Bill Text: NH SB157 | 2023 | Regular Session | Introduced

NOTE: There are more recent revisions of this legislation. Read Latest Draft
Bill Title: Relative to election audits.

Spectrum: Slight Partisan Bill (Republican 3-1)

Status: (Engrossed - Dead) 2023-06-27 - Conference Committee Report; Not Signed Off; House Journal 16 [SB157 Detail]

Download: New_Hampshire-2023-SB157-Introduced.html










AN ACT relative to election audits.


SPONSORS: Sen. Gray, Dist 6; Sen. Murphy, Dist 16; Sen. Perkins Kwoka, Dist 21; Rep. S. Smith, Sull. 3


COMMITTEE: Election Law and Municipal Affairs






This bill requires the secretary of state to conduct audits of a certain percentage of AccuVote machines to be used at state primary and general elections.


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Explanation: Matter added to current law appears in bold italics.

Matter removed from current law appears [in brackets and struckthrough.]

Matter which is either (a) all new or (b) repealed and reenacted appears in regular type.






In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Twenty Three


AN ACT relative to election audits.


Be it Enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened:


1  New Subdivision; Election Audits.  Amend RSA 660 by inserting after section 31 the following new subdivision:

Election Audits

660:32  Audit Authorized.  The secretary of state may conduct an audit of the AccuVote electronic ballot counting devices used in any state primary and general elections.

660:33  Equipment and Technical Assistance.  The secretary of state shall procure the equipment and arrange for any required technical assistance to support the audit process.  The equipment selected shall be capable of:

I.  Reading AccuVote ballots.

II.  Scanning approximately 2,000 ballots per hour.

III.  Capturing an image of both sides of the ballot.

IV.  Recording the voters' choices.

V.  Assigning a unique identifier to each record.

VI.  Displaying the ballot image and voter choice for randomly selected ballots by the unique identifier.

660:34  State AccuVote Election Audit.  

I.  The secretary of state shall randomly select not less than 4 towns or city wards that will use AccuVote devices at a state general election to be audited.  The secretary of state may divide towns or city wards into groups for the selection based on criteria such as the estimated number of election day ballots to be processed.  The selection of towns or city wards to be audited shall be non-public and made at least 2 weeks prior to the general election, after the AccuVote memory cards have been programed.  

II.  At a state primary election, the secretary of state shall conduct an audit of one percent of the number of AccuVote machines to be used, but not less than 2 AccuVote machines.  At a state general election, the secretary of state shall conduct an audit of 3 percent of AccuVote machines to be used, but not more than 8 AccuVote machines.

III.  The secretary of state shall not announce which towns or city wards have been selected to be audited until at least 12:00 p.m. on election day.

IV.  The audit team shall consist of at least 2 individuals appointed by the secretary of state.  One such individual shall have been trained by the secretary of state in the audit process and the use of audit equipment.  The other individual, if not trained by the secretary of state in the audit process and the use of audit equipment, shall be an elected election official.  The audit team shall scan all of the ballots which were cast and processed by the AccuVote machines in the selected towns or city wards.  The secretary of state may enlist the support of technical experts as an audit team member to assist with the technology being used.

V.  The audit shall be open to the public but no one except audit team members shall be allowed to touch any ballot or any of the audit equipment.

VI.  Preliminary results from the scanning of the ballots shall be announced by the audit team at the conclusion of the town or city ward audit.  The secretary of state shall report final results pursuant to paragraph VII.

VII.  A random sample of not less than 5 percent of the ballots scanned shall be selected and the images of the ballots selected shall be compared with the voters' choices recorded for the ballot.  Any differences identified during the comparison shall be documented.

VIII.  The secretary of state shall make the results of the audits available prior to 12:00 p.m. on the Friday after the election.  The secretary shall also report the results to the ballot law commission, and the chairpersons of the house of representatives and senate standing committees with jurisdiction over election law.

2  Effective Date.  This act shall take effect upon its passage.









AN ACT relative to election audits.



Due to time constraints, the Office of Legislative Budget Assistant is unable to provide a fiscal note for this bill, as introduced, at this time.  When completed, the fiscal note will be forwarded to the Senate Clerk's Office.



Department of State