Law:Division 15. Semifinal Official Canvass, Official Canvass, Recount, And Tie Vote Procedures (California)

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Contents

Chapter 1. Preparation For Canvass

Ca Codes (elec:15000-15004) Elections Code Section 15000-15004



15000. No later than seven days prior to any election conducted pursuant to this code, the elections official shall conduct a test or series of tests to ensure that every device used to tabulate ballots accurately records each vote. The exact methods employed in this test shall conform to the voting procedures for the specific voting systems, as adopted by the Secretary of State.


15001. (a) A copy of each election computer vote count program for a statewide election or state special election to fill vacancies shall be deposited with the Secretary of State. The copy of the election computer vote count program shall be received by the Secretary of State no later than 5 p.m. on the seventh day before the election. (b) If the election computer vote count program is modified or altered after the submission specified in subdivision (a), the elections official immediately shall deposit the subsequent program no later than 12 p.m. on the day of the election. (c) The Secretary of State shall hold the deposited programs for a period of not less than six months, at which time the program shall be returned to the elections official. (1) The elections official shall preserve the returned program for a period of 16 months. (2) The programs deposited in accordance with this section shall be used only for a recanvass of the vote, an official recount, court action, or for logic and accuracy tests required by the Secretary of State. (3) Any tape, diskette, cartridge, or other magnetic or electronic storage medium containing the vote count program submitted pursuant to this section shall be maintained by the Secretary of State in a secure location when not in use for an official purpose specified in paragraph (2). (d) The Secretary of State may, by mandamus or other appropriate proceeding, require and compel the county elections officials to submit the computer vote count program specified in subdivision (a). Venue for a proceeding under this section shall be exclusively in Sacramento County.


15002. No later than January 1 of each even-numbered year, the Secretary of State shall review, and if necessary amend, administrative procedures for use with each of the voting systems pursuant to Division 19.


15003. Elections officials shall adopt semifinal official and official canvass procedures to conform to the applicable voting system procedures that have been approved by the Secretary of State. These procedures shall be available for public inspection no later than 29 days before each election.


15004. (a) Each qualified political party may employ, and may have present at the central counting place or places, not more than two representatives to check and review the preparation and operation of the tabulating devices, their programming and testing, and have the representatives in attendance at any or all phases of the election. (b) Any bona fide association of citizens or a media organization may employ, and may have present at the central counting place or places, not more than two representatives to check and review the preparation and operation of the tabulating devices, their programming and testing, and have the representatives in attendance at any or all phases of the election. (c) The county elections official may limit the total number of representatives employed pursuant to subdivision (b) in attendance to no more than 10 by a manner in which each interested bona fide association of citizens or media organization has an equal opportunity to participate. Any representatives employed and in attendance pursuant to subdivision (a) shall not be subject to the limit specified in this subdivision.


Chapter 2. Vote By Mail Ballot Processing

Ca Codes (elec:15100-15112) Elections Code Section 15100-15112



15100. The provisions of this chapter apply to the processing of vote by mail ballots during the 29-day period before any election, during the semifinal official canvass, and during the official canvass.

15101. (a) Any jurisdiction in which vote by mail ballots are cast may begin to process vote by mail ballot return envelopes beginning 29 days before the election. Processing vote by mail ballot return envelopes may include verifying the voter's signature on the vote by mail ballot return envelope and updating voter history records. (b) Any jurisdiction having the necessary computer capability may start to process vote by mail ballots on the seventh business day prior to the election. Processing vote by mail ballots includes opening vote by mail ballot return envelopes, removing ballots, duplicating any damaged ballots, and preparing the ballots to be machine read, or machine reading them, but under no circumstances may a vote count be accessed or released until 8 p.m. on the day of the election. All other jurisdictions shall start to process vote by mail ballots at 5 p.m. on the day before the election. (c) Results of any vote by mail ballot tabulation or count shall not be released prior to the close of the polls on the day of the election.


15102. The official shall appoint a special counting board or boards in numbers that he or she deems adequate to count the vote by mail ballots. The official shall provide for the forms of tally books and the distribution of the duties of the members of the canvassing board. When the tally is done by hand, there shall be no less than four persons for each office or proposition to be counted. One shall read from the ballot, the second shall keep watch for any error or improper vote, and the other two shall keep the tally.


15103. The elections official shall pay a reasonable compensation to each member of the canvassing board of vote by mail ballots. This compensation shall be paid out of the treasury of the agency conducting the election as other claims against it are paid.


15104. (a) The processing of vote by mail ballot return envelopes, and the processing and counting of vote by mail ballots, shall be open to the public, both prior to and after the election. (b) A member of the county grand jury, and at least one member each of the Republican county central committee, the Democratic county central committee, and of any other party with a candidate on the ballot, and any other interested organization, shall be permitted to observe and challenge the manner in which the vote by mail ballots are handled, from the processing of vote by mail ballot return envelopes through the counting and disposition of the ballots. (c) The elections official shall notify vote by mail voter observers and the public at least 48 hours in advance of the dates, times, and places where vote by mail ballots will be processed and counted. (d) Notwithstanding paragraph (2) of subdivision (b) of Section 2194, vote by mail voter observers shall be allowed sufficiently close access to enable them to observe the vote by mail ballot return envelopes and the signatures thereon and challenge whether those individuals handling vote by mail ballots are following established procedures, including all of the following: (1) Verifying signatures and addresses on the vote by mail ballot return envelopes by comparing them to voter registration information. (2) Duplicating accurately damaged or defective ballots. (3) Securing vote by mail ballots to prevent tampering with them before they are counted on election day. (e) A vote by mail voter observer shall not interfere with the orderly processing of vote by mail ballot return envelopes or the processing and counting of vote by mail ballots, including the touching or handling of the ballots.


15105. Prior to processing and opening the identification envelopes of vote by mail voters, the elections official shall make available a list of vote by mail voters for public inspection, from which challenges may be presented. Challenges may be made for the same reasons as those made against a voter voting at a polling place. In addition, a challenge may be entered on the grounds that the ballot was not received within the time provided by this code or that a person is imprisoned for a conviction of a felony. All challenges shall be made prior to the opening of the identification envelope of the challenged vote by mail voter.

15106. Except as otherwise provided, the processing of vote by mail ballot return envelopes, the processing and counting of vote by mail ballots, and the disposition of challenges of vote by mail ballots shall be according to the laws now in force pertaining to the election for which they are cast. Because the voter is not present, the challenger shall have the burden of establishing extraordinary proof of the validity of the challenge at the time the challenge is made.

15107. If a challenge is overruled, the board shall open the identification envelope without defacing the affidavit printed on it or mutilating the enclosed ballot and, without viewing the ballot, remove it and destroy the numbered slip, if any remains, and store the ballots in a secure location.


15108. If a challenge is allowed, the board shall endorse on the face of the identification envelope the cause of the challenge and its action thereon.

15109. Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, the counting and canvassing of vote by mail ballots shall be conducted in the same manner and under the same regulations as used for ballots cast in a precinct polling place.

15110. Reports to the Secretary of State of the findings of the canvass of vote by mail ballots shall be made by the elections official pursuant to Chapter 3 (commencing with Section 15150) and Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 15300).

15111. The elections official shall keep an accurate list of all voters who have received and voted a vote by mail ballot at each election and compare this list with the roster of voters as provided in Section 15278. That list shall include the election precinct of the voter.


15112. When elections are consolidated pursuant to Division 10 (commencing with Section 10000), and only one form of ballot is used at the consolidated election, the ballots cast by vote by mail voters shall be counted only in connection with elections to which vote by mail voter privileges have been extended by law. Whenever the period of time within which vote by mail voters' ballots shall be received by the elections official in order to be counted, as provided for any election by this code or any other law of this state, is different from that period of time provided for another election, and the elections are consolidated and only one form of ballot used for both elections, all vote by mail voters' ballots issued for the consolidated election may be counted for both elections if received by the elections official within whichever period of time is longer.


Chapter 3. Semifinal Official Canvass

Article 1. General Provisions

Ca Codes (elec:15150-15154) Elections Code Section 15150-15154



15150. For every election, the elections official shall conduct a semifinal official canvass by tabulating vote by mail and precinct ballots and compiling the results. The semifinal official canvass shall commence immediately upon the close of the polls and shall continue without adjournment until all precincts are accounted for.


15151. (a) The elections official shall transmit the semifinal official results to the Secretary of State in the manner and according to the schedule prescribed by the Secretary of State prior to each election, for the following: (1) All candidates voted for statewide office. (2) All candidates voted for the following offices: (A) State Assembly. (B) State Senate. (C) Member of the United States House of Representatives. (D) Member of the State Board of Equalization. (E) Justice of the Court of Appeals. (3) All persons voted for at the presidential primary or for electors of President and Vice President of the United States. (4) Statewide ballot measures. (b) The elections official shall transmit the results to the Secretary of State at intervals no greater than two hours, following commencement of the semifinal official canvass.


15152. Neither the elections official, any member of a precinct board, nor any other person shall count any votes, either for a ballot proposition or candidate, until the close of the polls in that county. After that time, the ballots for all candidates and ballot propositions voted upon solely within the county shall be counted and the results of the balloting made public. However, the results for any candidate or ballot proposition also voted upon in another county or counties shall not be made public until after all the polls in that county and the other county or counties have closed. This paragraph applies regardless of whether the counting is done by manual tabulation or by a vote tabulating device.


15153. During the semifinal official canvass, write-in votes shall be counted in accordance with Article 3 (commencing with Section 15340) of Chapter 4.

15154. (a) Any ballot that is not marked as provided by law or that is marked or signed by the voter so that it can be identified by others shall be rejected. The rejected ballots shall be placed in the package marked for voted ballots or in a separate container as directed by the elections official. All rejected ballots shall have written thereon the cause for rejection and be signed by a majority of processing board members who are assigned by the elections official to process ballots. (b) The following ballot conditions shall not render a ballot invalid: (1) Soiled or defaced. (2) Two or more impressions of the voting stamp or mark in one voting square. (c) If a voter indicates, either by a combination of both marking and writing in, a choice of more names than there are candidates to be elected or nominated for any office, or if for any reason the choice of the voter is impossible to determine, the vote for that office shall not be counted, but the remainder of the ballot, if properly marked, shall be counted. (d) This section applies to all ballots counted pursuant to this chapter and Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 15300).


Article 2. Automated Count In A Central Location

Ca Codes (elec:15200-15213) Elections Code Section 15200-15213



15200. If paper ballots are used in conjunction with this system, counting shall be as provided in Article 5 (commencing with Section 15270) and Article 6 (commencing with Section 15290).


15201. (a) As soon as the polls are closed, the precinct board shall, in the presence of the public do all of the following: (1) Seal the container used to transport voted ballots and insure that the precinct number is designated on the ballot container. (2) Certify, sign, and seal the several packages or envelopes as directed by the elections official. (3) By not less than two of their number, deliver the ballot container and packages to the elections official at the central counting place in the manner prescribed by the elections official. The ballot container and packages shall remain in their exclusive possession until delivered to the elections official. (b) This section also applies to ballots counted manually pursuant to Article 6 (commencing with Section 15290).


15202. If the ballots are to be counted at a central counting place, no fewer than two precinct board members shall, following the close of the polls, deliver the ballots, in a sealed container, to the central counting place or a designated receiving station. There may be two or more central counting places.


15203. The vote tabulating device may be located at any place within the state approved by the elections official of the county or other political subdivision using the device. The same device may be jointly owned, borrowed, leased, or used by two or more counties, cities, or other political subdivisions to tabulate ballots cast in any election.


15204. All proceedings at the central counting place, or counting places, if applicable, shall be open to the view of the public but no person, except one employed and designated for the purpose by the elections official or his or her authorized deputy, shall touch any ballot container. Access to the area where electronic data processing equipment is being operated may be restricted to those persons authorized by the elections official.


15205. (a) A person may be employed to count, tally, and certify the ballots if he or she is not a candidate at the election and if he or she satisfies either of the following requirements: (1) Has the qualifications required for a precinct board member. (2) Is a deputy or employee of either of the following: (A) The governing board. (B) The elections official. (b) No person selected to count ballots need reside in any particular precinct.

15206. The elections official or any deputy authorized by the elections official may excuse or dismiss any person from any counting board and enforce the order.


15207. The elections official or authorized deputy shall segregate the persons employed to count the ballots into counting boards. These counting boards shall be deemed to be precinct boards, and are subject to all laws governing precinct boards where ballots are counted at the polling place.


15208. Each container of ballots shall be opened and its contents removed. The ballots shall be checked to ascertain if the ballots are properly grouped and shall be arranged, if necessary, so that all similar ballots from the precinct are together. Any ballot that is torn, bent, or mutilated shall be segregated in the manner directed by the elections official and a duplicate shall be prepared as provided in Section 15210. Any ballot that is marked in a manner so as to identify the voter shall be marked "Void" and shall be placed in the container for void ballots.


15209. Any magnetic or electronic storage medium used for the ballot tabulation program and any magnetic or electronic storage medium containing election results shall be kept in a secure location and shall be retained for six months following any local election and 22 months following any federal election or so long thereafter as any contest involving the vote at the local or federal election remains undetermined.


15210. In preparing the voted ballots for processing, any ballot that is torn, bent, or otherwise defective shall be corrected so that every vote cast by the voter shall be counted by the automatic tabulating equipment. If necessary, a true duplicate copy of the defective ballot shall be made and substituted therefor, following the intention of the voter insofar as it can be ascertained from the defective ballot. All duplicate ballots shall be clearly labeled "duplicate," and shall bear a serial number that shall be recorded on the damaged or defective ballot.


15211. If paper ballots are used for vote by mail voting, the canvass may be conducted in accordance with Chapter 1 (commencing with Section 15000), or the elections official may have a true duplicate copy of vote by mail voter paper ballots made on punchcard ballots that shall be verified in the presence of witnesses. After verification the punchcard ballots shall be counted in the same manner as other punchcard ballots.


15212. If voting at all precincts within a county is not conducted using the same voting system, the result as to the precincts not subject to this article shall be determined in accordance with other provisions of this code and the result of the vote at precincts subject to this article shall be determined as provided in this article. The statement of the vote in that case shall represent the consolidation of all the results and the results of the canvass of all vote by mail voter ballots.


15213. In case of an emergency in which it becomes impossible to transport the ballots from the precinct to a central counting place, the elections official may direct that the ballots be counted at the precinct. In those cases, counting shall be conducted substantially in accordance with Article 5 (commencing with Section 15270).


Article 3. Automated Vote Count In Precincts

Ca Codes (elec:15250-15251) Elections Code Section 15250-15251



15250. The ballots may be counted at the polls if a counting or tabulating machine approved therefor pursuant to Article 1 (commencing with Section 19200) of Chapter 3 of Division 19 is available at the polls.


15251. Upon receipt of the result of votes cast from the precinct boards, the elections official shall compile and make available to the public the results so received as to the offices and measures.


Article 4. Establishing Election Return Centers And Multiple Counting Centers

Ca Codes (elec:15260-15261) Elections Code Section 15260-15261



15260. (a) The elections official of the jurisdiction shall establish one or more election return centers for the purpose of facilitating the compilation of election returns and expediting their announcement to the public. (b) In establishing a return center, the elections official may designate a group of precincts which the center shall serve and this designation shall be available for public inspection no later than 15 days before the election. The election return center may be at any public place as the elections official designates.


15261. The elections official may establish one or more centers to count ballots from designated precincts and transmit the results via voice telephone connection or facsimile transmission. The count shall be conducted in all other respects in accordance with the central counting provisions of Article 2 (commencing with Section 15200). The list of designated precincts for each counting center shall be available for public inspection no later than 15 days before the election.


Article 5. Manual Vote Count In The Precinct

Ca Codes (elec:15270-15281) Elections Code Section 15270-15281



15270. This article applies to all elections in which ballots are counted by hand.


15271. As soon as the polls are finally closed, the precinct board shall commence to count the votes by taking the ballots cast, unopened, out of the box and counting them to ascertain whether the number of ballots corresponds with the number of signatures on the roster. The precinct board shall make a record upon the roster of the number of ballots in the ballot box, the number of signatures on the roster, and the difference, if any.


15272. The count shall be public and shall be continued without adjournment until completed and the result is declared. During the reading and tallying, the ballot read and the tally sheet kept shall be within the clear view of watchers.

15273. Unless otherwise provided in this code, the precinct board members may not constitute themselves into separate squads in an attempt to conduct more than one count of the ballots at the same time.

15274. The members of the precinct board may relieve each other in the duties of counting ballots.


15275. Those ballots not rejected shall be placed in one pile, and the board shall proceed to count by tallying the vote for one or more offices or measures at a time.


15276. The precinct board members shall ascertain the number of votes cast for each person and for and against each measure in the following manner: One precinct board member shall read from the ballots. As the ballots are read, at least one other precinct board member shall keep watch of each vote so as to check on any possible error or omission on the part of the officer reading or calling the ballot.


15277. (a) Two of the precinct board members shall each keep a tally sheet in a form prescribed by the elections official. Each tally sheet shall contain all of the following: (1) The name of each candidate being voted for and the specific office for which each candidate is being voted. The offices shall be in the same order as on the ballot. (2) A list of each measure being voted upon. (3) Sufficient space to permit the tallying of the full vote cast for each candidate and for and against each measure. (b) The precinct board members keeping the tally sheets shall record opposite each name or measure, with pen or indelible pencil, the number of votes by tallies as the name of each candidate or measure voted upon is read aloud from the respective ballot. (c) Immediately upon the completion of the tallies, the precinct board members keeping the tally shall draw two heavy lines in ink or indelible pencil from the last tally mark to the end of the line in which the tallies terminate and initial that line. The total number of votes counted for each candidate and for and against each measure shall be recorded on the tally sheets in words and figures.


15278. On completion of the canvass of the returns for each election, the elections official shall compare the vote by mail voters' list with the roster of voters in each precinct to determine if any voter cast more than one ballot at that election.


15278.5. No precinct board member may make any tally of votes in any other manner than is provided in this article, nor in any place other than on the tally sheets provided for that purpose.


15279. The ballots, as soon as all of the names and measures marked on them as voted for are read and tallied, shall not thereafter be examined by any person, but, as soon as all are counted, shall be carefully sealed in a strong envelope. The signatures of each member of the precinct board shall be written across the seal.


15280. The precinct board shall complete, sign, and return to the elections official all furnished forms requiring its signatures. When votes are counted at the precinct, all members of the precinct board, upon the completion of their duties, shall sign the following certificate of performance, which shall be substantially in the following form: Certificate of Performance for ____ precinct, for the ____ election, held on the ____ day of ____, (year). We hereby certify that the total number of votes received by each candidate for each office and the total number of votes cast for and against each measure is as indicated on the tally sheets. We further certify that the results of votes cast forms posted outside the polling place and transmitted to the county elections official show the total number of votes received by each candidate for each office and the total number of votes cast for and against each measure is as indicated. __________ ______ Inspector Clerk ____________________ ______ Assistant Inspector Clerk ______ ______ Judge Clerk ______ ______ Judge Clerk


15281. The precinct board shall sign and post conspicuously on the outside of the polling place a copy of the result of the votes cast. The copy shall remain posted for at least 48 hours after the official time fixed for the closing of the polls. To protect a person's right to cast a secret ballot under Section 7 of Article II of the California Constitution, in cases where fewer than 10 voters cast ballots and the precinct board tallies the results at the precinct, the precinct board shall post only the total number of people who voted at the precinct.


Article 6. Manual Vote Count In A Central Place

Ca Codes (elec:15290) Elections Code Section 15290



15290. Ballots that are to be counted manually in a central place shall be transported as provided in Sections 15201 and 15202. Each counting board shall proceed to count and tally the ballots by precincts, separately, under the direction of the elections official or authorized deputies, in the same manner as provided where ballots are counted at the polling place pursuant to Article 5 (commencing with Section 15270).


Chapter 4. Official Canvass

Article 1. General Provisions

Ca Codes (elec:15300-15304) Elections Code Section 15300-15304



15300. This chapter applies to all elections.


15301. The canvass shall commence no later than the Thursday following the election, shall be open to the public, and, for state or statewide elections, shall result in a report of results to the Secretary of State. The canvass shall be continued daily, Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays excepted, for not less than six hours each day until completed.


15302. The official canvass shall include, but not be limited to, the following tasks: (a) An inspection of all materials and supplies returned by poll workers. (b) A reconciliation of the number of signatures on the roster with the number of ballots recorded on the ballot statement. (c) In the event of a discrepancy in the reconciliation required by subdivision (b), the number of ballots received from each polling place shall be reconciled with the number of ballots cast, as indicated on the ballot statement. (d) A reconciliation of the number of ballots counted, spoiled, canceled, or invalidated due to identifying marks, overvotes, or as otherwise provided by statute, with the number of votes recorded, including vote by mail and provisional ballots, by the vote counting system. (e) Processing and counting any valid vote by mail and provisional ballots not included in the semifinal official canvass. (f) Counting any valid write-in votes. (g) Reproducing any damaged ballots, if necessary. (h) Reporting final results to the governing board and the Secretary of State, as required.


15303. If the returns from any precinct are incomplete, ambiguous, not properly authenticated, or otherwise defective, the elections official may issue and serve subpoenas requiring members of the precinct board to appear and be examined under oath concerning the manner in which votes were counted and the result of the count in their precinct. This section shall apply when ballots are tabulated manually or automatically at the polls.


15304. In jurisdictions using a central counting place, the elections official may appoint not less than three deputies to open the envelopes or containers with the materials returned from the precincts. If, after examination, any of the materials are incomplete, ambiguous, not properly authenticated, or otherwise defective, the precinct officers may be summoned before the elections official and examined under oath to describe polling place procedures and to correct the errors or omissions.


Article 2. Processing Vote By Mail Ballots And Mail Ballot Precinct Ballots

Ca Codes (elec:15320-15321) Elections Code Section 15320-15321



15320. Vote by mail ballots and mail ballot precinct ballots returned to the elections office and to the polls on election day that are not included in the semifinal official canvass phase of the election shall be processed and counted during the official canvass in the manner prescribed by Chapter 3 (commencing with Section 15100).


15321. For any statewide election or special election to fill a vacancy in a congressional or legislative office, votes cast by vote by mail ballot and votes cast at the polling place shall be tabulated by precinct.


Article 3. Processing Write-in Votes

Ca Codes (elec:15340-15342) Elections Code Section 15340-15342



15340. Each voter is entitled to write the name of any candidate for any public office, including that of President and Vice President of the United States, on the ballot of any election.


15341. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no name written upon a ballot in any election shall be counted for an office or nomination unless the candidate whose name has been written on the ballot has complied with Part 3 (commencing with Section 8600) of Division 8.


15342. Any name written upon a ballot for a qualified write-in candidate, including a reasonable facsimile of the spelling of a name, shall be counted for the office, if it is written in the blank space provided and voted as specified below: (a) For voting systems in which write-in spaces appear directly below the list of candidates for that office and provide a voting space, no write-in vote shall be counted unless the voting space next to the write-in space is marked or slotted as directed in the voting instructions. (b) For voting systems in which write-in spaces appear separately from the list of candidates for that office and do not provide a voting space, the name of the write-in candidate, if otherwise qualified, shall be counted if it is written in the manner described in the voting instructions. (c) The use of pressure-sensitive stickers, glued stamps, or any other device not provided for in the voting procedures for the voting systems approved by the Secretary of State to indicate the name of the write-in candidate are not valid, and a name indicated by these methods shall not be counted. (d) Neither a vote cast for a candidate whose name appears on the ballot nor a vote cast for a write-in candidate shall be counted if the voter has indicated, by a combination of marking and writing, a choice of more names than there are candidates to be nominated or elected to the office. (e) All valid write-in votes shall be tabulated and certified to the elections official on forms provided for this purpose, and the write-in votes shall be added to the results of the count of the ballots at the counting place and be included in the official returns for the precinct.


Article 4. Processing And Counting Provisional Ballots

Ca Codes (elec:15350) Elections Code Section 15350



15350. Provisional ballots cast pursuant to Section 14310 shall be processed and counted in accordance with the provisions outlined in Chapter 3 (commencing with Section 15100) and pursuant to the requirements of Sections 14310 and 14311.


Article 5. One Percent Manual Tally

Ca Codes (elec:15360) Elections Code Section 15360



15360. (a) During the official canvass of every election in which a voting system is used, the official conducting the election shall conduct a public manual tally of the ballots tabulated by those devices, including vote by mail voters' ballots, cast in 1 percent of the precincts chosen at random by the elections official. If 1 percent of the precincts is less than one whole precinct, the tally shall be conducted in one precinct chosen at random by the elections official. In addition to the 1 percent manual tally, the elections official shall, for each race not included in the initial group of precincts, count one additional precinct. The manual tally shall apply only to the race not previously counted. Additional precincts for the manual tally may be selected at the discretion of the elections official. (b) If vote by mail ballots are cast on a direct recording electronic voting system at the office of an elections official or at a satellite location of the office of an elections official pursuant to Section 3018, the official conducting the election shall either include those ballots in the manual tally conducted pursuant to subdivision (a) or conduct a public manual tally of those ballots cast on no fewer than 1 percent of all the direct recording electronic voting machines used in that election chosen at random by the elections official. (c) The elections official shall use either a random number generator or other method specified in regulations that shall be adopted by the Secretary of State to randomly choose the initial precincts or direct recording electronic voting machines subject to the public manual tally. (d) The manual tally shall be a public process, with the official conducting the election providing at least a five-day public notice of the time and place of the manual tally and of the time and place of the selection of the precincts to be tallied prior to conducting the tally and selection. (e) The official conducting the election shall include a report on the results of the 1 percent manual tally in the certification of the official canvass of the vote. This report shall identify any discrepancies between the machine count and the manual tally and a description of how each of these discrepancies was resolved. In resolving any discrepancy involving a vote recorded by means of a punchcard voting system or by electronic or electromechanical vote tabulating devices, the voter verified paper audit trail shall govern if there is a discrepancy between it and the electronic record.


Article 6. Ballot Security And Reporting Of Results

Ca Codes (elec:15370-15376) Elections Code Section 15370-15376



15370. After ballots are counted and sealed, the elections official may not open any ballots nor permit any ballots to be opened except as permitted in Sections 15303 and 15304, or in the event of a recount.

15371. Upon completion of the count, the elections official shall add to the results as so determined, the results of the write-in votes and any paper ballots used as certified by the precinct board, and thereupon shall declare the vote, and forthwith post one copy at the counting place for public inspection.


15372. The elections official shall prepare a certified statement of the results of the election and submit it to the governing body within 28 days of the election or, in the case of school district, community college district, county board of education, or special district elections conducted on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November of odd-numbered years, no later than the last Monday before the last Friday of that month.


15373. When ballots are counted under this article, the result of the vote shall be shown by precinct.


15374. (a) The statement of the result shall show all of the following: (1) The total number of ballots cast. (2) The number of votes cast at each precinct for each candidate and for and against each measure. (3) The total number of votes cast for each candidate and for and against each measure. (b) The statement of the result shall also show the number of votes cast in each city, Assembly district, congressional district, senatorial district, State Board of Equalization district, and supervisorial district located in whole or in part in the county, for each candidate for the offices of presidential elector and all statewide offices, depending on the offices to be filled, and on each statewide ballot proposition.


15375. The elections official shall send to the Secretary of State within 31 days of the election in an electronic format in the manner requested one complete copy of all results as to all of the following: (a) All candidates voted for statewide office. (b) All candidates voted for the following offices: (1) Member of the Assembly. (2) Member of the Senate. (3) Member of the United States House of Representatives. (4) Member of the State Board of Equalization. (5) Justice of the Court of Appeal. (6) Judge of the superior court. (c) All persons voted for at the presidential primary. The results for all persons voted for at the presidential primary for delegates to national conventions shall be canvassed and shall be sent within 28 days after the election. (d) The vote given for persons for electors of President and Vice President of the United States. The results for presidential electors shall be endorsed "Presidential Election Returns" and shall be canvassed and sent within 28 days after the election. (e) All statewide measures. (f) The total number of ballots cast.


15376. The elections official shall deliver a duplicate of the certified statement of the result of votes cast to the chairperson of the county central committee of each party.


Chapter 5. Announcement Of Results

Ca Codes (elec:15400-15402) Elections Code Section 15400-15402



15400. The governing body shall declare elected or nominated to each office voted on at each election under its jurisdiction the person having the highest number of votes for that office, or who was elected or nominated under the exceptions noted in Section 15452. The governing board shall also declare the results of each election under its jurisdiction as to each measure voted on at the election.


15401. The elections official shall make out and deliver to each person elected or nominated, as declared by the governing body, a certificate of election or nomination, signed and authenticated by the elections official.

15402. Whenever a candidate whose name appears upon the ballot at any election dies after the 68th day before the election, the votes cast for the deceased candidate shall be counted in determining the results of the election for the office for which the decedent was a candidate. If the deceased candidate receives a majority of the votes cast for the office, he or she shall be considered elected and the office to which he or she was elected shall be vacant at the beginning of the term for which he or she was elected. The vacancy thus created shall be filled in the same manner as if the candidate had died subsequent to taking office for that term.


Chapter 6. Determination Of Elected Or Nominated Candidates

Article 1. General Provisions

Ca Codes (elec:15450-15452) Elections Code Section 15450-15452



15450. A plurality of the votes given at any election shall constitute a choice where not otherwise directed in the California Constitution, provided that it shall be competent in all charters of cities, counties, or cities and counties framed under the authority of the California Constitution to provide the manner in which their respective elective officers may be elected and to prescribe a higher proportion of the vote therefor.


15451. The nominees for a voter-nominated office shall be determined in accordance with Section 8141.5 and subdivision (b) of Section 8142.

15452. The person who receives a plurality of the votes cast for any office is elected or nominated to that office in any election, except: (a) An election for which different provision is made by any city or county charter. (b) A municipal election for which different provision is made by the laws under which the city is organized. (c) The election of local officials in primary elections as specified in Article 8 (commencing with Section 8140) of Part 1 of Division 8. (d) The nomination of candidates for voter-nominated office at the primary election to participate in the general election for that office as specified in Article 8 (commencing with Section 8140) of Part 1 of Division 8.


Article 2. Democratic Central Committee Conditions For Election Of Candidate

Ca Codes (elec:15460) Elections Code Section 15460



15460. In each county the number of candidates for membership in a county central committee in each Assembly or supervisorial district who receive the highest number of votes shall be declared elected. However, a candidate for membership shall not be declared elected unless he or she has received votes equal in number to the minimum number of signatures to the nomination paper which would have been required to place his or her name on the direct primary ballot as a candidate for member of a committee.


Article 3. Republican Central Committee Conditions For Election Of Candidate

Ca Codes (elec:15470) Elections Code Section 15470



15470. In each county the number of candidates for membership in a committee in each Assembly or supervisorial district who receive the highest number of votes shall be declared elected. However, a candidate for membership shall not be declared elected unless he or she has received votes equal in number to the minimum number of signatures to the nomination paper which would have been required to place his or her name on the direct primary ballot as a candidate for member of a committee.


Article 4. American Independent Central Committee Conditions For Election Of Candidate

Ca Codes (elec:15480) Elections Code Section 15480



15480. In each county the number of candidates for membership in a county central committee in each Assembly or supervisor district who receive the highest number of votes shall be declared elected. However, a candidate for membership shall not be declared elected unless he or she has received votes equal in number to the minimum number of signatures to the nomination paper which would have been required to place his or her name on the direct primary ballot as a candidate for member of a committee.


Article 5. Peace And Freedom Central Committee Conditions For Election Of Candidate

Ca Codes (elec:15490) Elections Code Section 15490



15490. In each county the number of candidates for member of central committees to be elected in each central committee election district who receive the highest number of votes shall be declared elected. The names and votes of all nominees for partisan public office qualified for central committees membership pursuant to Section 7755 shall be excluded from the list of candidates for member of central committees and disregarded in the determination of the candidates with the highest number of votes. No write-in candidate for member of central committees shall be declared elected, however, unless that candidate has received a number of votes equal to or greater than 2 percent of the number of party members voting in the central committee election district at the direct primary, or 20 votes, whichever is less.


Chapter 7. Duties Of The Secretary Of State

Ca Codes (elec:15500-15505) Elections Code Section 15500-15505



15500. The Secretary of State, commencing with the first results from the semifinal official canvass received from the elections officials, shall compile the results for the offices and measures listed in Section 15151, which compilation shall be continued without adjournment until completed. The Secretary of State shall immediately make public the results of the compilation as to those offices and measures. The Secretary of State also shall compile and make those results reported pursuant to subdivision (c) of Section 15375 available to any person or organization upon request.


15501. (a) Except as to presidential electors, the Secretary of State shall compile the results for all of the following: (1) All candidates for statewide office. (2) All candidates for Assembly, State Senate, Congress, State Board of Equalization, Supreme Court, and Courts of Appeal. (3) All statewide measures. (b) The Secretary of State shall prepare, certify, and file a statement of the vote from the compiled results no later than the 38th day after the election. (c) The Secretary of State may gather returns for local elections, including, but not limited to, the following: (1) Candidates for county office. (2) Candidates for city office. (3) Candidates for school and district office. (4) County ballot measures. (5) City ballot measures. (6) School and district ballot measures.


15502. Within 120 days of the filing of the statement of the vote, the Secretary of State, upon the basis of the information provided, shall compile a supplement to the statement of the vote, showing the number of votes cast in each county, city, Assembly district, senatorial district, congressional district and supervisorial district for each candidate for the offices of presidential elector, Governor, and United States Senator, depending on the offices to be filled, and on each statewide ballot proposition. A copy of this supplement shall be made available, upon request, to any elector of this state.

15503. On the 38th day after the election, or as soon within that time as the returns have been received from the entire state or a congressional district, as the case may be, the Secretary of State shall determine the votes cast for candidates for Senator and Representative and certify to the persons having the highest number of votes for the respective offices as duly elected.


15504. The Secretary of State shall make out and deliver, or transmit by mail, a certificate of election or nomination to each person elected or nominated.

15505. No later than the 32nd day following the election, the Secretary of State shall analyze the votes given for presidential electors, and certify to the Governor the names of the proper number of persons having the highest number of votes. The Secretary of State shall thereupon issue and transmit to each presidential elector a certificate of election. The certificate shall be accompanied by a notice of the time and place of the meeting of the presidential electors and a statement that each presidential elector will be entitled to a per diem allowance and mileage in the amounts specified.


Chapter 8. Disposition Of Ballots And Supplies By The Elections Official

Ca Codes (elec:15550-15551) Elections Code Section 15550-15551



15550. The records and supplies of any election when received by the elections official shall be disposed of in the manner set forth in this chapter.

15551. If a contest or any such criminal prosecution has been commenced prior to the date fixed for its destruction, the package containing the voted ballots shall be subject to the order of the court in which the contest or criminal prosecution is pending and shall not be destroyed until after final determination of the contest or criminal prosecution. In the case of a congressional election contest, the elections official shall hold the ballots of that congressional district in custody subject to the inspection of any committee of the House of Representatives having in charge the investigation of the contest, until the final determination of the contest by the House of Representatives. In the case of a contest in the State Legislature, the elections official shall hold the ballots of the Senate or Assembly district in custody subject to the inspection of any committee of the Senate or Assembly having in charge the investigation of the contest until the final determination of the contest or the final adjournment of the session of the Legislature in which the contest is filed, whichever is the later. In no event shall the package or its contents be taken from the custody of the elections official.


Chapter 8.5. Postcanvass Risk-limiting Audit Pilot Program

Ca Codes (elec:15560) Elections Code Section 15560



15560. (a) The Secretary of State is authorized to establish a postcanvass risk-limiting audit pilot program in five or more counties to improve the accuracy of, and public confidence in, election results. The Secretary of State is encouraged to include urban and rural counties; counties from northern, central, and southern California; and counties with various different voting systems. (b) The pilot program described in subdivision (a) shall be conducted as follows: (1) During the year 2011, each county that chooses to participate in the pilot program shall conduct a postcanvass risk-limiting audit of one or more contests after each election in that county. (2) An elections official conducting an audit pursuant to this section shall do all of the following: (A) Provide at least a five-day public notice of the time and place of the random selection of the audit units to be manually tallied and of the time and place of the audit. (B) Make available to the public a report of the vote tabulating device results for the contest, including the results for each audit unit in the contest, prior to the random selection of audit units to be manually tallied and prior to the commencement of the audit. (C) Conduct the audit upon tabulation of the unofficial final results or upon completion of the official canvass for the election. (D) Conduct the audit in public view by hand without the use of electronic scanning equipment using the tally procedures established by Section 15360 for conducting a manual tally. (3) On or before March 1, 2012, the Secretary of State shall report to the Legislature on the effectiveness and efficiency of postcanvass risk-limiting audits conducted pursuant to this section. The report shall include an analysis of the efficiency of postcanvass risk-limiting audits, including the costs of performing the audits, as compared to the 1-percent manual tallies conducted in the same election pursuant to Section 15360. (c) An audit shall not be conducted pursuant to this section with respect to a state or multijurisdictional contest unless all of the counties involved in the contest choose to participate in the pilot program authorized by this section. (d) For purposes of this section, the following terms have the following meanings: (1) "Audit unit" means a precinct, a set of ballots, or a single ballot. A precinct, a set of ballots, or a single ballot may be used as an audit unit for purposes of this section only if all of the following conditions are satisfied: (A) The relevant vote tabulating device is able to produce a report of the votes cast in the precinct, set of ballots, or single ballot. (B) The elections official is able to match the report described in subparagraph (A) with the ballots corresponding to the report for purposes of conducting an audit pursuant to this section. (C) Each ballot is assigned to not more than one audit unit. (2) "Contest" means an election for an office or for a measure. "Contest" shall not include either of the following: (A) An election for a political party central committee, as provided in Division 7 (commencing with Section 7000). (B) An advisory election, as provided in Section 9603. (3) "Risk-limiting audit" means a manual tally employing a statistical method that ensures a large, predetermined minimum chance of requiring a full manual tally whenever a full manual tally would show an electoral outcome that differs from the outcome reported by the vote tabulating device for the audited contest. A risk-limiting audit shall begin with a hand tally of the votes in one or more audit units and shall continue to hand tally votes in additional audit units until there is strong statistical evidence that the electoral outcome is correct. In the event that counting additional audit units does not provide strong statistical evidence that the electoral outcome is correct, the audit shall continue until there has been a full manual tally to determine the correct electoral outcome of the audited contest. (4) "Unofficial final results" means election results tabulated pursuant to an official canvass conducted pursuant to Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 15300) but not yet reported to the governing board or the Secretary of State pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 15302.


Chapter 9. Recount

Article 1. General Provisions

Ca Codes (elec:15600-15601) Elections Code Section 15600-15601



15600. Except as provided in this chapter, this chapter applies to all elections. The recount of votes cast for candidates for presidential electors shall be governed by this chapter.


15601. The Secretary of State, within the Secretary of State's existing budget, shall adopt regulations no later than January 1, 2008, for each voting system approved for use in the state and specify the procedures for recounting ballots, including vote by mail and provisional ballots, using those voting systems.


Article 2. Elections Official-ordered Recounts

Ca Codes (elec:15610) Elections Code Section 15610



15610. If no election contest is pending wherein a recount of the ballots in a precinct has been or will be ordered, the elections official may order that the ballots voted in the precinct be publicly recounted if both of the following apply: (a) The elections official has reasonable cause to believe the ballots in the precinct have been miscounted. (b) The elections official has examined, under oath, the precinct board members or, in the case of ballots counted by a central counting system, the counting board members, and they are unable to explain the returns of their respective precincts.


Article 3. Voter-requested Recounts

Ca Codes (elec:15620-15634) Elections Code Section 15620-15634



15620. Following completion of the official canvass and again following completion of any postcanvass risk-limiting audit conducted pursuant to Section 15560, any voter may, within five days thereafter, file with the elections official responsible for conducting an election in the county wherein the recount is sought a written request for a recount of the votes cast for candidates for any office, for slates of presidential electors, or for or against any measure, provided the office, slate, or measure is not voted on statewide. The request shall specify on behalf of which candidate, slate of electors, or position on a measure (affirmative or negative) it is filed. If an election is conducted in more than one county, the request for the recount may be filed by any voter within five days, beginning on the 29th day after the election, with the elections official of, and the recount may be conducted within, any or all of the affected counties. For the purposes of this section, "completion of the canvass" shall be presumed to be that time when the elections official signs the certified statement of the results of the election except that, in the case of a city election, if a city council canvasses the returns itself and does not order the elections official to conduct the canvass, "completion of the canvass" shall be presumed to be that time when the governing body declares the persons elected or the measures approved or defeated.


15621. Following completion of the official canvass any voter may, within five days beginning on the 29th day after a statewide election, file with the Secretary of State a written request for a recount of the votes cast for candidates for any statewide office or for or against any measure voted on statewide. Additionally, any voter may file with the Secretary of State a written request for a recount of the votes cast for candidates for any statewide office or for or against any measure voted on statewide within five days following completion of any postcanvass risk-limiting audit conducted pursuant to Section 15560. A request filed pursuant to this section shall specify in which county or counties the recount is sought and shall specify on behalf of which candidate, slate of electors, or position on a measure (affirmative or negative) it is filed. The Secretary of State shall forthwith send by registered mail one copy of the request to the elections official of each county in which a recount of the votes is sought. All the other provisions of this article shall apply to recounts conducted under this section.


15622. The request may specify the order in which the precincts shall be recounted.


15623. Any time during the conduct of a recount and for 24 hours thereafter, any other voter may request the recount of any precincts in an election for the same office, slate of presidential electors, or measure not recounted as a result of the original request.


15624. The voter filing the request seeking the recount shall, before the recount is commenced and at the beginning of each day following, deposit with the elections official a sum as required by the elections official to cover the cost of the recount for that day. The money deposited shall be returned to the depositor if, upon completion of the recount, the candidate, slate of presidential electors, or the position on the measure (affirmative or negative) for which the declaration is filed is found to have received the plurality of votes cast which it had not received according to the official canvass or, in an election where there are two or more candidates, the recount results in the candidate for whom the recount was requested appearing on the ballot in a subsequent runoff election or general election who would not have so appeared in the absence of the recount. The depositor shall be entitled to the return of any money deposited in excess of the cost of the recount if the candidate, slate, or position on the measure has not received the plurality of the votes cast or, in an election where there are two or more candidates, the recount does not result in the candidate for whom the recount was requested appearing on the ballot in a subsequent runoff or general election as a result of the recount. Money not required to be refunded shall be deposited in the appropriate public treasury.


15625. The recount shall be conducted under the supervision of the elections official by special recount boards consisting of four voters of the county appointed by the elections official. Each member of a recount board shall receive the same compensation per day as is paid in the jurisdiction within which the recount is being conducted to members of precinct boards, other than inspectors, to be paid out of the appropriate public treasury. If the office of the elections official is the subject of the recount, the governing body shall appoint an officer, other than the elections official, to appoint and supervise the special recount boards.


15626. The recount shall be commenced not more than seven days following the receipt by the elections official of the request for the recount under Section 15620 or 15621, and shall be continued daily, Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays excepted, for not less than six hours each day until completed. The recount shall not be commenced until the first day following notification of the individuals specified in Section 15628.


15627. (a) If in the election which is to be recounted the votes were recorded by means of a punchcard voting system or by electronic or electromechanical vote tabulating devices, the voter who files the declaration requesting the recount may select whether the recount shall be conducted manually, or by means of the voting system used originally, or both. (b) For purposes of direct recording electronic voting systems, "conducted manually" means that either the paper record copies or the voter verified paper audit trail of the electronically recorded vote are counted manually, as selected by the voter who requests the recount.

15628. Not less than one day prior to commencement of the recount, the elections official shall post a notice as to the date and place of the recount and shall notify the following persons of it in person or by any federally regulated overnight mail service: (a) All candidates for any office the votes for which are to be recounted. (b) Authorized representatives of presidential candidates to whom electors are pledged if the votes to be recounted were cast for presidential electors. (c) Proponents of any initiative or referendum or persons filing ballot arguments for or against any initiative, referendum, or measure placed on the ballot by the governing body the votes for which are to be recounted. (d) The Secretary of State in the case of a recount of the votes cast for candidates for any state office, presidential electors, the House of Representatives of the United States, the Senate of the United States, or delegates to a national convention or on any state measure.


15629. The recount shall be conducted publicly.


15630. All ballots, whether voted or not, and any other relevant material, may be examined as part of any recount if the voter filing the declaration requesting the recount so requests. No examination of any ballot shall include touching or handling the ballot without the express consent of the elections official or the election officer supervising the special recount board. No ballot may be touched or handled during the examination unless the elections official or the elections officer supervising the special recount is present to observe the examination. Except as provided in this section no ballot shall be touched or handled by any person during the recount unless that person is the elections official, a person acting at the direction of the elections official, a member of the special recount board, or by order of the superior court.

15631. On recount, ballots may be challenged for incompleteness, ambiguity, or other defects, in accordance with the following procedure: (a) The person challenging the ballot shall state the reason for the challenge. (b) The official counting the ballot shall count it as he or she believes proper and then set it aside with a notation as to how it was counted. (c) The elections official shall, before the recount is completed, determine whether the challenge is to be allowed. The decision of the elections official is final.


15632. In lieu of the returns as reported in the official canvass, upon completion of the recount showing that a different candidate was nominated or elected, that a different presidential slate of electors received a plurality of the votes, or that a measure was defeated instead of approved or approved instead of defeated, there shall be entered the result of the recount in each precinct affected, which result shall, for all purposes thereafter, be the official returns of those precincts for the office, slates of presidential electors, or measure involved in the recount. If the office, slates of presidential electors, or measure are not voted on statewide, the results of any recount which is not completed by counting the votes in each and every precinct in the jurisdiction within which votes were cast on the candidates for the office, on the slates of electors, or on the measure in question shall be declared null and void. If the office, slates of presidential electors, or measure are voted on statewide, the results of any recount will be declared null and void where there is not recounted each vote cast for the office, slates, or measure in any county specified in the request for recount filed with the Secretary of State.


15633. A copy of the results of any recount conducted pursuant to this chapter shall be posted conspicuously in the office of the elections official.

15634. This chapter does not: (a) Authorize the opening or recounting of ballots for any precinct except for the purposes specified in this chapter. (b) Limit other provisions of law regarding an election contest or recount.


Article 4. Court-ordered Recounts

Ca Codes (elec:15640-15642) Elections Code Section 15640-15642



15640. (a) When requested by the board of supervisors or the grand jury, the district attorney may petition the superior court for an order directing a public recount to be made of ballots tabulated by a voting system in any precincts in the county that it designates for any election occurring not over 25 days before the request. The request and petition shall be made only on one or more of the following grounds, and the order may be issued only with a finding that there is probable cause to believe that one or more of the grounds exist: (1) Misconduct by anyone sufficient to make it likely that the result of the election was affected as to the successful candidates or propositions or tie holders, including any of the conduct specified in Section 16100. (2) Errors or failures, whether electronic, mechanical or otherwise, in the safekeeping, handling, tallying, counting, recording, or certification of the ballots or votes cast, sufficient to make it likely that the result of the election was affected as to the successful candidates or propositions or tie holders, or sufficient to cast substantial doubt on the substantial accuracy of the results without regard to affecting any result. The petition shall be set for hearing and may be opposed by any interested party. (b) The court may order any further recounts that it may deem proper based on the results of the recounts provided for in subdivision (a) or in Section 15645, and shall declare the results of all the recounts, and shall determine and order corrected the results of any election affected by any recount. (c) The court may order payment of the costs of any such recount in whole or in just proportion by any person or any public agency, or both, who petition for a recount. In the case of public agencies the costs shall be provided for and paid pursuant to Section 19212.


15641. Section 15001 shall apply unless a court orders the program held pending the conclusion of litigation challenging the outcome of an election. If court action or an official recount is initiated while the program is on deposit, the Secretary of State shall make the program available to the court or the elections official in whose jurisdiction the court action or recount takes place, upon written request.


15642. Any tape, diskette, cartridge, or other magnetic or electronic storage medium used in the programming of vote totals shall be kept in a secure location and, if there is a recanvass of votes, the officer entrusted with the magnetic storage medium shall submit his or her affidavit stating that they are the true media used in the election and have not been altered.


Chapter 10. Tie Votes

Article 1. Elections Other Than Primary Elections

Ca Codes (elec:15650-15654) Elections Code Section 15650-15654



15650. This article does not apply to any primary election.


15651. (a) If at any election, except as provided in subdivision (b) and an election for Governor or Lieutenant Governor, two or more persons receive an equal and the highest number of votes for an office to be voted for in more than one county, the Secretary of State shall forthwith summon the candidates who have received the tie votes, whether upon the canvass of the returns by the Secretary of State or upon recount by a court, to appear before him or her at the Secretary of State's office at the State Capitol at a time to be designated by him or her. The Secretary of State shall at that time and place determine the tie by lot. Except as provided in subdivision (b), in the same manner, at a time and place designated by it, the election board shall determine a tie vote, whether upon the canvass of the returns by the election board or upon a recount by a court, for candidates voted for wholly within one county or city. (b) In lieu of resolving a tie vote by lot as provided in subdivision (a), the legislative body of any county, city, or special district not subject to the Uniform District Election Law (Part 4 (commencing with Section 10500) of Division 10) may resolve a tie vote by the conduct of a special runoff election involving those candidates who received an equal number of votes and the highest number of votes. A special runoff election shall be held only if the legislative body adopts the provisions of this subdivision prior to the conduct of the election resulting in the tie vote. If a legislative body decides to call a special runoff election in the event of a tie vote, all future elections conducted by that body shall be resolved by the conduct of a special runoff election, unless the legislative body later repeals the authority for the conduct of a special runoff election. If a special runoff election is held pursuant to this subdivision, the legislative body shall call for the runoff election to be held in the local entity on a Tuesday not less than 40 nor more than 125 days after the administrative or judicial certification of the election that resulted in a tie vote. If a regular election is to be held throughout the jurisdiction within that time period, the special runoff election shall be held on the same day as, and consolidated with, the regular election.


15652. If the tie vote has been determined pursuant to Section 15651, the person declared elected by the Secretary of State or the election board is entitled to a certificate of election. The Secretary of State, the county elections official or the city elections official, whichever the case may be, shall immediately make out and deliver to that person a certificate of election.


15653. When two or more persons have an equal and highest number of votes for either Governor or Lieutenant Governor, the Secretary of State shall deliver a certificate to that effect to each of the tied candidates. Each tied candidate may present the certificate to the Legislature in the manner that he or she sees fit.


15654. In case any two or more persons have an equal and highest number of votes for either Governor or Lieutenant Governor, the Legislature shall, by a joint vote of both houses, choose one of the persons to fill the office.


Article 2. At Primary Elections

Ca Codes (elec:15670-15673) Elections Code Section 15670-15673



15670. This article applies only to: (a) Candidates for delegates to a national convention for the nomination of party candidates for President and Vice President of the United States. (b) Candidates for nomination at the direct primary to offices other than nonpartisan offices or voter-nominated offices.


15671. In case of a tie vote for member of a county central committee, where the office is to be voted for wholly within one county, the election board shall forthwith summon the candidates who have received tie votes to appear before it, at a time and place to be designated by the board, and the board shall at that time and place determine the tie by lot.


15672. In the case of a tie vote for an office other than a judicial or school office to be voted on in more than one county, the Secretary of State shall forthwith summon the candidates who have received tie votes to appear before him or her at his or her office at the State Capitol at a time to be designated by him or her. The Secretary of State shall at that time and place determine the tie by lot.


15673. The summons mentioned in this article shall in every case be mailed to the address of the candidate as it appears upon his or her affidavit of registration, at least five days before the day fixed for the determination of the tie vote.


Chapter 11. Extension Of Deadlines

Ca Codes (elec:15700-15702) Elections Code Section 15700-15702



15700. It is the intent of the Legislature in enacting this chapter to provide guidance in interpreting Section 2.5 of Article II of the California Constitution.


15701. If a postelection deadline imposed by this code prevents the proper tabulation or recounting of ballots, the county elections official of the affected county may petition the superior court of that county for an extension sufficient to permit the tabulation or recounting of ballots. The court may grant the petition if it finds that the time limitation would prevent the counting of all votes as required by Section 2.5 of Article II of the California Constitution.


15702. For purposes of Section 2.5 of Article II of the California Constitution, "vote" includes all action necessary to make a vote effective in any primary, special, or general election, including, but not limited to, voter registration, any other act prerequisite to voting, casting a ballot, and having the ballot counted properly and included in the appropriate totals of votes cast with respect to candidates for public office and ballot measures.


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