Law:Title 6. Conduct Of Elections from Chapter 67. Canvassing Elections (Texas)

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Contents

Chapter 67. Canvassing Elections

Section  67.001.  Applicability Of Chapter.

This chapter applies to each general or special election conducted in this state.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986.



Section  67.002.  Canvass Of Precinct Returns.

(a) Except as otherwise provided by law, the precinct election returns for each election shall be canvassed by the following authority:

(1)  for an election ordered by the governor or by a county authority, the commissioners court of each county in which the election is held; and

(2)  for an election ordered by an authority of a political subdivision other than a county, the political subdivision's governing body.

(b)  The canvass of precinct returns shall be conducted in accordance with this chapter except as otherwise provided by this code.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986.



Section 67.003.  Time For Local Canvass.

(a) Except as provided by Subsection (b), each local canvassing authority shall convene to conduct the local canvass at the time set by the canvassing authority's presiding officer not earlier than the eighth day or later than the 11th day after election day.

(b)  For an election held on the uniform election date in May, the local  canvass must occur not later than the 11th day after election day and not earlier than the later of:

(1)  the third day after election day;

(2)  the date on which the early voting ballot board has verified and counted all provisional ballots, if a provisional ballot has been cast in the election; or

(3)  the date on which all timely received ballots cast from addresses outside of the United States are counted, if a ballot to be voted by mail in the election was provided to a person outside of the United States.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986. Amended by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 728, Sec. 22, eff. Sept. 1, 1993; Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 1349, Sec. 31, eff. Sept. 1, 1997; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1315, Sec. 42, eff. Jan. 1, 2004; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1316, Sec. 17, eff. Sept. 1, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., 3rd C.S., ch. 1, Sec. 3, eff. Jan. 11, 2004.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 471, Sec. 7, eff. October 1, 2005.



Section  67.004.  Procedure For Local Canvass.

(a) At the time set for convening the canvassing authority for the local canvass, the presiding officer of the canvassing authority shall deliver the sealed precinct returns to the authority. The authority shall open the returns for each precinct and canvass them as provided by this section. Two members of the authority constitute a quorum for purposes of canvassing an election.

(b)  The canvassing authority shall prepare a tabulation stating for each candidate and for and against each measure:

(1)  the total number of votes received in each precinct; and

(2)  the sum of the precinct totals tabulated under Subdivision (1).

(b-1)  The tabulation in Subsection (b) must also include for each precinct the total number of voters who cast a ballot for a candidate or for or against a measure in the election.  The secretary of state shall prescribe any procedures necessary to implement this subsection.

(c)  The canvassing authority may prepare the tabulation as a separate document or may enter the tabulation directly in the local election register maintained for the authority. The authority shall attach or include as part of the tabulation the report of early voting votes by precinct received under Section 87.1231.

(d)  The canvassing authority may compare the precinct returns with the corresponding tally list. If a discrepancy is discovered between the vote totals shown on the returns and those shown on the tally list for a precinct, the presiding judge of the precinct shall examine the returns and tally list and make the necessary corrections on the returns.

(e)  On completion of the canvass, the presiding officer of the canvassing authority shall deliver the tabulation to the custodian of the local election register unless it is entered directly in the election register. The custodian shall preserve the tabulation for the period for preserving the precinct election records.

(f)  On completion of the canvass, the presiding officer of the canvassing authority shall deliver the precinct returns, tally lists, and early voting precinct report used in the canvass to the general custodian of election records. The custodian shall preserve them for the period for preserving the precinct election records.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986. Amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 114, Sec. 10, eff. Sept. 1, 1989; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 203, Sec. 1.01, 2.51; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 554, Sec. 22, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 728, Sec. 23, eff. Sept. 1, 1993; Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 1349, Sec. 32, eff. Sept. 1, 1997.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 1107, Sec. 1.14, eff. September 1, 2005.



Section  67.005.  Determining Official Result Of Election Not Canvassed At State Level.

(a) Except as provided by Subsection (b), the official result of an election that is not canvassed at the state level is determined from the canvass of the precinct returns conducted by the local canvassing authority.

(b)  In an election in which there is more than one local canvassing authority but no canvass at the state level, the official result is determined in the manner prescribed by the law providing for the election.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986.



Section  67.006.  Local Election Register.

(a) An election register shall be maintained for each local canvassing authority.

(b)  For each election, the election register must contain in tabulated form the information required to appear in the tabulation of precinct results prepared by the local canvassing authority.

(c)  The general custodian of election records for the elections canvassed by a local canvassing authority is the custodian of the authority's election register.

(d)  On receipt of the local canvassing authority's tabulation of votes, the custodian shall make the appropriate entries in the election register.

(e)  The election register shall be preserved as a permanent record.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986.



Section  67.007.  County Election Returns.

(a) For each election for a statewide or district office, a statewide measure, or president and vice-president of the United States, the county clerk of each county in the territory covered by the election shall prepare county election returns.

(b)  The county election returns shall state, for each candidate and for and against each measure, the total number of votes received in the county as stated by the local canvassing authority's tabulation of votes.

(c)  The county clerk shall sign the county returns to certify their accuracy.

(d)  Not later than 24 hours after completion of the local canvass, the county clerk shall deliver to the secretary of state, in the manner directed by the secretary, the county returns in a sealed envelope. The envelope shall be labeled: "Election Returns for __________ (name) County, for __________(election)."

(e)  The county clerk shall retain a copy of the county returns for the period for preserving the precinct election records.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986.



Section  67.008.  Separate County Returns For Governor And Lieutenant Governor. (a)

In addition to the returns required by Section 67.007, each county clerk shall prepare separate county election returns of an election for the office of governor or lieutenant governor that contain the same information as the returns for those offices prepared under Section 67.007.

(b)  The returns shall be delivered to the secretary of state as provided by Section 67.007, except that the envelope shall be labeled: "Returns of Election for Governor/Lieutenant Governor, __________ (name) County, for __________(election)."

(c)  The secretary of state shall retain the returns in their sealed condition until the first day of the next regular legislative session, when the secretary shall deliver the returns to the speaker of the house of representatives.

(d)  The county clerk shall retain a copy of the county returns for the offices of governor and lieutenant governor for the period for preserving the precinct election records.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986.



Section  67.009.  Forms And Instructions For County Returns.

(a) Before each election for which county election returns are required, the secretary of state shall deliver to each county clerk in the territory covered by the election two copies of the officially prescribed form for reporting county election returns. The secretary shall also deliver two copies of the official form for the separate returns for the offices of governor and lieutenant governor, if applicable.

(b)  With the delivery of the official county returns forms, the secretary of state shall deliver:

(1)  written instructions on the preparation and delivery of the county election returns; and

(2)  the officially prescribed envelopes for delivering the returns to the secretary.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986.



Section  67.010.  County Returns Canvassed By Governor.

(a) The county election returns for an election for a statewide office other than governor or lieutenant governor, a statewide measure, a district office, or president and vice-president of the United States shall be canvassed by the governor.

(b)  When this code refers to the presiding officer of the final canvassing authority, the secretary of state is considered to be the presiding officer when the final canvassing authority is the governor.

(c)  The canvass of county returns shall be conducted in accordance with this chapter except as otherwise provided by this code.

(d)  The presiding officer may make a clerical correction to the officially canvassed returns based on any authorized amended county canvass filed with the presiding officer.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986. Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 54, Sec. 18(a), eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 163, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1235, Sec. 7, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section  67.011.  County Returns Canvassed By Legislature.

(a) The county election returns for an election for the office of governor or lieutenant governor shall be canvassed by the legislature and the official result declared by the speaker of the house of representatives in accordance with Article IV, Section 3, of the Texas Constitution.

(b)  If a county's election returns are incomplete or missing, the legislature may substitute the secretary of state's tabulation for that county or may obtain the necessary information from the county. On request of the legislature, the secretary of state or the county shall promptly transmit the information to the legislature by the most expeditious means available.

(c)  On completion of the canvass, the speaker of the house of representatives shall deliver the county returns to the secretary of state, who shall retain them for the period for preserving the precinct election records.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986. Amended by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 728, Sec. 24, eff. Sept. 1, 1993.



Section  67.012.  Time For Canvass By Governor.

(a) The governor shall conduct the state canvass not earlier than the 15th or later than the 30th day after election day at the time set by the secretary of state.

(b)  The secretary of state shall post, on the bulletin board used for posting notice of meetings of state governmental bodies, a notice of the date, hour, and place of the canvass at least 72 hours before the canvass is conducted.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986. Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 54, Sec. 6(a), eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 163, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 728, Sec. 25, eff. Sept. 1, 1993.



Section  67.013.  Procedure For Canvass By Governor.

(a) At the time set for the state canvass, the secretary of state shall deliver the county returns to the governor.

(b)  The secretary of state shall prepare a tabulation stating for each candidate and for and against each measure required to be canvassed by the governor:

(1)  the total number of votes received in each county; and

(2)  the sum of the county totals tabulated under Subdivision (1).

(c)  At the canvass of an election in which the office of governor or lieutenant governor is voted on, the secretary of state shall prepare a separate tabulation on the candidates for governor and lieutenant governor, indicating for each candidate the information required by Subsection (b).

(d)  The governor shall certify the tabulations.

(e)  The secretary of state shall retain the county election returns used in the canvass and the tabulations for the period for preserving the precinct election records.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986. Amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 163, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.



Section  67.014.  Determining Official Result Of Election Canvassed At State Level.

The official result of an election canvassed by the governor or by the legislature is determined from the canvass of the county returns conducted by that authority.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986. Amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 163, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.



Section  67.015.  State Election Register.

(a) An election register shall be maintained for the governor.

(b)  Except as provided by Subsection (e), for each election the election register shall contain in tabulated form the information required to appear in the tabulations of the county results prepared by the secretary of state.

(c)  The secretary of state is the custodian of the election register for the governor.

(d)  After each canvass conducted by the governor, the secretary of state shall make the appropriate entries in the election register.

(e)  If a discrepancy exists between the legislature's canvass of the election for governor or lieutenant governor and the register entries pertaining to either of those offices that are made from the secretary of state's tabulation, the secretary shall make the entries in the register necessary to make it correspond to the legislature's canvass.

(f)  The election register shall be preserved as a permanent record of the state.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986. Amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 163, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.



Section  67.016.  Certificate Of Election.

(a) After the completion of a canvass, the presiding officer of the local canvassing authority shall prepare a certificate of election for each candidate who is elected to an office for which the official result is determined by that authority's canvass.

(b)  The governor shall prepare a certificate of election for each candidate who is elected to an office for which the official result is determined by the canvass conducted by the governor.

(c)  A certificate of election must contain:

(1)  the candidate's name;

(2)  the office to which the candidate is elected;

(3)  a statement of election to an unexpired term, if applicable;

(4)  the date of the election;

(5)  the signature of the officer preparing the certificate; and

(6)  any seal used by the officer preparing the certificate to authenticate documents that the officer executes or certifies.

(d)  After the canvass of a presidential election, the secretary of state shall prepare a certificate of election for each presidential elector candidate who is elected.

(e)  The authority preparing a certificate of election shall promptly deliver it to the person for whom it is prepared, subject to Section 212.0331.

(f)  A certificate of election may not be issued to a person who has been declared ineligible to be elected to the office.

(g)  This section does not apply to the offices of governor and lieutenant governor.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986. Amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 163, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 1989; Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1144, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 2001.



Section  67.017.  Reporting Precinct Results To Secretary Of State.

(a) After each election for a statewide office or the office of United States representative, state senator, or state representative, the county clerk shall prepare a report of the number of votes, including early voting votes, received in each county election precinct for each candidate for each of those offices.  In a presidential election year, the report must include the number of votes received in each precinct for each set of candidates for president and vice-president of the United States.  For any other election, the presiding officer of the canvassing authority shall prepare a report of the precinct results as contained in the election register.

(b)  The county clerk or presiding officer shall deliver the report to the secretary of state not later than the 30th day after election day in an electronic format prescribed by the secretary of state.

(c)  The report may be:

(1)  an electronic copy of the precinct returns;

(2)  an electronic copy of the tabulation prepared by the local canvassing authority; or

(3)  in any other electronic form approved by the secretary of state.

(d)  The secretary of state shall preserve a report received under this section for 10 years unless the secretary prepares a written tabulation of the information contained in the report received. In that case, the secretary shall preserve the original report for two years and the tabulation for 10 years after receipt of the original report.

(e)  After the applicable preservation period prescribed by Subsection (d) expires, the secretary of state shall transfer the report or tabulation to the state library.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986. Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 54, Sec. 2(c), eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 114, Sec. 11, eff. Sept. 1, 1989; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 203, Sec. 2.52; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 554, Sec. 23, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 1107, Sec. 1.15(a), eff. September 1, 2005.


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