Bill Text: TX SB381 | 2021-2022 | 87th Legislature | Introduced


Bill Title: Relating to the procedures for voting after changing residence to another county.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Democrat 1-0)

Status: (Introduced) 2021-03-09 - Referred to State Affairs [SB381 Detail]

Download: Texas-2021-SB381-Introduced.html
  87R3619 MLH-F
 
  By: West S.B. No. 381
 
 
 
A BILL TO BE ENTITLED
 
AN ACT
  relating to the procedures for voting after changing residence to
  another county.
         BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
         SECTION 1.  Subchapter A, Chapter 12, Election Code, is
  amended by adding Section 12.007 to read as follows:
         Sec. 12.007.  CERTAIN ELECTION OFFICERS ARE VOTER
  REGISTRARS.  An election officer serving a polling place is a deputy
  voter registrar and has the same authority as a regular deputy
  registrar.
         SECTION 2.  Section 15.002(a), Election Code, is amended to
  read as follows:
         (a)  A voter registration certificate may contain an
  explanation of the voter's rights or duties under this code,
  including:
               (1)  the procedure by which the voter will receive a
  renewal certificate;
               (2)  the necessity of notifying the registrar if the
  voter changes residence;
               (3)  the necessity of applying for a new registration
  if the voter changes residence to another county;
               (4)  the procedure for voting [period during which the
  voter may vote a limited ballot] after changing residence to
  another county;
               (5)  the procedure for voting without a certificate;
  and
               (6)  the procedure for obtaining a replacement for a
  lost or destroyed certificate.
         SECTION 3.  Section 16.031(a), Election Code, is amended to
  read as follows:
         (a)  The registrar shall cancel a voter's registration
  immediately on receipt of:
               (1)  notice under Section 13.072(b) or 15.021 or a
  response under Section 15.053 that the voter's residence is outside
  the county;
               (2)  an abstract of the voter's death certificate under
  Section 16.001(a) or an abstract of an application indicating that
  the voter is deceased under Section 16.001(b);
               (3)  an abstract of a final judgment of the voter's
  total mental incapacity, partial mental incapacity without the
  right to vote, conviction of a felony, or disqualification under
  Section 16.002, 16.003, or 16.004;
               (4)  notice under Section 63.007 [112.012] that the
  voter has voted [applied for] a provisional [limited] ballot in
  another county;
               (5)  notice from a voter registration official in
  another state that the voter has registered to vote outside this
  state;
               (6)  notice from the early voting clerk under Section
  101.053 that a federal postcard application submitted by an
  applicant states a voting residence address located outside the
  registrar's county; or
               (7)  notice from the secretary of state that the voter
  has registered to vote in another county, as determined by the
  voter's driver's license number or personal identification card
  number issued by the Department of Public Safety or social security
  number.
         SECTION 4.  Chapter 63, Election Code, is amended by adding
  Section 63.007 to read as follows:
         Sec. 63.007.  PROVISIONAL VOTING FOR VOTER WHO CHANGED
  COUNTY OF RESIDENCE. (a) After changing residence to another
  county, a person shall be accepted for provisional voting under
  this section if:
               (1)  the person would have been eligible to vote in the
  county of former residence on election day if still residing in that
  county;
               (2)  the person is registered to vote in the county of
  former residence at the time the person:
                     (A)  offers to vote in the county of new
  residence; or
                     (B)  submitted a voter registration application
  in the county of new residence;
               (3)  a voter registration for the person in the county
  of new residence is not effective on or before election day; and
               (4)  the person offers to vote in the person's new
  county of residence:
                     (A)  at any polling place during the early voting
  period;
                     (B)  at any polling place on election day if the
  county participates in the program under Section 43.007; or 
                     (C)  at the polling place of the precinct in which
  the person resides on election day if the county does not
  participate in the program under Section 43.007.
         (b)  Not later than the 30th day after the election, the
  voter registrar shall notify the voter registrar for the voter's
  former county of residence that the voter was accepted for voting
  under this section.
         SECTION 5.  Section 63.011, Election Code, is amended by
  adding Subsection (a-2) and amending Subsections (b), (b-1), and
  (c) to read as follows:
         (a-2)  A person to whom Section 63.007 applies may cast a
  provisional ballot if the person would be eligible to vote in the
  election, but for the requirement to be a registered voter, and
  executes an affidavit stating:
         "I am currently registered to vote in _________ (insert name
  of county) County and have not cast a ballot in that county in this
  election. I understand that doing so is a felony of the second
  degree under Section 64.012, Election Code."
         (b)  A form for an affidavit required by this section must be
  printed on an envelope in which the provisional ballot voted by the
  person may be placed and must include:
               (1)  a space for entering the identification number of
  the provisional ballot voted by the person; [and]
               (2)  a space for an election officer to indicate
  whether the person presented a form of identification described by
  Section 63.0101; and
               (3)  for a provisional ballot voted by the person under
  Section 63.007, a space for entering:
                     (A)  the precinct number of the precinct in which
  the voter voted; and
                     (B)  the name of the county in which the voter is
  registered to vote.
         (b-1)  The affidavit form shall [may] include space for
  disclosure of any necessary information to enable the person to
  register to vote under Chapter 13.  The secretary of state shall
  prescribe the form of the affidavit under this section.
         (c)  After executing the affidavit, the person shall be given
  a provisional ballot for the election. An election officer shall
  record the number of the ballot and, if applicable, the precinct
  number on the space provided on the affidavit.
         SECTION 6.  Section 65.054, Election Code, is amended by
  amending Subsection (b) and adding Subsection (b-1) to read as
  follows:
         (b)  Except as provided by Subsection (b-1), a [A]
  provisional ballot shall be accepted if the board determines that:
               (1)  from the information in the affidavit or contained
  in public records, the person is eligible to vote in the election
  and has not previously voted in that election;
               (2)  the person:
                     (A)  meets the identification requirements of
  Section 63.001(b) at the time the ballot was cast or in the period
  prescribed under Section 65.0541;
                     (B)  notwithstanding Chapter 110, Civil Practice
  and Remedies Code, executes an affidavit under penalty of perjury
  that states the voter has a religious objection to being
  photographed and the voter has consistently refused to be
  photographed for any governmental purpose from the time the voter
  has held this belief; or
                     (C)  executes an affidavit under penalty of
  perjury that states the voter does not have any identification
  meeting the requirements of Section 63.001(b) as a result of a
  natural disaster that was declared by the president of the United
  States or the governor, occurred not earlier than 45 days before the
  date the ballot was cast, and caused the destruction of or inability
  to access the voter's identification; and
               (3)  the voter has not been challenged and voted a
  provisional ballot solely because the voter did not meet the
  requirements for identification prescribed by Section 63.001(b).
         (b-1)  A provisional ballot cast under Section 63.007 shall
  be accepted if the board determines from the information in the
  affidavit or contained in public records that the person:
               (1)  is registered to vote in the county of the person's
  former residence;
               (2)  has not previously voted in the election; and
               (3)  is eligible to vote in the election, but for the
  requirement to be a registered voter.
         SECTION 7.  Section 65.055, Election Code, is amended by
  adding Subsection (a-1) to read as follows:
         (a-1)  If the affidavit on the envelope of a provisional
  ballot accepted under Section 65.054(b-1) contains the information
  necessary to enable the person to register to vote under Chapter 13,
  the voter registrar shall make a copy of the affidavit under
  procedures prescribed by the secretary of state. The voter
  registrar shall treat the copy as an application for registration
  under Chapter 13.
         SECTION 8.  Section 111.001, Election Code, is amended to
  read as follows:
         Sec. 111.001.  RESTRICTED BALLOT.  In this subtitle,
  "restricted ballot" means a ballot that is restricted to the
  offices and propositions stating measures on which a person is
  entitled to vote under Chapter [112,] 113[,] or 114.
         SECTION 9.  Section 111.009, Election Code, is amended to
  read as follows:
         Sec. 111.009.  EXCLUDING VOTER FROM PRECINCT EARLY VOTING
  LIST. The name of a person [voting a limited ballot by personal
  appearance under Chapter 112 or] to whom a [limited or] federal
  ballot to be voted by mail is provided under Chapter [112 or] 114 is
  not required to be included on the precinct early voting list.
         SECTION 10.  Section 162.002, Election Code, is amended to
  read as follows:
         Sec. 162.002.  ELIGIBILITY TO AFFILIATE. To be eligible to
  affiliate with a political party, a person must be:
               (1)  a registered voter; or
               (2)  eligible to vote a provisional [limited] ballot
  under Section 63.007 at the time of affiliating.
         SECTION 11.  Section 162.005, Election Code, is amended to
  read as follows:
         Sec. 162.005.  AFFILIATION PROCEDURE: EARLY VOTING BY MAIL.  
  Subject to Section 162.004(a-1), the early voting clerk in a
  general primary election shall provide an affiliation certificate
  with each early voting [or limited] ballot to be voted by mail. The
  certificate is not required to be provided to an applicant for a
  runoff primary ballot unless the applicant requests it.
         SECTION 12.  Section 174.003, Election Code, is amended to
  read as follows:
         Sec. 174.003.  DELEGATE TO BE QUALIFIED VOTER. In addition
  to the requirement of party affiliation, to be eligible to serve as
  a delegate to a county, senatorial district, or state convention
  held under this chapter, a person must be a qualified voter of the
  territory that the person is selected to represent or a resident of
  that territory who is eligible to vote a provisional [limited]
  ballot under Section 63.007.
         SECTION 13.  Section 174.024, Election Code, is amended to
  read as follows:
         Sec. 174.024.  PARTICIPANT TO BE REGISTERED VOTER. In
  addition to the requirement of party affiliation, to be eligible to
  participate in a precinct convention held under this subchapter, a
  person must be a registered voter of the precinct or a precinct
  resident who is eligible to vote a provisional [limited] ballot
  under Section 63.007.
         SECTION 14.  Section 181.065, Election Code, is amended to
  read as follows:
         Sec. 181.065.  PARTICIPANT TO BE REGISTERED VOTER. To be
  eligible to participate in a precinct convention held under this
  chapter, a person must be a registered voter of the precinct or a
  precinct resident who is eligible to vote a provisional [limited]
  ballot under Section 63.007.
         SECTION 15.  Chapter 112, Election Code, is repealed.
         SECTION 16.  Not later than December 1, 2021, the secretary
  of state shall adopt all necessary rules to implement this Act.
         SECTION 17.  (a)  Except as provided by Subsection (b) of
  this section, this Act takes effect January 1, 2022.
         (b)  Section 16 of this Act takes effect September 1, 2021.
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