SENATE BILL 6131
State of Washington 57th Legislature 2001 Regular Session
By Senator Kline
Read first time 02/27/2001. Referred to Committee on State & Local Government.
AN ACT Relating to providing modern voting and ballot processing systems; and adding new sections to chapter 29.33 RCW.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF WASHINGTON:
NEW SECTION. Sec. 1. A new section is added to chapter 29.33 RCW to read as follows:
The voting systems modernization account is established in the custody of the state treasurer. . . . . . . dollars must be transferred from the state general fund to this account on the first day of each fiscal year. Expenditures from the account may be used only for assisting county auditors to acquire and use modern voting systems and modern ballot processing systems, as provided in section 2 of this act. Only the secretary of state may authorize expenditures from the account. The account is not subject to allotment procedures under chapter 43.88 RCW, and an appropriation is not required for expenditures.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 2. A new section is added to chapter 29.33 RCW to read as follows:
The secretary of state shall establish a program to assist county auditors to acquire and use modern voting systems and modern ballot processing systems from moneys in the voting systems modernization account created under section 1 of this act. The program will consist of providing grants to county auditors and providing staff assistance for county auditors. Grants from this account may be used by county auditors to: (1) Purchase modern voting systems approved by the secretary of state under this chapter to replace punch card voting systems or provide additional modern voting systems for counties already using modern voting systems; (2) purchase modern ballot processing systems, including systems for absentee ballots and mail ballots; (3) finance the operation and programming of modern voting systems and modern ballot processing systems; and (4) provide adequate space for counties to process and tabulate ballots using modern ballot processing systems and modern voting systems in a timely manner. Staff assistance will consist of staff who program modern voting systems and modern ballot processing systems and who train county staff on programming and operating modern voting systems and modern ballot processing systems.
Modern voting systems are vote tallying systems approved by the secretary of state under this chapter that are capable of providing multiple voting methods, including optical scan voting systems, touch screen voting systems, and Internet voting systems, also including similar poll-site ballot counting devices and systems for transmitting unofficial returns from poll-site ballot counting devices to central reporting or counting locations. Modern ballot processing systems include systems that read bar codes on outer return envelopes for absentee ballots and mail ballots, digitize signatures of registered voters, and present digitized signatures on screens for staff to compare voter signatures with signatures on the outer return envelopes for absentee ballots and mail ballots.
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