BILL NUMBER: SB 908	AMENDED
	BILL TEXT

	AMENDED IN SENATE  MAY 10, 2011
	AMENDED IN SENATE  APRIL 11, 2011

INTRODUCED BY   Senator Runner

                        FEBRUARY 18, 2011

   An act to amend Sections 3102 and 3103 of, and to add Section
3103.7 to, the Elections Code, relating to elections.


	LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


   SB 908, as amended, Runner.  Elections: ballots: submission by
electronic mail.
   Existing law permits a voter to return a vote by mail ballot
either by mail to the elections official from whom it came or by
personal delivery to the elections official or to a precinct board
member at any polling place within the jurisdiction.
   Existing law permits a special absentee voter, as defined, who is
temporarily living outside of the territorial limits of the United
States or the District of Columbia, or is called to military service,
to return his or her vote by mail ballot by facsimile transmission
to the elections official. The ballot must be received by the closing
of the election day polls and accompanied by an identification
envelope and an oath of voter declaration in a prescribed form.
   Existing law requires a special absentee voter who returns a
ballot by facsimile transmission to agree in an oath of voter
declaration under penalty of perjury to waive his or her right to a
secret ballot and that he or she has not applied for a vote by mail
ballot from any other jurisdiction for the election. The elections
official is required to determine the voter's eligibility to vote by
comparing the voter's signature from the materials returned by
facsimile transmission to the signature on the voter's affidavit of
registration.
   This bill would permit a  member of the Armed Forces of
the United States or any auxiliary branch thereof, or his or her
spouse or dependent,   special absentee voter  who
is temporarily living outside of the territorial limits of the United
States or the District of Columbia, or is called for military
services within the United States on or after the final date to make
application for a vote by absent voter ballot, to return his or her
ballot by electronic mail, as prescribed. The bill would require the
ballot to be accompanied by a copy of an identification envelope and
an oath of voter declaration in substantially the form described with
respect to facsimile transmission of ballots.
   This bill would require the elections official to determine the
voter's eligibility to vote by comparing the signature on the scanned
copy of the identification envelope with the signature on the voter'
s affidavit of registration.
   Because the bill requires elections officials to provide a higher
level of service and extends the crime of perjury, it would impose a
state-mandated local program.
   The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local
agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the
state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that
reimbursement.
   This bill would provide that with regard to certain mandates no
reimbursement is required by this act for a specified reason.
   With regard to any other mandates, this bill would provide that,
if the Commission on State Mandates determines that the bill contains
costs so mandated by the state, reimbursement for those costs shall
be made pursuant to the statutory provisions noted above.
   Vote: majority. Appropriation: no. Fiscal committee: yes.
State-mandated local program: yes.


THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  SECTION 1.  Section 3102 of the Elections Code is amended to read:
   3102.  Applications for the ballots of special absentee voters
shall be received and, except as provided in Sections 3103.5 and
3103.7, the ballots shall be received and canvassed, at the same time
and under the same procedure as vote by mail ballots, insofar as
that procedure is not inconsistent with this chapter.
  SEC. 2.  Section 3103 of the Elections Code is amended to read:
   3103.  (a) Any application made pursuant to this chapter that is
received by the elections official prior to the 60th day before the
election shall be kept and processed on or after the 60th day before
the election.
   (b) The elections official shall immediately send the voter a
ballot in a form prescribed and provided by the Secretary of State.
The elections official shall send with the ballot a list of all
candidates who have qualified for the ballot by the 60th day before
the election and a list of all measures that are to be submitted to
the voters and on which the voter is qualified to vote. The voter
shall be entitled to write in the name of any specific candidate
seeking nomination or election to any office listed on the ballot.
   (c) Notwithstanding Section 15341 or any other provision of law,
any name written upon a ballot for a particular office pursuant to
subdivision (b) shall be counted for the office or nomination,
providing the candidate whose name has been written on the ballot
has, as of the date of the election, qualified to have his or her
name placed on the ballot for the office, or has qualified as a
write-in candidate for the office.
   (d) Except as provided in Sections 3103.5 and 3103.7, the
elections official shall receive and canvass special absentee voter
ballots described in this section under the same procedure as vote by
mail ballots, insofar as that procedure is not inconsistent with
this section.
   (e) In the event that a voter executes a special absentee ballot
pursuant to this section and an application for a vote by mail ballot
pursuant to Section 3101, the elections official shall cancel the
voter's permanent vote by mail status, and process the application in
accordance with Chapter 1 (commencing with Section 3000).
   (f) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a special absentee
voter who qualifies pursuant to this section may, by facsimile
transmission, register to vote and apply for a special absentee
ballot or a vote by mail ballot. Upon request, the elections official
may send to the qualified special absentee voter either by mail,
facsimile, or electronic transmission the special absentee ballot or,
if available, a vote by mail ballot pursuant to Chapter 1
(commencing with Section 3000).
  SEC. 3.  Section 3103.7 is added to the Elections Code, to read:
   3103.7.  (a) A  person described in paragraph (1) or (4)
of subdivision (b) of Section 300   special absentee
voter  who is temporarily living outside of the territorial
limits of the United States or the District of Columbia, or is called
for military services within the United States on or after the final
date to make application for a vote by mail ballot, may return his
or her ballot by electronic mail in the manner prescribed in
subdivision (b). To be counted, the ballot returned by electronic
mail must be received by the voter's elections official no later than
the closing of the polls on election day and must be accompanied by
a copy of an identification envelope containing all of the
information required by Section 3011 and  a   an
 oath of voter declaration in substantially the form described
in subdivision (a) of Section 3103.5.
   (b) To submit a ballot by electronic mail, the ballot and
accompanying identification envelope and oath of voter declaration
must be scanned to create electronic copies of the documents. The
electronic copies of the documents shall be included in the
electronic mail sent to the elections official as attachments. The
Secretary of State shall adopt uniform regulations for the use of
electronic mail in returning ballots.
   (c) Notwithstanding the voter's waiver of the right to a secret
ballot, each elections official shall adopt appropriate procedures to
protect the secrecy of ballots returned by electronic mail.
   (d) Upon receipt of a ballot returned by electronic mail, the
elections official shall determine the voter's eligibility to vote by
comparing the signature on the scanned copy of the identification
envelope with the signature on the voter's affidavit of registration.
The ballot shall be duplicated and all materials preserved according
to procedures set forth in this code.
  SEC. 4.  No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to
Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution for
certain costs that may be incurred by a local agency or school
district because, in that regard, this act creates a new crime or
infraction, eliminates a crime or infraction, or changes the penalty
for a crime or infraction, within the meaning of Section 17556 of the
Government Code, or changes the definition of a crime within the
meaning of Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California
Constitution.
   However, if the Commission on State Mandates determines that this
act contains other costs mandated by the state, reimbursement to
local agencies and school districts for those costs shall be made
pursuant to Part 7 (commencing with Section 17500) of Division 4 of
Title 2 of the Government Code.