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Introduced Version Senate Bill 496 History

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Senate Bill No. 496

(By Senators Kessler, Oliverio, White, McKenzie and Plymale)

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[Introduced January 30, 2008; referred to the Committee on the Judiciary.]

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A BILL to amend and reenact §3-2-30 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, relating to the protection of certain information maintained in voter registration files.

Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That §3-2-30 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended and reenacted to read as follows:
ARTICLE 2. REGISTRATION OF VOTERS.
§3-2-30. Public inspection of voter registration records in the office of the clerk of the county commission; providing voter lists for noncommercial use; prohibition against resale of voter lists for commercial use or profit.

(a) The active, inactive, rejected and canceled voter registration records shall be made available for public inspection during office hours of the clerk of the county commission in accordance with the provisions of chapter twenty-nine-b of this code as follows:
(1) When the active and inactive files are maintained on precinct registration books, any person shall be allowed to examine these files under the supervision of the clerk and obtain copies of records except when a precinct book is in temporary use for updating and preparing lists or during the time the books are sealed for use in an election. Other original voter registration records, including canceled voter records, pending applications, rejected applications, records of change requests, reinstatements and other documents, shall be available for inspection upon specific request; and
(2) When the active, inactive, rejected and canceled voter files are maintained in data format, any person shall be allowed to examine voter record information in printed form or in a read-only data format on a computer terminal set aside for public use, if available. The data files available shall include all registration and voting information maintained in the file, except that the telephone number, and social security number and driver's license number or nonoperator's number, as issued by the Division of Motor Vehicles, of any voter shall not be available for inspection or copying in any format.
(b) Printed lists of registered voters may be purchased for noncommercial use from the clerk of the county commission at a cost of one cent per name.
(c) In counties maintaining active and inactive files in digitized data format, the clerk of the county commission shall, upon request, prepare printed copies of the lists of voters for each precinct. No list prepared under this section may include the telephone number or social security number of the registrant. The clerk shall establish a written policy, which shall be posted within public view, listing the options which may be requested for selection and sorting criteria and available data elements, which shall include at least the name, residence address, political party affiliation and status and the format of the lists and the times at which lists will be prepared. A copy of the policy shall be filed with the Secretary of State no later than the first day of January of each even-numbered year.
(d) In counties which maintain voter files in a digitized data format, lists of registered voters may be obtained for noncommercial purposes in data format on disk provided and prepared by the clerk of the county commission at a cost of one cent per name plus ten dollars for each disk required. No data file prepared under this subsection may include the telephone number or social security number of the registrant.
(e) The fees received by the clerk of the county commission shall be kept in a separate fund under the supervision of the clerk for the purpose of defraying the cost of the preparation of the voter lists. Any unexpended balance in the fund shall be transferred to the General Fund of the county commission.
(f) The Secretary of State may make voter lists available for sale subject to the limitations as provided in this section for counties. The cost for a partial list shall be one and one-half cents per name plus ten dollars for each disk required; the cost for a complete statewide list shall be one-half cent per name and a flat fee of one thousand dollars. One cent per name for each voter from a particular county on each partial list, and one-half cent per name for each voter from a particular county on each statewide list sold shall be reimbursed to the appropriate county. The disk fee and one-half cent per name associated with a partial list and the flat fee of one thousand dollars associated with a complete statewide list shall be deposited to a special revenue account for purpose of defraying the cost of the preparation of the lists.
(g) An update to a previously purchased list may be provided by the Secretary of State or the clerk of the county commission at a prorated cost based on the amount of additional information provided. The additional rates charged by the clerk of the county commission shall be specified in the policy established pursuant to subsection (c) of this section.
(h) No voter registration lists or data files containing the names, addresses or other information relating to voters derived from voter data files obtained pursuant to the provisions of this article may be used for commercial or charitable solicitations or advertising, sold or reproduced for resale.



NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to protect information maintained in the voter registration.

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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