President Mahmoud Abbas on Thursday issued an executive order amending the 2005 election law as a precursor to holding a municipal vote sooner than scheduled, an official said.
The minister of local governance, Khaled Qawasmi, told Voice of Palestine radio that the decree would help the new government take a decision to hold elections "as soon as possible."
He added that the law would allow holding an election in more than one stage in case more than a day was needed.
Hamas, meanwhile, blasted the decision, calling it "unacceptable."
The move is corrupt because it puts the premiership in charge of the election and violates the Doha agreement to reconcile the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip, said spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri.
The PA has a poor track record of respecting the outcome of elections, he noted.
A spokesman for the Hamas government, Taher Nunu, called Fayyad's new government illegal according to the Palestinian Basic Law.
"Forming this government amounts to exporting the internal crisis of Fatah, and corruption scandals," he said in a statement, which slammed the presidential order for strengthening division.
Nunu said he supported holding elections in theory but said they should be held by a government that is agreed upon by the people. He called on Fatah to stop making decisions unilaterally.