BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



                                                                    AB 2071


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          CONCURRENCE IN SENATE AMENDMENTS


          AB  
          2071 (Harper)


          As Amended  June 30, 2016


          Majority vote


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          |ASSEMBLY:  |77-0  |(April 28,     |SENATE: | 37-0 |(August 11,      |
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          Original Committee Reference:  E. & R.


          SUMMARY:  Defines the term "bona fide private mail delivery  
          company" for the purposes of a vote by mail (VBM) ballot  
          received after election day, as specified.  Specifically, this  
          bill defines a "bona fide private mail delivery company" to mean  
          a courier service that is in the regular business of accepting a  
          mail item, package, or parcel for the purpose of delivery to a  
          person or entity whose address is specified on the item.  


          The Senate amendments delete requirements that a company must be  
          for profit and must deliver items at a cost in order to be  
          considered a "bona fide private mail delivery company" and make  
          technical changes to the bill.


          EXISTING LAW provides that a VBM ballot is timely cast if it is  
          received by the voter's elections official via the United States  
          Postal Service (USPS) or a bona fide private mail delivery  








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          company no later than three days after election day, as  
          specified.


          FISCAL EFFECT:  None.  This bill is keyed non-fiscal by the  
          Legislative Counsel.


          COMMENTS:  According to the author, "AB 2071 will protect the  
          integrity of California's election system by providing that only  
          legitimate courier services that are in the regular business of  
          delivering parcels may handle and deliver VBM ballots on behalf  
          of voters after Election Day.  This includes well-known services  
          such as DHL, FedEx, and [United Parcel Service] UPS.  As such,  
          it will ensure that only legitimate votes are counted, and that  
          no California voter is disenfranchised by the counting of  
          ballots that have been illegally harvested or tampered with in  
          the days following an election."


          In 2014, the Legislature approved and the Governor signed SB 29  
          (Correa), Chapter 618, Statutes of 2014, which allowed VBM  
          ballots to be counted if they were cast by election day and  
          received by the elections official by mail no later than three  
          days after the election.  SB 29 was introduced in response to  
          the fact that an increasing number of VBM ballots that were  
          returned to elections officials were arriving too late to be  
          counted.  Furthermore, given a number of recently enacted and  
          planned USPS facility closures, there was a fear that the number  
          of ballots arriving too late to be counted would continue to  
          rise.  According to a September 2014 report by the California  
          Civic Engagement Project (CCEP) at the University of California  
          at Davis Center for Regional Change, nearly 69,000 VBM ballots  
          that were received by county election offices in California for  
          the November 2012 general election were rejected during ballot  
          processing, with 47.8% of uncounted ballots being rejected  
          because they arrived too late.  Arriving late was the number one  
          reason why a VBM ballot was rejected.


          Analysis Prepared by:                                             
                          Nichole Becker / E. & R. / (916) 319-2094  FN:  








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