Law:Division 14. Election Day Procedures (California)

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Contents

Chapter 1. Privileges Of Voters

Ca Codes (elec:14000-14003) Elections Code Section 14000-14003



14000. (a) If a voter does not have sufficient time outside of working hours to vote at a statewide election, the voter may, without loss of pay, take off enough working time that, when added to the voting time available outside of working hours, will enable the voter to vote. (b) No more than two hours of the time taken off for voting shall be without loss of pay. The time off for voting shall be only at the beginning or end of the regular working shift, whichever allows the most free time for voting and the least time off from the regular working shift, unless otherwise mutually agreed. (c) If the employee on the third working day prior to the day of election, knows or has reason to believe that time off will be necessary to be able to vote on election day, the employee shall give the employer at least two working days' notice that time off for voting is desired, in accordance with this section.


14001. Not less than 10 days before every statewide election, every employer shall keep posted conspicuously at the place of work, if practicable, or elsewhere where it can be seen as employees come or go to their place of work, a notice setting forth the provisions of Section 14000.

14002. Sections 14000 and 14001 shall apply to all public agencies and the employees thereof, as well as to employers and employees in private industry.

14003. Except in time of war or public danger, no voter is obliged to perform militia duty on any election day.


Chapter 1.5. Rights Of Voters

Ca Codes (elec:14025-14032) Elections Code Section 14025-14032



14025. This act shall be known and may be cited as the California Voting Rights Act of 2001.


14026. As used in this chapter: (a) "At-large method of election" means any of the following methods of electing members to the governing body of a political subdivision: (1) One in which the voters of the entire jurisdiction elect the members to the governing body. (2) One in which the candidates are required to reside within given areas of the jurisdiction and the voters of the entire jurisdiction elect the members to the governing body. (3) One which combines at-large elections with district-based elections. (b) "District-based elections" means a method of electing members to the governing body of a political subdivision in which the candidate must reside within an election district that is a divisible part of the political subdivision and is elected only by voters residing within that election district. (c) "Political subdivision" means a geographic area of representation created for the provision of government services, including, but not limited to, a city, a school district, a community college district, or other district organized pursuant to state law. (d) "Protected class" means a class of voters who are members of a race, color or language minority group, as this class is referenced and defined in the federal Voting Rights Act (42 U.S.C. Sec. 1973 et seq.). (e) "Racially polarized voting" means voting in which there is a difference, as defined in case law regarding enforcement of the federal Voting Rights Act (42 U.S.C. Sec. 1973 et seq.), in the choice of candidates or other electoral choices that are preferred by voters in a protected class, and in the choice of candidates and electoral choices that are preferred by voters in the rest of the electorate. The methodologies for estimating group voting behavior as approved in applicable federal cases to enforce the federal Voting Rights Act (42 U.S.C. Sec. 1973 et seq.) to establish racially polarized voting may be used for purposes of this section to prove that elections are characterized by racially polarized voting.


14027. An at-large method of election may not be imposed or applied in a manner that impairs the ability of a protected class to elect candidates of its choice or its ability to influence the outcome of an election, as a result of the dilution or the abridgment of the rights of voters who are members of a protected class, as defined pursuant to Section 14026.


14028. (a) A violation of Section 14027 is established if it is shown that racially polarized voting occurs in elections for members of the governing body of the political subdivision or in elections incorporating other electoral choices by the voters of the political subdivision. Elections conducted prior to the filing of an action pursuant to Section 14027 and this section are more probative to establish the existence of racially polarized voting than elections conducted after the filing of the action. (b) The occurrence of racially polarized voting shall be determined from examining results of elections in which at least one candidate is a member of a protected class or elections involving ballot measures, or other electoral choices that affect the rights and privileges of members of a protected class. One circumstance that may be considered in determining a violation of Section 14027 and this section is the extent to which candidates who are members of a protected class and who are preferred by voters of the protected class, as determined by an analysis of voting behavior, have been elected to the governing body of a political subdivision that is the subject of an action based on Section 14027 and this section. In multiseat at-large election districts, where the number of candidates who are members of a protected class is fewer than the number of seats available, the relative groupwide support received by candidates from members of a protected class shall be the basis for the racial polarization analysis. (c) The fact that members of a protected class are not geographically compact or concentrated may not preclude a finding of racially polarized voting, or a violation of Section 14027 and this section, but may be a factor in determining an appropriate remedy. (d) Proof of an intent on the part of the voters or elected officials to discriminate against a protected class is not required. (e) Other factors such as the history of discrimination, the use of electoral devices or other voting practices or procedures that may enhance the dilutive effects of at-large elections, denial of access to those processes determining which groups of candidates will receive financial or other support in a given election, the extent to which members of a protected class bear the effects of past discrimination in areas such as education, employment, and health, which hinder their ability to participate effectively in the political process, and the use of overt or subtle racial appeals in political campaigns are probative, but not necessary factors to establish a violation of Section 14027 and this section.


14029. Upon a finding of a violation of Section 14027 and Section 14028, the court shall implement appropriate remedies, including the imposition of district-based elections, that are tailored to remedy the violation.

14030. In any action to enforce Section 14027 and Section 14028, the court shall allow the prevailing plaintiff party, other than the state or political subdivision thereof, a reasonable attorney's fee consistent with the standards established in Serrano v. Priest (1977) 20 Cal.3d 25, 48-49, and litigation expenses including, but not limited to, expert witness fees and expenses as part of the costs. Prevailing defendant parties shall not recover any costs, unless the court finds the action to be frivolous, unreasonable, or without foundation.

14031. This chapter is enacted to implement the guarantees of Section 7 of Article I and of Section 2 of Article II of the California Constitution.

14032. Any voter who is a member of a protected class and who resides in a political subdivision where a violation of Sections 14027 and 14028 is alleged may file an action pursuant to those sections in the superior court of the county in which the political subdivision is located.


Chapter 2. Precinct Supplies

Ca Codes (elec:14100-14113) Elections Code Section 14100-14113



14100. The county elections official, in providing the materials required by this division, shall not be required to utilize the services of the county purchasing agent.


14101. (a) On or before the first day of January of each even-numbered year, the Secretary of State and the Attorney General shall prepare a brief digest containing the substance of those provisions of this code and of other statutes that pertain to the duties of precinct officers during the casting and the canvassing of the vote. This digest shall contain in each case a reference to the section of this code or other statute, by reference to which further examination of its provisions may be made. (b) Immediately upon the completion of the digest set forth in subdivision (a), the Secretary of State shall send a copy to each county elections official.


14102. (a) (1) For each statewide election, the elections official shall provide a sufficient number of official ballots in each precinct to reasonably meet the needs of the voters in that precinct on election day using the precinct's voter turnout history as the criterion, but in no case shall this number be less than 75 percent of registered voters in the precinct, and for vote by mail and emergency purposes shall provide the additional number of ballots that may be necessary. (2) The number of party ballots to be furnished to any precinct for a primary election shall be computed from the number of voters registered in that precinct as intending to affiliate with a party, and the number of nonpartisan ballots to be furnished to any precinct shall be computed from the number of voters registered in that precinct without statement of intention to affiliate with any of the parties participating in the primary election. (b) For all other elections, the elections official shall provide a sufficient number of official ballots in each precinct to reasonably meet the needs of the voters in that precinct on election day, using the precinct's voter turnout history as the criterion, but in no case shall this number be less than 75 percent of the number of registered voters in the precinct, and for vote by mail and emergency purposes shall provide the additional number of ballots that may be necessary.

14103. Before the opening of the polls at any election, the elections official shall cause to be delivered to the precinct board in each precinct in which the election is to be held, the proper number of ballots of the kinds to be used in that precinct. The ballots shall be delivered in sealed packages with marks on the outside clearly designating the precinct or polling place for which they are intended, and the number of ballots enclosed.


14104. The elections official shall prepare a receipt for each polling place, enumerating the packages and stating the date of delivery to the precinct board member. The precinct board member shall sign the receipt upon receipt of the packages. The signed receipt shall be returned to the elections official. Messengers may be employed to insure the safe and expeditious delivery of the ballots. The elections official shall fix a reasonable compensation for the services of these messengers, to be paid in the same manner as other election expenses.

14105. The elections official shall furnish to the precinct officers all of the following: (a) Printed copies of the indexes. (b) Necessary printed blanks for the roster, tally sheets, lists of voters, declarations, and returns. (c) Envelopes in which to enclose returns. (d) Not less than six nor more than 12 instruction cards to each precinct for the guidance of voters in obtaining and marking their ballots. On each card shall be printed necessary instructions and the provisions of Sections 14225, 14279, 14280, 14287, 14291, 14295, 15271, 15272, 15273, 15276, 15277, 15278, 18370, 18380, 18403, 18563, and 18569. (e) A digest of the election laws with any further instructions the county elections official may desire to make. (f) An American flag of sufficient size to adequately assist the voter in identifying the polling place. The flag is to be erected at or near the polling place on election day. (g) A ballot container, properly marked on the outside indicating its contents. (h) When it is necessary to supply additional ballot containers, these additional containers shall also be marked on the outside, indicating their contents. (i) Sufficient ink pads and stamps for each booth. The stamps shall be one solid piece and shall be made so that a cross (+) may be made with either end. If ballots are to be counted by vote tabulating equipment, an adequate supply of other approved voting devices shall be furnished. All voting stamps or voting devices shall be maintained in good usable condition. (j) When a candidate or candidates have qualified to have his or her or their names counted pursuant to Article 3 (commencing with Section 15340) of Chapter 4 of Division 15, a sufficient number of ink pens or pencils in the voting booths for the purpose of writing in on the ballot the name of the candidate or candidates. (k) A sufficient number of cards to each polling place containing the telephone number of the office to which a voter may call to obtain information about his or her precinct location. The card shall state that the voter may call collect during polling hours. (l) An identifying badge or insignia for each member of the precinct board. The member shall print his or her name and the precinct number thereon and shall wear the badge or insignia at all times in the performance of duties, so as to be readily identified as a member of the precinct board by all persons entering the polling place. (m) Facsimile copies of the ballot containing ballot measures and ballot instructions printed in Spanish or other languages as provided in Section 14201. (n) Sufficient copies of the notices to be posted on the indexes used at the polls. The notice shall read as follows: "This index shall not be marked in any manner except by a member of the precinct board acting pursuant to Section 14297 of the Elections Code. Any person who removes, tears, marks, or otherwise defaces this index with the intent to falsify or prevent others from readily ascertaining the name, address, or political affiliation of any voter, or the fact that a voter has or has not voted, is guilty of a misdemeanor." (o) A roster of voters for each precinct in the form prescribed in Section 14107. (p) In addition, the elections official may, with the approval of the board of supervisors, furnish the original books of affidavits of registration or other material necessary to verify signatures to the precinct officers. (q) Printed copies of the Voter Bill of Rights, as supplied by the Secretary of State. The Voter Bill of Rights shall be conspicuously posted both inside and outside every polling place. This section shall become operative on January 1, 1990.


14105.1. In addition to the materials identified in Section 14105, the elections official shall furnish to the precinct officers printed copies of the notices specified in Section 9083.5, as supplied by the Secretary of State. The notices shall be conspicuously posted both inside and outside every polling place.


14105.3. (a) The federal Help America Vote Act of 2002 (P.L. 107-252) requires voting information to be publicly posted at each polling place on the day of each election for federal office. Voting information is defined as including general information on voting rights under applicable federal and state laws, including information on the right of an individual to cast a provisional ballot and instructions on how to contact the appropriate officials if these rights are alleged to have been violated. (b) The Secretary of State shall print posters and other appropriate materials setting forth the voter rights listed in Section 2300. The posters shall be printed in as many languages as the Secretary of State determines are necessary, but, at a minimum, in sufficient languages to comply with Section 14201 and with the federal Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended by Public Law 94-73. The Secretary of State shall distribute the posters and materials to all county elections officials sufficiently in advance of statewide elections.


14105.5. Members of the precinct board shall not display, distribute, or make available at the polling place any materials other than those required pursuant to this division without the express approval of the county elections official.


14106. In addition to the materials required by Section 14105, the elections official shall provide signs, or materials for making signs, advising voters that an election has been canceled pursuant to Section 8026 due to the death of the candidate-incumbent and that a special election will be held to fill the vacancy.


14107. (a) The roster to be kept by each precinct board shall be substantially in the following form: Roster of the ________ election held in the ________ precinct ________ district, County of ________, on the ________ day of ________, 20___. Following are the voters of above precinct desiring to vote under Sections 14216, 14218, 14278, and 14284 of the Elections Code: __________________________________________________ No. Signature of voter Residence of voter 1 _____________________ _____________________ 2 _____________________ _____________________ 3 _____________________ _____________________ etc. _____________________ _____________________ __________________________________________________ We hereby certify that all voters whose signatures appear hereinbefore in this roster voted this day excepting the following who, after signing the roster, failed to vote or were challenged and denied the right to vote. No. Name No. Name _______________________ _______________________ _______________________ _______________________ _______________________ _______________________ We further certify that the number of voters who voted in this precinct at this election is ____, and that the above list of voters, less those who did not vote as enumerated, constitutes the roster of this precinct for this election. We further certify that the total number of official ballots received, voted, rejected, spoiled and canceled, found in the ballot container and the number accounted for is as indicated on the ballot statement. We further certify that the assisted voters list and challenge list show a complete list of all voters assisted or challenged. ______ __________ Clerk Inspector ______ ______ Clerk Judge ______ ______ Clerk Judge All members of the precinct board shall sign this certificate. (b) When votes are counted at the precinct, all members of the board shall also sign the certificate of performance prescribed in Section 15280.


14108. In addition to the provisions contained in Section 14107, the roster shall contain, in no less than 6-point type at the head of each page, the following words: "WARNING: It is a crime punishable by imprisonment in the state prison or in county jail for anyone to fraudulently vote, fraudulently attempt to vote, vote more than once, attempt to vote more than once, impersonate a voter, or attempt to impersonate a voter (Elections Code Sec. 18560)."


14109. Notwithstanding Sections 14105 and 14107, the roster to be kept by each precinct board may be in a form of an index to the affidavits of registration for that precinct, in which case the index shall provide space of sufficient size to allow each voter to sign his or her name pursuant to Section 14216.


14110. All officers required by law to designate polling places shall furnish the polling places with a sufficient number of places, booths, or compartments, at or in which voters may conveniently mark their ballots, so that they may be screened from the observation of others. Each place, compartment, or booth shall be so adjusted as to conceal from any observation the voter's marking of the ballot. The number of voting booths or compartments shall be determined by the officer conducting the election. This section shall become operative on January 1, 1990.


14111. Translations of the ballot measures and ballot instructions, as required by Section 14201, shall be provided by a person selected by the elections official from the list of approved translators and interpreters of the superior court of the county or from an institution accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.


14112. All voting equipment shall be transferred to the polling places in charge of an authorized official, who shall certify to their delivery in good order.


14113. Ballots and other election supplies appropriate to the system shall be furnished as provided for other precincts except that: (a) No rubber stamps or ink pads shall be supplied when only ballots to be punched are used. (b) Ballots shall be suitable to be punched or slotted in the marking device and subsequently counted on an approved mechanical or electronic counting device. (c) The containers of the ballots shall be of a type so that they will adequately protect the ballots and that they can be opened without mutilation.


Chapter 3. Procedures At Polls

Article 1. Election Day Posting Requirements

Ca Codes (elec:14200-14203) Elections Code Section 14200-14203



14200. A member of each precinct board shall cause the following voting information to be publicly posted at each polling place on the day of each election: (a) A sample version of the ballot that will be used for the election. (b) Information regarding the date of the election and the hours during which polling places will be open. (c) Instructions on how to vote, including how to cast a vote and how to cast a provisional ballot. (d) Instructions for mail-in registrants and first-time voters under Section 303(b) of the Help America Vote Act of 2002 (P.L. 107-252). (e) General information on voting rights under applicable federal and state laws, including information on the right of an individual to cast a provisional ballot and instructions on how to contact the appropriate officials if these rights are alleged to have been violated. (f) General information on federal and state laws regarding prohibitions on acts of fraud and misrepresentation as they pertain to elections.

14201. (a) (1) The precinct board shall post, in a conspicuous location in the polling place, at least one facsimile copy of the ballot with the ballot measures and ballot instructions printed in Spanish. Facsimile ballots shall also be printed in other languages and posted in the same manner if a significant and substantial need is found by the elections official. (2) In those counties which are required under the provisions of the federal Voting Rights Act of 1965, as extended by Public Law 94-73, to furnish ballots in other than the English language, the posting of the facsimile ballot in that particular language shall not be required. (3) This subdivision shall remain in effect until the Secretary of State makes the determinations and findings required by this section. (b) In counties where the Secretary of State has determined that it is appropriate, each precinct board shall post, in a conspicuous location in the polling place, at least one facsimile copy of the ballot with the ballot measures and ballot instructions printed in Spanish. If the Secretary of State determines that it is appropriate to post the election materials in Spanish in only certain precincts in the county, the material shall be posted in the polling places situated in those precincts. Facsimile ballots shall also be printed in other languages and posted in the same manner if a significant and substantial need is found by the Secretary of State. (c) In determining whether it is appropriate to post the election materials in Spanish or other languages, the Secretary of State shall determine the number of residents of voting age in each county and precinct who are members of a single language minority, and who lack sufficient skills in English to vote without assistance. If the number of these residents equals 3 percent or more of the voting age residents of a particular county or precinct, or in the event that interested citizens or organizations provide the Secretary of State with information which gives the Secretary of State sufficient reason to believe a need for the furnishing of facsimile ballots, the Secretary of State shall find a need to post at least one facsimile copy of the ballot with the ballot measures and ballot instructions printed in Spanish or other applicable language in the affected polling places. (d) The Secretary of State shall make the determinations and findings set forth in subdivisions (b) and (c) by January 1 of each year in which the Governor is elected. (e) In those precincts where ballots printed in a language other than English are available for use by the voters at the polls, the posting of a facsimile ballot in that particular language shall not be required. (f) It is the intent of the Legislature that non-English-speaking citizens, like all other citizens, should be encouraged to vote. Therefore, appropriate efforts should be made on a statewide basis to minimize obstacles to voting by citizens who lack sufficient skill in English to vote without assistance.


14202. (a) Before opening the polls, the precinct board shall post in separate, convenient places at or near the polling place, and of easy access to the voters, not less than two of the copies of the index to the affidavits of registration for that precinct. (b) In any county in which tabulating equipment is used to produce the index of registration, the copies of the index posted pursuant to this section shall be by street addresses in numerical order, unless otherwise provided by Section 2192.


14203. The precinct officer shall post the signs required by Section 14106 in plain view within each voting booth or compartment whenever an election has been canceled pursuant to Section 8026.


Article 2. Election Day Procedures

Ca Codes (elec:14210-14227) Elections Code Section 14210-14227



14210. The members of each precinct board shall distribute the duties devolving upon the precinct board, which are in addition to their individual duties, in a manner they deem most advantageous.


14211. The polling places shall be arranged so that neither the ballot containers nor the voting booths or compartments shall be hidden from the view of those present.


14212. The polls shall be open at 7 a.m. of the day of any election, and shall be kept open until 8 p.m. of the same day, when the polls shall be closed, except as provided in Section 14401.


14213. Before the precinct board receives any ballots, it shall proclaim aloud at the place of election that the polls are open.


14214. Voting shall commence as soon as the polls are opened and shall be continued during the time the polls remain open.


14215. Before receiving any ballots, the precinct board, in the presence of any persons assembled at the polling place, shall open and exhibit and close the ballot container or containers. Thereafter, the ballot container or containers shall not be removed from the polling place or presence of the bystanders until all the ballots are counted, nor opened until after the polls are finally closed.


14216. Any person desiring to vote shall announce his or her name and address in an audible tone of voice, and when one of the precinct officers finds the name in the index, the officer shall in a like manner repeat the name and address. The voter shall then write his or her name and residence address or, if the voter is unable to write, shall have the name and residence address written by another person on a roster of voters provided for that purpose, whereupon a challenge may be interposed as provided in this article.


14217. If the precinct board is unable to find a voter's name upon the index of registration, it shall inform the voter that he or she may cast a provisional ballot and the procedure for doing so. If the voter elects to cast a provisional ballot, the precinct board shall furnish the voter with a provisional ballot, in accordance with Section 14310.


14218. If the surname of any person offering to vote has been changed since the person has registered, the person shall sign his or her name as it was before the change and also the appropriate name as it is at the time the person votes, indicating on the roster on the same line by brackets or other means that the two names are the name of one person.


14219. The precinct board shall provide, upon request, to any voter for use in the voting booth or compartment, a copy of the facsimile ballot containing ballot measures and instructions printed in Spanish or in other languages, as required by Section 14201, unless sample ballots and ballots for voting are already being provided in that language under the federal Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended by Public Law 94-73.


14220. At any election, a majority of the members of any precinct board shall be present at the polling place at all times while the polling place is open.

14221. Only voters engaged in receiving, preparing, or depositing their ballots and persons authorized by the precinct board to keep order and enforce the law may be permitted to be within the voting booth area before the closing of the polls.


14222. Nothing contained in this code shall prevent a voter from being accompanied by a child or children under the age of 18 years while the voter is within the voting booth area if the child is, or children are, under the voter's care.

14223. (a) Only members of the precinct board, and persons while signing their names on the roster, shall be permitted, during the hours within which voting is in progress, to sit at the desk or table used by the precinct board. (b) Any person may inspect the roster while voting is in progress and while votes are being counted. However, this shall not be done at a time or in a manner which will impede, interfere, or interrupt the normal process of voting.

14224. Except as provided in Section 14222, voting booths or compartments shall not be occupied by more than one person at a time, unless the voter is eligible under the assisted-voter provisions. Voters shall not remain in or occupy the booths or compartments longer than is necessary to mark their ballots, which shall not exceed 10 minutes. However, where no other voter would be inconvenienced, a longer period shall be allowed.


14225. Members of the precinct board shall not deposit in the ballot container any ballot from which the slip containing the number of the ballot has not been removed by a member of the precinct board and handed to the voter. This section does not apply to a vote by mail ballot.


14227. Any member of the precinct board, when using a language other than English at the polls, shall communicate with voters in that language only as he or she would be lawfully permitted to communicate in English under the code. The member shall be subject to like penalty for any illegal communication as if it had occurred in English.


Article 3. Challenging A Voter

Ca Codes (elec:14240-14253) Elections Code Section 14240-14253



14240. (a) A person offering to vote may be orally challenged within the polling place only by a member of the precinct board upon any or all of the following grounds: (1) That the voter is not the person whose name appears on the index. (2) That the voter is not a resident of the precinct. (3) That the voter is not a citizen of the United States. (4) That the voter has voted that day. (5) That the voter is presently on parole for the conviction of a felony. (b) On the day of the election no person, other than a member of a precinct board or other official responsible for the conduct of the election, shall challenge or question any voter concerning the voter' s qualifications to vote. (c) If any member of a precinct board receives, by mail or otherwise, any document or list concerning the residence or other voting qualifications of any person or persons, with the express or implied suggestion, request, or demand that the person or persons be challenged, the board member shall first determine whether the document or list contains or is accompanied by evidence constituting probable cause to justify or substantiate a challenge. In any case, before making any use whatever of such a list or document, the member of the precinct board shall immediately contact the elections official, charged with the duty of conducting the election, and describe the contents of the document or list and the evidence, if any, received bearing on voting qualifications. The elections official shall advise the members of the precinct board as to the sufficiency of probable cause for instituting and substantiating the challenge and as to the law as herein provided, relating to hearings and procedures for challenges by members of the precinct board and determination thereof by a precinct board. The elections official may, if necessary, designate a deputy to receive and answer inquiries from precinct board members as herein provided.


14241. A piece of mailed matter returned undelivered by the post office shall not be accepted or used as evidence upon which to initiate a challenge as to residency by any member of the precinct board unless other evidence or testimony is also presented, nor shall the mailed matter, standing alone without other evidence or testimony, be accepted as evidence by the precinct board in determining a challenge.


14242. The ground for challenge set forth in paragraph (2) of subdivision (a) of Section 14240 shall not apply to any person duly registered as a voter in any precinct in California and moving from that precinct within 14 days prior to an election.


14243. If the challenge is on the ground that the person seeking to vote is not the person whose name appears on the index, a member of the precinct board shall tender the following oath: "You do swear (or affirm) that you are the person whose name is entered on the index."


14244. If the challenge is on the ground that the person seeking to vote is not a resident of the precinct, the person challenged shall be sworn to answer questions, and after having been sworn, a member of the precinct board shall ask that person: "Are you a resident of this precinct " If the answer to the question is "Yes," without significant qualification, no other questions shall be asked.


14245. If the challenge is on the ground that the person challenged has already cast a ballot for this election, a member of the precinct board shall tender to the person challenged this oath: "You do swear (or affirm) that you have not previously voted in this election, either by vote by mail ballot or at a polling place."


14246. If the challenge is on the ground either that the person challenged is not the person whose name appears on the index, or that he or she has voted that day, the challenge shall be determined in favor of the person challenged if that person takes the oath as set forth either in Section 14243 or 14245.


14247. Challenges of voters that they are not residents of the precinct or citizens of the United States shall be tried and determined by the precinct board at the time of the challenge. The precinct board may, at its discretion, also request any other person, present in the polling place to be sworn and answer questions, whom the board believes may have knowledge or information concerning the facts of the challenge.


14248. Before administering an oath to a person regarding his or her place of residence, a member of the precinct board shall read to the person challenged, the rules prescribed by Section 14249 and Article 2 (commencing with Section 2020) of Chapter 1 of Division 2.


14249. If any person challenged refuses to take the oaths tendered, or refuses to be sworn and to answer the questions concerning the matter of residence, that person shall not be allowed to vote.


14250. The precinct board, in determining the place of residence of any person, shall be governed by the rules set forth in Article 2 (commencing with Section 2020) of Chapter 1 of Division 2.


14251. Any doubt in the interpretation of the law shall be resolved in favor of the challenged voter.


14252. The precinct board shall compile a list showing all of the following: (a) The name and address of each person challenged. (b) The name, address, and any other identification as a voter, of each person offering information concerning any person's qualifications to vote, or testifying pursuant to Section 14247, together with the name and address and any other identification of the person about whom the information or testimony is given. (c) The grounds of each challenge. (d) The determination of the board upon the challenge, together with any written evidence pertaining thereto. (e) If evidence has been presented to the board requesting challenges, the evidence shall be returned to the elections official responsible for the conduct of the election.


14253. In the event that the precinct board determines that persistent challenging of voters is resulting in a delay of voting sufficient to cause voters to forego voting because of insufficient time or for fear of unwarranted intimidation, the board shall discontinue all challenges, and so note on the roster.


Article 4. Issuing Ballots And Voting

Ca Codes (elec:14270-14300) Elections Code Section 14270-14300



14270. The procedure at the polls where voting is conducted pursuant to this division shall be the same as at other polling places, except as provided in this article.


14271. After the opening of the polls, the precinct board shall not allow any voter to enter the voting booth until it ascertains that he or she is entitled to vote.


14272. Before each voter enters the voting booth, the precinct board shall inform him or her how to operate the voting device. If a marking or punching device is used, the voter shall be instructed to use only that device. The voter shall also be instructed how to fold the ballot and place it in the envelope. If any voter, after entering the booth, asks for information regarding the operation of the machine or device, the precinct board shall give him or her the information.


14273. The device for marking the ballot may be handed to the voter with his or her ballot before the voter goes into the voting booth, and shall be returned to the precinct board after he or she has finished marking his or her ballot.

14274. In any election where ballots are to be counted both manually and by electromechanical tabulating devices, the marking device used for marking ballots to be counted electromechanically may be used for marking ballots to be counted manually.


14275. Before leaving the voting booth or compartment, the voter shall fold or place the ballot card in the envelope so that the ballot markings of the voter will not be exposed, and the ballot stub will be outside of the envelope or other container, to be removed by the precinct board.


14276. After his or her ballot is marked, a voter shall not show it to any person in such a way as to reveal its contents.


14277. The voter shall hand the folded ballot or the envelope containing the ballot to a precinct board member, who shall remove the ballot stub, hand it to the voter, and deposit the ballot in the ballot container. If the ballot is to be transferred from the envelope to the ballot container, care shall be taken not to disclose the markings of the voter on the ballot.


14278. The precinct board shall give each voter only one ballot, as provided in Section 13102.


14279. Unless otherwise provided by law, no person shall apply for or receive any ballot at any precinct other than that in which the voter is entitled to vote.


14280. Unless otherwise provided by law, a voter shall not receive a ballot from any person other than one of the precinct officers. No person other than a precinct officer or officer authorized by law shall deliver a ballot to any voter.


14281. On receiving a ballot, the voter shall forthwith retire alone to one of the booths or compartments provided, and mark the ballot, unless Section 14222 or 14224 is applicable.


14282. (a) When a voter declares under oath, administered by any member of the precinct board at the time the voter appears at the polling place to vote, that the voter is then unable to mark a ballot, the voter shall receive the assistance of not more than two persons selected by the voter, other than the voter's employer, an agent of the voter's employer, or an officer or agent of the union of which the voter is a member. (b) No person assisting a voter shall divulge any information regarding the marking of the ballot. (c) In those polling places that are inaccessible under the guidelines promulgated by the Secretary of State for accessibility by the physically handicapped, a physically handicapped person may appear outside the polling place and vote a regular ballot. The person may vote the ballot in a place that is as near as possible to the polling place and that is accessible to the physically handicapped. A precinct board member shall take a regular ballot to that person, qualify that person to vote, and return the voted ballot to the polling place. In those precincts in which it is impractical to vote a regular ballot outside the polling place, vote by mail ballots shall be provided in sufficient numbers to accommodate physically handicapped persons who present themselves on election day. The vote by mail ballot shall be presented to and voted by a physically handicapped person in the same manner as a regular ballot may be voted by that person outside the polling place.


14283. The precinct officers shall keep a list of the voters who have been assisted in marking their ballots. The list of assisted voters shall be returned to the elections official and preserved with other election materials and records.


14284. (a) All ballots, except vote by mail voter ballots, shall be marked only with the marking device provided by law. (b) To prevent voters from marking their ballots with a pen or pencil, at the time of delivering a ballot to a voter, the precinct officer shall distinctly state that the voter shall mark the ballot with the device provided by law or the ballot will not be counted.


14285. Where two or more candidates for the same office are to be elected, and the voter desires to vote for candidates for that office, the voter shall, by using the provided marking device, place a mark in the voting square, rectangle, or other specific voting space following the names of the candidates for that office for whom the voter intends to vote, not exceeding, however, the number of candidates to be elected.


14286. When a measure is submitted to the voters, the voter shall place a mark on the ballot in the appropriate space opposite the answer the voter desires to give as to that measure. The voter, in marking the ballot, shall use the marking device provided.


14287. No voter shall place any mark upon a ballot that will make that ballot identifiable.


14288. If a voter spoils or defaces a ballot, the voter shall at once return it to the ballot clerk and receive another ballot. A voter shall not receive more than a total of three ballots, including his or her original ballot, in this manner.


14290. The precinct board shall immediately cancel, without unfolding them, all the spoiled ballots returned. The board shall write the word "spoiled" on the back of each spoiled ballot in ink or indelible pencil and return the spoiled ballots with the unused ballots.


14291. After the ballot is marked, a voter shall not show it to any person in such a way as to reveal its contents.


14292. Before leaving the voting booth or compartment, the voter shall fold the ballot according to the instructions on it, so that the marks on its face are not visible and only the number on the ballot and the top margin are exposed.

14293. Having folded the ballot, the voter shall deliver it folded to a member of the precinct board, who shall then separate the slip containing the number from the ballot, hand the slip to the voter, and deposit the ballot in the ballot box in the presence of the voter.


14294. At all elections, a member of the precinct board shall mark, on one of the copies of the index posted at or near the polling place, the name of each person who has voted, by drawing a line through the name of the voter, with a pen or indelible pencil. The board member shall mark off the names at least once each hour, to and including 6 p.m. In all counties not using the index roster, the board member shall draw a line under the last name signed in the roster at 6 p.m. or at the time of discontinuation of this procedure, whichever occurs last.

14295. No voter shall deliver to any member of the precinct board any ballot other than the one received from the board member.


14296. Any voter who does not vote the ballot he or she has received, shall, before leaving the polling place, return it to the board member having charge of the ballots, who shall immediately cancel it. All canceled ballots shall be returned to the ballot clerk in the same manner as spoiled ballots.


14297. No later than the time at which the voter delivers the voted ballot, a precinct board member in charge of the index shall write in the space opposite the name of the voter the line number designating the position of the name on the roster. In those counties using the combined index roster, the voter's name shall be crossed off of the index in lieu of numbering.


14298. (a) The precinct board shall maintain the copies of the index posted during the whole time of voting. These copies shall not be marked in any manner except by a member of the precinct board acting pursuant to Section 14294. (b) A member of the precinct board shall post a notice on each index which reads as follows: "This index shall not be marked in any manner except by a member of the precinct board acting pursuant to Section 14294. Any person who removes, tears, marks, or otherwise defaces this index with the intent to falsify or prevent others from readily ascertaining the name, address, or political affiliation of any voter, or the fact that a voter has or has not voted, is guilty of a misdemeanor."


14299. (a) If a precinct board is unable to furnish a ballot to a qualified voter because there is an insufficient number of ballots at the precinct, the elections official shall deliver to the precinct additional ballots to ensure that all eligible voters can cast their ballots within two hours. (b) While awaiting the delivery of additional ballots, the precinct board shall provide each voter with the option of casting his or her vote immediately using an alternative procedure established prior to the election or waiting for the delivery of the additional ballots. (c) The alternative procedure required by this section shall be subject to approval by the Secretary of State. The elections official shall submit the alternative procedure to the Secretary of State for approval by a date to be determined by the Secretary of State.


14300. (a) In the case of an election for a state or federal office, each polling place using a direct recording electronic voting system, as defined by Section 19251, the elections official shall provide paper ballots equivalent to the following percentages: (1) For a statewide general election, no less than 10 percent of the registered voters in the polling place. (2) For a statewide direct primary election, for each partisan ballot form for which at least 10 percent of the registered voters in the polling place are eligible to request, no less than 5 percent of the registered voters in the precinct eligible to request that ballot form at the polling place. For nonpartisan voters, the total number of paper ballots among all ballot forms that they are eligible to request shall be no less than 5 percent of registered nonpartisan voters at the polling place. (3) For any other state or federal election contest, no less than 5 percent of registered voters at the polling place. (4) For purposes of this section, the number of registered voters shall be based on the registration on the 88th day prior to the day of the election. (b) The elections official shall establish procedures for the use of the paper ballots described in this section in the event the direct recording electronic voting system becomes nonfunctional. (c) Upon request, the precinct board shall provide a paper ballot to a voter, regardless of the availability of the direct recording electronic voting system, as long as supplies remain available. (d) The paper ballots described in this section may consist of provisional ballots. (e) Any vote cast on a provisional ballot subject to this section by an otherwise qualified voter shall be counted as a regular ballot and shall not be subject to the requirements of Section 14310.


Article 5. Provisional Voting

Ca Codes (elec:14310-14313) Elections Code Section 14310-14313



14310. (a) At all elections, a voter claiming to be properly registered but whose qualification or entitlement to vote cannot be immediately established upon examination of the index of registration for the precinct or upon examination of the records on file with the county elections official, shall be entitled to vote a provisional ballot as follows: (1) An elections official shall advise the voter of the voter's right to cast a provisional ballot. (2) The voter shall be provided a provisional ballot, written instructions regarding the process and procedures for casting the provisional ballot, and a written affirmation regarding the voter's registration and eligibility to vote. The written instructions shall include the information set forth in subdivisions (c) and (d). (3) The voter shall be required to execute, in the presence of an elections official, the written affirmation stating that the voter is eligible to vote and registered in the county where the voter desires to vote. (b) Once voted, the voter's ballot shall be sealed in a provisional ballot envelope, and the ballot in its envelope shall be deposited in the ballot box. All provisional ballots voted shall remain sealed in their envelopes for return to the elections official in accordance with the elections official's instructions. The provisional ballot envelopes specified in this subdivision shall be a color different than the color of, but printed substantially similar to, the envelopes used for vote by mail ballots, and shall be completed in the same manner as vote by mail envelopes. (c) (1) During the official canvass, the elections official shall examine the records with respect to all provisional ballots cast. Using the procedures that apply to the comparison of signatures on vote by mail ballots, the elections official shall compare the signature on each provisional ballot envelope with the signature on the voter's affidavit of registration. If the signatures do not compare or the provisional ballot envelope is not signed, the ballot shall be rejected. A variation of the signature caused by the substitution of initials for the first or middle name, or both, shall not invalidate the ballot. (2) Provisional ballots shall not be included in any semiofficial or official canvass, except upon: (A) the elections official's establishing prior to the completion of the official canvass, from the records in his or her office, the claimant's right to vote; or (B) the order of a superior court in the county of the voter's residence. A voter may seek the court order specified in this paragraph regarding his or her own ballot at any time prior to completion of the official canvass. Any judicial action or appeal shall have priority over all other civil matters. No fee shall be charged to the claimant by the clerk of the court for services rendered in an action under this section. (3) The provisional ballot of a voter who is otherwise entitled to vote shall not be rejected because the voter did not cast his or her ballot in the precinct to which he or she was assigned by the elections official. (A) If the ballot cast by the voter contains the same candidates and measures on which the voter would have been entitled to vote in his or her assigned precinct, the elections official shall count the votes for the entire ballot. (B) If the ballot cast by the voter contains candidates or measures on which the voter would not have been entitled to vote in his or her assigned precinct, the elections official shall count only the votes for the candidates and measures on which the voter was entitled to vote in his or her assigned precinct. (d) The Secretary of State shall establish a free access system that any voter who casts a provisional ballot may access to discover whether the voter's provisional ballot was counted and, if not, the reason why it was not counted. (e) The Secretary of State may adopt appropriate regulations for purposes of ensuring the uniform application of this section. (f) This section shall apply to any vote by mail voter described by Section 3015 who is unable to surrender his or her unvoted vote by mail voter's ballot. (g) Any existing supply of envelopes marked "special challenged ballot" may be used until the supply is exhausted.


14311. (a) A voter who has moved from one address to another within the same county and who has not reregistered to vote at that new address may, at his or her option, vote on the day of the election at the polling place at which he or she is entitled to vote based on his or her current residence address, or at the office of the county elections official or other central location designated by that elections official. The voter shall be reregistered at the place of voting for future elections. (b) Voters casting ballots under this section shall be required to vote by provisional ballot, as provided in Section 14310.


14312. This article shall be liberally construed in favor of the provisional voter.


14313. (a) Upon the declaration of a state of emergency by the Governor and the issuance of an executive order authorizing an emergency worker to cast a ballot outside of his or her home precinct, elections officials in the counties included in the executive order shall, upon demand, issue to an emergency worker a provisional ballot that may be identical to the provisional ballot offered to other voters in the county, using a process to be determined by the elections official. The elections official shall transmit for processing any ballot cast, including any materials necessary to process the ballot, pursuant to this section to the elections official in the county where the voter is registered to vote. (b) To be counted, a ballot cast pursuant to this section shall satisfy both of the following requirements: (1) Be cast by the voter no later than the close of the polls on election day. (2) Be received by the county elections official where the voter is registered on or before the 10th day following the date of the election. (c) Upon receipt of the returned ballot, the elections official shall process the ballot pursuant to the procedures in subdivision (c) of Section 14310. (d) If the requirements in subdivisions (b) and (c) are met and the ballot is eligible to be counted, the ballot shall be duplicated and all other materials preserved according to the procedures set forth in this code. (e) "Emergency worker" for the purposes of this section means a person who is officially engaged in responding to the proclaimed state of emergency and whose vocation has been identified in an executive order relating to the state of emergency.


Chapter 4. Closing Of The Polls

Article 1. General Provisions

Ca Codes (elec:14400-14405) Elections Code Section 14400-14405



14400. At any election, all members of the precinct board shall be present at the closing of the polls.


14401. When the polls are closed, the precinct board shall proclaim that fact aloud at the place of election. After the proclamation no ballot shall be received. However, if at the hour of closing there are any other voters in the polling place, or in line at the door, who are qualified to vote and have not been able to do so since appearing, the polls shall be kept open a sufficient time to enable them to vote.


14402. Any one who arrives at the polling place after the time provided for closing the polls shall not be entitled to vote, even though the polls are open when the voter arrives.


14402.5. If the time for closing the polls is extended pursuant to a court order, all votes cast during the time that the closing of the polls is extended shall be by provisional ballot. Any provisional ballots cast pursuant to this section shall be separated and held apart from other provisional ballots cast by voters prior to the time the closing of the polls was extended.


14403. Immediately upon the closing of the polls and before any voted ballot is taken from any of the ballot containers, the precinct board member shall, in the presence of all persons in the room who may desire to observe them, proceed to render the unused ballots unusable in one of the following ways: (a) By drawing across its face, in ink or indelible pencil, two lines that cross each other, the cross to be more than three inches square. The precinct board member shall thereupon, immediately and before any ballots are taken from any ballot container, place all defaced ballots within an envelope or other receptacle provided for that purpose. (b) By tearing or cutting in a manner so that it is apparent that the ballot has been intentionally destroyed to prevent its use. If this method of destruction is used, it shall be done in a manner so that the serial number of the ballots is retained for the purposes of reconciliation. (c) By placing all of the unused ballots into a special container provided for that purpose. A tamperproof seal containing spaces for entering the total number of unused ballots enclosed, the beginning and ending serial numbers thereof, and signature lines for all members of the precinct board following a statement certifying that all of the ballots were placed in the container in their presence and the information on the seal is true and correct, shall be provided. After signing the seal, it shall be placed on the container in a manner so that the container cannot be opened without tearing the seal.

14404. Immediately upon the arrival of the hour when the polls are required by law to be closed on election day, the elections official conducting the election shall openly, in the elections official's main office, in the presence of any persons who are present to observe, according to the procedure set forth in Section 14403, proceed to render every unused ballot remaining in the control of the elections official unusable. The elections official shall forthwith make and file an affidavit, in writing, as to the number of ballots destroyed. If the procedure in subdivision (c) of Section 14403 is used, the tamperproof seal shall be signed by the elections official and at least one deputy or assistant elections official or registrar. The sealed container shall then be placed, with the sealed containers containing unused ballots from the precincts, in a security area by the elections official until disposition is made pursuant to Section 17301 or 17302. Alternatively, the elections official may, immediately upon the arrival of the hour when the polls are closed, recycle for any other lawful purpose any unused ballots remaining in the control of the elections official that clearly identify the election for which they were prepared. No later than 30 days following the last day to certify the official results of the election, the elections official shall make and file an affidavit, in writing, as to the number of ballots recycled. At the elections official's discretion, the unused ballots may be recycled up to six months following an election or at the conclusion of an election contest proceeding, whichever is later.


14405. (a) The members of the precinct board shall account for the ballots delivered to them by returning a sufficient number of unused ballots to make up, when added to the number of official ballots cast and the number of spoiled and canceled ballots returned, the number of ballots given to them. The officers receiving returned ballots shall compel this accounting. (b) The precinct board shall complete the roster as required in Section 14107, and shall also complete and sign the certificate of performance prescribed in Section 15280, if that section applies.



Article 2. Elections Using Voting Systems

Ca Codes (elec:14420-14421) Elections Code Section 14420-14421



14420. (a) As soon as the polls are closed, the precinct board shall remove the voted ballots from the ballot container and take them out of the secrecy envelopes or detach them from the secrecy stubs. Where the envelope or stub is also the write-in ballot, and a write-in vote has been registered thereon, the ballot card shall not be separated from the envelope or stub. If two or more separate ballot cards have been used in the election, the precinct board shall sort them into groups, each of which shall contain the same series of ballot cards. (b) After completing the action described in subdivision (a), the precinct board shall count the number of ballot cards in each group, and certify the number of ballots cast on the voting roster as provided by Section 14105. If there is any discrepancy between the number of voters listed in the roster and the number of ballots voted, this fact shall be noted with an explanation of the difference and signed by all the members of the precinct board.


14421. The precinct board shall group voted ballot cards and voted separate write-in ballots, as directed by the elections official, and place them in containers. The board shall also place spoiled and void ballots, if any, in containers as directed by the elections official. All of these ballots, along with the containers for voted ballot cards, shall be placed in one or more boxes, which shall then be sealed and delivered as soon as possible to the receiving centers or central counting places with the unused ballots, supplies, and other materials as directed by the elections official.


Article 3. Return Of Supplies To The Clerk

Ca Codes (elec:14430-14435) Elections Code Section 14430-14435



14430. The precinct board, as soon after the polls are closed as possible, shall prepare the supplies, including the copies of the index posted at or near the polling place, and records of the election for delivery to the elections official.


14431. The precinct board shall enclose and seal in one or more packages, as determined by the elections official, all voted, spoiled, canceled, or unused ballots.


14432. The precinct board shall enclose and seal in one or two packages, as determined by the elections official, all of the following: (a) Two tally sheets, if ballots are to be tabulated manually at the precinct. (b) The roster of voters. (c) The copy of the index used as the voting record. (d) The challenge list. (e) The assisted voter's list.


14433. If ballots are counted at precincts pursuant to Article 3 (commencing with Section 15340) or Article 5 (commencing with Section 15360) of Chapter 4 of Division 15, the precinct board immediately shall transmit, unsealed, to the elections official a statement showing the result of the votes cast at the polling place. The statement shall be open to public inspection.


14434. The sealed packages containing the lists, papers, and ballots shall be delivered by two of its members without delay, unopened, to the elections official or to a receiving station designated by the elections official.


14435. No list, tally, paper, or certificate returned from any election shall be set aside or rejected for want of form, nor because it is not strictly in accordance with this code, if it can be satisfactorily understood.


Article 4. Snap Tallies

Ca Codes (elec:14440-14443) Elections Code Section 14440-14443



14440. Before any election, the governing body of the jurisdiction holding the election shall decide that certain offices or measures to be voted on are of more than ordinary public interest and require an early tabulation and announcement. The decision shall be transmitted to the elections official not less than 30 days before the election.


14441. The elections official shall prepare and forward to each selected precinct forms containing a list of the offices and measures designated as being of more than ordinary interest, and stating the number of ballots to be counted for the snap tally. In each general election, the special form shall, for each office listed on it, include the names of all candidates for that office whose names appear on the ballot. The inspector at each selected precinct shall note the results of the count and the total number of votes cast in the precinct on the snap tally forms as soon as the designated number of ballots has been tallied. The inspector shall then communicate the figures in the manner directed by the elections official. In each general election, the figures shall include the votes cast for every candidate whose name appears on the ballot for an office listed on the forms. The inspector shall continue, each time the designated number of ballots have been tallied, to note and report the results as directed.


14442. Upon receipt from the precincts of the reports of votes cast on the specially designated offices and measures, the elections official shall tabulate the results and make the results available to the public. In each general election, all these reports of the election results shall include the votes cast for all candidates whose names appear on the ballot for each office for which returns are reported.


14443. If ballots are counted by means of electronic, electromechanical, or punchcard device, the elections official may provide for early tabulation and announcement of the returns in a manner consistent with the use of the tabulating devices.


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