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The Florida Statutes

The 2017 Florida Statutes

Title IX
ELECTORS AND ELECTIONS
Chapter 98
REGISTRATION OFFICE, OFFICERS, AND PROCEDURES
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CHAPTER 98
CHAPTER 98
REGISTRATION OFFICE, OFFICERS, AND PROCEDURES
98.015 Supervisor of elections; election, tenure of office, compensation, custody of registration-related documents, office hours, successor, seal; appointment of deputy supervisors; duties.
98.035 Statewide voter registration system; implementation, operation, and maintenance.
98.045 Administration of voter registration.
98.065 Registration list maintenance programs.
98.0655 Registration list maintenance forms.
98.075 Registration records maintenance activities; ineligibility determinations.
98.0755 Appeal of determination of ineligibility.
98.077 Update of voter signature.
98.081 Names removed from the statewide voter registration system; restrictions on reregistering; recordkeeping; restoration of erroneously or illegally removed names.
98.093 Duty of officials to furnish information relating to deceased persons, persons adjudicated mentally incapacitated, and persons convicted of a felony.
98.0981 Reports; voting history; statewide voter registration system information; precinct-level election results; book closing statistics.
98.212 Department and supervisors to furnish statistical and other information.
98.255 Voter education programs.
98.461 Registration application, precinct register; contents.
98.015 Supervisor of elections; election, tenure of office, compensation, custody of registration-related documents, office hours, successor, seal; appointment of deputy supervisors; duties.
(1) A supervisor of elections shall be elected in each county at the general election in each year the number of which is a multiple of four for a 4-year term commencing on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in January succeeding his or her election. Each supervisor shall, before performing any of his or her duties, take the oath prescribed in s. 5, Art. II of the State Constitution.
(2) The supervisor’s compensation shall be paid by the board of county commissioners.
(3) The supervisor shall update voter registration information, enter new voter registrations into the statewide voter registration system, and act as the official custodian of documents received by the supervisor related to the registration of electors and changes in voter registration status of electors of the supervisor’s county.
(4) At a minimum, the office of the supervisor must be open Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays, for a period of not less than 8 hours per day, beginning no later than 9 a.m.
(5) The supervisor shall preserve statements and other information required to be filed with the supervisor’s office pursuant to chapter 106 for a period of 10 years from date of receipt.
(6) The supervisor shall, upon leaving office, deliver to his or her successor immediately all records belonging to the office.
(7) Each supervisor is authorized to obtain for the office an impression seal approved by the department. An impression of the seal with a description thereof shall be filed with the department. The supervisor is empowered to attach an impression of the seal upon official documents and certificates executed over the supervisor’s signature and take oaths and acknowledgments under the supervisor’s seal in matters pertaining to the office. However, said seal need not be affixed to registration certificates.
(8) Each supervisor may select and appoint, subject to removal by the supervisor, as many deputy supervisors as are necessary, whose compensation must be paid by the supervisor and who shall have the same powers and whose acts shall have the same effect as the acts of the supervisor; except that the supervisor shall limit the power to appoint deputy supervisors to designated deputy supervisors. Each deputy supervisor shall, before entering office, take an oath in writing that he or she will faithfully perform the duties of the deputy supervisor’s office, which oath must be acknowledged by the supervisor or a designated deputy supervisor and must be filed in the office of the supervisor.
(9) Each supervisor must make training in the proper implementation of voter registration procedures available to any individual, group, center for independent living, or public library in the supervisor’s county.
(10) Each supervisor shall ensure that all voter registration and list maintenance procedures conducted by such supervisor are in compliance with any applicable requirements prescribed by rule of the department through the statewide voter registration system or prescribed by the Voting Rights Act of 1965, the National Voter Registration Act of 1993, or the Help America Vote Act of 2002.
(11) Each supervisor shall ensure that any voter registration system used by the supervisor for administering his or her duties as a voter registration official complies with the specifications and procedures established by rule of the department and the statewide voter registration system.
(12) Each supervisor shall maintain a list of valid residential street addresses for purposes of verifying the legal addresses of voters residing in the supervisor’s county. To the maximum extent practicable, the list shall include information necessary to differentiate one residence from another, including, but not limited to, a distinguishing apartment, suite, lot, room, or dormitory room number or other identifier. If a voter registration application does not include information necessary to differentiate one residence from another, the supervisor shall make all reasonable efforts to obtain such information in order to maintain the list of valid residential street addresses. The supervisor shall make all reasonable efforts to coordinate with county 911 service providers, property appraisers, the United States Postal Service, or other agencies as necessary to ensure the continued accuracy of such list. The supervisor shall provide the list of valid residential addresses to the statewide voter registration system in the manner and frequency specified by rule of the department.
History.chs. 3700, 3704, 1887; s. 8, ch. 3879, 1889; RS 162; s. 9, ch. 4328, 1895; GS 179, 180; s. 1, ch. 5614, 1907; s. 1, ch. 9271, 1923; RGS 223, 224; CGL 258, 259; ss. 1, 2, ch. 22759, 1945; s. 2, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 10, ch. 65-134; ss. 10, 11, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 33, ch. 69-216; s. 5, ch. 77-175; s. 25, ch. 94-224; s. 1385, ch. 95-147; s. 17, ch. 98-34; s. 2, ch. 98-129; s. 16, ch. 2005-278; s. 4, ch. 2016-23.
Note.Former ss. 98.13, 98.14, 98.17; s. 98.161.
98.035 Statewide voter registration system; implementation, operation, and maintenance.
(1) The Secretary of State, as chief election officer of the state, shall be responsible for implementing, operating, and maintaining, in a uniform and nondiscriminatory manner, a single, uniform, official, centralized, interactive, computerized statewide voter registration system as required by the Help America Vote Act of 2002. The department may adopt rules to administer this section.
(2) The statewide voter registration system must contain the name and registration information of every legally registered voter in the state. All voters shall be assigned a unique identifier. The system shall be the official list of registered voters in the state and shall provide secured access by authorized voter registration officials. The system shall enable voter registration officials to provide, access, and update voter registration information.
(3) The department may not contract with any other entity for the operation of the statewide voter registration system.
(4) The implementation of the statewide voter registration system shall not prevent any supervisor of elections from acquiring, maintaining, or using any hardware or software necessary or desirable to carry out the supervisor’s responsibilities related to the use of voter registration information or the conduct of elections, provided that such hardware or software does not conflict with the operation of the statewide voter registration system.
(5) The department may adopt rules governing the access, use, and operation of the statewide voter registration system to ensure security, uniformity, and integrity of the system.
History.s. 17, ch. 2005-278.
98.045 Administration of voter registration.
(1) ELIGIBILITY OF APPLICANT.The supervisor must ensure that any eligible applicant for voter registration is registered to vote and that each application for voter registration is processed in accordance with law. The supervisor shall determine whether a voter registration applicant is ineligible based on any of the following:
(a) The failure to complete a voter registration application as specified in s. 97.053.
(b) The applicant is deceased.
(c) The applicant has been convicted of a felony for which his or her civil rights have not been restored.
(d) The applicant has been adjudicated mentally incapacitated with respect to the right to vote and such right has not been restored.
(e) The applicant does not meet the age requirement pursuant to s. 97.041.
(f) The applicant is not a United States citizen.
(g) The applicant is a fictitious person.
(h) The applicant has provided an address of legal residence that is not his or her legal residence.
(i) The applicant has provided a driver license number, Florida identification card number, or the last four digits of a social security number that is not verifiable by the department.
(2) REMOVAL OF REGISTERED VOTERS.
(a) Once a voter is registered, the name of that voter may not be removed from the statewide voter registration system except at the written request of the voter, by reason of the voter’s conviction of a felony or adjudication as mentally incapacitated with respect to voting, by death of the voter, or pursuant to a registration list maintenance activity conducted pursuant to s. 98.065 or s. 98.075.
(b) Information received by a voter registration official from an election official in another state indicating that a registered voter in this state has registered to vote in that other state shall be considered as a written request from the voter to have the voter’s name removed from the statewide voter registration system.
(3) PUBLIC RECORDS ACCESS AND RETENTION.Each supervisor shall maintain for at least 2 years, and make available for public inspection and copying, all records concerning implementation of registration list maintenance programs and activities conducted pursuant to ss. 98.065 and 98.075. The records must include lists of the name and address of each person to whom a notice was sent and information as to whether each such person responded to the mailing, but may not include any information that is confidential or exempt from public records requirements under this code.
(4) STATEWIDE ELECTRONIC DATABASE OF VALID RESIDENTIAL STREET ADDRESSES.
(a) The department shall compile and maintain a statewide electronic database of valid residential street addresses from the information provided by the supervisors of elections pursuant to s. 98.015. The department shall evaluate the information provided by the supervisors of elections to identify any duplicate addresses and any address that may overlap county boundaries.
(b) The department shall make the statewide database of valid street addresses available to the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles as provided in s. 97.057(10). The Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles shall use the database for purposes of validating the legal residential addresses provided in voter registration applications received by the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles.
(5) FORMS.The department may prescribe by rule forms necessary to conduct maintenance of records in the statewide voter registration system.
History.s. 26, ch. 94-224; s. 36, ch. 97-13; s. 2, ch. 2002-17; s. 7, ch. 2003-415; s. 9, ch. 2005-277; s. 18, ch. 2005-278.
98.065 Registration list maintenance programs.
(1) The supervisor must conduct a general registration list maintenance program to protect the integrity of the electoral process by ensuring the maintenance of accurate and current voter registration records in the statewide voter registration system. The program must be uniform, nondiscriminatory, and in compliance with the Voting Rights Act of 1965, the National Voter Registration Act of 1993, and the Help America Vote Act of 2002. As used in this subsection, the term “nondiscriminatory” applies to and includes persons with disabilities.
(2) A supervisor must incorporate one or more of the following procedures in the supervisor’s biennial registration list maintenance program under which:
(a) Change-of-address information supplied by the United States Postal Service through its licensees is used to identify registered voters whose addresses might have changed;
(b) Change-of-address information is identified from returned nonforwardable return-if-undeliverable mail sent to all registered voters in the county; or
(c) Change-of-address information is identified from returned nonforwardable return-if-undeliverable address confirmation requests mailed to all registered voters who have not voted in the last 2 years and who did not make a written request that their registration records be updated during that time.
(3) A registration list maintenance program must be conducted by each supervisor, at a minimum, in each odd-numbered year and must be completed not later than 90 days prior to the date of any federal election. All list maintenance actions associated with each voter must be entered, tracked, and maintained in the statewide voter registration system.
(4)(a) If the supervisor receives change-of-address information pursuant to the activities conducted in subsection (2), from jury notices signed by the voter and returned to the courts, from the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, or from other sources which indicates that a registered voter’s legal residence might have changed to another location within the state, the supervisor must change the registration records to reflect the new address and must send the voter an address change notice as provided in s. 98.0655(2).
(b) If the supervisor of elections receives change-of-address information pursuant to the activities conducted in subsection (2), from jury notices signed by the voter and returned to the courts, or from other sources which indicates that a registered voter’s legal residence might have changed to a location outside the state, the supervisor of elections shall send an address confirmation final notice to the voter as provided in s. 98.0655(3).
(c) The supervisor must designate as inactive all voters who have been sent an address confirmation final notice and who have not returned the postage prepaid, preaddressed return form within 30 days or for which the final notice has been returned as undeliverable. Names on the inactive list may not be used to calculate the number of signatures needed on any petition. A voter on the inactive list may be restored to the active list of voters upon the voter updating his or her registration, requesting a vote-by-mail ballot, or appearing to vote. However, if the voter does not update his or her voter registration information, request a vote-by-mail ballot, or vote by the second general election after being placed on the inactive list, the voter’s name shall be removed from the statewide voter registration system and the voter shall be required to reregister to have his or her name restored to the statewide voter registration system.
(5) A notice may not be issued pursuant to this section and a voter’s name may not be removed from the statewide voter registration system later than 90 days prior to the date of a federal election. However, this section does not preclude the removal of the name of a voter from the statewide voter registration system at any time upon the voter’s written request, by reason of the voter’s death, or upon a determination of the voter’s ineligibility as provided in s. 98.075(7).
(6)(a) No later than July 31 and January 31 of each year, the supervisor must certify to the department the list maintenance activities conducted during the first 6 months and the second 6 months of the year, respectively, including the number of address confirmation requests sent, the number of voters designated as inactive, and the number of voters removed from the statewide voter registration system.
(b) If, based on the certification provided pursuant to paragraph (a), the department determines that a supervisor has not conducted the list maintenance activities required by this section, the department shall conduct the appropriate list maintenance activities for that county. Failure to conduct list maintenance activities as required in this section constitutes a violation of s. 104.051.
History.s. 28, ch. 94-224; s. 6, ch. 2002-281; s. 19, ch. 2005-278; s. 6, ch. 2008-95; s. 4, ch. 2016-37.
98.0655 Registration list maintenance forms.The department shall prescribe registration list maintenance forms to be used by the supervisors which must include:
(1) An address confirmation request that must contain:
(a) The voter’s name and address of legal residence as shown on the voter registration record; and
(b) A request that the voter notify the supervisor if either the voter’s name or address of legal residence is incorrect.
(2) An address change notice that must be sent to the newly recorded address of legal residence by forwardable mail, including a postage prepaid, preaddressed return form with which the voter may verify or correct the voter’s new address information.
(3) An address confirmation final notice that must be sent to the newly recorded address of legal residence by forwardable mail and must contain a postage prepaid, preaddressed return form and a statement that:
(a) If the voter has not changed his or her legal residence or has changed his or her legal residence within the state, the voter should return the form within 30 days after the date on which the notice was sent to the voter.
(b) If the voter has changed his or her legal residence to a location outside the state:
1. The voter shall return the form, which serves as a request to be removed from the registration books; and
2. The voter shall be provided with information on how to register in the new jurisdiction in order to be eligible to vote.
(c) If the return form is not returned, the voter’s name shall be designated as inactive in the statewide voter registration system.
History.s. 7, ch. 2008-95.
98.075 Registration records maintenance activities; ineligibility determinations.
(1) MAINTENANCE OF RECORDS.The department shall protect the integrity of the electoral process by ensuring the maintenance of accurate and current voter registration records. List maintenance activities must be uniform, nondiscriminatory, and in compliance with the Voting Rights Act of 1965, the National Voter Registration Act of 1993, and the Help America Vote Act of 2002. The department may adopt by rule uniform standards and procedures to interpret and administer this section.
(2) DUPLICATE REGISTRATION.The department shall identify those voters who are registered more than once or those applicants whose registration applications would result in duplicate registrations. The most recent application shall be deemed an update to the voter registration record.
(3) DECEASED PERSONS.
(a)1. The department shall identify those registered voters who are deceased by comparing information received from either:
a. The Department of Health as provided in s. 98.093; or
b. The United States Social Security Administration, including, but not limited to, any master death file or index compiled by the United States Social Security Administration.
2. Within 7 days after receipt of such information through the statewide voter registration system, the supervisor shall remove the name of the registered voter.
(b) The supervisor shall remove the name of a deceased registered voter from the statewide voter registration system upon receipt of a copy of a death certificate issued by a governmental agency authorized to issue death certificates.
(4) ADJUDICATION OF MENTAL INCAPACITY.The department shall identify those registered voters who have been adjudicated mentally incapacitated with respect to voting and who have not had their voting rights restored by comparing information received from the clerk of the circuit court as provided in s. 98.093. The department shall review such information and make an initial determination as to whether the information is credible and reliable. If the department determines that the information is credible and reliable, the department shall notify the supervisor and provide a copy of the supporting documentation indicating the potential ineligibility of the voter to be registered. Upon receipt of the notice that the department has made a determination of initial credibility and reliability, the supervisor shall adhere to the procedures set forth in subsection (7) prior to the removal of a registered voter from the statewide voter registration system.
(5) FELONY CONVICTION.The department shall identify those registered voters who have been convicted of a felony and whose rights have not been restored by comparing information received from, but not limited to, a clerk of the circuit court, the Board of Executive Clemency, the Department of Corrections, the Department of Law Enforcement, or a United States Attorney’s Office, as provided in s. 98.093. The department shall review such information and make an initial determination as to whether the information is credible and reliable. If the department determines that the information is credible and reliable, the department shall notify the supervisor and provide a copy of the supporting documentation indicating the potential ineligibility of the voter to be registered. Upon receipt of the notice that the department has made a determination of initial credibility and reliability, the supervisor shall adhere to the procedures set forth in subsection (7) prior to the removal of a registered voter’s name from the statewide voter registration system.
(6) OTHER BASES FOR INELIGIBILITY.If the department or supervisor receives information from sources other than those identified in subsections (2)-(5) that a registered voter is ineligible because he or she is deceased, adjudicated a convicted felon without having had his or her civil rights restored, adjudicated mentally incapacitated without having had his or her voting rights restored, does not meet the age requirement pursuant to s. 97.041, is not a United States citizen, is a fictitious person, or has listed a residence that is not his or her legal residence, the supervisor must adhere to the procedures set forth in subsection (7) prior to the removal of a registered voter’s name from the statewide voter registration system.
(7) PROCEDURES FOR REMOVAL.
(a) If the supervisor receives notice or information pursuant to subsections (4)-(6), the supervisor of the county in which the voter is registered shall:
1. Notify the registered voter of his or her potential ineligibility by mail within 7 days after receipt of notice or information. The notice shall include:
a. A statement of the basis for the registered voter’s potential ineligibility and a copy of any documentation upon which the potential ineligibility is based.
b. A statement that failure to respond within 30 days after receipt of the notice may result in a determination of ineligibility and in removal of the registered voter’s name from the statewide voter registration system.
c. A return form that requires the registered voter to admit or deny the accuracy of the information underlying the potential ineligibility for purposes of a final determination by the supervisor.
d. A statement that, if the voter is denying the accuracy of the information underlying the potential ineligibility, the voter has a right to request a hearing for the purpose of determining eligibility.
e. Instructions for the registered voter to contact the supervisor of elections of the county in which the voter is registered if assistance is needed in resolving the matter.
f. Instructions for seeking restoration of civil rights following a felony conviction, if applicable.
2. If the mailed notice is returned as undeliverable, the supervisor shall publish notice once in a newspaper of general circulation in the county in which the voter was last registered. The notice shall contain the following:
a. The voter’s name and address.
b. A statement that the voter is potentially ineligible to be registered to vote.
c. A statement that failure to respond within 30 days after the notice is published may result in a determination of ineligibility by the supervisor and removal of the registered voter’s name from the statewide voter registration system.
d. An instruction for the voter to contact the supervisor no later than 30 days after the date of the published notice to receive information regarding the basis for the potential ineligibility and the procedure to resolve the matter.
e. An instruction to the voter that, if further assistance is needed, the voter should contact the supervisor of elections of the county in which the voter is registered.
3. If a registered voter fails to respond to a notice pursuant to subparagraph 1. or subparagraph 2., the supervisor shall make a final determination of the voter’s eligibility. If the supervisor determines that the voter is ineligible, the supervisor shall remove the name of the registered voter from the statewide voter registration system. The supervisor shall notify the registered voter of the supervisor’s determination and action.
4. If a registered voter responds to the notice pursuant to subparagraph 1. or subparagraph 2. and admits the accuracy of the information underlying the potential ineligibility, the supervisor shall make a final determination of ineligibility and shall remove the voter’s name from the statewide voter registration system. The supervisor shall notify the registered voter of the supervisor’s determination and action.
5. If a registered voter responds to the notice issued pursuant to subparagraph 1. or subparagraph 2. and denies the accuracy of the information underlying the potential ineligibility but does not request a hearing, the supervisor shall review the evidence and make a final determination of eligibility. If such registered voter requests a hearing, the supervisor shall send notice to the registered voter to attend a hearing at a time and place specified in the notice. Upon hearing all evidence presented at the hearing, the supervisor shall make a determination of eligibility. If the supervisor determines that the registered voter is ineligible, the supervisor shall remove the voter’s name from the statewide voter registration system and notify the registered voter of the supervisor’s determination and action.
(b) The following shall apply to this subsection:
1. All determinations of eligibility shall be based on a preponderance of the evidence.
2. All proceedings are exempt from the provisions of chapter 120.
3. Any notice shall be sent to the registered voter by certified mail, return receipt requested, or other means that provides a verification of receipt or shall be published in a newspaper of general circulation where the voter was last registered, whichever is applicable.
4. The supervisor shall remove the name of any registered voter from the statewide voter registration system only after the supervisor makes a final determination that the voter is ineligible to vote.
5. Any voter whose name has been removed from the statewide voter registration system pursuant to a determination of ineligibility may appeal that determination under the provisions of s. 98.0755.
6. Any voter whose name was removed from the statewide voter registration system on the basis of a determination of ineligibility who subsequently becomes eligible to vote must reregister in order to have his or her name restored to the statewide voter registration system.
(8) CERTIFICATION.
(a) No later than July 31 and January 31 of each year, the supervisor shall certify to the department the activities conducted pursuant to this section during the first 6 months and the second 6 months of the year, respectively. The certification shall include the number of persons to whom notices were sent pursuant to subsection (7), the number of persons who responded to the notices, the number of notices returned as undeliverable, the number of notices published in the newspaper, the number of hearings conducted, and the number of persons removed from the statewide voter registration systems and the reasons for such removals.
(b) If, based on the certification provided pursuant to paragraph (a), the department determines that a supervisor has not satisfied the requirements of this section, the department shall satisfy the appropriate requirements for that county. Failure to satisfy the requirements of this section shall constitute a violation of s. 104.051.
History.s. 29, ch. 94-224; s. 1386, ch. 95-147; s. 20, ch. 2005-278; s. 9, ch. 2011-40.
98.0755 Appeal of determination of ineligibility.Appeal of the supervisor’s determination of ineligibility pursuant to s. 98.075(7) may be taken to the circuit court in and for the county where the person was registered. Notice of appeal must be filed within the time and in the manner provided by the Florida Rules of Appellate Procedure and acts as supersedeas. Trial in the circuit court is de novo and governed by the rules of that court. Unless the person can show that his or her name was erroneously or illegally removed from the statewide voter registration system, or that he or she is indigent, the person must bear the costs of the trial in the circuit court. Otherwise, the cost of the appeal must be paid by the supervisor of elections.
History.s. 21, ch. 2005-278.
98.077 Update of voter signature.
(1) A registered voter may update his or her signature on file in the statewide voter registration system at any time using a voter registration application submitted to a voter registration official.
(2) The department and supervisors of elections shall include in any correspondence, other than postcard notifications and notices relating to eligibility, sent to a registered voter information regarding when, where, and how to update the voter’s signature and shall provide the voter information on how to obtain a voter registration application from a voter registration official which can be returned to update the signature.
(3) At least once during each general election year, the supervisor shall publish in a newspaper of general circulation or other newspaper in the county deemed appropriate by the supervisor a notice specifying when, where, or how a voter can update his or her signature that is on file and how a voter can obtain a voter registration application from a voter registration official.
(4) All signature updates for use in verifying vote-by-mail and provisional ballots must be received by the appropriate supervisor of elections no later than the start of the canvassing of vote-by-mail ballots by the canvassing board. The signature on file at the start of the canvass of the vote-by-mail ballots is the signature that shall be used in verifying the signature on the vote-by-mail and provisional ballot certificates.
History.s. 8, ch. 2002-189; s. 10, ch. 2005-277; s. 22, ch. 2005-278; s. 8, ch. 2006-1; s. 5, ch. 2016-37.
98.081 Names removed from the statewide voter registration system; restrictions on reregistering; recordkeeping; restoration of erroneously or illegally removed names.
(1) When the name of any elector is removed from the statewide voter registration system pursuant to s. 98.065 or s. 98.075, the elector’s original registration application shall be retained by the supervisor of elections having custody of the application. As alternatives, registrations removed from the statewide voter registration system may be microfilmed and such microfilms substituted for the original registration applications; or, when voter registration information, including the voter’s signature, is maintained digitally or on electronic, magnetic, or optic media, such stored information may be substituted for the original registration application. Such microfilms or stored information shall be retained by the supervisor of elections having custody. In the event the original registration applications are microfilmed or maintained digitally or on electronic or other media, such originals may be destroyed in accordance with the schedule approved by the Bureau of Archives and Records Management of the Division of Library and Information Services of the department.
(2) When the name of any elector has been erroneously or illegally removed from the statewide voter registration system, the name of the elector shall be restored by a voter registration official upon satisfactory proof, even though the registration period for that election is closed.
History.s. 8, ch. 25391, 1949; s. 2, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 1, ch. 61-86; s. 5, ch. 77-175; s. 1, ch. 78-102; s. 14, ch. 79-365; s. 8, ch. 80-292; s. 45, ch. 81-259; s. 18, ch. 81-304; s. 7, ch. 82-143; s. 3, ch. 90-315; s. 30, ch. 94-224; s. 1387, ch. 95-147; s. 23, ch. 2005-278; s. 6, ch. 2005-286.
Note.Former s. 97.08.
98.093 Duty of officials to furnish information relating to deceased persons, persons adjudicated mentally incapacitated, and persons convicted of a felony.
(1) In order to identify ineligible registered voters and maintain accurate and current voter registration records in the statewide voter registration system pursuant to procedures in s. 98.065 or s. 98.075, it is necessary for the department and supervisors of elections to receive or access certain information from state and federal officials and entities in the format prescribed.
(2) To the maximum extent feasible, state and local government agencies shall facilitate provision of information and access to data to the department, including, but not limited to, databases that contain reliable criminal records and records of deceased persons. State and local government agencies that provide such data shall do so without charge if the direct cost incurred by those agencies is not significant.
(a) The Department of Health shall furnish monthly to the department a list containing the name, address, date of birth, date of death, social security number, race, and sex of each deceased person 17 years of age or older.
(b) Each clerk of the circuit court shall furnish monthly to the department a list of those persons who have been adjudicated mentally incapacitated with respect to voting during the preceding calendar month, a list of those persons whose mental capacity with respect to voting has been restored during the preceding calendar month, and a list of those persons who have returned signed jury notices during the preceding months to the clerk of the circuit court indicating a change of address. Each list shall include the name, address, date of birth, race, sex, and, whichever is available, the Florida driver license number, Florida identification card number, or social security number of each such person.
(c) Upon receipt of information from the United States Attorney, listing persons convicted of a felony in federal court, the department shall use such information to identify registered voters or applicants for voter registration who may be potentially ineligible based on information provided in accordance with s. 98.075.
(d) The Department of Law Enforcement shall identify those persons who have been convicted of a felony who appear in the voter registration records supplied by the statewide voter registration system, in a time and manner that enables the department to meet its obligations under state and federal law.
(e) The Florida Commission on Offender Review shall furnish at least bimonthly to the department data, including the identity of those persons granted clemency in the preceding month or any updates to prior records which have occurred in the preceding month. The data shall contain the commission’s case number and the person’s name, address, date of birth, race, gender, Florida driver license number, Florida identification card number, or the last four digits of the social security number, if available, and references to record identifiers assigned by the Department of Corrections and the Department of Law Enforcement, a unique identifier of each clemency case, and the effective date of clemency of each person.
(f) The Department of Corrections shall identify those persons who have been convicted of a felony and committed to its custody or placed on community supervision. The information must be provided to the department at a time and in a manner that enables the department to identify registered voters who are convicted felons and to meet its obligations under state and federal law.
(g) The Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles shall furnish monthly to the department a list of those persons whose names have been removed from the driver license database because they have been licensed in another state. The list shall contain the name, address, date of birth, sex, social security number, and driver license number of each such person.
(3) This section does not limit or restrict the supervisor in his or her duty to remove the names of persons from the statewide voter registration system pursuant to s. 98.075(7) based upon information received from other sources.
History.s. 3, ch. 14730, 1931; CGL 1936 Supp. 302(1); s. 10, ch. 24203, 1947; s. 11, ch. 25035, 1949; s. 2, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 1, ch. 29917; s. 9, ch. 29934, 1955; s. 33, ch. 73-333; s. 27, ch. 77-147; s. 5, ch. 77-175; s. 32, ch. 94-224; s. 1388, ch. 95-147; s. 7, ch. 99-8; s. 24, ch. 2005-278; s. 10, ch. 2011-40; s. 4, ch. 2012-5; s. 6, ch. 2014-191.
Note.Former s. 98.41; s. 98.301.
98.0981 Reports; voting history; statewide voter registration system information; precinct-level election results; book closing statistics.
(1) VOTING HISTORY AND STATEWIDE VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM INFORMATION.
(a) Within 30 days after certification by the Elections Canvassing Commission of a presidential preference primary, special election, primary election, or general election, supervisors of elections shall transmit to the department, in a uniform electronic format specified in paragraph (d), completely updated voting history information for each qualified voter who voted.
(b) After receipt of the information in paragraph (a), the department shall prepare a report in electronic format which contains the following information, separately compiled for the primary and general election for all voters qualified to vote in either election:
1. The unique identifier assigned to each qualified voter within the statewide voter registration system;
2. All information provided by each qualified voter on his or her voter registration application pursuant to s. 97.052(2), except that which is confidential or exempt from public records requirements;
3. Each qualified voter’s date of registration;
4. Each qualified voter’s current state representative district, state senatorial district, and congressional district, assigned by the supervisor of elections;
5. Each qualified voter’s current precinct; and
6. Voting history as transmitted under paragraph (a) to include whether the qualified voter voted at a precinct location, voted during the early voting period, voted by vote-by-mail ballot, attempted to vote by vote-by-mail ballot that was not counted, attempted to vote by provisional ballot that was not counted, or did not vote.
(c) Within 45 days after certification by the Elections Canvassing Commission of a presidential preference primary, special election, primary election, or general election, the department shall send to the President of the Senate, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, the Senate Minority Leader, and the House Minority Leader a report in electronic format that includes all information set forth in paragraph (b).
(d) File specifications are as follows:
1. The file shall contain records designated by the categories below for all qualified voters who, regardless of the voter’s county of residence or active or inactive registration status at the book closing for the corresponding election that the file is being created for:
a. Voted a regular ballot at a precinct location.
b. Voted at a precinct location using a provisional ballot that was subsequently counted.
c. Voted a regular ballot during the early voting period.
d. Voted during the early voting period using a provisional ballot that was subsequently counted.
e. Voted by vote-by-mail ballot.
f. Attempted to vote by vote-by-mail ballot, but the ballot was not counted.
g. Attempted to vote by provisional ballot, but the ballot was not counted in that election.
2. Each file shall be created or converted into a tab-delimited format.
3. File names shall adhere to the following convention:
a. Three-character county identifier as established by the department followed by an underscore.
b. Followed by four-character file type identifier of “VHO3” followed by an underscore.
c. Followed by FVRS election ID followed by an underscore.
d. Followed by Date Created followed by an underscore.
e. Date format is YYYYMMDD.
f. Followed by Time Created - HHMMSS.
g. Followed by “.txt”.
4. Each record shall contain the following columns: Record Identifier, FVRS Voter ID Number, FVRS Election ID Number, Vote Date, Vote History Code, Precinct, Congressional District, House District, Senate District, County Commission District, and School Board District.
(e) Each supervisor of elections shall reconcile, before submission, the aggregate total of ballots cast in each precinct as reported in the precinct-level election results to the aggregate total number of voters with voter history for the election for each district.
(f) Each supervisor of elections shall submit the results of the data reconciliation as described in paragraph (e) to the department in an electronic format and give a written explanation for any precincts where the reconciliation as described in paragraph (e) results in a discrepancy between the voter history and the election results.
(2) PRECINCT-LEVEL ELECTION RESULTS.
(a) Within 30 days after certification by the Elections Canvassing Commission of a presidential preference primary election, special election, primary election, or general election, the supervisors of elections shall collect and submit to the department precinct-level election results for the election in a uniform electronic format specified by paragraph (c). The precinct-level election results shall be compiled separately for the primary or special primary election that preceded the general or special general election, respectively. The results shall specifically include for each precinct the total of all ballots cast for each candidate or nominee to fill a national, state, county, or district office or proposed constitutional amendment, with subtotals for each candidate and ballot type, unless fewer than 10 voters voted a ballot type. “All ballots cast” means ballots cast by voters who cast a ballot whether at a precinct location, by vote-by-mail ballot including overseas vote-by-mail ballots, during the early voting period, or by provisional ballot.
(b) The department shall make such information available on a searchable, sortable, and downloadable database via its website that also includes the file layout and codes. The database shall be searchable and sortable by county, precinct, and candidate. The database shall be downloadable in a tab-delimited format. The database shall be available for download county-by-county and also as a statewide file. Such report shall also be made available upon request.
(c) The files containing the precinct-level election results shall be created in accordance with the applicable file specification:
1. The precinct-level results file shall be created or converted into a tab-delimited text file.
2. The row immediately before the first data record shall contain the column names of the data elements that make up the data records. There shall be one header record followed by multiple data records.
3. The data records shall include the following columns: County Name, Election Number, Election Date, Unique Precinct Identifier, Precinct Polling Location, Total Registered Voters, Total Registered Republicans, Total Registered Democrats, Total Registered All Other Parties, Contest Name, Candidate/Retention/Issue Name, Candidate Florida Voter Registration System ID Number, Division of Elections Unique Candidate Identifying Number, Candidate Party, District, Undervote Total, Overvote Total, Write-in Total, and Vote Total.
(3) PRECINCT-LEVEL BOOK CLOSING STATISTICS.After the date of book closing but before the date of an election as defined in s. 97.021 to fill a national, state, county, or district office, or to vote on a proposed constitutional amendment, the department shall compile the following precinct-level statistical data for each county:
(a) Precinct numbers.
(b) Total number of active registered voters by party for each precinct.
(4) REPORTS PUBLICLY AVAILABLE.The department shall also make publicly available the reports and results required in subsections (1)-(3).
(5) RULEMAKING.The department shall adopt rules and prescribe forms to carry out the purposes of this section.
History.s. 25, ch. 2005-278; s. 8, ch. 2008-95; s. 3, ch. 2010-167; s. 11, ch. 2011-40; s. 6, ch. 2016-37.
98.212 Department and supervisors to furnish statistical and other information.
(1)(a) Upon written request, the department and any supervisor of the respective counties shall, as promptly as possible, furnish to recognized public or private universities and senior colleges within the state, to state or county governmental agencies, and to recognized political party committees statistical information for the purpose of analyzing election returns and results.
(b) The department and any supervisor may require reimbursement for any part or all of the actual expenses of supplying any information requested under paragraph (a). For the purposes of this subsection, the department and supervisors may use the services of any research and statistical personnel that may be supplied.
(c) Lists of names submitted to the department and any supervisor of the respective counties for indication of registration or nonregistration or of party affiliation shall be processed at any time at cost, except that in no case shall the charge exceed 10 cents for each name on which the information is furnished.
(2) The supervisors shall provide information as requested by the department for program evaluation and reporting to the Election Assistance Commission pursuant to federal law.
History.s. 2, ch. 57-810; s. 5, ch. 77-175; s. 26, ch. 79-400; s. 34, ch. 94-224; s. 40, ch. 97-13; s. 11, ch. 2003-415; s. 26, ch. 2005-278.
98.255 Voter education programs.
(1) The Department of State shall adopt rules prescribing minimum standards for nonpartisan voter education. The standards shall, at a minimum, address:
(a) Voter registration;
(b) Balloting procedures, by mail and polling place;
(c) Voter rights and responsibilities;
(d) Distribution of sample ballots; and
(e) Public service announcements.
(2) Each county supervisor shall implement the minimum voter education standards, and shall conduct additional nonpartisan education efforts as necessary to ensure that voters have a working knowledge of the voting process.
(3) By December 15 of each general election year, each supervisor of elections shall report to the Department of State a detailed description of the voter education programs implemented and any other information that may be useful in evaluating the effectiveness of voter education efforts. The department shall reexamine the rules adopted pursuant to subsection (1) and use the findings in these reports as a basis for modifying the rules to incorporate successful voter education programs and techniques, as necessary.
History.s. 9, ch. 80-292; s. 1, ch. 83-16; s. 530, ch. 95-147; s. 59, ch. 2001-40; s. 35, ch. 2010-102; s. 7, ch. 2016-37.
98.461 Registration application, precinct register; contents.
(1) A registration application, approved by the Department of State, containing the information required in s. 97.052 shall be retained by the supervisor of elections of the county of the applicant’s registration. However, the registration application may be microfilmed and such microfilm substituted for the original registration application; or, when voter registration information, including the voter’s signature, is maintained digitally or on electronic, magnetic, or optic media, such stored information may be substituted for the original registration application. Such microfilms or stored information shall be retained in the custody of the supervisor of elections of the county of the applicant’s registration. In the event the original registration applications are microfilmed or maintained digitally or on electronic or other media, such originals may be destroyed in accordance with the schedule approved by the Bureau of Archives and Records Management of the Division of Library and Information Services of the Department of State.
(2) A computer printout or electronic database shall be used at the polls as a precinct register. The precinct register shall contain the date of the election, the precinct number, and the following information concerning each registered elector: last name, first name, middle name or initial, and suffix; party affiliation; residence address; registration number; date of birth; sex, if provided; race, if provided; whether the voter needs assistance in voting; and such other additional information as to readily identify the elector. The precinct register shall also contain a space for the elector’s signature and a space for the initials of the witnessing clerk or inspector or an electronic device may be provided for this purpose.
History.s. 1, ch. 77-267; s. 1, ch. 86-200; s. 6, ch. 90-315; s. 36, ch. 94-224; s. 30, ch. 97-13; s. 9, ch. 98-129; s. 12, ch. 2003-415; s. 27, ch. 2005-278.