BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



                                                                  SB 362
                                                                  Page  1

          Date of Hearing:   August 14, 2013

                        ASSEMBLY COMMITTEE ON APPROPRIATIONS
                                  Mike Gatto, Chair

                   SB 362 (Padilla) - As Amended:  August 5, 2013 

          Policy Committee:                             ElectionsVote:5-2

          Urgency:     No                   State Mandated Local Program:  
          Yes    Reimbursable:              Yes

           SUMMARY  

          This bill authorizes emergency workers who are out of state  
          during an election to cast a ballot, under specified conditions  
          and procedures. Specifically, this bill:

          1)Requires an elections official-upon declaration of an  
            out-of-state emergency by the Governor and issuance of an  
            executive order allowing an out-of-state emergency worker, as  
            defined, to cast a ballot outside his or her home precinct-to  
            issue a vote-by-mail (VBM) ballot to the emergency worker. The  
            VBM ballot may be sent to the emergency worker via mail, fax,  
            or electronically.

          2)Requires a VBM ballot per (1), in order to be counted, to be  
            received by the elections official in accordance with existing  
            law, i.e. by the close of polls on election day.

           FISCAL EFFECT 

          Any minor costs to elections officials would be state  
          reimbursable.

           COMMENTS  

           1)Purpose  . The genesis of this bill was Hurricane Sandy, which  
            struck the northeast U.S. one week before the 2012  
            Presidential Election. In the aftermath of this disaster, the  
            Los Angeles Department of Water & Power, SoCal Edison, San  
            Diego Gas & Electric, Pacific Gas & Electric, the California  
            Red Cross, the California Emergency Management Urban Search  
            and Rescue Team, and many other California residents went to  
            New York and New Jersey to volunteer.  Many of the California  








                                                                  SB 362
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            volunteers had little time to make special arrangements to  
            vote and the deadline to apply for a VBM ballot had already  
            passed.  Consequently, the California Utilities Emergency  
            Association (CUEA), which oversees the state's national relief  
            efforts, found that several hundred utility workers were  
            unable to vote.

           2)Related Legislation  . AB 214 (Skinner), pending in the Senate  
            Appropriations, requires the Secretary of State to establish  
            procedures and guidelines for voting in the event of a natural  
            disaster or other state of emergency.

            SB 29 (Correa), also on today's committee agenda, allows VBM  
            ballots to be received by elections officials up to three days  
            after election day. If SB 29 is enacted, the three-day  
            timeframe will also apply to VBM ballots from out-of-state  
            emergency workers.
           Analysis Prepared by  :    Chuck Nicol / APPR. / (916) 319-2081