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Introduced Version House Bill 3134 History

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hb3134 intr
H. B. 3134


(By Delegates Fleischauer, Beach, Marshall,

Shook, Hunt, Frazier, Brown, Miley,

Longstreth, Lawrence and Manchin)

[Introduced March 13, 2009; referred to the

Committee on the Judiciary then Finance.]



A BILL to amend the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, by adding thereto a new article, designated §3-3A-1, §3-3A-2 and §3-3A-3, all relating to a vote by mail pilot program; requiring the Secretary of State select five municipalities for a pilot project; and rules governing the elections.

Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:

That the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended by adding thereto a new article, designated §3-3A-1, §3-3A-2 and §3-3A-3, all to read as follows:

ARTICLE 3A. VOTING BY MAIL PILOT PROGRAM.

§3-3A-1. Voting by mail pilot program.

(a) The Secretary of State shall establish procedures to allow five municipalities in the state to conduct a voting by mail pilot program. All registered and other qualified voters of the municipalities may vote a ballot by mail during the pilot program period of voting by mail.

§3-3A-2. Authority to conduct voting by mail; voting by mail application; form.

(a) Voting may be by mail during the vote by mail pilot program experimental period for an election held on the date of the primary or general election in those municipalities selected by the Secretary of State. The Secretary of State shall by rule direct that an election to be conducted by mail under the provisions of this article be conducted uniformly by mail or at polling places. The Secretary of State shall adopt rules to (1) provide for uniformity in the conduct of state elections by mail; and (2) govern the procedures for conducting elections by mail.
(b) A County Clerk may conduct an election described in this section by mail in the municipality under the supervision of the Secretary of State. The County Clerk may consider requests from the governing body of the municipality and shall consider whether conducting the election by mail will be economically and administratively feasible, in deciding to conduct an election by mail.
§3-3A-3. How voting by mail to be conducted.
(a) An election by mail shall be conducted as provided in this section. The Secretary of State shall adopt rules governing procedures for conducting an election by mail in a pilot program to be held in five municipalities in the state. Secretary of State by rule shall establish requirements and criteria for the designation of places of deposit for the ballots cast in an election. The rules shall also specify the dates and times the places of deposit must be open and the security requirements for the places of deposit. The places designated under this section shall be open on the dated of the election for a period of eight or more hours, but must be open until at least eight p.m., at a minimum. The county clerk shall prominently display a sign stating that the location is an official ballot drop site, at each place of deposit. Except as provided in subsection (b) of this section, the county clerk shall mail a nonforwardable official ballot with a return identification envelope and a secrecy envelope not sooner than the eighteenth day before the date of an election conducted by mail and not later than the fourteenth day before the date of the election, to each active voter of the pilot program municipality as of the twenty-first day before the election.
(b) Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (a) of this section, if the county clerk determines that an active voter of the pilot program municipality as of the twenty-first day before the date of the election does not receive daily mail service from the United States Postal Service, the clerk shall mail by nonforwardable mail an official ballot with a return identification envelope and a secrecy envelope to the voter not sooner than the eighteenth day before the date of the election.




NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to authorize a vote by mail pilot program. The Secretary of State is to select five municipalities for participation in the pilot project and adopt rules governing the elections by mail.


Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken from the present law, and underscoring indicates new language that would be added.
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