20-HB2362/SB2297 – Carter/Gardenhire
Under present law, in counties using a ballot marking device, or any other electronic ballot marking system, after the voter completes the application for ballot and the election official records the ballot stub number on the application for ballot, the election official is required to attach the ballot stub to the voter's application for ballot. Under this amendment, a ballot stub number is not required to be preprinted on the paper ballot in counties using an electronic ballot marking system or ballot-on-demand technology approved by the coordinator of elections. When a ballot stub number is not preprinted on the paper ballot, this amendment requires the election commission to reconcile the number of applications issued in the polling place with the number of ballots recorded by the optical scanner used to tabulate the ballots in the polling place. Whenever the total number of applications issued differs from the total number of ballots scanned in a tabulator used in the polling place, this amendment requires the election commission to make a written report explaining the difference.
Present law generally prohibits elected officials and government employees from serving as a member of a county election commission or as a member of a county primary board or as an election official. Present law specifies that the general prohibition does not disqualify:
(1) Any person solely because the person is a notary public, or a member of a reserve unit of the United States army, air force, marine corps or navy, or a member of the national guard unless the person is a full-time employee or member of such reserve unit or the national guard, or unless the person is on active duty;
(2) Any employee of a county or city school system who does not work directly under the supervision of an elected official; or
(3) Any person from service as an officer of elections, judge, machine operator, assistant precinct registrar or inspector because the person is a member of a reserve unit of the U.S. armed forces or the national guard except while the person is on active duty.
This amendment removes the general prohibition against elected officials and government employees serving as a member of a county primary board or as an election official. This amendment replaces the provisions described in (1)-(3) with specific prohibitions against the following persons serving as an election official:
(1) An employee of a county or city who works directly under the supervision of an elected official who is on the ballot;
(2) The spouse, parent, father-in-law, mother-in-law, child, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, grandparent, grandchild, brother, sister, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, uncle, aunt, nephew, or niece, whether any such relationship is by direct relation or by marriage, of an opposed candidate or declared write-in candidate to be voted for at the election in that precinct or district; or
(3) A member of a reserve unit of the U.S. armed forces, or a member of the national guard who is on active duty.
This amendment authorizes county election commissions to provide that the appointment of an election official, except for the officer of elections, applies to a specific term that begins or expires at designated times during the election day.
This amendment reduces age of eligibility for appointment as an election official from 17 to 16 years of age.
Changes of Polling Place Due to Emergencies
This amendment adds to present law the following procedural requirements for county election commissions when an emergency necessitates a change to a polling place within 10 days of an election day:
(1) A county election commission will be prohibited from changing a polling place without approval of the coordinator of elections;
(2) If no alternative suitable site is available within a precinct, the county election commission will be authorized to create emergency supersites by moving a polling place that is unavailable or unsuitable due to an emergency to another polling place in the county. To the extent practicable, the county election commission should choose the nearest available and suitable polling place;
(3) The county election commission will be authorized to designate one or more centrally located sites for voting by any voter in the county; and
(4) The county election commission will be required to provide notice of any changes as widely as possible under the circumstances.
Support but not scoring; giving the sponsors credit under leadership.
TLRC Observed Process
Passed unanimously in the house.
Passed in the senate:
Voting no were: Dickerson, Yarbro — 2.
Present and not voting were: Gilmore, Kyle — 2.
Became Pub. Ch. 655