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HOUSE BILL NO. 632
INTRODUCED BY R. BITNEY, B. LAWSON, P. SLITER
AN ACT REVISING ELECTION LAWS RELATING TO THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE NATIONAL VOTER REGISTRATION ACT; AMENDING SECTIONS 13-1-101, 13-2-222, 13-2-402, AND 13-27-410, MCA; AND PROVIDING AN IMMEDIATE EFFECTIVE DATE.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MONTANA:
Section 1. Section 13-1-101, MCA, is amended to read:
"13-1-101. Definitions. As used in this title, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise, the following definitions apply:
(1) "Active elector" means a qualified elector whose name is on the active list.
(2) "Active list" means a list of active electors maintained by an election administrator pursuant to 13-2-219.
(3) "Anything of value" means any goods that have a certain utility to the recipient that is real and that is ordinarily not given away free but is purchased.
(4) "Application for voter registration" means a completed voter registration card submitted to the election administrator and subject to confirmation, as provided in 13-2-207.
(5) "Candidate" means:
(a) an individual who has filed a declaration or petition for nomination, acceptance of nomination or appointment as a candidate for public office as required by law;
(b) for the purposes of
chapters chapter 35, 36, or 37, an individual who has solicited or received and retained
contributions, made expenditures, or given consent to an individual, organization, political party, or committee to solicit or
receive and retain contributions or make expenditures on the individual's behalf to secure nomination or election to any
office at any time, whether or not the office for which the individual will seek nomination or election is known when the:
(i) solicitation is made;
(ii) contribution is received and retained; or
(iii) expenditure is made; and
(c) an officeholder who is the subject of a recall election.
(6) (a) "Contribution" means:
(i) an advance, gift, loan, conveyance, deposit, payment, or distribution of money or anything of value to influence an election;
(ii) a transfer of funds between political committees;
(iii) the payment by a person other than a candidate or political committee of compensation for the personal services of another person that are rendered to a candidate or political committee.
(b) "Contribution" does not mean:
(i) services provided without compensation by individuals volunteering a portion or all of their time on behalf of a candidate or political committee or meals and lodging provided by individuals in their private residence for a candidate or other individual;
(ii) the cost of any bona fide news story, commentary, or editorial distributed through the facilities of any broadcasting station, newspaper, magazine, or other periodical publication of general circulation;
(iii) the cost of any communication by any membership organization or corporation to its members or stockholders or employees, as long as the organization is not a primary political committee; or
(iv) filing fees paid by the candidate.
(7) "Election" means a general, regular, special, or primary election held pursuant to the requirements of state law, regardless of the time or purpose.
(8) "Election administrator" means the county clerk and recorder or the individual designated by a county governing body to be responsible for all election administration duties, except that with regard to school elections, the term means the school district clerk.
(9) "Elector" means an individual qualified and registered to vote under state law.
(10) (a) "Expenditure" means a purchase, payment, distribution, loan, advance, promise, pledge, or gift of money or anything of value made for the purpose of influencing the results of an election.
(b) "Expenditure" does not mean:
(i) services, food, or lodging provided in a manner that they are not contributions under subsection (6);
(ii) payments by a candidate for a filing fee or for personal travel expenses, food, clothing, lodging, or personal necessities for the candidate and the candidate's family;
(iii) the cost of any bona fide news story, commentary, or editorial distributed through the facilities of any broadcasting station, newspaper, magazine, or other periodical publication of general circulation; or
(iv) the cost of any communication by any membership organization or corporation to its members or stockholders or employees, as long as the organization is not a primary political committee.
(11) "Federal election" means a general or primary election in which an elector may vote for individuals for the office of president of the United States or for the United States congress.
(12) "General election" or "regular election" means an election held for the election of public officers throughout the state at times specified by law, including elections for officers of political subdivisions when the time of the election is set on the same date for all similar political subdivisions in the state. For ballot issues required by Article III, section 6, or Article XIV, section 8, of the Montana constitution to be submitted by the legislature to the electors at a general election, "general election" means an election held at the time provided in 13-1-104(1). For ballot issues required by Article XIV, section 9, of the Montana constitution to be submitted as a constitutional initiative at a regular election, regular election means an election held at the time provided in 13-1-104(1).
(13) "Inactive elector" means
a qualified elector an individual who whose name is placed on an inactive list.
(14) "Inactive list" means a list of inactive electors maintained by an election administrator pursuant to 13-2-219.
(15) "Individual" means a human being.
(16) "Issue" or "ballot issue" means a proposal submitted to the people at an election for their approval or rejection, including but not limited to initiatives, referenda, proposed constitutional amendments, recall questions, school levy questions, bond issue questions, or a ballot question. For the purposes of chapters 35, 36, or 37, an issue becomes a "ballot issue" upon certification by the proper official that the legal procedure necessary for its qualification and placement upon the ballot has been completed, except that a statewide issue becomes an "issue" upon approval by the secretary of state of the form of the petition or referral.
(17) "Person" means an individual, corporation, association, firm, partnership, cooperative, committee, club, union, or other organization or group of individuals or a candidate as defined in subsection (5).
(18) "Political committee" means a combination of two or more individuals or a person other than an individual who makes a contribution or expenditure:
(a) to support or oppose a candidate or a committee organized to support or oppose a candidate or a petition for nomination; or
(b) to support or oppose a ballot issue or a committee organized to support or oppose a ballot issue; or
(c) as an earmarked contribution.
(19) "Political subdivision" means a county, consolidated municipal-county government, municipality, special district, or any other unit of government, except school districts, having authority to hold an election for officers or on a ballot issue.
(20) "Primary" or "primary election" means an election held throughout the state to nominate candidates for public office at times specified by law, including nominations of candidates for offices of political subdivisions when the time for nominations is set on the same date for all similar subdivisions in the state.
(21) "Public office" means a state, county, municipal, school, or other district office that is filled by the people at an election.
(22) "Registrar" means the county election administrator and any regularly appointed deputy or assistant election administrator.
(23) "Special election" means an election other than a statutorily scheduled primary or general election held at any time for any purpose provided by law. It may be held in conjunction with a statutorily scheduled election.
(24) "Voting machine or device" means any equipment used to record, tabulate, or in any manner process the vote of an elector."
Section 2. Section 13-2-222, MCA, is amended to read:
"13-2-222. Reactivation of elector. (1) The name of an elector must be moved by an election administrator from the inactive list to the active list of a county if an elector meets the requirements for registration provided in this chapter and:
(a) appears in order to vote in a federal election;
(b) notifies the county election administrator in writing of the elector's current residence, which must be in that county; or
(c) completes a reactivation form provided by the county election administrator that provides current address information in that county.
(2) After an elector has complied with
either subsection (1)(a) or, (1)(b), or (1)(c), the county election administrator
shall place the elector's name on the active voting list for that county.
(3) To be effective for a nonfederal election, a reactivation of an elector must be accomplished no later than 30 days before the election."
Section 3. Section 13-2-402, MCA, is amended to read:
"13-2-402. Reasons for cancellation. The election administrator shall cancel the registration of an elector:
(1) at the written request of the registered elector;
(2) if a certificate of the death of the elector is filed or if the elector is reported as deceased by the department of public health and human services in the department's reports submitted to the county under 72-16-217;
(3) if the elector is of unsound mind as established by a court;
(4) if the incarceration of the elector in a penal institution for a felony conviction is legally established;
(5) if a certified copy of a court order directing the cancellation is filed with the election administrator;
(6) if the elector is successfully challenged and not allowed to vote at an election upon determination of an election judge;
(7) if a notice is received from another county or state that the elector has registered in that county or state; or
(8) if the elector fails to respond to certain confirmation mailings and fails to vote in two subsequent federal general elections."
Section 4. Section 13-27-410, MCA, is amended to read:
"13-27-410. Printing and distribution of voter information pamphlet. (1) The secretary of state shall arrange with the department of administration by requisition for the printing and delivery of a voter information pamphlet for all ballot issues to be submitted to the people at least 110 days before the election at which they will be submitted. The requisition must include a delivery list providing for shipment of the required number of pamphlets to each county and to the secretary of state.
(2) The secretary of state shall estimate the number of copies necessary to furnish one copy to each voter in each county, except that two or more voters with the same mailing address and the same last name may be counted as one voter. The secretary of state shall provide for an extra supply of the pamphlets in determining the number of voter pamphlets to be ordered in the requisition.
(3) The department of administration shall call for bids and contract with the lowest bidder for the printing and delivery of the voter information pamphlet. The contract must require completion of printing and shipment, as specified on the delivery list, of the voter information pamphlets by not later than 45 days before the election at which the ballot issues will be voted on by the people.
(4) The county official responsible for voter registration in each county shall mail one copy of the voter information pamphlet to each registered voter in the county who is on the active voter list, except that two or more voters with the same mailing address and the same last name may be counted as one voter. The mailing must take place no later than 2 weeks before the election.
(5) Ten copies of the voter information pamphlet must be available at each precinct for use by any voter wishing to read the explanatory information and complete text before voting on the ballot issues."
Section 5. Effective date. [This act] is effective on passage and approval.
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Latest Version of HB 632 (HB0632.ENR)
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