support of 49 Mps instead of the required 51, with 36 against and three abstentions. The rejection of the bill was applauded in the Parliament, uudised.err.ee reported.
This means that the constitution and the local government act are now conflicting and the latter must pass a new round of readings.
The next local elections are due in fall 2017.