WSR 97-21-044

EMERGENCY RULES

SECRETARY OF STATE

[Filed October 13, 1997, 9:20 a.m.]

Date of Adoption: October 13, 1997.

Purpose: To provide consistent election procedures for the general election in 1997, until permanent rules can be adopted.

Citation of Existing Rules Affected by this Order: Repealing WAC 434-40-310; and amending WAC 434-24-120, 434-40-010, 434-40-190, 434-40-240, 434-40-270, 434-40-230, 434-53-050, 434-61-040, and 434-62-040.

Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 29.04.080, 29.04.210, 29.36.150, 29.79.200.

Under RCW 34.05.350 the agency for good cause finds that immediate adoption, amendment, or repeal of a rule is necessary for the preservation of the public health, safety, or general welfare, and that observing the time requirements of notice and opportunity to comment upon adoption of a permanent rule would be contrary to the public interest.

Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Comply with Federal Statute: New 0, amended 0, repealed 0; Federal Rules or Standards: New 0, amended 0, repealed 0; or Recently Enacted State Statutes: New 0, amended 0, repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted at Request of a Nongovernmental Entity: New 0, amended 0, repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted on the Agency's own Initiative: New 8, amended 9, repealed 1.

Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Clarify, Streamline, or Reform Agency Procedures: New 8, amended 9, repealed 1.

Number of Sections Adopted using Negotiated Rule Making: New 8, amended 9, repealed 1; Pilot Rule Making: New 0, amended 0, repealed 0; or Other Alternative Rule Making: New 0, amended 0, repealed 0.

Effective Date of Rule: Immediately.

October 13, 1997

Donald F. Whiting

Assistant Secretary of State

AMENDATORY SECTION (Amending Order 74-4, filed 6/3/74)

WAC 434-24-120 Contents of precinct list of registered voters. The precinct list of registered voters as required by RCW 29.48.030 shall contain the name, residence address, sex, month and day of birth, and voter registration number of each voter in the precinct, a listing of the districts in which that voter resides, and a designation of the applicable county, legislative district, and precinct, or a ballot code identifying this information. The names shall be listed alphabetically by surname. The list ((may also)) shall contain a space for each voter to sign his/her name and to verify his/her current address and a space for the inspector or judge to credit the voter with having participated in a particular election as provided in RCW 29.51.070. ((Each county shall submit its output format for listing to the secretary of state who shall determine whether such format is suitable for use at the polls. If so, he shall approve that format for use in all elections in that county.)) The county auditor may eliminate from precinct lists ongoing absentee voters and voters requesting absentee ballots for that election. If the names of such voters do not appear, the precinct list shall clearly indicate that the voters are not included on the list.

[Order 74-4, 434-24-120, filed 6/3/74. Formerly WAC 434-24-120, contents of lists of registered voters for the public, Order 6, filed 3/3/72.]

AMENDATORY SECTION (Amending WSR 91-20-074, filed 9/26/91, effective 10/27/91)

WAC 434-40-010 Definitions. As used in this chapter:

(1) An "elector" of the state of Washington is any person who qualifies under state or federal law as an overseas voter, service voter, or out-of-state voter and who:

(a) Is not currently a registered voter in Washington or any other state;

(b) Will be at least eighteen years of age at the time of the next election;

(c) Is a citizen of the United States;

(d) Is a legal resident of the state, county, and precinct for at least thirty days preceding the election at which he or she offers to vote;

(e) Is not currently being denied his or her civil rights by being convicted of a crime for which he or she could have been sentenced to the state penitentiary;

(2) "Out-of-state voters," "overseas voters," "protected records voters," and "service voters" are electors of the state of Washington and are not registered voters of Washington or any other state; electors of the state of Washington who are spouses or dependents of service voters shall be considered to be either out-of-state voters or overseas voters;

(3) "Service voters" are electors of the state of Washington who are outside the state during the period available for voter registration and who are members of the armed forces while in active service, are students or members of the faculty at a United States military academy, are members of the merchant marine of the United States, are members of a religious group or welfare agency officially attached to and serving with the armed forces of the United States, or are certified participants in the address confidentiality program authorized by chapter ((23, Laws of 1991)) 40.24 RCW.

(4) "Canvassing" is that process of examining, in detail, a ballot, groups of ballots, election subtotals, or grand totals in order to determine the final official returns of a primary, special, or general election and in order to safeguard the integrity of the election process;

(5) "Canvassing board" or "county canvassing board" is that body charged by law with the duty of canvassing absentee ballots, of ruling on the validity of ((questioned)) special or challenged ballots, of verifying all unofficial returns as listed in the auditor's abstract of votes, and of producing the official county canvass report; it shall be composed of the county auditor, prosecuting attorney, and chairperson of the board of the county legislative authority, or their representatives, designated pursuant to the provisions of WAC ((434-40-210)) 434-240-210;

(6) "Territorial limits of the United States" means the fifty United States and the District of Columbia;

(7) (("Blind voter" is a voter who has no vision or whose vision with corrective lenses is so defective as to prevent performance of ordinary activities for which eyesight is essential, or who has an eye condition of a progressive nature which may lead to blindness;

(8) "Voter requiring assistance" is any voter who has a sensory or physical handicap that results in his or her inability to vote at a polling place without assistance; such assistance shall be provided in the manner set forth by RCW 29.51.200;

(9) "Disabled voter" is any blind voter, voter requiring assistance, or any voter who has:

(a) Lost both lower limbs;

(b) Lost normal or full use of the lower limbs to sufficiently constitute severe disability;

(c) No ability to move without crutches or a wheelchair;

(d) Lost both hands;

(e) A lung disease where forced expiratory respiratory volume when measured by spirometry is less than one liter per second;

(f) Cardiovascular disease classified as Class III or IV under American Heart Association standards;

(10))) "Ongoing absentee ballot" is ((that absentee ballot provided to disabled voters and voters over the age of sixty-five, pursuant to the provisions of RCW 29.36.013)) a ballot provided to voters who have requested in writing to automatically receive an absentee ballot for each ensuing election for which he or she is entitled to vote, and provided to voters who are certified participants in the address confidentiality program, pursuant to the provisions of chapter ((23, Laws of 1991)) 40.24 RCW;

(((11))) (8) "Hospital absentee ballot" is that absentee ballot provided to voters confined to a hospital no earlier than five days before a primary or election, pursuant to the provisions of RCW 29.36.010;

(((12))) (9) "Special absentee ballot" is that ballot provided to registered voters and electors in state primary and general elections who indicate on their application that they believe they will be residing or stationed or working outside the continental United States at the time of the election and that they will be unable to vote and return a regular absentee ballot during the time period provided by law;

(((13))) (10) "Regular absentee ballot" is that absentee ballot provided to voters or electors who request an absentee ballot and who do not either request or qualify for an ongoing absentee ballot, hospital absentee ballot, or special absentee ballot;

(((14))) (11) "Secure storage" are those locations provided for the storage of all material connected with the absentee ballot process, including ballots, and shall be under the direct control of the county auditor((; it shall be locked during those periods of time when the auditor's office is closed, and when the office is open, access shall be permitted only to the county auditor and to those persons authorized in writing)). Secure storage shall employ the use of numbered seals and logs or any other security measures which will detect any inappropriate access to the secured materials when such materials are not being prepared or processed by the county auditor or persons authorized by the county canvassing board;

(((15))) (12) "Challenged ballot" is that ballot issued to any voter whose registration has been challenged pursuant to the provisions of chapter 29.10 RCW and this chapter;

(((16) "Questioned)) (13) "Special ballot" is that ballot issued to a voter by precinct election officers pursuant to WAC ((434-40-250)) 434-240-250 or whenever any doubt exists as to the voter's qualifications to vote in an election and no challenge has been made by either a registered voter or the precinct election officer.

(((17))) (14) "County auditor" shall be as defined by RCW 29.01.043, and with respect to the processing of absentee ballots and applications, the term includes any employee of the county auditor who is directed in writing to perform those duties on behalf of the county auditor.

(15) "Mail ballot precinct" is any precinct containing less than two hundred active registered voters at the closing of voter registration under RCW 29.07.160 in which the county auditor has determined to conduct the voting by mail ballot.

[Statutory Authority: 1991 c 23. 91-20-074, 434-40-010, filed 9/26/91, effective 10/27/91. Statutory Authority: RCW 29.36.150. 88-03-019 (Order 88-1), 434-40-010, filed 1/12/88.]

AMENDATORY SECTION (Amending Order 88-1, filed 1/12/88)

WAC 434-40-240 Verification of the signature and postmark on absentee ballots. ((The county canvassing board shall examine the signature on the return envelope of all absentee ballots to ensure that the applicant is qualified to cast the ballot. The provisions of WAC 434-40-140 shall be applicable in determining the validity of the signature as it appears on the return envelope.)) An absentee ballot shall be counted only if:

(1) It is returned in the return envelope;

(2) The affidavit is signed by the registered voter to whom it was issued;

(3) The signature has been verified by the county canvassing board;

(4) It is postmarked not later than the day of the election or deposited not later than 8:00 p.m. on election day; and

(5) The absentee ballot is received by the certification of the election.

The canvassing board must compare the signature on the return envelope, or on a copy of the return envelope, with the signature as it appears on the voter's voter registration card. The canvassing board may designate in writing representatives to perform this function. All personnel assigned to the duty of signature verification shall subscribe to an oath administered by the county auditor regarding the discharge of his or her duties. Personnel shall be instructed in the signature verification process prior to actually canvassing any signatures. Local law enforcement officials may instruct those employees in techniques used to identify forgeries. For service voters, overseas voters, and out-of-state voters the date of mailing shall be the date indicated by the voter on the return envelope, and any envelope which shows a date subsequent to the date of the primary or general election shall be referred to the county canvassing board for disposition. For all other absentee ballots, the date of mailing shall be the postmark, if present and legible. If the postmark is not present or legible, the date of mailing shall be considered the date indicated by the voter on the return envelope. All absentee ballots showing a postmark subsequent to the date of the primary or election, or a date indicated by the voter subsequent to the date of the primary or election if the postmark is missing or illegible, shall be referred to the county canvassing board for their disposition. The signature verification process shall be open to the public, subject to reasonable procedures adopted and promulgated by the canvassing board to ensure that order is maintained and to safeguard the integrity of the process.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 29.36.150. 88-03-019 (Order 88-1), 434-40-240, filed 1/12/88.]

AMENDATORY SECTION (Amending Order 88-1, filed 1/12/88)

WAC 434-40-270 Maintenance of an audit trail on absentee ballots. Each county auditor shall maintain an audit trail with respect to the processing of absentee ballots which shall include, but not be limited to, the following:

(1) A record of when each absentee ballot application was received, the date the ballot was mailed or issued, and the date the absentee ballot was received;

(2) The number of absentee ballots issued and returned, by legislative and congressional district, for each primary and general election;

(3) A record of the disposition of each request for an absentee ballot not honored;

(4) A record of the disposition of each returned absentee ballot not counted;

(5) A record of the time and place of each time the county canvassing board met to process absentee ballots;

(6) A documentation of the security procedures undertaken to protect the integrity of the ballots after receipt, including the seal numbers used to secure the ballots during all facets of the absentee ballot process;

(7) A reconciliation that all absentee ballots counted plus all absentee ballots rejected is equal to the total number of absentee ballots received.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 29.36.150. 88-03-019 (Order 88-1), 434-40-270, filed 1/12/88.]

REPEALER

The following section of the Washington Administrative Code is repealed:

WAC 434-40-310 Absentee ballot--Credit for having voted.

AMENDATORY SECTION (Amending Order 88-1, filed 1/12/88)

WAC 434-40-190 Absentee ballot envelopes. Included with any absentee ballot provided to a voter shall be instructions for correctly voting the absentee ballot, a security envelope which shall bear no markings identifying the voter, and a return envelope which shall bear the return address of the issuing officer and shall have a space for the voter to sign his or her name. The return envelope shall also have ((a)) the following statement ((in substantially the following form)):

((affidavit of absentee ballot applicant))

I . . . . . . . . . do solemnly swear under penalty of law ((as set forth below,)) that I am a legal resident of the state of Washington ((and I further certify that I am legally qualified to vote at the election for which this ballot was requested, that)) entitled to vote in this election. I have not voted another ballot, and ((that I herein enclose my ballot for that election.)) I understand that any person attempting to vote when he or she is not entitled or who falsely signs this affidavit shall be guilty of a felony, punishable by imprisonment of not more than five years or a fine of not more than ten thousand dollars, or both such fine and imprisonment.

Date Ballot Voted Signature of Voter

((penalty provision: Any person who violates any of the provisions of this chapter, relating to swearing and voting, shall be guilty of a felony and shall be punished by imprisonment for not more than five years or a fine of not more than five thousand dollars, or by both such fine and imprisonment (RCW 29.36.160).

))

All absentee ballot envelopes and return envelopes shall conform to existing postal department regulations ((regarding size)). The return envelope shall bear the words "official ballot - do not delay" prominently displayed on the front, and shall also bear the words "postage required" in the upper right-hand corner.

County auditors shall be permitted to use any existing stock of absentee ballot return envelopes, in the form specified by state law((,)) or administrative rule prior to ((the 1987 amendment to RCW 29.36.030)) June 1, 1997. Upon exhaustion of that stock or not later than ((January 1, 1989)) December 31, 1998, county auditors shall comply with the provisions of this regulation when ordering absentee ballot return envelopes.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 29.36.150. 88-03-019 (Order 88-1), 434-40-190, filed 1/12/88.]

AMENDATORY SECTION (Amending Order 88-1, filed 1/12/88)

WAC 434-40-230 Processing of absentee ballots. (1) Prior to initial processing of absentee ballots, the county auditor shall notify the county chair of each major political party of the time and date on which absentee processing shall begin, and shall request that each major political party appoint official observers to observe the processing and tabulation of absentee ballots. If any major political party has appointed observers, such observers may be present for initial processing, final processing, or tabulation, if they so choose, but failure to appoint or attend shall not preclude the processing or tabulation of absentee ballots.

(2) All absentee ballot return envelopes may be opened and subsequently processed no earlier than the tenth day prior to any primary or election. In counties tabulating absentee ballots by hand, the inner security envelope may not be opened until after 8:00 p.m. on election day. ((In counties tabulating absentee ballots on an electronic vote tallying system, the ballots may be removed from the inner envelope not earlier than the tenth day prior to a primary or election and the ballots then prepared for processing.))

(3) In counties tabulating absentee ballots on an electronic vote tallying system, the canvassing board or its representatives may perform the initial processing of absentee ballots at any time on or after the tenth day prior to the primary or election. Following initial processing, all absentee ballots((, whether removed from the inner security envelope or not,)) must be kept ((in sealed or locked containers and)) in secure storage until they are ready ((to be tabulated)) for final processing.

(4) Final processing may be performed only after 7:00 a.m. on the day of that primary or election.

(5) Tabulation may not occur until after 8:00 p.m. on the day of the primary or election.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 29.36.150. 88-03-019 (Order 88-1), 434-40-230, filed 1/12/88.]

AMENDATORY SECTION (Amending WSR 92-12-083, filed 6/2/92, effective 7/3/92)

WAC 434-53-050 Voter unable to sign name--Authority to vote. Whenever a registered voter's name appears in the poll book or precinct list but the voter is unable to sign his/her name, the ((voter shall be provided)) precinct election officer shall require the person offering to vote to be identified by another registered voter and issued a ((questioned)) ballot. The ((questioned)) ballot shall be processed in the same manner as other ((questioned)) regularly voted ballots. In the event that the person offering to vote cannot be identified by another registered voter, the precinct election officer shall issue the person a special ballot. Such special ballots shall be referred to the county canvassing board. The precinct election officer shall note on the poll book that the voter could not sign their name. The county auditor shall verify after election day that the voter's registration reflects the voter's inability to sign. The county auditor shall request an updated signature for those voters without current signatures on file.

[Statutory Authority: 1990 c 59. 92-12-083, 434-53-050, filed 6/2/92, effective 7/3/92.]

AMENDATORY SECTION (Amending WSR 92-10-038, filed 5/4/92, effective 6/4/92)

WAC 434-61-040 Receipt of ballots at the counting center. Immediately upon the receipt of voted ballots in transfer containers from the polling places or collection stations, the seal or lock on each ballot container shall be examined to ensure that it is intact. The precinct name or number, time of receipt, and seal number of each container shall be recorded on a transfer case receipt log, and the log shall be initialled by the persons receiving them.

Upon the breaking of the seal and the opening of the container, ((a comparison)) the seal number shall be compared with the transmittal sheet accompanying the container ((shall be made)). ((If no lock or seal exists, or if a discrepancy is noted between the information recorded on the transmittal sheet and the seal, the county auditor shall immediately be notified. The nature of the discrepancy shall be entered on the receipt log, the container set aside, and the ballots contained therein not tallied until the discrepancy is resolved. If the container has no seal or the seal has already been broken, it shall be considered a discrepancy and handled in the same manner. If the auditor cannot resolve the discrepancy or arrive at a satisfactory explanation for the discrepancy, the ballots shall be set aside and referred to the canvassing board for their consideration as provided by this rule.)) If no discrepancy exists, a notation shall be made on the ballot receipt log and the ballots shall be forwarded to the next station in the counting center process.

((Where a discrepancy does exist and the matter cannot be resolved, the ballots shall be treated as ballots for which a question of validity has arisen, and shall be processed as provided for by law or administrative rule (see chapter 434-62 WAC).)) If no seal exists, or if a discrepancy is noted between the information recorded on the transmittal sheet and the seal, the county auditor shall immediately be notified. The nature of the discrepancy shall be entered on the receipt log, the container set aside, and the ballots contained therein not tallied until the discrepancy is resolved. The log shall list the precinct, the nature of the discrepancy, and the corrective action taken. If the county auditor cannot resolve the discrepancy or arrive at a satisfactory explanation for the discrepancy, the ballots shall be treated as ballots for which a question of validity has arisen, and shall be set aside and referred to the canvassing board for their consideration as provided by law or administrative rule (see chapter 434-262 WAC).

[Statutory Authority: RCW 29.04.080 and 29.04.210. 92-10-038, 434-61-040, filed 5/4/92, effective 6/4/92.]

AMENDATORY SECTION (Amending Order 80-3, filed 10/3/80)

WAC 434-62-040 Verification of auditor's abstract of votes. The county canvassing board shall examine the auditor's abstract of votes and shall verify that all of the individual precinct and absentee ballot totals have been included in the abstract and that the subtotals and county-wide totals for registered voters and votes cast are an accurate reflection of the sum of those individual precinct and absentee ballot totals. ((This verification shall be accomplished, in counties with fewer than 100,000 registered voters, by directing the county auditor or his or her representative to add these individual precinct and absentee ballot totals in the presence of the canvassing board manually or by using an adding machine. The canvassing board shall then compare the subtotals and totals produced in this manner against the subtotals and totals as they appear on the auditor's abstract of votes and verify that the figures are identical. In counties with more than 100,000 registered voters the adding machine tapes or manual totals may be produced prior to the meeting of the canvassing board, but in such counties the canvassing board shall carefully compare the preproduced subtotals and totals against the subtotals and totals as they appear on the official abstract of votes and verify that the two sets of figures are identical.))

[Statutory Authority: RCW 29.04.080. 80-15-008 (Order 80-3), 434-62-040, filed 10/3/80.]

NEW SECTION

WAC 434-240-205 Replacement absentee ballots. The county auditor may issue replacement absentee ballots to a voter who both:

(1) Requested an absentee ballot prior to election day; and

(2) Did not receive the absentee ballot or whose absentee ballot was damaged, lost, or destroyed.

A voter may request an absentee replacement ballot in person, by mail, by telephone, or by other electronic transmission for himself or herself and for any member of his or her immediate family. The request must be received by the auditor prior to 8:00 p.m. on election day.

The county auditor shall maintain a record of each replacement ballot issued, including the date of the request. Replacement absentee ballots shall be counted in the final tabulation of ballots, and shall only be tabulated if the original ballot is not received by the county auditor and the replacement ballot meets all requirements for tabulation necessary for the tabulation of regular absentee ballots.

[]

NEW SECTION

WAC 434-240-225 Definitions regarding absentee ballots. For purposes of the counting and canvassing of absentee ballots:

(1) "Initial processing" means all steps taken to prepare absentee ballots for tabulation, except for the reading of ballots by an electronic vote tallying system. Initial processing includes, but is not limited to: Removal of the security envelope from the return envelope; removal of the ballot from the security envelope; manual inspection for damage, for write-in votes, and for incorrect or incomplete marks; duplication of damaged and write-in ballots; and other preparation of ballots for final processing.

(2) "Final processing" means the reading of ballots by an electronic vote tallying system, but does not include tabulation.

(3) "Tabulation" means the production of returns of votes cast regarding candidates or measures in a form that can be read by a person, whether as precinct totals, partial cumulative totals, or final cumulative totals.

[]

NEW SECTION

WAC 434-240-235 Unsigned affidavit. (1) If the voter neglects to sign the affidavit on the return envelope, the auditor shall notify the voter, either by telephone or by first class mail, of that fact. The auditor may:

(a) Require the voter to appear in person and sign the return envelope not later than the day before the certification of the primary or election; or

(b) Provide the voter with a copy of the return envelope affidavit and require the voter to sign the copy of the affidavit and mail it back to the auditor so that it arrives not later than the day before the certification of the primary or election.

(2) The auditor shall advise the voter about the correct procedures for completing the unsigned affidavit and that, in order for the ballot to be counted, the voter must either:

(a) Sign the copy of the return envelope affidavit, if one is provided by the auditor, and mail it back to the auditor so that it arrives not later than the day before the certification of the primary or election; or

(b) Appear in person at the auditor's office not later than the day before the certification of the primary or election and complete the affidavit on the return envelope.

A record shall be kept of the date on which the voter was contacted or on which the notice was mailed to the voter, as well as the date on which the voter signed the return envelope or a copy of the return envelope affidavit.

[]

NEW SECTION

WAC 434-240-320 Mail ballot precincts. At any primary or election, general or special, the county auditor may, in any precinct having fewer than two hundred active registered voters at the time of closing of voter registration as provided in chapter 29.07 RCW, conduct the voting in that precinct by mail ballot. For any precinct so designated, the county auditor shall not less than fifteen days prior to the date of the primary or election mail or deliver to each active and inactive registered voter within that precinct a notice that the voting in the precinct will be by mail ballot, an application form for a mail ballot, preaddressed to the issuing officer with return postage prepaid. A mail ballot shall be issued to each voter who returns a properly executed application to the county auditor no later than the day of the primary or election. For all subsequent mail ballot elections in that precinct, the application is valid so long as the voter remains active and qualified to vote. For each subsequent mail ballot election in the precinct, the county auditor shall mail a notice, mail ballot application form, preaddressed to the issuing officer with return postage prepaid to each active and inactive voter in the precinct without a mail ballot application form on file with the county auditor. Unless otherwise provided for by law or administrative rule, mail ballot precinct ballots shall be processed in the same manner as absentee ballots. For all other purposes, including the rotation of ballots and the reporting of returns, mail ballot precinct ballots shall be treated in the same manner as polling place ballots unless otherwise provided for by law or administrative rule.

[]

NEW SECTION

WAC 434-261-005 Definitions. (1) "Manual inspection" is the process of inspecting each voter response position on each voted ballot upon breaking the seals and opening the ballot containers from the precincts or, in the case of precinct counting systems, prior to the certification of the election;

(2) "Duplicating ballots" is the process of copying valid votes from ballots that may not be properly counted by the electronic voting equipment to blank ballots of the same type and style, or as directed by the canvassing board;

(3) "Ballot enhancement" is the process of adding or covering marks on a ballot to ensure that the electronic voting equipment will tally the votes on the ballot in the manner intended by the voter, or as directed by the canvassing board.

[]

NEW SECTION

WAC 434-261-070 Manual inspection of ballots. Upon breaking the seals and opening the ballot containers from the precincts, all voted ballots shall be manually inspected for damage, write-in votes, incorrect or incomplete marks, and questions of voter intent. The same manual inspection process shall apply to absentee ballots, mail ballot precinct ballots, and vote-by-mail ballots. This manual inspection shall include examining each voter response position, and is a required part of processing ballots used with all electronic vote tabulating systems.

If the manual inspection process detects any ballots which might not be correctly counted by the tabulating equipment, the county may either:

(1) Refer the ballots to the county canvassing board;

(2) Duplicate the ballots if the intent of the voters is clear; or

(3) Enhance the ballots if the intent of the voters is clear and enhancement can be accomplished without permanently obscuring the original marks of the voters.

[]

NEW SECTION

WAC 434-261-080 Ballot enhancement. Ballots shall only be enhanced when such enhancement will not permanently obscure the original marks of the voters. Ballots shall be enhanced by teams of two or more people working together. When enhancing ballots, the county shall take the following steps to create and maintain an audit trail of the actions taken with respect to those enhanced ballots:

(1) Each ballot to be enhanced must be assigned a unique control number, with such number being marked on the face of the enhanced ballot;

(2) A log shall be kept of the ballots enhanced and shall include at least the following information:

(a) The control number of each ballot enhanced;

(b) The initials of at least two people who participated in enhancing each ballot; and

(c) The total number of ballots enhanced;

(3) Enhanced ballots and ballots to be enhanced shall be sealed into secure storage at all times, except when said ballots are in the process of being enhanced, are being tabulated, or are being inspected by the canvassing board.

[]

NEW SECTION

WAC 434-261-090 Ballot duplication. A ballot may be duplicated only if the intent of the voter's marks on the ballot is clear and the electronic voting equipment might not otherwise properly tally the ballot to reflect the intent of the voter. Ballots shall be duplicated by teams of two or more people working together. When duplicating ballots, the county auditor shall take the following steps to create and maintain an audit trail of the actions taken with respect to those duplicated ballots and the corresponding duplicate ballots:

(1) Each ballot to be duplicated and the corresponding duplicate ballot must be assigned a unique control number, with such number being marked upon the face of each ballot, the purpose being to insure that each duplicate ballot may be tied back to the original ballot;

(2) A log shall be kept of the ballots duplicated and shall include at least the following information:

(a) The control number of each ballot duplicated and the corresponding duplicate ballot;

(b) The initials of at least two people who participated in the duplication of each ballot; and

(c) The total number of ballots duplicated;

(3) Duplicated ballots and the corresponding duplicate ballots, as well as ballots requiring duplication shall be sealed into secure storage at all times, except when said ballots are in the process of being duplicated, are being tabulated, or are being inspected by the canvassing board.

[]

Legislature Code Reviser

Register

Washington State Code Reviser's Office