Bill Text: TX HB4019 | 2021-2022 | 87th Legislature | Introduced


Bill Title: Relating to accommodating voters with a disability.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Democrat 1-0)

Status: (Introduced) 2021-03-29 - Referred to Elections [HB4019 Detail]

Download: Texas-2021-HB4019-Introduced.html
  87R10740 MLH-D
 
  By: Bucy H.B. No. 4019
 
 
 
A BILL TO BE ENTITLED
 
AN ACT
  relating to accommodating voters with a disability.
         BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
         SECTION 1.  Section 63.0015, Election Code, is amended by
  amending Subsections (b), (c), and (d) and adding Subsection (f) to
  read as follows:
         (b)  An election officer shall [may] accept a person with a
  mobility problem that substantially impairs a person's ability to
  ambulate who is offering to vote before accepting others offering
  to vote at the polling place who arrived before the person.
         (c)  Notice of the priority given to persons with a mobility
  problem that substantially impairs a person's ability to ambulate
  shall be posted:
               (1)  at [one or more locations in] each entrance to a
  polling place where it can be read by persons waiting to vote;
               (2)  on the Internet website of the secretary of state;
  and
               (3)  on each Internet website relating to elections
  maintained by a county.
         (d)  The notice required by Subsection (c) must read:
  "Pursuant to Section 63.0015, Election Code, an election officer
  shall [may] give voting order priority to individuals with a
  mobility problem that substantially impairs the person's ability to
  move around. A person assisting an individual with a mobility
  problem may also, at the individual's request, be given voting
  order priority. Disabilities and conditions that may qualify you
  for voting order priority include paralysis, lung disease, the use
  of portable oxygen, cardiac deficiency, severe limitation in the
  ability to walk due to arthritic, neurological, or orthopedic
  condition, wheelchair confinement, arthritis, foot disorder, the
  inability to walk 200 feet without stopping to rest, or use of a
  brace, cane, crutch, or other assistive device."
         (f)  All procedures and accommodations available for voters
  with disabilities, including voting under Section 64.009, shall be
  posted in an accessible manner on the county clerk's Internet
  website.
         SECTION 2.  Section 64.009, Election Code, is amended by
  adding Subsection (e) to read as follows:
         (e)  At each polling place two parking spaces shall be
  reserved for voting under this section. The spaces may not be
  parking spaces designated specifically for persons with
  disabilities. The parking spaces must be clearly marked for use by a
  voter who is unable to enter the polling place with a sign. The sign
  must have a telephone number that a voter may call or text to
  request assistance from election officials at the polling place.
         SECTION 3.  Subchapter A, Chapter 84, Election Code, is
  amended by adding Section 84.0121 to read as follows:
         Sec. 84.0121.  CLERK TO POST APPLICATION FORM ONLINE. (a)
  The early voting clerk shall post the official application form for
  an early voting ballot on the clerk's Internet website in a format
  that allows a person to easily complete the application directly on
  the website before printing.
         (b)  The early voting clerk may use the application form
  provided by the secretary of state under Section 84.013 or the early
  voting clerk's own application form.
         SECTION 4.  Section 84.013, Election Code, is amended to
  read as follows:
         Sec. 84.013.  APPLICATION FORMS FURNISHED BY SECRETARY OF
  STATE. (a) The secretary of state shall maintain a supply of the
  official application forms for ballots to be voted by mail and shall
  furnish the forms in reasonable quantities without charge to
  individuals or organizations requesting them for distribution to
  voters.
         (b)  The secretary of state shall provide a printable
  application for a ballot by mail in a format that complies with
  Section 84.0121(a) to the early voting clerk for use under that
  section.
         SECTION 5.  Section 86.003, Election Code, is amended by
  amending Subsection (a) and adding Subsection (e) to read as
  follows:
         (a)  Except as provided by Subsection (e), the [The]
  balloting materials for voting by mail shall be provided to the
  voter by mail. A ballot provided by any other method may not be
  counted.
         (e)  If a voter is eligible for early voting by mail on the
  ground of disability, the balloting materials may be provided by
  e-mail in PDF format, through a scanned format, or by any other
  method of electronic transmission authorized by the secretary of
  state in writing. The secretary of state shall adopt procedures to
  implement this subsection.
         SECTION 6.  Section 104.004(e), Election Code, is amended to
  read as follows:
         (e)  If the voter is physically unable to enter the early
  voting polling place without personal assistance or a likelihood of
  injuring the voter's health, the clerk shall deliver the balloting
  materials to the voter at the polling place entrance or curb
  following the procedures prescribed by Section 64.009.
         SECTION 7.  This Act takes effect immediately if it receives
  a vote of two-thirds of all the members elected to each house, as
  provided by Section 39, Article III, Texas Constitution.  If this
  Act does not receive the vote necessary for immediate effect, this
  Act takes effect September 1, 2021.
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