A BILL TO BE ENTITLED AN ACT TO IMPROVE VOTING IN NORTH CAROLINA BY ENACTING THE ELLA BAKER VOTER EMPOWERMENT ACT.
Amends GS 163-227.2(b) including an exception to the provision addressing one-stop voting conducted on the last Saturday before the election. Accordingly, a county board of elections must conduct one-stop voting on the last Saturday before the election until 1:00 P.M. and may conduct it until 5:00 P.M. on that Saturday, except that during each of the first primary and general elections in even-numbered years the county board of elections must conduct one-stop voting on the last two Saturdays and the last two Sundays, with not less than six or more than eight hours on the final Sunday.
Amends GS 163.227.2(f) including an exception to the requirement of a county office to be open for one-stop voting on the last Saturday before the election. Accordingly, county offices must be open on the last Saturday before the election, except during each of the first primary and general elections in even-numbered years the county board of elections must conduct one-stop voting on the last two Saturdays and the last two Sundays, with not less than six nor more than eight hours on the final Sunday.
Amends GS 163.227.2(g) including an exception to the ability of a county board of elections to unanimously vote to open one or more sites in a county for absentee ballots to be applied for and cast. Accordingly, a board of elections may unanimously vote to provide that county one or more sites for absentee ballots, except that in any incorporated municipality with a population of 15,000 or more that has a public or private college campus, in addition to the required site at the board of elections office if applicable, there must be at least one site on or adjacent to that campus for the general election in even-numbered years.
Amends GS 163-82.6A adding subsection (a1) specifying that only those qualified to register to vote may register in person on election day.
Also amends GS 163-82.6A adding subsection (c1) specifying that persons who register to vote under subsection (a1) of this section must vote a provisional ballot immediately after registering.
Amends GS 126-4 adding subsection (5b) allowing state employees to take 24 hours per year of paid leave for election service, meaning service as a precinct official as provided in GS 163-42 on election day.
Amends GS 163-46, prohibiting the county board of elections from compensating a precinct official for any hours worked for which the precinct official takes paid leave subject to GS 126-4(5b).
Appropriates $390,871 for 2013-14 from the General Fund to the State Board of Elections to meet federal Help America Vote Act Title II Maintenance of Effort requirements.
Amends GS 163-82.3(a), mandating the State Board of Elections to develop an application form for voter registration that can either be printed out in blank or filled in online and printed out for mailing. Amends GS 163-82.3(a) adding subsection (a1), specifying requirements for the online fillable voter registration form.
Enacts GS 163-82.5A in Article 7A of Chapter 163 of the General Statutes addressing online voter registration. Individuals who are eligible to vote and possess a current and valid NC driver's license or special identification card may submit a voter registration application online. The State Board of Elections must establish a secure website to permit qualified individuals the ability to register to vote and change their name, address, and party affiliation. The Division of Motor Vehicles will compare the information submitted by the applicant with the DMV database and confirm the eligibility of the applicant. If the DMV cannot confirm the applicant's eligibility, the DMV must send the application to the county board of elections where the applicant resides. The county board of elections must then notify the applicant by U.S. mail and by email if the applicant provided an email address with the online registration.
Amends GS 163-82.19(a), providing that applicants for licenses at the DMV must be affirmatively informed of the opportunity to register to vote or update voter registration by the person taking the application at the DMV.
Amends GS 163-82.20(b) adding subsection (1a) requiring specified voter registration agencies to affirmatively inform each applicant of the opportunity to register to vote if the applicant is eligible.
Amends GS 163-41 adding subsection (a1) requiring all chief judges and judges to be certified as knowledgeable on election laws and procedures relating to voting.
Requires the State Board of Elections to publish a voter guide in regional editions covering all state legislative races and statewide races not covered in the Judicial Voter Guide or the Voter Guide.
Amends GS 115C-81(g)(1), clarifying the curriculum of "American History I -- The Founding Principles" to include frequent and free elections in a representative government, specifically including the process of voting and registering to vote.
Effective January 1, 2014.
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