BILL NUMBER: AB 308	AMENDED
	BILL TEXT

	AMENDED IN ASSEMBLY  MAY 11, 2009

INTRODUCED BY   Assembly Member Cook
    (   Coauthors:   Assembly Members 
 Bill Berryhill,   Davis,   De Leon,  
DeVore,   Fletcher,   Harkey,   Knight,
  and Nestande  ) 
    (   Coauthors:   Senators   Huff
  and Runner   ) 

                        FEBRUARY 17, 2009

   An act to add Section 3312 to the Elections Code, relating to
elections.



	LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


   AB 308, as amended, Cook. Special absentee voters.
   (1) Under existing law, special absentee voters, including members
of the armed forces and their spouses and dependents, citizens of
the United States living outside the country, and those serving on a
merchant vessel documented under the laws of the United States, may
apply for vote by mail ballots. Existing law also requires that these
voters be sent vote by mail ballots in future elections.
   This bill would require local elections officials to prepare a
special runoff ballot for each primary, special, or general election
to send to special absentee voters that would be counted if there is
a runoff election for any of the offices in that election. By
increasing the duties of local elections officials, the bill would
impose a state-mandated local program.
   (2) The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse
local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the
state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that
reimbursement.
   This bill would provide that, if the Commission on State Mandates
determines that the bill contains costs mandated by the state,
reimbursement for those costs shall be made pursuant to these
statutory provisions.
   Vote: majority. Appropriation: no. Fiscal committee: yes.
State-mandated local program: yes.


THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  SECTION 1.  Section 3312 is added to the Elections Code, to read:
   3312.  (a) For  voters who qualify as special absentee
voters   each voter who qualifies as a special absentee
voter  pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 300, and who
 are   is  temporarily living outside of
the territorial limits of the United States or the District of
Columbia, the elections official shall prepare a special runoff
ballot for each primary, special, or general election for which there
may be a runoff election held within 90 days of that election to be
sent to the voter, in addition to the regular runoff ballot, for the
purpose of allowing  their votes   his or her
vote  to also be counted if there is a runoff election.
   (b) (1) The special runoff ballot shall contain a list of all
offices being contested for which there may be a runoff election held
within 90 days of that election and the candidates qualifying for
the election in each office.
   (2) The special runoff ballot shall permit the elector's vote to
be counted in a runoff election by indicating his or her order of
preference for each candidate for each office.
   (3) (A) To indicate his or her order of preference for each
candidate for each office, the voter shall mark the special runoff
ballot by writing the number one next to the name of the candidate
who is the voter's first choice, the number two for the voter's
second choice, and so forth, so that, in consecutive numerical order,
a number indicating the voter's preference is written by the voter
next to the candidate's name on the special runoff ballot.
   (B) However, the voter shall not be required to indicate his or
her preference for more than one candidate on the special runoff
ballot if he or she chooses.
   (C) The completed special runoff ballot shall be received by the
elections official by the close of the polls on the day of the runoff
election.
   (4) In the event of a runoff election, the elections official
shall tabulate the special runoff ballot by counting the ballot as a
vote for that candidate in the runoff election who is ranked the
highest on the special runoff ballot as chosen by the special
absentee voter. If a special absentee voter receives a regular runoff
ballot for the runoff election and returns it by the close of the
polls on the day of the runoff election, then the elections official
shall tabulate that ballot and shall not tabulate any special runoff
ballot previously returned by that voter.
   (5) Instructions shall be sent with the special runoff ballot to
the qualified voter explaining the runoff voting process for special
absentee voters.
  SEC. 2.   If the Commission on State Mandates determines that this
act contains costs mandated by the state, reimbursement to local
agencies and school districts for those costs shall be made pursuant
to Part 7 (commencing with Section 17500) of Division 4 of Title 2 of
the Government Code.