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2011 Florida Statutes

Chapter 101
VOTING METHODS AND PROCEDURE
CHAPTER 101
CHAPTER 101
VOTING METHODS AND PROCEDURE
101.001 Precincts and polling places; boundaries.
101.002 Use of system by municipalities.
101.015 Standards for voting systems.
101.017 Bureau of Voting Systems Certification.
101.021 Elector to vote the primary ballot of the political party in which he or she is registered.
101.031 Instructions for electors.
101.041 Secret voting.
101.043 Identification required at polls.
101.045 Electors must be registered in precinct; provisions for change of residence or name.
101.048 Provisional ballots.
101.049 Provisional ballots; special circumstances.
101.051 Electors seeking assistance in casting ballots; oath to be executed; forms to be furnished.
101.111 Voter challenges.
101.131 Watchers at polls.
101.151 Specifications for ballots.
101.161 Referenda; ballots.
101.171 Copy of constitutional amendment to be available at voting locations.
101.20 Publication of ballot form; sample ballots.
101.21 Official ballots; number; printing; payment.
101.23 Election inspector to keep list of those voting.
101.24 Ballot boxes and ballots.
101.2512 Candidates’ names on general election ballots.
101.2515 Translation of ballot language.
101.252 Candidates entitled to have names printed on certain ballots; exception.
101.254 When nominated names to appear in groups or districts.
101.292 Definitions; ss. 101.292-101.295.
101.293 Competitive sealed bids and proposals required.
101.294 Purchase and sale of voting equipment.
101.295 Penalties for violation.
101.34 Custody of voting system.
101.341 Prohibited activities by voting system custodians and deputy custodians.
101.43 Substitute ballot.
101.49 Procedure of election officers where signatures differ.
101.51 Electors to occupy booth alone.
101.545 Retention and destruction of certain election materials.
101.5601 Short title.
101.5602 Purpose.
101.5603 Definitions relating to Electronic Voting Systems Act.
101.5604 Adoption of system; procurement of equipment; commercial tabulations.
101.56042 Punch card type systems prohibited.
101.5605 Examination and approval of equipment.
101.5606 Requirements for approval of systems.
101.56062 Standards for accessible voting systems.
101.56063 Accessibility of voting systems and polling places; intent; eligibility for federal funding.
101.56064 Application for federal funds under ch. 2002-281.
101.5607 Department of State to maintain voting system information; prepare software.
101.56075 Voting methods.
101.5608 Voting by electronic or electromechanical method; procedures.
101.5610 Inspection of ballot by election board.
101.5611 Instructions to electors.
101.5612 Testing of tabulating equipment.
101.5613 Examination of equipment during voting.
101.5614 Canvass of returns.
101.572 Public inspection of ballots.
101.58 Supervising and observing registration and election processes.
101.591 Voting system audit.
101.5911 Rulemaking authority for voting system audit procedures.
101.595 Analysis and reports of voting problems.
101.6101 Short title.
101.6102 Mail ballot elections; limitations.
101.6103 Mail ballot election procedure.
101.6104 Challenge of votes.
101.6105 Absentee voting.
101.6106 Application of other election laws.
101.6107 Department of State to adopt rules.
101.62 Request for absentee ballots.
101.64 Delivery of absentee ballots; envelopes; form.
101.65 Instructions to absent electors.
101.655 Supervised voting by absent electors in certain facilities.
101.657 Early voting.
101.661 Voting absentee ballots.
101.662 Accessibility of absentee ballots.
101.663 Electors; change of residence to another state.
101.665 Administration of oaths; military personnel, federal employees, and other absentee registrants.
101.67 Safekeeping of mailed ballots; deadline for receiving absentee ballots.
101.68 Canvassing of absentee ballot.
101.69 Voting in person; return of absentee ballot.
101.6921 Delivery of special absentee ballot to certain first-time voters.
101.6923 Special absentee ballot instructions for certain first-time voters.
101.6925 Canvassing special absentee ballots.
101.694 Mailing of ballots upon receipt of federal postcard application.
101.6951 State write-in ballot.
101.6952 Absentee ballots for absent uniformed services and overseas voters.
101.697 Electronic transmission of election materials.
101.698 Absentee voting in emergency situations.
101.71 Polling place.
101.715 Accessibility of polling places for people having a disability.
101.731 Short title.
101.732 Definitions relating to Elections Emergency Act.
101.733 Election emergency; purpose; elections emergency contingency plan.
101.74 Temporary change of polling place in case of emergency.
101.75 Municipal elections; change of dates for cause.
101.001 Precincts and polling places; boundaries.
(1) The board of county commissioners in each county, upon recommendation and approval of the supervisor, shall alter or create precincts for voting in the county. Each precinct shall be numbered and, as nearly as practicable, composed of contiguous and compact areas. The supervisor shall designate a polling place at a suitable location within each precinct. The precinct shall not be changed thereafter except with the consent of the supervisor and a majority of the members of the board of county commissioners. The board of county commissioners and the supervisor may have precinct boundaries conform to municipal boundaries in accordance with the provisions of s. 101.002, but, in any event, the registration books shall be maintained in such a manner that there may be determined therefrom the total number of electors in each municipality.
(2) When in any election there are fewer than 25 registered electors of the only political party having candidates on the ballot at any precinct, such precinct may be combined with other adjoining precincts upon the recommendation of the supervisor and the approval of the county commissioners. Notice of the combination of precincts shall be given in the same manner as provided in s. 101.71(2).
1(3)(a) Each supervisor of elections shall maintain a suitable map drawn to a scale no smaller than 3 miles to the inch and clearly delineating all major observable features such as roads, streams, and railway lines and showing the current geographical boundaries of each precinct, representative district, and senatorial district, and other type of district in the county subject to the elections process in this code.
(b) The supervisor of elections shall notify the Secretary of State in writing within 30 days after any reorganization of precincts and shall furnish a copy of the map showing the current geographical boundaries and designation of each new precinct. However, if precincts are composed of whole census blocks, the supervisor may furnish, in lieu of a copy of the map, a list, in an electronic format prescribed by the Department of State, associating each census block in the county with its precinct.
(c) Any precinct established or altered under the provisions of this section shall consist of areas bounded on all sides only by:
1. Census block boundaries from the most recent United States Census;
2. Governmental unit boundaries reported in the most recent Boundary and Annexation Survey published by the United States Census Bureau;
3. Visible features that are readily distinguishable upon the ground, such as streets, railroads, tracks, streams, and lakes, and that are indicated upon current census maps, official Department of Transportation maps, official municipal maps, official county maps, or a combination of such maps;
4. Boundaries of public parks, public school grounds, or churches; or
5. Boundaries of counties, incorporated municipalities, or other political subdivisions that meet criteria established by the United States Census Bureau for block boundaries.
(d) Until July 1, 2012, a supervisor may apply for and obtain from the Secretary of State a waiver of the requirement in paragraph (c).
1(4) Within 10 days after there is any change in the division, number, or boundaries of the precincts, or the location of the polling places, the supervisor of elections shall make in writing an accurate description of any new or altered precincts, setting forth the boundary lines and shall identify the location of each new or altered polling place. A copy of the document describing such changes shall be posted at the supervisor’s office.
History.s. 10, ch. 3879, 1889; RS 164; s. 11, ch. 4328, 1895; GS 184; RGS 228; CGL 281; s. 2, ch. 24203, 1947; s. 6, ch. 25383, 1949; s. 2, ch. 26329, 1949; s. 2, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 4, ch. 29934, 1955; s. 3, ch. 57-166; s. 1, ch. 59-281; s. 1, ch. 67-169; s. 1, ch. 72-25; s. 3, ch. 73-155; s. 1, ch. 76-60; s. 1, ch. 76-121; s. 1, ch. 76-233; s. 4, ch. 77-175; s. 1, ch. 80-189; s. 11, ch. 80-292; s. 4, ch. 81-304; s. 26, ch. 84-302; s. 24, ch. 94-224; s. 1390, ch. 95-147; s. 54, ch. 97-13; s. 29, ch. 2005-278; s. 24, ch. 2011-40.
1Note.Section 24, ch. 2011-40, amended subsections (3) and (4), effective July 1, 2012, to read:

(3)(a) Each supervisor of elections shall maintain a suitable map drawn to a scale no smaller than 3 miles to the inch and clearly delineating all major observable features such as roads, streams, and railway lines and showing the current geographical boundaries of each precinct, representative district, and senatorial district, and other type of district in the county subject to the elections process in this code.

(b) The supervisor shall provide to the department data on all precincts in the county associated with the most recent decennial census blocks within each precinct.

(c) The department shall maintain a searchable database that contains the precincts and the corresponding most recent decennial census blocks within the precincts for each county, including a historical file that allows the census blocks to be traced through the prior decade.

(d) The supervisor of elections shall notify the Secretary of State in writing within 10 days after any reorganization of precincts and shall furnish a copy of the map showing the current geographical boundaries and designation of each new precinct. However, if precincts are composed of whole census blocks, the supervisor may furnish, in lieu of a copy of the map, a list, in an electronic format prescribed by the Department of State, associating each census block in the county with its precinct.

(e) Any precinct established or altered under the provisions of this section shall consist of areas bounded on all sides only by census block boundaries from the most recent United States Census. If the census block boundaries split or conflict with another political boundary listed below, the boundary listed below may be used:

1. Governmental unit boundaries reported in the most recent Boundary and Annexation Survey published by the United States Census Bureau;

2. Visible features that are readily distinguishable upon the ground, such as streets, railroads, tracks, streams, and lakes, and that are indicated upon current census maps, official Department of Transportation maps, official municipal maps, official county maps, or a combination of such maps;

3. Boundaries of public parks, public school grounds, or churches; or

4. Boundaries of counties, incorporated municipalities, or other political subdivisions that meet criteria established by the United States Census Bureau for block boundaries.

(4)(a) Within 10 days after there is any change in the division, number, or boundaries of the precincts, or the location of the polling places, the supervisor of elections shall make in writing an accurate description of any new or altered precincts, setting forth the boundary lines and shall identify the location of each new or altered polling place. A copy of the document describing such changes shall be posted at the supervisor’s office.

(b) Any changes in the county precinct data shall be provided to the department within 10 days after a change.

(c) Precinct data shall include all precincts for which precinct-level election results and voting history results are reported.

Note.Former s. 98.23; s. 98.031.
101.002 Use of system by municipalities.
(1) The board of county commissioners, with the concurrence of the supervisor of elections, may arrange the boundaries of the precincts in each municipality within the county to conform to the boundaries of the municipality, subject to the concurrence of the governing body of the municipality. All binders, files, and other equipment or materials necessary for the permanent registration system shall be furnished by the board of county commissioners.
(2) The supervisor of elections shall deliver the records required for a municipal election to the municipal elections boards or other appropriate elections officials before the election and collect them after the election. The municipality shall reimburse the county for the actual costs incurred.
(3) Any person who is a duly registered elector pursuant to this code and who resides within the boundaries of a municipality is qualified to participate in all municipal elections, the provisions of special acts or local charters notwithstanding. Electors who are not registered under the permanent registration system shall not be permitted to vote.
History.s. 4, ch. 25391, 1949; s. 2, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 10, ch. 27991, 1953; s. 2, ch. 29761, 1955; s. 1, ch. 57-136; s. 1, ch. 63-268; s. 6, ch. 65-134; s. 2, ch. 73-155; s. 5, ch. 77-175; s. 31, ch. 94-224.
Note.Former s. 97.04; s. 98.091.
101.015 Standards for voting systems.
(1) The Department of State shall adopt rules which establish minimum standards for hardware and software for electronic and electromechanical voting systems. Such rules shall contain standards for:
(a) Functional requirements;
(b) Performance levels;
(c) Physical and design characteristics;
(d) Documentation requirements; and
(e) Evaluation criteria.
(2) Each odd-numbered year the Department of State shall review the rules governing standards and certification of voting systems to determine the adequacy and effectiveness of such rules in assuring that elections are fair and impartial.
(3) The Department of State shall adopt rules to achieve and maintain the maximum degree of correctness, impartiality, and efficiency of the procedures of voting, including write-in voting, and of counting, tabulating, and recording votes by voting systems used in this state.
(4)(a) The Department of State shall adopt rules establishing minimum security standards for voting systems.
(b) Each supervisor of elections shall establish written procedures to assure accuracy and security in his or her county, including procedures related to early voting pursuant to s. 101.657. Such procedures shall be reviewed in each odd-numbered year by the Department of State.
(c) Each supervisor of elections shall submit any revisions to the security procedures to the Department of State at least 45 days before early voting commences pursuant to s. 101.657 in an election in which they are to take effect.
(5)(a) The Department of State shall adopt rules which establish standards for provisional approval of hardware and software for innovative use of electronic and electromechanical voting systems. Such rules shall contain standards for:
1. Functional requirements;
2. Performance levels;
3. Physical and design characteristics;
4. Documentation requirements;
5. Evaluation criteria;
6. Audit capabilities; and
7. Consideration of prior use of a system.
(b) A voting system shall be provisionally approved for a total of no more than 2 years, and the Department of State has the authority to revoke such approval. Provisional approval of a system shall not be granted by the Department of State to supersede certification requirements of this section.
(c)1. No provisionally approved system may be used in any election, including any municipal election, without the authorization of the Department of State.
2. An application for use of a provisionally approved system shall be submitted at least 120 days prior to the intended use by the supervisor of elections or municipal elections official. Such application shall request authorization for use of the system in a specific election. Each application shall state the election, the number of precincts, and the number of anticipated voters for which the system is requested for use.
3. The Department of State shall authorize or deny authorization of the use of the provisionally approved system for the specific election and shall notify the supervisor of elections or municipal elections official in writing of the authorization or denial of authorization, along with the reasons therefor, within 45 days after receipt of the application.
(d) A contract for the use of a provisionally approved system for a specific election may be entered into with the approval of the Department of State. No contract for title to a provisionally approved system may be entered into.
(e) The use of any provisionally approved system shall be valid for all purposes.
(6) All electronic and electromechanical voting systems purchased on or after January 1, 1990, must meet the minimum standards established under subsection (1). All electronic and electromechanical voting systems in use on or after July 1, 1993, must meet the minimum standards established under subsection (1) or subsection (5).
(7) The Division of Elections shall review the voting systems certification standards and ensure that new technologies are available for selection by boards of county commissioners which meet the requirements for voting systems and meet user standards. The Division of Elections shall continuously review the voting systems certification standards to ensure that new technologies are appropriately certified for all elections in a timely manner. The division shall also develop methods to determine the will of the public with respect to voting systems.
History.s. 4, ch. 89-348; s. 16, ch. 90-315; s. 551, ch. 95-147; s. 6, ch. 2001-40; s. 10, ch. 2004-252.
101.017 Bureau of Voting Systems Certification.There is created a Bureau of Voting Systems Certification within the Division of Elections of the Department of State which shall provide technical support to the supervisors of elections and which is responsible for voting system standards and certification. The positions necessary for the bureau to accomplish its duties shall be established through the budgetary process.
History.s. 16, ch. 89-348; s. 20, ch. 90-315.
Note.Former s. 102.1691.
101.021 Elector to vote the primary ballot of the political party in which he or she is registered.In a primary election a qualified elector is entitled to vote the official primary election ballot of the political party designated in the elector’s registration, and no other. It is unlawful for any elector to vote in a primary for any candidate running for nomination from a party other than that in which such elector is registered.
History.s. 41, ch. 6469, 1913; RGS 345; CGL 402; s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 21, ch. 28156, 1953; s. 13, ch. 77-175; s. 552, ch. 95-147.
Note.Former s. 102.40.
101.031 Instructions for electors.
(1) The Department of State, or in case of municipal elections the governing body of the municipality, shall print, in large type on cards, instructions for the electors to use in voting. It shall provide not less than two cards for each voting precinct for each election and furnish such cards to each supervisor upon requisition. Each supervisor of elections shall send a sufficient number of these cards to the precincts prior to an election. The election inspectors shall display the cards in the polling places as information for electors. The cards shall contain information about how to vote and such other information as the Department of State may deem necessary. The cards must also include the list of rights and responsibilities afforded to Florida voters, as described in subsection (2).
(2) The supervisor of elections in each county shall have posted at each polling place in the county the Voter’s Bill of Rights and Responsibilities in the following form:

VOTER’S BILL OF RIGHTS

Each registered voter in this state has the right to:

1. Vote and have his or her vote accurately counted.

2. Cast a vote if he or she is in line at the official closing of the polls in that county.

3. Ask for and receive assistance in voting.

4. Receive up to two replacement ballots if he or she makes a mistake prior to the ballot being cast.

5. An explanation if his or her registration or identity is in question.

6. If his or her registration or identity is in question, cast a provisional ballot.

7. Written instructions to use when voting, and, upon request, oral instructions in voting from elections officers.

8. Vote free from coercion or intimidation by elections officers or any other person.

9. Vote on a voting system that is in working condition and that will allow votes to be accurately cast.

VOTER RESPONSIBILITIES

Each registered voter in this state should:

1. Familiarize himself or herself with the candidates and issues.

2. Maintain with the office of the supervisor of elections a current address.

3. Know the location of his or her polling place and its hours of operation.

4. Bring proper identification to the polling station.

5. Familiarize himself or herself with the operation of the voting equipment in his or her precinct.

6. Treat precinct workers with courtesy.

7. Respect the privacy of other voters.

8. Report any problems or violations of election laws to the supervisor of elections.

9. Ask questions, if needed.

10. Make sure that his or her completed ballot is correct before leaving the polling station.

NOTE TO VOTER: Failure to perform any of these responsibilities does not prohibit a voter from voting.

(3) Nothing in this section shall give rise to a legal cause of action.
(4) In case any elector, after entering the voting booth, shall ask for further instructions concerning the manner of voting, two election officers who are not both members of the same political party, if present, or, if not, two election officers who are members of the same political party, shall give such instructions to such elector, but no officer or person assisting an elector shall in any manner request, suggest, or seek to persuade or induce any elector to vote for or against any particular ticket, candidate, amendment, question, or proposition. After giving the elector instructions and before the elector has voted, the officers or persons assisting the elector shall retire, and such elector shall vote in secret.
History.s. 40, ch. 4328, 1895; s. 12, ch. 4537, 1897; GS 225; RGS 270; CGL 326; s. 1, ch. 25106, 1949; s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; ss. 10, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 25, ch. 77-104; s. 13, ch. 77-175; s. 31, ch. 79-400; s. 60, ch. 2001-40; s. 5, ch. 2002-17; s. 22, ch. 2005-277.
Note.Former s. 99.24.
101.041 Secret voting.In all elections held on any subject which may be submitted to a vote, and for all or any state, county, district, or municipal officers, the voting shall be by secret, official ballot as provided by this code, and no vote shall be received or counted in any election, except as prescribed by this code.
History.s. 24, ch. 3879, 1889; RS 178; s. 28, ch. 4328, 1895; GS 210; RGS 254; CGL 310; s. 3, ch. 17898, 1937; s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 13, ch. 77-175; s. 15, ch. 2008-95.
Note.Former s. 99.08.
101.043 Identification required at polls.
(1)(a) The precinct register, as prescribed in s. 98.461, shall be used at the polls for the purpose of identifying the elector at the polls before allowing him or her to vote. The clerk or inspector shall require each elector, upon entering the polling place, to present one of the following current and valid picture identifications:
1. Florida driver’s license.
2. Florida identification card issued by the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles.
3. United States passport.
4. Debit or credit card.
5. Military identification.
6. Student identification.
7. Retirement center identification.
8. Neighborhood association identification.
9. Public assistance identification.
(b) If the picture identification does not contain the signature of the elector, an additional identification that provides the elector’s signature shall be required. The address appearing on the identification presented by the elector may not be used as the basis to confirm an elector’s legal residence or otherwise challenge an elector’s legal residence. The elector shall sign his or her name in the space provided on the precinct register or on an electronic device provided for recording the elector’s signature. The clerk or inspector shall compare the signature with that on the identification provided by the elector and enter his or her initials in the space provided on the precinct register or on an electronic device provided for that purpose and allow the elector to vote if the clerk or inspector is satisfied as to the identity of the elector.
(c) When an elector presents his or her picture identification to the clerk or inspector and the elector’s address on the picture identification matches the elector’s address in the supervisor’s records, the elector may not be asked to provide additional information or to recite his or her home address.
(2) If the elector fails to furnish the required identification, the elector shall be allowed to vote a provisional ballot. The canvassing board shall determine the validity of the ballot pursuant to s. 101.048(2).
History.s. 1, ch. 77-267; s. 533, ch. 95-147; s. 10, ch. 98-129; s. 3, ch. 2001-40; s. 13, ch. 2003-415; s. 23, ch. 2005-277; s. 30, ch. 2005-278; s. 26, ch. 2007-30; s. 25, ch. 2011-40.
Note.Former s. 98.471.
101.045 Electors must be registered in precinct; provisions for change of residence or name.
(1) A person is not permitted to vote in any election precinct or district other than the one in which the person has his or her legal residence and in which the person is registered. However, a person temporarily residing outside the county shall be registered in the precinct in which the main office of the supervisor, as designated by the supervisor, is located when the person has no permanent address in the county and it is the person’s intention to remain a resident of Florida and of the county in which he or she is registered to vote. Such persons who are registered in the precinct in which the main office of the supervisor, as designated by the supervisor, is located and who are residing outside the county with no permanent address in the county shall not be registered electors of a municipality and therefore shall not be permitted to vote in any municipal election.
(2)(a) An elector who moves from the precinct in which the elector is registered may be permitted to vote in the precinct to which he or she has moved his or her legal residence, if the change of residence is within the same county and the elector completes an affirmation in substantially the following form:

Change of Legal Residence of Registered
Voter

Under penalties for false swearing, I,   (Name of voter)  , swear (or affirm) that the former address of my legal residence was   (Address of legal residence)   in the municipality of  , in   County, Florida, and I was registered to vote in the   precinct of   County, Florida; that I have not voted in the precinct of my former registration in this election; that I now reside at   (Address of legal residence)   in the Municipality of  , in   County, Florida, and am therefore eligible to vote in the   precinct of   County, Florida; and I further swear (or affirm) that I am otherwise legally registered and entitled to vote.

  (Signature of voter whose address of legal residence has changed)  

(b) Except for an active uniformed services voter or a member of his or her family, an elector whose change of address is from outside the county may not change his or her legal residence at the polling place and vote a regular ballot; however, such elector is entitled to vote a provisional ballot.
(c) An elector whose name changes because of marriage or other legal process may be permitted to vote, provided such elector completes an affirmation in substantially the following form:

Change of Name of Registered
Voter

Under penalties for false swearing, I,   (New name of voter)  , swear (or affirm) that my name has been changed because of marriage or other legal process. My former name and address of legal residence appear on the registration records of precinct   as follows:

Name 

Address 

Municipality 

County 

Florida, Zip 

My present name and address of legal residence are as follows:

Name 

Address 

Municipality 

County 

Florida, Zip 

and I further swear (or affirm) that I am otherwise legally registered and entitled to vote.

  (Signature of voter whose name has changed)  

(d) Instead of the affirmation contained in paragraph (a) or paragraph (c), an elector may complete a voter registration application that indicates the change of name or change of address of legal residence.
(e) Such affirmation or application, when completed and presented at the precinct in which such elector is entitled to vote, and upon verification of the elector’s registration, shall entitle such elector to vote as provided in this subsection. If the elector’s eligibility to vote cannot be determined, he or she shall be entitled to vote a provisional ballot, subject to the requirements and procedures in s. 101.048. Upon receipt of an affirmation or application certifying a change in address of legal residence or name, the supervisor shall as soon as practicable make the necessary changes in the statewide voter registration system to indicate the change in address of legal residence or name of such elector.
History.s. 13, ch. 3879, 1889; RS 167; s. 15, ch. 4328, 1895; GS 192; RGS 236; CGL 289; s. 4, ch. 24203, 1947; s. 11, ch. 25035, 1949; s. 1, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 4, ch. 28156, 1953; s. 7, ch. 65-60; s. 1, ch. 71-307; s. 3, ch. 77-175; s. 6, ch. 78-403; s. 4, ch. 80-292; s. 5, ch. 89-338; s. 20, ch. 94-224; s. 1391, ch. 95-147; s. 36, ch. 2001-40; s. 31, ch. 2005-278; s. 16, ch. 2008-95; s. 26, ch. 2011-40.
Note.Former s. 98.32; s. 97.091.
101.048 Provisional ballots.
(1) At all elections, a voter claiming to be properly registered in the state and eligible to vote at the precinct in the election but whose eligibility cannot be determined, a person whom an election official asserts is not eligible, and other persons specified in the code shall be entitled to vote a provisional ballot. Once voted, the provisional ballot shall be placed in a secrecy envelope and thereafter sealed in a provisional ballot envelope. The provisional ballot shall be deposited in a ballot box. All provisional ballots shall remain sealed in their envelopes for return to the supervisor of elections. The department shall prescribe the form of the provisional ballot envelope. A person casting a provisional ballot shall have the right to present written evidence supporting his or her eligibility to vote to the supervisor of elections by not later than 5 p.m. on the second day following the election.
(2)(a) The county canvassing board shall examine each Provisional Ballot Voter’s Certificate and Affirmation to determine if the person voting that ballot was entitled to vote at the precinct where the person cast a vote in the election and that the person had not already cast a ballot in the election. In determining whether a person casting a provisional ballot is entitled to vote, the county canvassing board shall review the information provided in the Voter’s Certificate and Affirmation, written evidence provided by the person pursuant to subsection (1), any other evidence presented by the supervisor of elections, and, in the case of a challenge, any evidence presented by the challenger. A ballot of a person casting a provisional ballot shall be counted unless the canvassing board determines by a preponderance of the evidence that the person was not entitled to vote.
(b)1. If it is determined that the person was registered and entitled to vote at the precinct where the person cast a vote in the election, the canvassing board shall compare the signature on the Provisional Ballot Voter’s Certificate and Affirmation with the signature on the voter’s registration and, if it matches, shall count the ballot.
2. If it is determined that the person voting the provisional ballot was not registered or entitled to vote at the precinct where the person cast a vote in the election, the provisional ballot shall not be counted and the ballot shall remain in the envelope containing the Provisional Ballot Voter’s Certificate and Affirmation and the envelope shall be marked “Rejected as Illegal.”
(3) The Provisional Ballot Voter’s Certificate and Affirmation shall be in substantially the following form:

STATE OF FLORIDA

COUNTY OF  

I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that my name is  ; that my date of birth is  ; that I am registered and qualified to vote in   County, Florida; that I am registered in the   Party; that I am a qualified voter of the county; and that I have not voted in this election. I understand that if I commit any fraud in connection with voting, vote a fraudulent ballot, or vote more than once in an election, I can be convicted of a felony of the third degree and fined up to $5,000 and/or imprisoned for up to 5 years.

  (Signature of Voter)  

  (Current Residence Address)  

  (Current Mailing Address)  

  (City, State, Zip Code)  

  (Driver’s License Number or Last Four Digits of Social Security Number)  

Sworn to and subscribed before me this   day of   ,   (year)  .

  (Election Official)  

Precinct #       Ballot Style/Party Issued:  

(4) Notwithstanding the requirements of subsections (1), (2), and (3), the supervisor of elections may, and for persons with disabilities shall, provide the appropriate provisional ballot to the voter by electronic means that meet the requirements of s. 101.56062, as provided for by the certified voting system. Each person casting a provisional ballot by electronic means shall, prior to casting his or her ballot, complete the Provisional Ballot Voter’s Certificate and Affirmation as provided in subsection (3).
(5) Each person casting a provisional ballot shall be given written instructions regarding the person’s right to provide the supervisor of elections with written evidence of his or her eligibility to vote and regarding the free access system established pursuant to subsection (6). The instructions shall contain information on how to access the system and the information the voter will need to provide to obtain information on his or her particular ballot. The instructions shall also include the following statement: “If this is a primary election, you should contact the supervisor of elections’ office immediately to confirm that you are registered and can vote in the general election.”
(6) Each supervisor of elections shall establish a free access system that allows each person who casts a provisional ballot to determine whether his or her provisional ballot was counted in the final canvass of votes and, if not, the reasons why. Information regarding provisional ballots shall be available no later than 30 days following the election. The system established must restrict information regarding an individual ballot to the person who cast the ballot.
History.s. 35, ch. 2001-40; s. 6, ch. 2002-17; s. 15, ch. 2003-415; s. 24, ch. 2005-277; s. 32, ch. 2005-278; s. 27, ch. 2007-30.
101.049 Provisional ballots; special circumstances.
(1) Any person who votes in an election after the regular poll-closing time pursuant to a court or other order extending the statutory polling hours must vote a provisional ballot. Once voted, the provisional ballot shall be placed in a secrecy envelope and thereafter sealed in a provisional ballot envelope. The election official witnessing the voter’s subscription and affirmation on the Provisional Ballot Voter’s Certificate shall indicate whether or not the voter met all requirements to vote a regular ballot at the polls. All such provisional ballots shall remain sealed in their envelopes and be transmitted to the supervisor of elections.
(2) Separate and apart from all other ballots, the county canvassing board shall count all late-voted provisional ballots that the canvassing board determines to be valid.
(3) The supervisor shall ensure that late-voted provisional ballots are not commingled with other ballots during the canvassing process or at any other time they are statutorily required to be in the supervisor’s possession.
(4) This section shall not apply to voters in line at the poll-closing time provided in s. 100.011 who cast their ballots subsequent to that time.
(5) As an alternative, provisional ballots cast pursuant to this section may, and for persons with disabilities shall, be cast in accordance with the provisions of s. 101.048(4).
History.s. 16, ch. 2003-415; s. 3, ch. 2004-5; s. 25, ch. 2005-277.
101.051 Electors seeking assistance in casting ballots; oath to be executed; forms to be furnished.
(1) Any elector applying to vote in any election who requires assistance to vote by reason of blindness, disability, or inability to read or write may request the assistance of two election officials or some other person of the elector’s own choice, other than the elector’s employer, an agent of the employer, or an officer or agent of his or her union, to assist the elector in casting his or her vote. Any such elector, before retiring to the voting booth, may have one of such persons read over to him or her, without suggestion or interference, the titles of the offices to be filled and the candidates therefor and the issues on the ballot. After the elector requests the aid of the two election officials or the person of the elector’s choice, they shall retire to the voting booth for the purpose of casting the elector’s vote according to the elector’s choice.
(2) It is unlawful for any person to be in the voting booth with any elector except as provided in subsection (1). A person at a polling place or early voting site, or within 100 feet of the entrance of a polling place or early voting site, may not solicit any elector in an effort to provide assistance to vote pursuant to subsection (1). Any person who violates this subsection commits a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.
(3) Any elector applying to cast an absentee ballot in the office of the supervisor, in any election, who requires assistance to vote by reason of blindness, disability, or inability to read or write may request the assistance of some person of his or her own choice, other than the elector’s employer, an agent of the employer, or an officer or agent of his or her union, in casting his or her absentee ballot.
(4) If an elector needs assistance in voting pursuant to the provisions of this section, the clerk or one of the inspectors shall require the elector requesting assistance in voting to take the following oath:

DECLARATION TO SECURE ASSISTANCE

State of Florida

County of  

Date  

Precinct  

I,   (Print name)  , swear or affirm that I am a registered elector and request assistance from   (Print names)   in voting at the   (name of election)   held on   (date of election)  .

  (Signature of voter)  

Sworn and subscribed to before me this   day of  ,   (year)  .

  (Signature of Official Administering Oath)  

(5) If an elector needing assistance requests that a person other than an election official provide him or her with assistance in voting, the clerk or one of the inspectors shall require the person providing assistance to take the following oath:

DECLARATION TO PROVIDE ASSISTANCE

State of Florida

County of  

Date  

Precinct  

I,   (Print name)  , have been requested by   (print name of elector needing assistance)   to provide him or her with assistance to vote. I swear or affirm that I am not the employer, an agent of the employer, or an officer or agent of the union of the voter and that I have not solicited this voter at the polling place or early voting site or within 100 feet of such locations in an effort to provide assistance.

  (Signature of assistor)  

Sworn and subscribed to before me this   day of  ,   (year)  .

  (Signature of Official Administering Oath)  

(6) The supervisor of elections shall deliver a sufficient number of these forms to each precinct, along with other election paraphernalia.
History.s. 3, ch. 22018, 1943; s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 2, ch. 59-446; s. 2, ch. 65-60; s. 1, ch. 65-380; s. 13, ch. 77-175; s. 2, ch. 79-366; s. 31, ch. 84-302; s. 12, ch. 85-226; s. 553, ch. 95-147; s. 8, ch. 99-6; s. 10, ch. 2002-281; s. 26, ch. 2005-277; s. 9, ch. 2006-1.
Note.Former s. 100.36.
101.111 Voter challenges.
(1)(a) Any registered elector or poll watcher of a county may challenge the right of a person to vote in that county. The challenge must be in writing and contain the following oath, which shall be delivered to the clerk or inspector:

OATH OF PERSON ENTERING CHALLENGE

State of Florida

County of  

I do solemnly swear or affirm that my name is  ; that I am a member of the   Party; that I am a registered voter or pollwatcher; that my residence address is  , in the municipality of  ; and that I have reason to believe that   is attempting to vote illegally and the reasons for my belief are set forth herein to wit:    

  (Signature of person challenging voter)  

Sworn and subscribed to before me this   day of  ,   (year)  .

  (Clerk of election)  

(b)1. The clerk or inspector shall immediately deliver to the challenged person a copy of the oath of the person entering the challenge, and the challenged voter shall be allowed to cast a provisional ballot in accordance with s. 101.048, except as provided in subparagraph 2.
2. If the basis for the challenge is that the person’s legal residence is not in that precinct, the person shall first be given the opportunity to execute a change of legal residence in order to be able to vote a regular ballot in accordance with s. 101.045(2). If the change of legal residence is such that the person is then properly registered for that precinct, the person shall be allowed to vote a regular ballot. If the change of legal residence places the person in another precinct, the person shall be directed to the proper precinct to vote. If such person insists that he or she is currently in the proper precinct, the person shall be allowed to vote a provisional ballot in accordance with s. 101.048.
(c) Alternatively, a challenge in accordance with this section may be filed in advance with the supervisor of elections no sooner than 30 days before an election. The supervisor shall promptly provide the election board in the challenged voter’s precinct with a copy of the oath of the person entering the challenge. The challenged voter shall be allowed to cast a provisional ballot in accordance with s. 101.048, subject to the provisions of subparagraph (b)2.
(2) Any elector or poll watcher filing a frivolous challenge of any person’s right to vote commits a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083; however, electors or poll watchers shall not be subject to liability for any action taken in good faith and in furtherance of any activity or duty permitted of such electors or poll watchers by law. Each instance where any elector or poll watcher files a frivolous challenge of any person’s right to vote constitutes a separate offense.
History.s. 43, ch. 4328, 1895; GS 227; s. 43, ch. 6469, 1913; RGS 272, 347; CGL 328, 404; s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 10, ch. 27991, 1953; s. 23, ch. 28156, 1953; s. 4, ch. 65-380; s. 13, ch. 77-175; s. 554, ch. 95-147; s. 9, ch. 99-6; s. 17, ch. 2003-415; s. 27, ch. 2005-277; s. 10, ch. 2006-1; s. 17, ch. 2008-95; s. 4, ch. 2010-167.
Note.Former ss. 99.26, 102.42.
101.131 Watchers at polls.
(1) Each political party and each candidate may have one watcher in each polling room or early voting area at any one time during the election. A political committee formed for the specific purpose of expressly advocating the passage or defeat of an issue on the ballot may have one watcher for each polling room or early voting area at any one time during the election. No watcher shall be permitted to come closer to the officials’ table or the voting booths than is reasonably necessary to properly perform his or her functions, but each shall be allowed within the polling room or early voting area to watch and observe the conduct of electors and officials. The poll watchers shall furnish their own materials and necessities and shall not obstruct the orderly conduct of any election. The poll watchers shall pose any questions regarding polling place procedures directly to the clerk for resolution. They may not interact with voters. Each poll watcher shall be a qualified and registered elector of the county in which he or she serves.
(2) Each party, each political committee, and each candidate requesting to have poll watchers shall designate, in writing to the supervisors of elections, on a form prescribed by the division, before noon of the second Tuesday preceding the election poll watchers for each polling room on election day. Designations of poll watchers for early voting areas shall be submitted in writing to the supervisor of elections, on a form prescribed by the division, before noon at least 14 days before early voting begins. The poll watchers for polling rooms shall be approved by the supervisor of elections on or before the Tuesday before the election. Poll watchers for early voting areas shall be approved by the supervisor of elections no later than 7 days before early voting begins. The supervisor shall furnish to each election board a list of the poll watchers designated and approved for such polling rooms or early voting areas. Designation of poll watchers shall be made by the chair of the county executive committee of a political party, the chair of a political committee, or the candidate requesting to have poll watchers.
(3) No candidate or sheriff, deputy sheriff, police officer, or other law enforcement officer may be designated as a poll watcher.
(4) All poll watchers shall be allowed to enter and watch polls in all polling rooms and early voting areas within the county in which they have been designated if the number of poll watchers at any particular polling place does not exceed the number provided in this section.
(5) The supervisor of elections shall provide to each designated poll watcher, no later than 7 days before early voting begins, a poll watcher identification badge that identifies the poll watcher by name. Each poll watcher must wear his or her identification badge while in the polling room or early voting area.
History.s. 3-D, ch. 22018, 1943; s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 18, ch. 29934, 1955; s. 6, ch. 65-380; s. 13, ch. 77-175; s. 3, ch. 87-184; s. 14, ch. 87-363; s. 18, ch. 89-338; s. 555, ch. 95-147; s. 61, ch. 2001-40; s. 28, ch. 2005-277; s. 27, ch. 2011-40.
Note.Former s. 100.45.
101.151 Specifications for ballots.
(1)(a) Marksense ballots shall be printed on paper of such thickness that the printing cannot be distinguished from the back and shall meet the specifications of the voting system that will be used to tabulate the ballots.
(b) Early voting sites may employ a ballot-on-demand production system to print individual marksense ballots, including provisional ballots, for eligible electors pursuant to s. 101.657. Ballot-on-demand technology may be used to produce marksense absentee and election-day ballots.
(2)(a) The ballot shall have the following office titles under which shall appear the names of the candidates for the respective offices in the following order:
1. The office titles of President and Vice President and thereunder the names of the candidates for President and Vice President of the United States nominated by the political party that received the highest vote for Governor in the last general election of the Governor in this state. Then shall appear the names of other candidates for President and Vice President of the United States who have been properly nominated.
2. The office titles of United States Senator and Representative in Congress.
3. The office titles of Governor and Lieutenant Governor; Attorney General; Chief Financial Officer; Commissioner of Agriculture; State Attorney, with the applicable judicial circuit; and Public Defender, with the applicable judicial circuit.
4.  The office titles of State Senator and State Representative, with the applicable district for the office printed beneath.
5. The office titles of Clerk of the Circuit Court, or Clerk of the Circuit Court and Comptroller (whichever is applicable and when authorized by law), Clerk of the County Court (when authorized by law), Sheriff, Property Appraiser, Tax Collector, District Superintendent of Schools, and Supervisor of Elections.
6. The office titles of Board of County Commissioners, with the applicable district printed beneath each office, and such other county and district offices as are involved in the election, in the order fixed by the Department of State, followed, in the year of their election, by “Party Offices,” and thereunder the offices of state and county party executive committee members.
(b) In a general election, in addition to the names printed on the ballot, a blank space shall be provided under each office for which a write-in candidate has qualified. With respect to write-in candidates, if two or more candidates are seeking election to one office, only one blank space shall be provided.
(c) When more than one candidate is nominated for office, the candidates for such office shall qualify and run in a group or district, and the group or district number shall be printed beneath the name of the office. Each nominee of a political party chosen in a primary shall appear on the general election ballot in the same numbered group or district as on the primary election ballot.
(d) If in any election all the offices as set forth in paragraph (a) are not involved, those offices not to be filled shall be omitted and the remaining offices shall be arranged on the ballot in the order named.
(3)(a) The names of the candidates of the party that received the highest number of votes for Governor in the last election in which a Governor was elected shall be placed first for each office on the general election ballot, together with an appropriate abbreviation of the party name; the names of the candidates of the party that received the second highest vote for Governor shall be placed second for each office, together with an appropriate abbreviation of the party name.
(b) Minor political party candidates shall have their names appear on the general election ballot following the names of recognized political parties, in the same order as they were qualified, followed by the names of candidates with no party affiliation, in the order as they were qualified.
(4)(a) The names of candidates for each office shall be arranged alphabetically as to surnames on a primary election ballot.
(b) When two or more candidates running for the same office on a primary election ballot have the same or a similar surname, the word “incumbent” shall appear next to the incumbent’s name.
(5) The primary election ballot shall be arranged so that the offices of Governor and Lieutenant Governor are joined in a single voting space to allow each elector to cast a single vote for the joint candidacies for Governor and Lieutenant Governor, if applicable.
(6) The general election ballot shall be arranged so that the offices of President and Vice President are joined in a single voting space to allow each elector to cast a single vote for the joint candidacies for President and Vice President and so that the offices of Governor and Lieutenant Governor are joined in a single voting space to allow each elector to cast a single vote for the joint candidacies for Governor and Lieutenant Governor.
(7) Except for justices or judges seeking retention, the names of unopposed candidates shall not appear on the general election ballot. Each unopposed candidate shall be deemed to have voted for himself or herself.
(8)(a) The Department of State shall adopt rules prescribing a uniform primary and general election ballot for each certified voting system. The rules shall incorporate the requirements set forth in this section and shall prescribe additional matters and forms that include, without limitation:
1. Clear and unambiguous ballot instructions and directions;
2. Individual race layout; and
3. Overall ballot layout.
(b) The department rules shall graphically depict a sample uniform primary and general election ballot form for each certified voting system.
History.s. 35, ch. 4328, 1895; GS 219; s. 1, ch. 5612, 1907; RGS 264; CGL 320; s. 5, ch. 17898, 1937; ss. 2, 3, ch. 25187, 1949; s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 3, ch. 29937, 1955; s. 1, ch. 57-235; s. 2, ch. 59-334; s. 8, ch. 65-380; s. 1, ch. 65-52; s. 2, ch. 65-60; s. 8, ch. 65-380; s. 4, ch. 67-386; ss. 10, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 8, ch. 69-281; s. 1, ch. 69-380; s. 37, ch. 73-333; s. 1, ch. 77-102; s. 13, ch. 77-175; s. 33, ch. 79-400; s. 6, ch. 81-105; s. 11, ch. 81-304; s. 9, ch. 82-143; s. 20, ch. 89-338; s. 556, ch. 95-147; s. 14, ch. 99-318; s. 11, ch. 99-326; s. 14, ch. 99-355; s. 7, ch. 2001-40; s. 7, ch. 2002-17; s. 29, ch. 2005-277; s. 5, ch. 2007-30; s. 28, ch. 2011-40.
Note.Former ss. 99.18, 99.171.
1101.161 Referenda; ballots.
(1) Whenever a constitutional amendment or other public measure is submitted to the vote of the people, a ballot summary of such amendment or other public measure shall be printed in clear and unambiguous language on the ballot after the list of candidates, followed by the word “yes” and also by the word “no,” and shall be styled in such a manner that a “yes” vote will indicate approval of the proposal and a “no” vote will indicate rejection. The ballot summary of the amendment or other public measure and the ballot title to appear on the ballot shall be embodied in the constitutional revision commission proposal, constitutional convention proposal, taxation and budget reform commission proposal, or enabling resolution or ordinance. The ballot summary of the amendment or other public measure shall be an explanatory statement, not exceeding 75 words in length, of the chief purpose of the measure. In addition, for every amendment proposed by initiative, the ballot shall include, following the ballot summary, a separate financial impact statement concerning the measure prepared by the Financial Impact Estimating Conference in accordance with s. 100.371(5). The ballot title shall consist of a caption, not exceeding 15 words in length, by which the measure is commonly referred to or spoken of. This subsection does not apply to constitutional amendments or revisions proposed by joint resolution.
(2) The ballot summary and ballot title of a constitutional amendment proposed by initiative shall be prepared by the sponsor and approved by the Secretary of State in accordance with rules adopted pursuant to s. 120.54. The Department of State shall give each proposed constitutional amendment a designating number for convenient reference. This number designation shall appear on the ballot. Designating numbers shall be assigned in the order of filing or certification and in accordance with rules adopted by the Department of State. The Department of State shall furnish the designating number, the ballot title, and, unless otherwise specified in a joint resolution, the ballot summary of each amendment to the supervisor of elections of each county in which such amendment is to be voted on.
(3)(a) Each joint resolution that proposes a constitutional amendment or revision shall include one or more ballot statements set forth in order of priority. Each ballot statement shall consist of a ballot title, by which the measure is commonly referred to or spoken of, not exceeding 15 words in length, and either a ballot summary that describes the chief purpose of the amendment or revision in clear and unambiguous language, or the full text of the amendment or revision. The Department of State shall furnish a designating number pursuant to subsection (2) and the appropriate ballot statement to the supervisor of elections of each county. The ballot statement shall be printed on the ballot after the list of candidates, followed by the word “yes” and also by the word “no,” and shall be styled in such a manner that a “yes” vote will indicate approval of the amendment or revision and a “no” vote will indicate rejection.
(b)1. Any action for a judicial determination that one or more ballot statements embodied in a joint resolution are defective must be commenced by filing a complaint or petition with the appropriate court within 30 days after the joint resolution is filed with the Secretary of State. The complaint or petition shall assert all grounds for challenge to each ballot statement. Any ground not asserted within 30 days after the joint resolution is filed with the Secretary of State is waived.
2. The court, including any appellate court, shall accord an action described in subparagraph 1. priority over other pending cases and render a decision as expeditiously as possible. If the court finds that all ballot statements embodied in a joint resolution are defective and further appeals are declined, abandoned, or exhausted, unless otherwise provided in the joint resolution, the Attorney General shall, within 10 days, prepare and submit to the Department of State a revised ballot title or ballot summary that corrects the deficiencies identified by the court, and the Department of State shall furnish a designating number and the revised ballot title or ballot summary to the supervisor of elections of each county for placement on the ballot. The court shall retain jurisdiction over challenges to a revised ballot title or ballot summary prepared by the Attorney General, and any challenge to a revised ballot title or ballot summary must be filed within 10 days after a revised ballot title or ballot summary is submitted to the Department of State.
3. A ballot statement that consists of the full text of an amendment or revision shall be presumed to be a clear and unambiguous statement of the substance and effect of the amendment or revision, providing fair notice to the electors of the content of the amendment or revision and sufficiently advising electors of the issue upon which they are to vote.
(4)(a) For any general election in which the Secretary of State, for any circuit, or the supervisor of elections, for any county, has certified the ballot position for an initiative to change the method of selection of judges, the ballot for any circuit must contain the statement in paragraph (b) or paragraph (c) and the ballot for any county must contain the statement in paragraph (d) or paragraph (e).
(b) In any circuit where the initiative is to change the selection of circuit court judges to selection by merit selection and retention, the ballot shall state: “Shall the method of selecting circuit court judges in the   (number of the circuit)   judicial circuit be changed from election by a vote of the people to selection by the judicial nominating commission and appointment by the Governor with subsequent terms determined by a retention vote of the people?” This statement must be followed by the word “yes” and also by the word “no.”
(c) In any circuit where the initiative is to change the selection of circuit court judges to election by the voters, the ballot shall state: “Shall the method of selecting circuit court judges in the   (number of the circuit)   judicial circuit be changed from selection by the judicial nominating commission and appointment by the Governor with subsequent terms determined by a retention vote of the people to election by a vote of the people?” This statement must be followed by the word “yes” and also by the word “no.”
(d) In any county where the initiative is to change the selection of county court judges to merit selection and retention, the ballot shall state: “Shall the method of selecting county court judges in   (name of county)   be changed from election by a vote of the people to selection by the judicial nominating commission and appointment by the Governor with subsequent terms determined by a retention vote of the people?” This statement must be followed by the word “yes” and also by the word “no.”
(e) In any county where the initiative is to change the selection of county court judges to election by the voters, the ballot shall state: “Shall the method of selecting county court judges in   (name of the county)   be changed from selection by the judicial nominating commission and appointment by the Governor with subsequent terms determined by a retention vote of the people to election by a vote of the people?” This statement must be followed by the word “yes” and also by the word “no.”
History.s. 34, ch. 4328, 1895; GS 218; RGS 262; CGL 318; ss. 1-11, ch. 16180, 1933; s. 1, ch. 16877, 1935; s. 4, ch. 17898, 1937; s. 1, ch. 22626, 1945; s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; ss. 10, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 1, ch. 73-7; s. 13, ch. 77-175; s. 16, ch. 79-365; s. 2, ch. 80-305; s. 32, ch. 84-302; s. 11, ch. 90-203; s. 10, ch. 99-355; s. 1, ch. 2000-361; s. 4, ch. 2001-75; s. 5, ch. 2002-390; s. 5, ch. 2004-33; s. 11, ch. 2005-2; s. 33, ch. 2005-278; s. 29, ch. 2011-40.
1Note.Section 30, ch. 2011-40, provides that “[t]he amendment of section 101.161, Florida Statutes, made by this act applies retroactively to all joint resolutions adopted by the Legislature during the 2011 Regular Session, except that any legal action challenging a ballot title or ballot summary embodied in such joint resolution or challenging placement on the ballot of the full text of the proposed amendment or revision to the State Constitution as specified in such joint resolution must be commenced within 30 days after the effective date of this act or within 30 days after the joint resolution to which a challenge relates is filed with the Secretary of State, whichever occurs later.”
Note.Former s. 99.16.
101.171 Copy of constitutional amendment to be available at voting locations.Whenever any amendment to the State Constitution is to be voted upon at any election, the Department of State shall have printed and shall furnish to each supervisor of elections a sufficient number of copies of the amendment either in poster or booklet form, and the supervisor shall have a copy thereof conspicuously posted or available at each polling room or early voting area upon the day of election.
History.s. 1, ch. 5405, 1905; RGS 263; CGL 319; s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; ss. 10, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 13, ch. 77-175; s. 30, ch. 2005-277.
Note.Former s. 99.17.
101.20 Publication of ballot form; sample ballots.
(1) Two sample ballots shall be furnished to each polling place by the officer whose duty it is to provide official ballots. The sample ballots shall be in the form of the official ballot as it will appear at that polling place on election day. Sample ballots shall be open to inspection by all electors in any election, and a sufficient number of reduced-size ballots may be furnished to election officials so that one may be given to any elector desiring same.
(2) Upon completion of the list of qualified candidates, a sample ballot shall be published by the supervisor of elections in a newspaper of general circulation in the county, prior to the day of election. If the county has an addressograph or equivalent system for mailing to registered electors, a sample ballot may be mailed to each registered elector or to each household in which there is a registered elector, in lieu of publication, at least 7 days prior to any election.
History.s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 8, ch. 57-166; s. 9, ch. 65-380; s. 1, ch. 75-174; s. 16, ch. 77-175.
101.21 Official ballots; number; printing; payment.Where applicable, the supervisor of elections shall determine the actual number of ballots to be printed. The printing and delivery of ballots and cards of instruction shall, in a municipal election, be paid for by the municipality, and in all other elections by the county.
History.ss. 29, 37, ch. 4328, 1895; s. 11, ch. 4537, 1897; GS 211, 222; RGS 255, 267; CGL 311, 323; s. 7, ch. 17898, 1937; s. 2, ch. 24088, 1947; s. 7, ch. 25384, 1949; s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 10, ch. 65-380; s. 1, ch. 69-281; s. 20, ch. 71-355; s. 16, ch. 77-175; s. 34, ch. 79-400; s. 1, ch. 80-292; s. 48, ch. 81-259; s. 8, ch. 2001-40.
Note.Former ss. 99.09, 99.21.
101.23 Election inspector to keep list of those voting.When any person has been admitted to vote, the person’s name shall be checked by the clerk or one of the inspectors at the place indicated upon the registration books or voter history form provided by the supervisor. One of the inspectors shall, at the same time, keep a poll list containing names of electors who have voted or a list of registered electors, on which those electors who have voted are indicated. Such lists shall be available for inspection during regular voting hours by poll watchers designated and appointed pursuant to s. 101.131, except that the election inspector may regulate access to the lists so as to ensure that such inspection does not unreasonably interfere with the orderly operation of the polling place.
History.s. 58, ch. 4328, 1895; GS 236; RGS 281; CGL 337; s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 24, ch. 28156, 1953; s. 11, ch. 65-380; s. 16, ch. 77-175; s. 559, ch. 95-147; s. 18, ch. 2008-95.
Note.Former s. 99.37.
101.24 Ballot boxes and ballots.The supervisor of elections shall prepare for each polling place one ballot box of sufficient size to contain all the ballots of the particular precinct, and the ballot box shall be plainly marked with the name of the precinct for which it is intended. An additional ballot box, if necessary, may be supplied to any precinct. Before each election, the supervisor shall place in the ballot box or ballot transfer container as many ballots as are required in s. 101.21. After securely sealing the ballot box or ballot transfer container, the supervisor shall send the ballot box or ballot transfer container to the clerk or inspector of election of the precinct in which it is to be used. The clerk or inspector shall be placed under oath or affirmation to perform his or her duties faithfully and without favor or prejudice to any political party.
History.s. 26, ch. 3879, 1889; RS 180; s. 7, ch. 4328, 1895; s. 7, ch. 4537, 1897; GS 203; RGS 247; CGL 303; s. 1, ch. 17898, 1937; s. 1, ch. 24088, 1947; s. 11, ch. 25035, 1949; s. 1, ch. 25384, 1949; s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 12, ch. 65-380; s. 16, ch. 77-175; s. 2, ch. 86-200; s. 560, ch. 95-147; s. 9, ch. 2001-40.
Note.Former s. 99.02.
101.2512 Candidates’ names on general election ballots.
(1) The supervisor of elections shall print on the general election ballot the names of candidates nominated by primary election or special primary election or the names of candidates selected by the appropriate executive committee of any political party pursuant to the requirements of this code.
(2) In addition to the names printed on the ballot as provided in subsection (1), the supervisor of elections shall print on the general election ballot the names of each nonpartisan candidate, minor party candidate, or candidate with no party affiliation who has obtained a position on the general election ballot in compliance with the requirements of this code.
History.s. 8, ch. 2002-17.
101.2515 Translation of ballot language.Upon the request of a supervisor of elections made no later than 60 days prior to the date of a general election, the Department of State shall provide a written translation of a statewide ballot issue in the language of any language minority group specified in the provisions of s. 203 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended, as applicable to this state.
History.s. 1, ch. 94-300.
101.252 Candidates entitled to have names printed on certain ballots; exception.
(1) Any candidate for nomination who has qualified as prescribed by law is entitled to have his or her name printed on the official primary election ballot. However, when there is only one candidate of any political party qualified for an office, the name of the candidate shall not be printed on the primary election ballot, and such candidate shall be declared nominated for the office.
(2) Any candidate for party executive committee member who has qualified as prescribed by law is entitled to have his or her name printed on the primary election ballot. However, when there is only one candidate of any political party qualified for such an office, the name of the candidate shall not be printed on the primary election ballot, and such candidate shall be declared elected to the state or county executive committee.
History.s. 27, ch. 6469, 1913; RGS 331; CGL 388; s. 3, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 1, ch. 63-99; s. 5, ch. 65-378; s. 16, ch. 77-175; s. 21, ch. 89-338; s. 561, ch. 95-147; s. 15, ch. 2005-286.
Note.Former ss. 102.34, 99.041.
101.254 When nominated names to appear in groups or districts.When an office requires the nomination of more than one candidate, as many groups or districts shall be numerically designated as there are vacancies to be filled by nomination. Each candidate shall indicate on his or her qualifying papers the group or district in which the candidate desires his or her name to appear on the ballot. In addition, any candidate qualifying by the petition method must indicate on his or her petition prior to circulating such petition, which group or district for which the candidate is attempting to qualify.
History.s. 52, ch. 6469, 1913; s. 8, ch. 6874, 1915; RGS 356; CGL 413; s. 3, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 6, ch. 65-378; s. 16, ch. 77-175; s. 23, ch. 89-338; s. 563, ch. 95-147.
Note.Former ss. 102.49, 99.051.
101.292 Definitions; ss. 101.292-101.295.As used in ss. 101.292-101.295, the following terms shall have the following meanings:
(1) “Governing body” means the board of county commissioners of a county or any other governing body empowered by general or special act or local ordinance to purchase or sell voting equipment.
(2) “Voting equipment” means electronic or electromechanical voting systems, voting devices, and automatic tabulating equipment as defined in s. 101.5603, as well as materials, parts, or other equipment necessary for the operation and maintenance of such systems and devices, the individual or combined retail value of which is in excess of the threshold amount for CATEGORY TWO purchases provided in s. 287.017.
(3) “Purchase” means a contract for the purchase, lease, rental, or other acquisition of voting equipment.
History.s. 2, ch. 72-303; s. 17, ch. 73-156; s. 16, ch. 77-175; s. 4, ch. 84-302; s. 5, ch. 89-348; s. 32, ch. 90-268; s. 10, ch. 2001-40.
101.293 Competitive sealed bids and proposals required.
(1) Any purchase of voting equipment, the individual or combined retail value of which is in excess of the threshold amount for CATEGORY TWO purchases provided in s. 287.017, by a governing body shall be by means of competitive sealed bids or competitive sealed proposals from at least two bidders, except under the following conditions:
(a) If a majority of the governing body agrees by vote that an emergency situation exists in regard to the purchase of such equipment to the extent that the potential benefits derived from competitive sealed bids or competitive sealed proposals are outweighed by the detrimental effects of a delay in the acquisition of such equipment; or
(b) If a majority of the governing body finds that there is but a single source from which suitable equipment may be obtained.

If such conditions are found to exist, the chair of the governing body shall certify to the Division of Elections the situation and conditions requiring an exception to the competitive sealed bidding and competitive sealed proposal requirements of this section. Such certification shall be maintained on file by the division.

(2) The Division of Elections of the Department of State shall establish bidding procedures for carrying out the provisions and the intent of ss. 101.292-101.295, and each governing body shall follow the procedures so established.
History.s. 2, ch. 72-303; s. 18, ch. 73-156; s. 38, ch. 73-333; s. 16, ch. 77-175; s. 5, ch. 84-302; s. 6, ch. 89-348; s. 1, ch. 90-268; s. 566, ch. 95-147.
101.294 Purchase and sale of voting equipment.
(1) The Division of Elections of the Department of State shall adopt uniform rules for the purchase, use, and sale of voting equipment in the state. No governing body shall purchase or cause to be purchased any voting equipment unless such equipment has been certified for use in this state by the Department of State.
(2) Any governing body contemplating the purchase or sale of voting equipment shall notify the Division of Elections of such considerations. The division shall attempt to coordinate the sale of excess or outmoded equipment by one county with purchases of necessary equipment by other counties.
(3) The division shall inform the governing bodies of the various counties of the state of the availability of new or used voting equipment and of sources available for obtaining such equipment.
(4) A vendor of voting equipment may not provide an uncertified voting system, voting system component, or voting system upgrade to a local governing body or supervisor of elections in this state.
(5) Before or in conjunction with providing a voting system, voting system component, or voting system upgrade, the vendor shall provide the local governing body or supervisor of elections with a sworn certification that the voting system, voting system component, or voting system upgrade being provided has been certified by the Division of Elections.
History.s. 2, ch. 72-303; s. 19, ch. 73-156; s. 17, ch. 77-175; s. 6, ch. 84-302; s. 31, ch. 2005-277.
101.295 Penalties for violation.
(1) Any member of a governing body which purchases or sells voting equipment in violation of the provisions of ss. 101.292-101.295, which member knowingly votes to purchase or sell voting equipment in violation of the provisions of ss. 101.292-101.295, is guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided by s. 775.082 or s. 775.083, and shall be subject to suspension from office on the grounds of malfeasance.
(2) Any vendor, chief executive officer, or vendor representative of voting equipment who provides a voting system, voting system component, or voting system upgrade in violation of this chapter commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
History.s. 2, ch. 72-303; s. 18, ch. 77-175; s. 32, ch. 2005-277.
101.34 Custody of voting system.The supervisor of elections shall be the custodian of the voting system in the county, and he or she shall appoint deputies necessary to prepare and supervise the voting system prior to and during elections. The compensation for such deputies shall be paid by the supervisor of elections.
History.s. 3-A, ch. 22018, 1943; s. 4, ch. 24089, 1947; s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 16, ch. 65-380; s. 18, ch. 77-175; s. 3, ch. 80-20; s. 567, ch. 95-147; s. 11, ch. 2001-40.
Note.Former s. 100.42.
101.341 Prohibited activities by voting system custodians and deputy custodians.
(1) No voting system custodian or deputy custodian or other employee of the supervisor of elections, which employee’s duties are primarily involved with the preparation, maintenance, or repair of voting equipment, may accept employment or any form of consideration from any person or business entity involved in the purchase, repair, or sale of voting equipment unless such employment has the prior written approval of the supervisor of elections of the county by which such person is employed.
(2) Any person violating the provisions of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided by s. 775.082 or s. 775.083. Such person shall also be subject to immediate discharge from his or her position.
History.s. 3, ch. 72-303; s. 4, ch. 80-20; s. 568, ch. 95-147; s. 12, ch. 2001-40.
101.43 Substitute ballot.When the required official ballots for a precinct are not delivered in time to be used on election day, or after delivery, are lost, destroyed or stolen, the clerk or other officials whose duty it is to provide ballots for use at such election, in lieu of the official ballots, shall have substitute ballots prepared, conforming as nearly as possible to the official ballots, and the board of election shall substitute these ballots to be used in the same manner as the official ballots would have been used at the election.
History.s. 15, ch. 13893, 1929; CGL 1936 Supp. 337(15); s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 13, ch. 2001-40.
Note.Former s. 100.15.
101.49 Procedure of election officers where signatures differ.
(1) Whenever any clerk or inspector, upon a just comparison of the signatures, doubts that the signature on the identification presented by the elector is the same as the signature the elector affixed on the precinct register or early voting certificate, the clerk or inspector shall deliver to the person an affidavit which shall be in substantially the following form:

STATE OF FLORIDA,

COUNTY OF  

I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that my name is  ; that I am   years old; that I was born in the State of  ; that I am registered to vote; that I am a qualified voter of the county and state aforesaid and have not voted in this election.

  (Signature of voter)  

Sworn to and subscribed before me this   day of  , A. D.   (year)  .

  (Clerk or inspector of election)  

Precinct No.  

County of  

(2) The person shall fill out, in his or her own handwriting or with assistance from a member of the election board, the form and make an affidavit to the facts stated in the filled-in form; such affidavit shall then be sworn to and subscribed before one of the inspectors or clerks of the election who is authorized to administer the oath. Whenever the affidavit is made and filed with the clerk or inspector, the person shall then be admitted to cast his or her vote, but if the person fails or refuses to make out or file such affidavit and asserts his or her eligibility, then he or she shall be entitled to vote a provisional ballot.
History.s. 2, ch. 18407, 1937; CGL 1940 Supp. 337(28-d); s. 2, ch. 22018, 1943; s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 18, ch. 77-175; s. 573, ch. 95-147; s. 11, ch. 99-6; s. 14, ch. 2001-40; s. 33, ch. 2005-277.
Note.Former s. 100.35.
101.51 Electors to occupy booth alone.
(1) When the elector presents himself or herself to vote, an election official shall permit the elector to enter the booth or compartment to cast his or her vote, allowing only one elector at a time to pass through to vote. An elector, while casting his or her ballot, may not occupy a booth or compartment already occupied or speak with anyone, except as provided by s. 101.051.
(2) After casting his or her vote, the elector shall at once leave the polling room by the exit opening and shall not be permitted to reenter on any pretext whatever.
History.ss. 44, 45, ch. 4328, 1895; GS 228, 229; RGS 273, 274; CGL 329, 330; s. 20, ch. 13893, 1929; 1936 Supp. 337(20); s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 25, ch. 65-380; s. 18, ch. 77-175; s. 574, ch. 95-147; s. 11, ch. 2002-281; s. 34, ch. 2005-277; s. 19, ch. 2008-95.
Note.Former ss. 99.27, 99.28, 100.20.
101.545 Retention and destruction of certain election materials.All ballots, forms, and other election materials shall be retained in the custody of the supervisor of elections in accordance with the schedule approved by the Division of Library and Information Services of the Department of State. All unused ballots, forms, and other election materials may, with the approval of the Department of State, be destroyed by the supervisor after the election for which such ballots, forms, or other election materials were to be used.
History.s. 20, ch. 77-175; s. 15, ch. 2001-60.
101.5601 Short title.Sections 101.5601-101.5614 may be cited as the “Electronic Voting Systems Act.”
History.s. 1, ch. 73-156; s. 9, ch. 2002-17.
101.5602 Purpose.The purpose of this act is to authorize the use of electronic and electromechanical voting systems in which votes are registered electronically or are tabulated on automatic tabulating equipment or data processing equipment.
History.s. 2, ch. 73-156; s. 21, ch. 77-175; s. 7, ch. 84-302.
101.5603 Definitions relating to Electronic Voting Systems Act.As used in this act, the term:
(1) “Automatic tabulating equipment” includes apparatus necessary to automatically examine, count, and record votes.
(2) “Ballot” means the card, tape, or other vehicle upon which the elector’s choices are recorded.
(3) “Ballot information” means the material containing the names of offices and candidates and the questions to be voted on.
(4) “Electronic or electromechanical voting system” means a system of casting votes by use of voting devices or marking devices and counting ballots by employing automatic tabulating equipment or data processing equipment, and the term includes touchscreen systems.
(5) “Marking device” means any approved device for marking a ballot with ink or other substance which will enable the ballot to be tabulated by means of automatic tabulating equipment.
(6) “Secrecy envelope” means an opaque device, used for enclosing a marked ballot, which conceals the voter’s choices.
(7) “Software” means the programs and routines used to employ and control the capabilities of data processing hardware, including, without limitation, operating systems, compilers, assemblers, utilities, library routines, maintenance routines, applications, and computer networking programs.
(8) “Voting device” means an apparatus by which votes are registered electronically.
History.s. 3, ch. 73-156; s. 21, ch. 77-175; s. 8, ch. 84-302; s. 8, ch. 89-348; s. 15, ch. 2001-40.
101.5604 Adoption of system; procurement of equipment; commercial tabulations.The board of county commissioners of any county, at any regular meeting or a special meeting called for the purpose, may, upon consultation with the supervisor of elections, adopt, purchase or otherwise procure, and provide for the use of any electronic or electromechanical voting system approved by the Department of State in all or a portion of the election precincts of that county. Thereafter the electronic or electromechanical voting system may be used for voting at all elections for public and party offices and on all measures and for receiving, registering, and counting the votes thereof in such election precincts as the governing body directs. A county must use an electronic or electromechanical precinct-count tabulation voting system.
History.s. 4, ch. 73-156; s. 21, ch. 77-175; s. 16, ch. 2001-40.
101.56042 Punch card type systems prohibited.Effective September 2, 2002, a voting system that uses an apparatus or device for the piercing of ballots by the voter may not be used in this state.
History.s. 17, ch. 2001-40.
101.5605 Examination and approval of equipment.
(1) The Department of State shall publicly examine all makes of electronic or electromechanical voting systems submitted to it and determine whether the systems comply with the requirements of s. 101.5606.
(2)(a) Any person owning or interested in an electronic or electromechanical voting system may submit it to the Department of State for examination. The vote counting segment shall be certified after a satisfactory evaluation testing has been performed according to the standards adopted under s. 101.015(1). This testing shall include, but is not limited to, testing of all software required for the voting system’s operation; the ballot reader; the rote processor, especially in its logic and memory components; the digital printer; the fail-safe operations; the counting center environmental requirements; and the equipment reliability estimate. For the purpose of assisting in examining the system, the department shall employ or contract for services of at least one individual who is expert in one or more fields of data processing, mechanical engineering, and public administration and shall require from the individual a written report of his or her examination.
(b) The person submitting a system for approval or the board of county commissioners of any county seeking approval of a given system shall reimburse the Department of State in an amount equal to the actual costs incurred by the department in examining the system. Such reimbursement shall be made whether or not the system is approved by the department.
(c) Neither the Secretary of State nor any examiner shall have any pecuniary interest in any voting equipment.
(d) The Department of State shall approve or disapprove any voting system submitted to it within 90 days after the date of its initial submission.
(3)(a) Within 30 days after completing the examination and upon approval of any electronic or electromechanical voting system, the Department of State shall make and maintain a report on the system, together with a written or printed description and drawings and photographs clearly identifying the system and the operation thereof. As soon as practicable after such filing, the department shall send a notice of certification and, upon request, a copy of the report to the governing bodies of the respective counties of the state. Any voting system that does not receive the approval of the department shall not be adopted for or used at any election.
(b) After a voting system has been approved by the Department of State, any change or improvement in the system is required to be approved by the department prior to the adoption of such change or improvement by any county. If any such change or improvement does not comply with the requirements of this act, the department shall suspend all sales of the equipment or system in the state until the equipment or system complies with the requirements of this act.
(4) The Department of State may at any time reexamine any system, or any part thereof, which has previously been approved for the purpose of updating the certification of the system.
History.s. 5, ch. 73-156; s. 21, ch. 77-175; s. 9, ch. 84-302; s. 12, ch. 85-80; s. 9, ch. 89-348; s. 577, ch. 95-147; s. 31, ch. 2011-40.
101.5606 Requirements for approval of systems.No electronic or electromechanical voting system shall be approved by the Department of State unless it is so constructed that:
(1) It permits and requires voting in secrecy.
(2) It permits each elector to vote at any election for all persons and offices for whom and for which the elector is lawfully entitled to vote, and no others; to vote for as many persons for an office as the elector is entitled to vote for; and to vote for or against any question upon which the elector is entitled to vote.
(3) It immediately rejects a ballot where the number of votes for an office or measure exceeds the number which the voter is entitled to cast or where the tabulating equipment reads the ballot as a ballot with no votes cast.
(4) For systems using marksense ballots, it accepts a rejected ballot pursuant to subsection (3) if a voter chooses to cast the ballot, but records no vote for any office that has been overvoted or undervoted.
(5) It is capable of correctly counting votes.
(6) It permits each voter at a primary election to vote only for the candidates seeking nomination by the political party in which such voter is registered, for any candidate for nonpartisan office, and for any question upon which the voter is entitled to vote.
(7) At presidential elections it permits each elector, by one operation, to vote for all presidential electors of a party or for all presidential electors of candidates for President and Vice President with no party affiliation.
(8) It provides a method for write-in voting.
(9) It is capable of accumulating a count of the specific number of ballots tallied for a precinct, accumulating total votes by candidate for each office, and accumulating total votes for and against each question and issue of the ballots tallied for a precinct.
(10) It is capable of tallying votes from ballots of different political parties from the same precinct, in the case of a primary election.
(11) It is capable of automatically producing precinct totals in printed form.
(12) If it is of a type which registers votes electronically, it will permit each voter to change his or her vote for any candidate or upon any question appearing on the official ballot up to the time that the voter takes the final step to register his or her vote and to have the vote computed.
(13) It is capable of providing records from which the operation of the voting system may be audited.
(14) It uses a precinct-count tabulation system.
(15) It does not use an apparatus or device for the piercing of ballots by the voter.
History.s. 6, ch. 73-156; s. 21, ch. 77-175; s. 10, ch. 84-302; s. 10, ch. 89-348; s. 578, ch. 95-147; s. 17, ch. 99-318; s. 18, ch. 2001-40; s. 10, ch. 2002-17; s. 35, ch. 2005-277; s. 32, ch. 2011-40.
101.56062 Standards for accessible voting systems.
(1) Notwithstanding anything in this chapter to the contrary, each voting system certified by the Department of State for use in local, state, and federal elections must include the capability to install accessible voter interface devices in the system configuration which will allow the system to meet the following minimum standards:
(a) The voting system must provide a tactile input or audio input device, or both.
(b) The voting system must provide a method by which voters can confirm any tactile or audio input by having the capability of audio output using synthetic or recorded human speech that is reasonably phonetically accurate.
(c) Any operable controls on the input device which are needed for voters who are visually impaired must be discernible tactilely without actuating the keys.
(d) Audio and visual access approaches must be able to work both separately and simultaneously.
(e) If a nonaudio access approach is provided, the system may not require color perception. The system must use black text or graphics, or both, on white background or white text or graphics, or both, on black background, unless the office of the Secretary of State approves other high-contrast color combinations that do not require color perception.
(f) Any voting system that requires any visual perception must offer the election official who programs the system, prior to its being sent to the polling place, the capability to set the font size, as it appears to the voter, from a minimum of 14 points to a maximum of 24 points.
(g) The voting system must provide audio information, including any audio output using synthetic or recorded human speech or any auditory feedback tones that are important for the use of the audio approach, through at least one mode, by handset or headset, in enhanced auditory fashion (increased amplification), and must provide incremental volume control with output amplification up to a level of at least 97 dB SPL.
(h) For transmitted voice signals to the voter, the voting system must provide a gain adjustable up to a minimum of 20 dB with at least one intermediate step of 12 dB of gain.
(i) For the safety of others, if the voting system has the possibility of exceeding 120 dB SPL, then a mechanism must be included to reset the volume automatically to the voting system’s default volume level after every use, for example when the handset is replaced, but not before. Also, universal precautions in the use and sharing of headsets should be followed.
(j) If sound cues and audible information such as “beeps” are used, there must be simultaneous corresponding visual cues and information.
(k) Controls and operable mechanisms must be operable with one hand, including operability with a closed fist, and operable without tight grasping, pinching, or twisting of the wrist.
(l) The force required to operate or activate the controls must be no greater than 5 pounds of force.
(m) Voting booths must have voting controls at a minimum height of 36 inches above the finished floor with a minimum knee clearance of 27 inches high, 30 inches wide, and 19 inches deep, or the accessible voter interface devices must be designed so as to allow their use on top of a table to meet these requirements. Tabletop installations must include adequate privacy.
(n) Any audio ballot must provide the voter with the following functionalities:
1. After the initial instructions that the system requires election officials to provide to each voter, the voter should be able to independently operate the voter interface through the final step of casting a ballot without assistance.
2. The voter must be able to determine the races that he or she is allowed to vote in and to determine which candidates are available in each race.
3. The voter must be able to determine how many candidates may be selected in each race.
4. The voter must be able to have confidence that the physical or vocal inputs given to the system have selected the candidates that he or she intended to select.
5. The voter must be able to review the candidate selections that he or she has made.
6. Prior to the act of casting the ballot, the voter must be able to change any selections previously made and confirm a new selection.
7. The system must communicate to the voter the fact that the voter has failed to vote in a race or has failed to vote the number of allowable candidates in any race and require the voter to confirm his or her intent to undervote before casting the ballot.
8. The system must prevent the voter from overvoting any race.
9. The voter must be able to input a candidate’s name in each race that allows a write-in candidate.
10. The voter must be able to review his or her write-in input to the interface, edit that input, and confirm that the edits meet the voter’s intent.
11. There must be a clear, identifiable action that the voter takes to “cast” the ballot. The system must make clear to the voter how to take this action so that the voter has minimal risk of taking the action accidentally but, when the voter intends to cast the ballot, the action can be easily performed.
12. Once the ballot is cast, the system must confirm to the voter that the action has occurred and that the voter’s process of voting is complete.
13. Once the ballot is cast, the system must preclude the voter from modifying the ballot cast or voting or casting another ballot.

The functionalities required in this paragraph for certification may be satisfied by either the voting device or by the entire voting system.

(2) Such voting system must include at least one accessible voter interface device installed in each polling place which meets the requirements of this section, except for paragraph (1)(d).
(3) The Department of State may adopt rules in accordance with s. 120.54 which are necessary to administer this section.
History.s. 12, ch. 2002-281; s. 34, ch. 2005-278; s. 1, ch. 2006-111.
101.56063 Accessibility of voting systems and polling places; intent; eligibility for federal funding.It is the intent of the Legislature that this state be eligible for any funds that are available from the Federal Government to assist states in providing or improving accessibility of voting systems and polling places for persons having a disability. Accordingly, all state laws, rules, standards, and codes governing voting systems and polling place accessibility must be maintained to ensure the state’s eligibility to receive federal funds. It is the intent of the Legislature that all state requirements meet or exceed the minimum federal requirements for voting systems and polling place accessibility. This section shall take effect upon this act becoming a law.
History.s. 13, ch. 2002-281.
101.56064 Application for federal funds under ch. 2002-281.The state may apply for all available federal funds to be used to pay for the costs associated with this act.
History.s. 21, ch. 2002-281.
101.5607 Department of State to maintain voting system information; prepare software.
(1)(a) Copies of the program codes and the user and operator manuals and copies of all software and any other information, specifications, or documentation required by the Department of State relating to an approved electronic or electromechanical voting system and its equipment must be filed with the Department of State by the supervisor of elections at the time of purchase or implementation. Any such information or materials that are not on file with and approved by the Department of State, including any updated or modified materials, may not be used in an election.
(b) Within 24 hours after the completion of any logic and accuracy test conducted pursuant to s. 101.5612, the supervisor of elections shall send by certified mail to the Department of State a copy of the tabulation program which was used in the logic and accuracy testing.
(c) The Department of State may, at any time, review the voting system of any county to ensure compliance with the Electronic Voting Systems Act.
(d) Section 119.071(1)(f) applies to all software on file with the Department of State.
(2)(a) The Department of State may develop software for use with an electronic or electromechanical voting system. The standards and examination procedures developed for software apply to all software developed by the Department of State.
(b) Software prepared by the Department of State is a public record pursuant to chapter 119 and shall be provided at the actual cost of duplication.
History.s. 7, ch. 73-156; s. 21, ch. 77-175; s. 4, ch. 82-143; s. 11, ch. 84-302; s. 11, ch. 89-348; s. 25, ch. 90-344; s. 21, ch. 95-398; s. 19, ch. 2001-40; s. 32, ch. 2004-335; s. 41, ch. 2005-251.
101.56075 Voting methods.
(1) Except as provided in subsection (2), all voting shall be by marksense ballot utilizing a marking device for the purpose of designating ballot selections.
(2) Persons with disabilities may vote on a voter interface device that meets the voting system accessibility requirements for individuals with disabilities pursuant to s. 301 of the federal Help America Vote Act of 2002 and s. 101.56062.
(3) By 2016, persons with disabilities shall vote on a voter interface device that meets the voter accessibility requirements for individuals with disabilities under s. 301 of the federal Help America Vote Act of 2002 and s. 101.56062 which are consistent with subsection (1) of this section.
(4) By December 31, 2013, all voting systems utilized by voters during a state election shall permit placement on the ballot of the full text of a constitutional amendment or revision containing stricken or underlined text.
History.s. 6, ch. 2007-30; s. 5, ch. 2010-167; s. 33, ch. 2011-40.
101.5608 Voting by electronic or electromechanical method; procedures.
(1) Each elector desiring to vote shall be identified to the clerk or inspector of the election as a duly qualified elector of such election and shall sign his or her name on the precinct register or other form or device provided by the supervisor. The inspector shall compare the signature with the signature on the identification provided by the elector. If the inspector is reasonably sure that the person is entitled to vote, the inspector shall provide the person with a ballot.
(2) When an electronic or electromechanical voting system utilizes a ballot card or marksense ballot, the following procedures shall be followed:
(a) After receiving a ballot from an inspector, the elector shall, without leaving the polling place, retire to a booth or compartment and mark the ballot. After marking his or her ballot, the elector shall place the ballot in a secrecy envelope so that the ballot will be deposited in the tabulator without exposing the voter’s choices.
(b) Any voter who spoils his or her ballot or makes an error may return the ballot to the election official and secure another ballot, except that in no case shall a voter be furnished more than three ballots. If the vote tabulation device has rejected a ballot, the ballot shall be considered spoiled and a new ballot shall be provided to the voter unless the voter chooses to cast the rejected ballot. The election official, without examining the original ballot, shall state the possible reasons for the rejection and shall provide instruction to the voter pursuant to s. 101.5611. A spoiled ballot shall be preserved, without examination, in an envelope provided for that purpose. The stub shall be removed from the ballot and placed in an envelope.
(c) The supervisor of elections shall prepare for each polling place at least one ballot box to contain the ballots of a particular precinct, and each ballot box shall be plainly marked with the name of the precinct for which it is intended.
(3) The Department of State shall promulgate rules regarding voting procedures to be used when an electronic or electromechanical voting system is of a type which does not utilize a ballot card or marksense ballot.
(4) In any election in which a write-in candidate has qualified for office, the supervisor of elections shall provide for write-in voting pursuant to rules adopted by the Division of Elections.
History.s. 8, ch. 73-156; s. 21, ch. 77-175; s. 13, ch. 81-105; s. 5, ch. 82-143; s. 12, ch. 84-302; s. 579, ch. 95-147; s. 20, ch. 2001-40; s. 11, ch. 2002-17; s. 36, ch. 2005-277; s. 35, ch. 2005-278; s. 20, ch. 2008-95.
101.5610 Inspection of ballot by election board.The election board of each precinct shall cause the voting devices to be put in order, set, adjusted, and made ready for voting when delivered to the polling places. Before the opening of the polls, the election board shall compare the ballots or the ballot information used in the voting devices with the sample ballots furnished and see that the names, numbers, and letters thereon agree and shall certify thereto on forms provided by the supervisor of elections.
History.s. 10, ch. 73-156; s. 14, ch. 84-302; s. 4, ch. 86-200.
101.5611 Instructions to electors.
(1) The supervisor of elections shall provide instruction at each polling place regarding the manner of voting with the system. In instructing voters, no precinct official may favor any political party, candidate, or issue. Such instruction shall show the arrangement of candidates and questions to be voted on. Additionally, the supervisor of elections shall provide instruction on the proper method of casting a ballot for the specific voting system utilized in that jurisdiction. Such instruction shall be provided at a place which voters must pass to reach the official voting booth.
(2) The supervisor of elections shall have posted at each polling place a notice that reads: “A person who commits or attempts to commit any fraud in connection with voting, votes a fraudulent ballot, or votes more than once in an election can be convicted of a felony of the third degree and fined up to $5,000 and/or imprisoned for up to 5 years.”
History.s. 11, ch. 73-156; s. 21, ch. 77-175; s. 581, ch. 95-147; s. 12, ch. 98-129; s. 12, ch. 2002-17.
101.5612 Testing of tabulating equipment.
(1) All electronic or electromechanical voting systems shall be thoroughly tested at the conclusion of maintenance and programming. Tests shall be sufficient to determine that the voting system is properly programmed, the election is correctly defined on the voting system, and all of the voting system input, output, and communication devices are working properly.
(2) On any day not more than 10 days prior to the commencement of early voting as provided in s. 101.657, the supervisor of elections shall have the automatic tabulating equipment publicly tested to ascertain that the equipment will correctly count the votes cast for all offices and on all measures. If the ballots to be used at the polling place on election day are not available at the time of the testing, the supervisor may conduct an additional test not more than 10 days before election day. Public notice of the time and place of the test shall be given at least 48 hours prior thereto by publication on the supervisor of elections’ website and once in one or more newspapers of general circulation in the county or, if there is no newspaper of general circulation in the county, by posting the notice in at least four conspicuous places in the county. The supervisor or the municipal elections official may, at the time of qualifying, give written notice of the time and location of the public preelection test to each candidate qualifying with that office and obtain a signed receipt that the notice has been given. The Department of State shall give written notice to each statewide candidate at the time of qualifying, or immediately at the end of qualifying, that the voting equipment will be tested and advise each candidate to contact the county supervisor of elections as to the time and location of the public preelection test. The supervisor or the municipal elections official shall, at least 15 days prior to the commencement of early voting as provided in s. 101.657, send written notice by certified mail to the county party chair of each political party and to all candidates for other than statewide office whose names appear on the ballot in the county and who did not receive written notification from the supervisor or municipal elections official at the time of qualifying, stating the time and location of the public preelection test of the automatic tabulating equipment. The canvassing board shall convene, and each member of the canvassing board shall certify to the accuracy of the test. For the test, the canvassing board may designate one member to represent it. The test shall be open to representatives of the political parties, the press, and the public. Each political party may designate one person with expertise in the computer field who shall be allowed in the central counting room when all tests are being conducted and when the official votes are being counted. The designee shall not interfere with the normal operation of the canvassing board.
(3) For electronic or electromechanical voting systems configured to tabulate absentee ballots at a central or regional site, the public testing shall be conducted by processing a preaudited group of ballots so produced as to record a predetermined number of valid votes for each candidate and on each measure and to include one or more ballots for each office which have activated voting positions in excess of the number allowed by law in order to test the ability of the automatic tabulating equipment to reject such votes. If any error is detected, the cause therefor shall be corrected and an errorless count shall be made before the automatic tabulating equipment is approved. The test shall be repeated and errorless results achieved immediately before the start of the official count of the ballots and again after the completion of the official count. The programs and ballots used for testing shall be sealed and retained under the custody of the county canvassing board.
(4)(a)1. For electronic or electromechanical voting systems configured to include electronic or electromechanical tabulation devices which are distributed to the precincts, all or a sample of the devices to be used in the election shall be publicly tested. If a sample is to be tested, the sample shall consist of a random selection of at least 5 percent or 10 of the devices for an optical scan system, whichever is greater. For touchscreen systems used for voters having a disability, a sample of at least 2 percent of the devices must be tested. The test shall be conducted by processing a group of ballots, causing the device to output results for the ballots processed, and comparing the output of results to the results expected for the ballots processed. The group of ballots shall be produced so as to record a predetermined number of valid votes for each candidate and on each measure and to include for each office one or more ballots which have activated voting positions in excess of the number allowed by law in order to test the ability of the tabulating device to reject such votes.
2. If any tested tabulating device is found to have an error in tabulation, it shall be deemed unsatisfactory. For each device deemed unsatisfactory, the canvassing board shall take steps to determine the cause of the error, shall attempt to identify and test other devices that could reasonably be expected to have the same error, and shall test a number of additional devices sufficient to determine that all devices are satisfactory. Upon deeming any device unsatisfactory, the canvassing board may require all devices to be tested or may declare that all devices are unsatisfactory.
3. If the operation or output of any tested tabulation device, such as spelling or the order of candidates on a report, is in error, such problem shall be reported to the canvassing board. The canvassing board shall then determine if the reported problem warrants its deeming the device unsatisfactory.
(b) At the completion of testing under this subsection, the canvassing board or its representative, the representatives of the political parties, and the candidates or their representatives who attended the test shall witness the resetting of each device that passed to a preelection state of readiness and the sealing of each device that passed in such a manner as to secure its state of readiness until the opening of the polls.
(c) The canvassing board or its representative shall execute a written statement setting forth the tabulation devices tested, the results of the testing, the protective counter numbers, if applicable, of each tabulation device, the number of the seal securing each tabulation device at the conclusion of testing, any problems reported to the board as a result of the testing, and whether each device tested is satisfactory or unsatisfactory.
(d) Any tabulating device deemed unsatisfactory shall be recoded, repaired, or replaced and shall be made available for retesting. Such device must be determined by the canvassing board or its representative to be satisfactory before it may be used in any election. The canvassing board or its representative shall announce at the close of the first testing the date, place, and time that any unsatisfactory device will be retested or may, at the option of the board, notify by telephone each person who was present at the first testing as to the date, place, and time that the retesting will occur.
(e) Records must be kept of all preelection testing of electronic or electromechanical tabulation devices used in any election. Such records are to be present and available for inspection and reference during public preelection testing by any person in attendance during such testing. The need of the canvassing board for access to such records during the testing shall take precedence over the need of other attendees to access such records so that the work of the canvassing board will not be delayed or hindered. Records of testing must include, for each device, the name of each person who tested the device and the date, place, time, and results of each test. Records of testing shall be retained as part of the official records of the election in which any device was used.
(5) Any tests involving marksense ballots pursuant to this section shall employ test ballots created by the supervisor of elections using actual ballots that have been printed for the election. If ballot-on-demand ballots will be used in the election, the supervisor shall also create test ballots using the ballot-on-demand technology that will be used to produce ballots in the election, using the same paper stock as will be used for ballots in the election.
History.s. 12, ch. 73-156; s. 21, ch. 77-175; s. 39, ch. 79-400; s. 2, ch. 81-29; s. 24, ch. 83-217; s. 15, ch. 84-302; s. 582, ch. 95-147; s. 21, ch. 2001-40; s. 13, ch. 2002-17; s. 11, ch. 2004-252; s. 37, ch. 2005-277; s. 7, ch. 2007-30; s. 6, ch. 2010-167; s. 34, ch. 2011-40.
101.5613 Examination of equipment during voting.A member of the election board or, for purposes of early voting pursuant to s. 101.657, a representative of the supervisor of elections shall occasionally examine the face of the voting device and the ballot information to determine that the device and the ballot information have not been damaged or tampered with.
History.s. 13, ch. 73-156; s. 21, ch. 77-175; s. 16, ch. 84-302; s. 12, ch. 2004-252.
101.5614 Canvass of returns.
(1) As soon as the polls are closed, the election board shall secure the voting devices against further voting. The election board shall thereafter, in the presence of members of the public desiring to witness the proceedings, verify the number of voted ballots, unused ballots, provisional ballots, and spoiled ballots to ascertain whether such number corresponds with the number of ballots issued by the supervisor. If there is a difference, this fact shall be reported in writing to the county canvassing board with the reasons therefor if known. The total number of voted ballots shall be entered on the forms provided. The proceedings of the election board at the precinct after the polls have closed shall be open to the public; however, no person except a member of the election board shall touch any ballot or ballot container or interfere with or obstruct the orderly count of the ballots.
(2) The Department of State shall, in accordance with s. 101.015, adopt rules that provide safeguards for the counting of votes at a precinct and at a central or regional location.
(3) The results of ballots tabulated at precinct locations may be transmitted to the main computer system for the purpose of compilation of complete returns. The security guidelines for transmission of returns shall conform to rules adopted by the Department of State pursuant to s. 101.015.
(4)  For each ballot or ballot image on which write-in votes have been cast, the canvassing board shall compare the write-in votes with the votes cast on the ballot; if the total number of votes for any office exceeds the number allowed by law, such votes shall not be counted. All valid votes shall be tallied by the canvassing board.
(5)(a) If any absentee ballot is physically damaged so that it cannot properly be counted by the automatic tabulating equipment, a true duplicate copy shall be made of the damaged ballot in the presence of witnesses and substituted for the damaged ballot. Likewise, a duplicate ballot shall be made of an absentee ballot containing an overvoted race or a marked absentee ballot in which every race is undervoted which shall include all valid votes as determined by the canvassing board based on rules adopted by the division pursuant to s. 102.166(4). All duplicate ballots shall be clearly labeled “duplicate,” bear a serial number which shall be recorded on the defective ballot, and be counted in lieu of the defective ballot. After a ballot has been duplicated, the defective ballot shall be placed in an envelope provided for that purpose, and the duplicate ballot shall be tallied with the other ballots for that precinct.
(b) A true duplicate copy shall be made of each federal write-in absentee ballot in the presence of witnesses and substituted for the federal write-in absentee ballot. The duplicate ballot must include all valid votes as determined by the canvassing board based on rules adopted by the division pursuant to s. 102.166(4). All duplicate ballots shall be clearly labeled “duplicate,” bear a serial number that shall be recorded on the federal write-in absentee ballot, and be counted in lieu of the federal write-in absentee ballot. After a ballot has been duplicated, the federal write-in absentee ballot shall be placed in an envelope provided for that purpose, and the duplicate ballot shall be tallied with other ballots for that precinct.
(6) If there is no clear indication on the ballot that the voter has made a definite choice for an office or ballot measure, the elector’s ballot shall not be counted for that office or measure, but the ballot shall not be invalidated as to those names or measures which are properly marked.
(7) Absentee ballots may be counted by automatic tabulating equipment if they have been marked in a manner which will enable them to be properly counted by such equipment.
(8) The return printed by the automatic tabulating equipment, to which has been added the return of write-in, absentee, and manually counted votes and votes from provisional ballots, shall constitute the official return of the election upon certification by the canvassing board. Upon completion of the count, the returns shall be open to the public. A copy of the returns may be posted at the central counting place or at the office of the supervisor of elections in lieu of the posting of returns at individual precincts.
(9) Any supervisor of elections, deputy supervisor of elections, canvassing board member, election board member, or election employee who releases the results of any election prior to the closing of the polls in that county on election day commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
History.s. 14, ch. 73-156; s. 1, ch. 77-174; s. 21, ch. 77-175; s. 14, ch. 81-105; s. 17, ch. 84-302; s. 1, ch. 85-17; s. 5, ch. 86-200; s. 17, ch. 90-315; s. 1, ch. 94-208; ss. 22, 37, ch. 2001-40; ss. 14, 15, ch. 2002-17; s. 38, ch. 2005-277; s. 35, ch. 2011-40; s. 2, ch. 2011-162.
101.572 Public inspection of ballots.The official ballots and ballot cards received from election boards and removed from absentee ballot mailing envelopes shall be open for public inspection or examination while in the custody of the supervisor of elections or the county canvassing board at any reasonable time, under reasonable conditions; however, no persons other than the supervisor of elections or his or her employees or the county canvassing board shall handle any official ballot or ballot card. If the ballots are being examined prior to the end of the contest period in s. 102.168, the supervisor of elections shall make a reasonable effort to notify all candidates whose names appear on such ballots or ballot cards by telephone or otherwise of the time and place of the inspection or examination. All such candidates, or their representatives, shall be allowed to be present during the inspection or examination.
History.s. 2, ch. 86-199; s. 583, ch. 95-147; s. 39, ch. 2005-277.
101.58 Supervising and observing registration and election processes.
(1) The Department of State may, at any time it deems fit; upon the petition of 5 percent of the registered electors; or upon the petition of any candidate, county executive committee chair, state committeeman or committeewoman, or state executive committee chair, appoint one or more deputies whose duties shall be to observe and examine the registration and election processes and the condition, custody, and operation of voting systems and equipment in any county or municipality. The deputy shall have access to all registration books and records as well as any other records or procedures relating to the voting process. The deputy may supervise preparation of the voting equipment and procedures for election, and it shall be unlawful for any person to obstruct the deputy in the performance of his or her duty. The deputy shall file with the Department of State a report of his or her findings and observations of the registration and election processes in the county or municipality, and a copy of the report shall also be filed with the clerk of the circuit court of said county. The compensation of such deputies shall be fixed by the Department of State; and costs incurred under this section shall be paid from the annual operating appropriation made to the Department of State.
(2) Upon the written direction of the Secretary of State, any employee of the Department of State having expertise in the matter of concern to the Secretary of State shall have full access to all premises, records, equipment, and staff of the supervisor of elections.
History.s. 13, ch. 18405, 1937; CGL 1940 Supp. 337(28-b); s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 1, ch. 63-256; ss. 10, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 1, ch. 73-305; s. 21, ch. 77-175; s. 26, ch. 89-338; s. 584, ch. 95-147; s. 23, ch. 2001-40; s. 40, ch. 2005-277.
Note.Former s. 100.31.
101.591 Voting system audit.
(1) Immediately following the certification of each election, the county canvassing board or the local board responsible for certifying the election shall conduct a manual audit of the voting systems used in randomly selected precincts.
(2) The audit shall consist of a public manual tally of the votes cast in one randomly selected race that appears on the ballot. The tally sheet shall include election-day, absentee, early voting, provisional, and overseas ballots, in at least 1 percent but no more than 2 percent of the precincts chosen at random by the county canvassing board or the local board responsible for certifying the election. If 1 percent of the precincts is less than one entire precinct, the audit shall be conducted using at least one precinct chosen at random by the county canvassing board or the local board responsible for certifying the election. Such precincts shall be selected at a publicly noticed canvassing board meeting.
(3) The canvassing board shall post a notice of the audit, including the date, time, and place, in four conspicuous places in the county and on the home page of the county supervisor of elections website.
(4) The audit must be completed and the results made public no later than 11:59 p.m. on the 7th day following certification of the election by the county canvassing board or the local board responsible for certifying the election.
(5) Within 15 days after completion of the audit, the county canvassing board or the board responsible for certifying the election shall provide a report with the results of the audit to the Department of State in a standard format as prescribed by the department. The report shall contain, but is not limited to, the following items:
(a) The overall accuracy of audit.
(b) A description of any problems or discrepancies encountered.
(c) The likely cause of such problems or discrepancies.
(d) Recommended corrective action with respect to avoiding or mitigating such circumstances in future elections.
(6) If a manual recount is undertaken pursuant to s. 102.166, the canvassing board is not required to perform the audit provided for in this section.
History.s. 14, ch. 89-348; s. 41, ch. 97-13; s. 8, ch. 2007-30; s. 36, ch. 2011-40.
101.5911 Rulemaking authority for voting system audit procedures.Effective upon this act becoming a law, the Department of State shall adopt rules to implement the provisions of s. 101.591, as amended by s. 8, chapter 2007-30, Laws of Florida, which prescribe detailed audit procedures for each voting system, which shall be uniform to the extent practicable, along with the standard form for audit reports.
History.s. 9, ch. 2007-30.
101.595 Analysis and reports of voting problems.
(1) No later than December 15 of each general election year, the supervisor of elections in each county shall report to the Department of State the total number of overvotes and undervotes in the “President and Vice President” or “Governor and Lieutenant Governor” race that appears first on the ballot or, if neither appears, the first race appearing on the ballot pursuant to s. 101.151(2), along with the likely reasons for such overvotes and undervotes and other information as may be useful in evaluating the performance of the voting system and identifying problems with ballot design and instructions which may have contributed to voter confusion.
(2) The Department of State, upon receipt of such information, shall prepare a public report on the performance of each type of voting system. The report must contain, but is not limited to, the following information:
(a) An identification of problems with the ballot design or instructions which may have contributed to voter confusion;
(b) An identification of voting system design problems; and
(c) Recommendations for correcting any problems identified.
(3) The Department of State shall submit the report to the Governor, the President of the Senate, and the Speaker of the House of Representatives by January 31 of each year following a general election.
History.s. 24, ch. 2001-40; s. 16, ch. 2002-17; s. 41, ch. 2005-277.
101.6101 Short title.Sections 101.6101-101.6107 may be cited as the “Mail Ballot Election Act.”
History.s. 1, ch. 87-364.
101.6102 Mail ballot elections; limitations.
(1)(a) An election may be conducted by mail ballot if:
1. The election is a referendum election at which all or a portion of the qualified electors of one of the following subdivisions of government are the only electors eligible to vote:
a. Counties;
b. Cities;
c. School districts covering no more than one county; or
d. Special districts;
2. The governing body responsible for calling the election and the supervisor of elections responsible for the conduct of the election authorize the use of mail ballots for the election; and
3. The Secretary of State approves a written plan for the conduct of the election, which shall include a written timetable for the conduct of the election, submitted by the supervisor of elections.
(b) In addition, an annexation referendum which includes only qualified electors of one county may also be voted on by mail ballot election.
(2) The following elections may not be conducted by mail ballot:
(a) An election at which any candidate is nominated, elected, retained, or recalled; or
(b) An election held on the same date as another election, other than a mail ballot election, in which the qualified electors of that political subdivision are eligible to cast ballots.
(3) The supervisor of elections shall be responsible for the conduct of any election held under ss. 101.6101-101.6107.
(4) The costs of a mail ballot election shall be borne by the jurisdiction initiating the calling of the election, unless otherwise provided by law.
(5) Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit the use of a mail ballot election in a municipal annexation referendum requiring separate vote of the registered electors of the annexing municipality and of the area proposed to be annexed. If a mail ballot election is authorized for a municipal annexation referendum, the provisions of ss. 101.6101-101.6107 shall control over any conflicting provisions of s. 171.0413.
History.s. 1, ch. 87-364; s. 1, ch. 89-52; s. 27, ch. 89-338; s. 18, ch. 90-315.
101.6103 Mail ballot election procedure.
(1) Except as otherwise provided in subsection (7), the supervisor of elections shall mail all official ballots with a secrecy envelope, a return mailing envelope, and instructions sufficient to describe the voting process to each elector entitled to vote in the election not sooner than the 20th day before the election and not later than the 10th day before the date of the election. All such ballots shall be mailed by first-class mail. Ballots shall be addressed to each elector at the address appearing in the registration records and placed in an envelope which is prominently marked “Do Not Forward.”
(2) Upon receipt of the ballot the elector shall mark the ballot, place it in the secrecy envelope, sign the return mailing envelope supplied with the ballot, and comply with the instructions provided with the ballot. The elector shall mail, deliver, or have delivered the marked ballot so that it reaches the supervisor of elections no later than 7 p.m. on the day of the election. The ballot must be returned in the return mailing envelope.
(3) The return mailing envelope shall contain a statement in substantially the following form:

VOTER’S CERTIFICATE

I,   (Print Name)  , do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I am a qualified voter in this election and that I have not and will not vote more than one ballot in this election.

I understand that failure to sign this certificate and give my residence address will invalidate my ballot.

  (Signature)  

  (Residence Address)  

(4) If the ballot is destroyed, spoiled, lost, or not received by the elector, the elector may obtain a replacement ballot from the supervisor of elections as provided in this subsection. An elector seeking a replacement ballot shall sign a sworn statement that the ballot was destroyed, spoiled, lost, or not received and present such statement to the supervisor of elections prior to 7 p.m. on the day of the election. The supervisor of elections shall keep a record of each replacement ballot provided under this subsection.
(5) A ballot shall be counted only if:
(a) It is returned in the return mailing envelope;
(b) The elector’s signature has been verified as provided in this subsection; and
(c) It is received by the supervisor of elections not later than 7 p.m. on the day of the election.

The supervisor of elections shall verify the signature of each elector on the return mailing envelope with the signature on the elector’s registration records. Such verification may commence at any time prior to the canvass of votes. The supervisor of elections shall safely keep the ballot unopened in his or her office until the county canvassing board canvasses the vote. If the supervisor of elections determines that an elector to whom a replacement ballot has been issued under subsection (4) has voted more than once, the canvassing board shall determine which ballot, if any, is to be counted.

(6) The canvassing board may begin the canvassing of mail ballots at 7 a.m. on the sixth day before the election, including processing the ballots through the tabulating equipment. However, results may not be released until after 7 p.m. on election day. Any canvassing board member or election employee who releases any result before 7 p.m. on election day commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
(7) With respect to absent electors overseas entitled to vote in the election, the supervisor of elections shall mail an official ballot with a secrecy envelope, a return mailing envelope, and instructions sufficient to describe the voting process to each such elector on a date sufficient to allow such elector time to vote in the election and to have his or her marked ballot reach the supervisor by 7 p.m. on the day of the election.
(8) A ballot that otherwise satisfies the requirements of subsection (5) shall be counted even if the elector dies after mailing the ballot but before election day, as long as, prior to the death of the voter, the ballot was:
(a) Postmarked by the United States Postal Service;
(b) Date-stamped with a verifiable tracking number by common carrier; or
(c) Already in the possession of the supervisor of elections.
History.s. 1, ch. 87-364; s. 585, ch. 95-147; s. 42, ch. 2005-277; s. 29, ch. 2007-30.
101.6104 Challenge of votes.If any elector present for the canvass of votes believes that any ballot is illegal due to any defect apparent on the voter’s certificate, the elector may, at any time before the ballot is removed from the envelope, file with the canvassing board a protest against the canvass of such ballot, specifying the reason he or she believes the ballot to be illegal. No challenge based upon any defect on the voter’s certificate shall be accepted after the ballot has been removed from the return mailing envelope.
History.s. 1, ch. 87-364; s. 586, ch. 95-147.
101.6105 Absentee voting.The provisions of the election code relating to absentee voting and absentee ballots shall apply to elections under ss. 101.6101-101.6107 only insofar as they do not conflict with the provisions of ss. 101.6101-101.6107.
History.s. 1, ch. 87-364.
101.6106 Application of other election laws.All laws that are applicable to general elections are applicable to mail ballot elections to the extent applicable.
History.s. 1. ch. 87-364.
101.6107 Department of State to adopt rules.The Department of State shall adopt rules governing the procedures and forms necessary to implement ss. 101.6101-101.6107.
History.s. 1, ch. 87-364.
101.62 Request for absentee ballots.
(1)(a) The supervisor shall accept a request for an absentee ballot from an elector in person or in writing. One request shall be deemed sufficient to receive an absentee ballot for all elections through the end of the calendar year of the second ensuing regularly scheduled general election, unless the elector or the elector’s designee indicates at the time the request is made the elections for which the elector desires to receive an absentee ballot. Such request may be considered canceled when any first-class mail sent by the supervisor to the elector is returned as undeliverable.
(b) The supervisor may accept a written or telephonic request for an absentee ballot from the elector, or, if directly instructed by the elector, a member of the elector’s immediate family, or the elector’s legal guardian. For purposes of this section, the term “immediate family” has the same meaning as specified in paragraph (4)(c). The person making the request must disclose:
1. The name of the elector for whom the ballot is requested.
2. The elector’s address.
3. The elector’s date of birth.
4. The requester’s name.
5. The requester’s address.
6. The requester’s driver’s license number, if available.
7. The requester’s relationship to the elector.
8. The requester’s signature (written requests only).
(c) Upon receiving a request for an absentee ballot from an absent voter, the supervisor of elections shall notify the voter of the free access system that has been designated by the department for determining the status of his or her absentee ballot.
(2) A request for an absentee ballot to be mailed to a voter must be received no later than 5 p.m. on the sixth day before the election by the supervisor of elections. The supervisor of elections shall mail absentee ballots to voters requesting ballots by such deadline no later than 4 days before the election.
(3) For each request for an absentee ballot received, the supervisor shall record the date the request was made, the date the absentee ballot was delivered to the voter or the voter’s designee or the date the absentee ballot was delivered to the post office or other carrier, the date the ballot was received by the supervisor, and such other information he or she may deem necessary. This information shall be provided in electronic format as provided by rule adopted by the division. The information shall be updated and made available no later than 8 a.m. of each day, including weekends, beginning 60 days before the primary until 15 days after the general election and shall be contemporaneously provided to the division. This information shall be confidential and exempt from the provisions of s. 119.07(1) and shall be made available to or reproduced only for the voter requesting the ballot, a canvassing board, an election official, a political party or official thereof, a candidate who has filed qualification papers and is opposed in an upcoming election, and registered political committees or registered committees of continuous existence, for political purposes only.
(4)(a) No later than 45 days before each presidential preference primary election, primary election, and general election, the supervisor of elections shall send an absentee ballot as provided in subparagraph (c)2. to each absent uniformed services voter and to each overseas voter who has requested an absentee ballot.
(b) The supervisor of elections shall mail an absentee ballot to each absent qualified voter, other than those listed in paragraph (a), who has requested such a ballot, between the 35th and 28th days before the presidential preference primary election, primary election, and general election. Except as otherwise provided in subsection (2) and after the period described in this paragraph, the supervisor shall mail absentee ballots within 2 business days after receiving a request for such a ballot.
(c) The supervisor shall provide an absentee ballot to each elector by whom a request for that ballot has been made by one of the following means:
1. By nonforwardable, return-if-undeliverable mail to the elector’s current mailing address on file with the supervisor or any other address the elector specifies in the request.
2. By forwardable mail, e-mail, or facsimile machine transmission to absent uniformed services voters and overseas voters. The absent uniformed services voter or overseas voter may designate in the absentee ballot request the preferred method of transmission. If the voter does not designate the method of transmission, the absentee ballot shall be mailed.
3. By personal delivery before 7 p.m. on election day to the elector, upon presentation of the identification required in s. 101.043.
4. By delivery to a designee on election day or up to 5 days prior to the day of an election. Any elector may designate in writing a person to pick up the ballot for the elector; however, the person designated may not pick up more than two absentee ballots per election, other than the designee’s own ballot, except that additional ballots may be picked up for members of the designee’s immediate family. For purposes of this section, “immediate family” means the designee’s spouse or the parent, child, grandparent, or sibling of the designee or of the designee’s spouse. The designee shall provide to the supervisor the written authorization by the elector and a picture identification of the designee and must complete an affidavit. The designee shall state in the affidavit that the designee is authorized by the elector to pick up that ballot and shall indicate if the elector is a member of the designee’s immediate family and, if so, the relationship. The department shall prescribe the form of the affidavit. If the supervisor is satisfied that the designee is authorized to pick up the ballot and that the signature of the elector on the written authorization matches the signature of the elector on file, the supervisor shall give the ballot to that designee for delivery to the elector.
(5) If the department is unable to certify candidates for an election in time to comply with paragraph (4)(a), the Department of State is authorized to prescribe rules for a ballot to be sent to absent uniformed services voters and overseas voters.
(6) Nothing other than the materials necessary to vote absentee shall be mailed or delivered with any absentee ballot.
History.s. 2, ch. 7380, 1917; RGS 369; CGL 430; s. 1, ch. 25385, 1949; s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 32, ch. 28156, 1953; s. 21, ch. 29934, 1955; s. 2, ch. 59-213; s. 32, ch. 65-380; s. 1, ch. 67-33; s. 2, ch. 69-136; s. 4, ch. 69-280; s. 2, ch. 70-93; ss. 1, 2, ch. 71-149; s. 5, ch. 73-157; s. 39, ch. 73-333; s. 2, ch. 75-174; s. 21, ch. 77-175; s. 40, ch. 79-400; s. 2, ch. 83-16; s. 6, ch. 83-251; s. 1, ch. 85-226; s. 4, ch. 86-199; s. 4, ch. 87-363; s. 2, ch. 87-538; s. 28, ch. 89-338; s. 20, ch. 90-360; s. 587, ch. 95-147; s. 3, ch. 96-57; s. 25, ch. 96-406; s. 13, ch. 98-129; s. 32, ch. 99-2; s. 6, ch. 99-140; s. 52, ch. 2001-40; s. 5, ch. 2001-75; s. 18, ch. 2003-415; s. 6, ch. 2004-33; s. 43, ch. 2005-277; s. 37, ch. 2005-278; s. 16, ch. 2005-286; s. 30, ch. 2007-30; s. 7, ch. 2010-167; s. 37, ch. 2011-40.
Note.Former s. 101.02.
101.64 Delivery of absentee ballots; envelopes; form.
(1) The supervisor shall enclose with each absentee ballot two envelopes: a secrecy envelope, into which the absent elector shall enclose his or her marked ballot; and a mailing envelope, into which the absent elector shall then place the secrecy envelope, which shall be addressed to the supervisor and also bear on the back side a certificate in substantially the following form:

Note: Please Read Instructions Carefully Before

Marking Ballot and Completing Voter’s Certificate.

VOTER’S CERTIFICATE

I,  , do solemnly swear or affirm that I am a qualified and registered voter of   County, Florida, and that I have not and will not vote more than one ballot in this election. I understand that if I commit or attempt to commit any fraud in connection with voting, vote a fraudulent ballot, or vote more than once in an election, I can be convicted of a felony of the third degree and fined up to $5,000 and/or imprisoned for up to 5 years. I also understand that failure to sign this certificate will invalidate my ballot.

  (Date)         (Voter’s Signature)  

(2) The certificate shall be arranged on the back of the mailing envelope so that the line for the signature of the absent elector is across the seal of the envelope; however, no statement shall appear on the envelope which indicates that a signature of the voter must cross the seal of the envelope. The absent elector shall execute the certificate on the envelope.
(3) In lieu of the voter’s certificate provided in this section, the supervisor of elections shall provide each person voting absentee under the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act with the standard oath prescribed by the presidential designee.
(4) The supervisor shall mark, code, indicate on, or otherwise track the precinct of the absent elector for each absentee ballot.
History.s. 4, ch. 7380, 1917; RGS 371; CGL 432; s. 1, ch. 25385, 1949; s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 34, ch. 28156, 1953; s. 22, ch. 29934, 1955; s. 1, ch. 61-369; s. 33, ch. 65-380; s. 3, ch. 69-136; s. 5, ch. 69-280; s. 21, ch. 71-355; s. 1, ch. 73-105; s. 6, ch. 73-157; s. 39, ch. 73-333; s. 3, ch. 75-174; s. 23, ch. 77-175; s. 4, ch. 79-365; s. 1, ch. 81-106; s. 9, ch. 81-304; s. 10, ch. 82-143; s. 2, ch. 85-226; s. 1, ch. 86-33; s. 19, ch. 90-315; s. 588, ch. 95-147; s. 4, ch. 96-57; s. 14, ch. 98-129; s. 53, ch. 2001-40; s. 19, ch. 2003-415; s. 1, ch. 2004-232; s. 44, ch. 2005-277; s. 38, ch. 2005-278.
Note.Former s. 101.04.
101.65 Instructions to absent electors.The supervisor shall enclose with each absentee ballot separate printed instructions in substantially the following form:

READ THESE INSTRUCTIONS CAREFULLY BEFORE MARKING BALLOT.

1. VERY IMPORTANT. In order to ensure that your absentee ballot will be counted, it should be completed and returned as soon as possible so that it can reach the supervisor of elections of the county in which your precinct is located no later than 7 p.m. on the day of the election.

2. Mark your ballot in secret as instructed on the ballot. You must mark your own ballot unless you are unable to do so because of blindness, disability, or inability to read or write.

3. Mark only the number of candidates or issue choices for a race as indicated on the ballot. If you are allowed to “Vote for One” candidate and you vote for more than one candidate, your vote in that race will not be counted.

4. Place your marked ballot in the enclosed secrecy envelope.

5. Insert the secrecy envelope into the enclosed mailing envelope which is addressed to the supervisor.

6. Seal the mailing envelope and completely fill out the Voter’s Certificate on the back of the mailing envelope.

7. VERY IMPORTANT. In order for your absentee ballot to be counted, you must sign your name on the line above (Voter’s Signature). An absentee ballot will be considered illegal and not be counted if the signature on the voter’s certificate does not match the signature on record. The signature on file at the start of the canvass of the absentee ballots is the signature that will be used to verify your signature on the voter’s certificate. If you need to update your signature for this election, send your signature update on a voter registration application to your supervisor of elections so that it is received no later than the start of the canvassing of absentee ballots, which occurs no earlier than the 15th day before election day.

8. VERY IMPORTANT. If you are an overseas voter, you must include the date you signed the Voter’s Certificate on the line above (Date) or your ballot may not be counted.

9. Mail, deliver, or have delivered the completed mailing envelope. Be sure there is sufficient postage if mailed.

10. FELONY NOTICE. It is a felony under Florida law to accept any gift, payment, or gratuity in exchange for your vote for a candidate. It is also a felony under Florida law to vote in an election using a false identity or false address, or under any other circumstances making your ballot false or fraudulent.

History.s. 5, ch. 7380, 1917; RGS 372; CGL 433; s. 1, ch. 25385, 1949; s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 35, ch. 28156, 1953; s. 23, ch. 29934, 1955; s. 34, ch. 65-380; s. 4, ch. 71-149; s. 9, ch. 72-63; s. 2, ch. 73-105; s. 7, ch. 73-157; ss. 3, 4, ch. 75-174; s. 23, ch. 77-175; s. 2, ch. 81-106; s. 10, ch. 81-304; s. 11, ch. 82-143; s. 7, ch. 83-251; s. 3, ch. 85-226; s. 2, ch. 86-33; s. 589, ch. 95-147; s. 5, ch. 96-57; s. 16, ch. 98-129; s. 33, ch. 99-2; s. 54, ch. 2001-40; s. 20, ch. 2003-415; s. 2, ch. 2004-232; s. 38, ch. 2011-40.
Note.Former s. 101.05.
101.655 Supervised voting by absent electors in certain facilities.
(1) The supervisor of elections of a county shall provide supervised voting for absent electors residing in any assisted living facility, as defined in s. 429.02, or nursing home facility, as defined in s. 400.021, within that county at the request of any administrator of such a facility. Such request for supervised voting in the facility shall be made by submitting a written request to the supervisor of elections no later than 21 days prior to the election for which that request is submitted. The request shall specify the name and address of the facility and the name of the electors who wish to vote absentee in that election. If the request contains the names of fewer than five voters, the supervisor of elections is not required to provide supervised voting.
(2) The supervisor of elections may, in the absence of a request from the administrator of a facility, provide for supervised voting in the facility for those persons who have requested absentee ballots. The supervisor of elections shall notify the administrator of the facility that supervised voting will occur.
(3) The supervisor of elections shall, in cooperation with the administrator of the facility, select a date and time when the supervised voting will occur.
(4) The supervisor of elections shall designate supervised voting teams to provide the services prescribed by this section. Each supervised voting team shall include at least two persons. Each supervised voting team must include representatives of more than one political party; however, in any primary election to nominate party nominees in which only one party has candidates appearing on the ballot, all supervised voting team members may be of that party. No candidate may provide supervised voting services.
(5) The supervised voting team shall deliver the ballots to the respective absent electors, and each member of the team shall jointly supervise the voting of the ballots. If any elector requests assistance in voting, the oath prescribed in s. 101.051 shall be completed and the elector may receive the assistance of two members of the supervised voting team or some other person of the elector’s choice to assist the elector in casting the elector’s ballot.
(6) Before providing assistance, the supervised voting team shall disclose to the elector that the ballot may be retained to vote at a later time and that the elector has the right to seek assistance in voting from some other person of the elector’s choice without the presence of the supervised voting team.
(7) If any elector declines to vote a ballot or is unable to vote a ballot, the supervised voting team shall mark the ballot “refused to vote” or “unable to vote.”
(8) After the ballots have been voted or marked in accordance with the provisions of this section, the supervised voting team shall deliver the ballots to the supervisor of elections, who shall retain them pursuant to s. 101.67.
History.s. 6, ch. 96-57; s. 5, ch. 2006-197.
101.657 Early voting.
(1)(a) As a convenience to the voter, the supervisor of elections shall allow an elector to vote early in the main or branch office of the supervisor. The supervisor shall mark, code, indicate on, or otherwise track the voter’s precinct for each early voted ballot. In order for a branch office to be used for early voting, it shall be a permanent facility of the supervisor and shall have been designated and used as such for at least 1 year prior to the election. The supervisor may also designate any city hall or permanent public library facility as early voting sites; however, if so designated, the sites must be geographically located so as to provide all voters in the county an equal opportunity to cast a ballot, insofar as is practicable. The results or tabulation of votes cast during early voting may not be made before the close of the polls on election day. Results shall be reported by precinct.
(b) The supervisor shall designate each early voting site by no later than the 30th day prior to an election and shall designate an early voting area, as defined in s. 97.021, at each early voting site. The supervisor shall provide to the division no later than the 30th day before an election the address of each early voting site and the hours that early voting will occur at each site.
(c) All early voting sites in a county shall allow any person in line at the closing of an early voting site to vote.
(d) Early voting shall begin on the 10th day before an election that contains state or federal races and end on the 3rd day before the election, and shall be provided for no less than 6 hours and no more than 12 hours per day at each site during the applicable period. The supervisor of elections may provide early voting for elections that are not held in conjunction with a state or federal election. However, the supervisor has the discretion to determine the hours of operation of early voting sites in those elections.
(e) Notwithstanding the requirements of s. 100.3605, municipalities may provide early voting in municipal elections that are not held in conjunction with county or state elections. If a municipality provides early voting, it may designate as many sites as necessary and shall conduct its activities in accordance with the provisions of paragraphs (a)-(c). The supervisor is not required to conduct early voting if it is provided pursuant to this subsection.
(f) Notwithstanding the requirements of s. 189.405, special districts may provide early voting in any district election not held in conjunction with county or state elections. If a special district provides early voting, it may designate as many sites as necessary and shall conduct its activities in accordance with the provisions of paragraphs (a)-(c). The supervisor is not required to conduct early voting if it is provided pursuant to this subsection.
(2) During any early voting period, each supervisor of elections shall make available the total number of voters casting a ballot at each early voting location during the previous day. Each supervisor shall prepare an electronic data file listing the individual voters who cast a ballot during the early voting period. This information shall be provided in electronic format as provided by rule adopted by the division. The information shall be updated and made available no later than noon of each day and shall be contemporaneously provided to the division.
(3) The ballot of each elector voting early shall be counted even if the elector dies on or before election day.
(4)(a) The elector must provide identification and must complete an Early Voting Voter Certificate in substantially the following form:

EARLY VOTING VOTER CERTIFICATE

I,  , am a qualified elector in this election and registered voter of   County, Florida. I do solemnly swear or affirm that I am the person so listed on the voter registration rolls of   County and that I reside at the listed address. I understand that if I commit or attempt to commit fraud in connection with voting, vote a fraudulent ballot, or vote more than once in an election I could be convicted of a felony of the third degree and both fined up to $5,000 and imprisoned for up to 5 years. I understand that my failure to sign this certificate invalidates my ballot.

  (Voter’s Signature)  

  (Address)  

  (City/State)  

(b) Any elector may challenge an elector seeking to vote early under the provisions of s. 101.111. Any challenged voter must vote a provisional ballot. The canvassing board shall review the ballot and decide the validity of the ballot by majority vote.
(c) The canvass of returns for ballots cast under this subsection shall be substantially the same as votes cast by electors in precincts, as provided in s. 101.5614.
History.s. 17, ch. 98-129; s. 2, ch. 2000-249; s. 55, ch. 2001-40; s. 21, ch. 2003-415; s. 7, ch. 2004-232; s. 13, ch. 2004-252; s. 45, ch. 2005-277; s. 39, ch. 2005-278; s. 39, ch. 2011-40.
101.661 Voting absentee ballots.All electors must personally mark or designate their choices on the absentee ballot, except:
(1) Electors who require assistance to vote because of blindness, disability, or inability to read or write, who may have some person of the elector’s choice, other than the elector’s employer, an agent of the employer, or an officer or agent of the elector’s union, mark the elector’s choices or assist the elector in marking his or her choices on the ballot.
(2) As otherwise provided in s. 101.051 or s. 101.655.
History.s. 18, ch. 98-129.
101.662 Accessibility of absentee ballots.It is the intent of the Legislature that voting by absentee ballot be by methods that are fully accessible to all voters, including voters having a disability. The Department of State shall work with the supervisors of elections and the disability community to develop and implement procedures and technologies, as possible, which will include procedures for providing absentee ballots, upon request, in alternative formats that will allow all voters to cast a secret, independent, and verifiable absentee ballot without the assistance of another person.
History.s. 14, ch. 2002-281.
101.663 Electors; change of residence to another state.An elector registered in this state who moves his or her permanent residence to another state after the registration books in that state have closed shall be permitted to vote absentee in the county of his or her former residence for the offices of President and Vice President of the United States.
History.s. 1, ch. 69-136; s. 11, ch. 69-280; s. 4, ch. 73-157; s. 31, ch. 73-333; s. 3, ch. 77-175; s. 1, ch. 79-365; s. 22, ch. 94-224; s. 1392, ch. 95-147; s. 46, ch. 2005-277; s. 40, ch. 2005-278.
Note.Former s. 97.102.
101.665 Administration of oaths; military personnel, federal employees, and other absentee registrants.For the purposes of this code, oaths may be administered and attested by any commissioned officer in the active service of the Armed Forces, any member of the Merchant Marine of the United States designated for this purpose by the Secretary of Commerce, any civilian official empowered by state or federal law to administer oaths, any supervisor of elections, deputy supervisor of elections, or employee of the supervisor of elections when designated by the supervisor of elections, or any civilian employee designated by the head of any department or agency of the United States, except when this code requires an oath to be administered and attested by another official specifically named.
History.s. 6, ch. 29904, 1955; s. 42, ch. 65-380; s. 4, ch. 72-63; s. 3, ch. 77-175; s. 17, ch. 94-224; s. 19, ch. 98-129.
Note.Former s. 101.695; s. 97.065.
101.67 Safekeeping of mailed ballots; deadline for receiving absentee ballots.
(1) The supervisor of elections shall safely keep in his or her office any envelopes received containing marked ballots of absent electors, and he or she shall, before the canvassing of the election returns, deliver the envelopes to the county canvassing board along with his or her file or list kept regarding said ballots.
(2) All marked absent electors’ ballots to be counted must be received by the supervisor by 7 p.m. the day of the election. All ballots received thereafter shall be marked with the time and date of receipt and filed in the supervisor’s office.
History.s. 2, ch. 11824, 1927; CGL 436; s. 1, ch. 25385, 1949; s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 24, ch. 29934, 1955; s. 24, ch. 57-1; s. 35, ch. 65-380; s. 5, ch. 71-149; s. 23, ch. 77-175; s. 590, ch. 95-147.
Note.Former s. 101.07.
101.68 Canvassing of absentee ballot.
(1) The supervisor of the county where the absent elector resides shall receive the voted ballot, at which time the supervisor shall compare the signature of the elector on the voter’s certificate with the signature of the elector in the registration books to determine whether the elector is duly registered in the county and may record on the elector’s registration certificate that the elector has voted. However, effective July 1, 2005, an elector who dies after casting an absentee ballot but on or before election day shall remain listed in the registration books until the results have been certified for the election in which the ballot was cast. The supervisor shall safely keep the ballot unopened in his or her office until the county canvassing board canvasses the vote. After an absentee ballot is received by the supervisor, the ballot is deemed to have been cast, and changes or additions may not be made to the voter’s certificate.
(2)(a) The county canvassing board may begin the canvassing of absentee ballots at 7 a.m. on the 15th day before the election, but not later than noon on the day following the election. In addition, for any county using electronic tabulating equipment, the processing of absentee ballots through such tabulating equipment may begin at 7 a.m. on the 15th day before the election. However, notwithstanding any such authorization to begin canvassing or otherwise processing absentee ballots early, no result shall be released until after the closing of the polls in that county on election day. Any supervisor of elections, deputy supervisor of elections, canvassing board member, election board member, or election employee who releases the results of a canvassing or processing of absentee ballots prior to the closing of the polls in that county on election day commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
(b) To ensure that all absentee ballots to be counted by the canvassing board are accounted for, the canvassing board shall compare the number of ballots in its possession with the number of requests for ballots received to be counted according to the supervisor’s file or list.
(c)1. The canvassing board shall, if the supervisor has not already done so, compare the signature of the elector on the voter’s certificate with the signature of the elector in the registration books to see that the elector is duly registered in the county and to determine the legality of that absentee ballot. The ballot of an elector who casts an absentee ballot shall be counted even if the elector dies on or before election day, as long as, prior to the death of the voter, the ballot was postmarked by the United States Postal Service, date-stamped with a verifiable tracking number by common carrier, or already in the possession of the supervisor of elections. An absentee ballot shall be considered illegal if it does not include the signature of the elector, as shown by the registration records. However, an absentee ballot shall not be considered illegal if the signature of the elector does not cross the seal of the mailing envelope. If the canvassing board determines that any ballot is illegal, a member of the board shall, without opening the envelope, mark across the face of the envelope: “rejected as illegal.” The envelope and the ballot contained therein shall be preserved in the manner that official ballots voted are preserved.
2. If any elector or candidate present believes that an absentee ballot is illegal due to a defect apparent on the voter’s certificate, he or she may, at any time before the ballot is removed from the envelope, file with the canvassing board a protest against the canvass of that ballot, specifying the precinct, the ballot, and the reason he or she believes the ballot to be illegal. A challenge based upon a defect in the voter’s certificate may not be accepted after the ballot has been removed from the mailing envelope.
(d) The canvassing board shall record the ballot upon the proper record, unless the ballot has been previously recorded by the supervisor. The mailing envelopes shall be opened and the secrecy envelopes shall be mixed so as to make it impossible to determine which secrecy envelope came out of which signed mailing envelope; however, in any county in which an electronic or electromechanical voting system is used, the ballots may be sorted by ballot styles and the mailing envelopes may be opened and the secrecy envelopes mixed separately for each ballot style. The votes on absentee ballots shall be included in the total vote of the county.
(3) The supervisor or the chair of the county canvassing board shall, after the board convenes, have custody of the absentee ballots until a final proclamation is made as to the total vote received by each candidate.
(4) The supervisor of elections shall, on behalf of the county canvassing board, notify each elector whose ballot was rejected as illegal because of a difference between the elector’s signature on the ballot and that on the elector’s voter registration record. The supervisor shall mail a voter registration application to the elector to be completed indicating the elector’s current signature. This section does not prohibit the supervisor from providing additional methods for updating an elector’s signature.
History.s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 37, ch. 28156, 1953; s. 36, ch. 65-380; s. 6, ch. 69-280; s. 3, ch. 75-174; s. 23, ch. 77-175; s. 41, ch. 79-400; s. 3, ch. 86-33; s. 591, ch. 95-147; s. 7, ch. 96-57; s. 20, ch. 98-129; s. 56, ch. 2001-40; s. 17, ch. 2002-17; s. 3, ch. 2004-232; s. 47, ch. 2005-277; s. 31, ch. 2007-30; s. 40, ch. 2011-40.
101.69 Voting in person; return of absentee ballot.The provisions of this code shall not be construed to prohibit any elector from voting in person at the elector’s precinct on the day of an election or at an early voting site, notwithstanding that the elector has requested an absentee ballot for that election. An elector who has returned a voted absentee ballot to the supervisor, however, is deemed to have cast his or her ballot and is not entitled to vote another ballot or to have a provisional ballot counted by the county canvassing board. An elector who has received an absentee ballot and has not returned the voted ballot to the supervisor, but desires to vote in person, shall return the ballot, whether voted or not, to the election board in the elector’s precinct or to an early voting site. The returned ballot shall be marked “canceled” by the board and placed with other canceled ballots. However, if the elector does not return the ballot and the election official:
(1) Confirms that the supervisor has received the elector’s absentee ballot, the elector shall not be allowed to vote in person. If the elector maintains that he or she has not returned the absentee ballot or remains eligible to vote, the elector shall be provided a provisional ballot as provided in s. 101.048.
(2) Confirms that the supervisor has not received the elector’s absentee ballot, the elector shall be allowed to vote in person as provided in this code. The elector’s absentee ballot, if subsequently received, shall not be counted and shall remain in the mailing envelope, and the envelope shall be marked “Rejected as Illegal.”
(3) Cannot determine whether the supervisor has received the elector’s absentee ballot, the elector may vote a provisional ballot as provided in s. 101.048.
History.s. 1, ch. 22014, 1943; s. 1, ch. 25385, 1949; s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 37, ch. 65-380; s. 23, ch. 77-175; s. 592, ch. 95-147; s. 8, ch. 96-57; s. 38, ch. 2001-40; s. 18, ch. 2002-17; s. 48, ch. 2005-277.
Note.Former s. 101.11.
101.6921 Delivery of special absentee ballot to certain first-time voters.
(1) The provisions of this section apply to voters who are subject to the provisions of s. 97.0535 and who have not provided the identification or certification required by s. 97.0535 by the time the absentee ballot is mailed.
(2) The supervisor shall enclose with each absentee ballot three envelopes: a secrecy envelope, into which the absent elector will enclose his or her marked ballot; an envelope containing the Voter’s Certificate, into which the absent elector shall place the secrecy envelope; and a mailing envelope, which shall be addressed to the supervisor and into which the absent elector will place the envelope containing the Voter’s Certificate and a copy of the required identification.
(3) The Voter’s Certificate shall be in substantially the following form:

Note: Please Read Instructions Carefully Before Marking Ballot and Completing Voter’s Certificate.

VOTER’S CERTIFICATE

I,  , do solemnly swear or affirm that I am a qualified and registered voter of   County, Florida, and that I have not and will not vote more than one ballot in this election. I understand that if I commit or attempt to commit any fraud in connection with voting, vote a fraudulent ballot, or vote more than once in an election, I can be convicted of a felony of the third degree and fined up to $5,000 and/or imprisoned for up to 5 years. I also understand that failure to sign this certificate will invalidate my ballot. I understand that unless I meet one of the exemptions below, I must provide a copy of a current and valid identification as provided in the instruction sheet to the supervisor of elections in order for my ballot to count.

I further certify that I am exempt from the requirements to furnish a copy of a current and valid identification with my ballot because of one or more of the following (check all that apply):

☐ I am 65 years of age or older.

☐ I have a permanent or temporary physical disability.

☐ I am a member of a uniformed service on active duty who, by reason of such active duty, will be absent from the county on election day.

☐ I am a member of the Merchant Marine who, by reason of service in the Merchant Marine, will be absent from the county on election day.

☐ I am the spouse or dependent of a member of the uniformed service or Merchant Marine who, by reason of the active duty or service of the member, will be absent from the county on election day.

☐ I am currently residing outside the United States.

  (Date)         Voter’s Signature  

(4) The certificate shall be arranged on the back of the envelope so that the line for the signature of the absent elector is across the seal of the envelope.
History.s. 22, ch. 2003-415; s. 4, ch. 2004-232; s. 41, ch. 2005-278.
101.6923 Special absentee ballot instructions for certain first-time voters.
(1) The provisions of this section apply to voters who are subject to the provisions of s. 97.0535 and who have not provided the identification or information required by s. 97.0535 by the time the absentee ballot is mailed.
(2) A voter covered by this section shall be provided with printed instructions with his or her absentee ballot in substantially the following form:

READ THESE INSTRUCTIONS CAREFULLY BEFORE MARKING YOUR BALLOT. FAILURE TO FOLLOW THESE INSTRUCTIONS MAY CAUSE YOUR BALLOT NOT TO COUNT.

1. In order to ensure that your absentee ballot will be counted, it should be completed and returned as soon as possible so that it can reach the supervisor of elections of the county in which your precinct is located no later than 7 p.m. on the date of the election.

2. Mark your ballot in secret as instructed on the ballot. You must mark your own ballot unless you are unable to do so because of blindness, disability, or inability to read or write.

3. Mark only the number of candidates or issue choices for a race as indicated on the ballot. If you are allowed to “Vote for One” candidate and you vote for more than one, your vote in that race will not be counted.

4. Place your marked ballot in the enclosed secrecy envelope and seal the envelope.

5. Insert the secrecy envelope into the enclosed envelope bearing the Voter’s Certificate. Seal the envelope and completely fill out the Voter’s Certificate on the back of the envelope.

a. You must sign your name on the line above (Voter’s Signature).

b. If you are an overseas voter, you must include the date you signed the Voter’s Certificate on the line above (Date) or your ballot may not be counted.

c. An absentee ballot will be considered illegal and will not be counted if the signature on the Voter’s Certificate does not match the signature on record. The signature on file at the start of the canvass of the absentee ballots is the signature that will be used to verify your signature on the Voter’s Certificate. If you need to update your signature for this election, send your signature update on a voter registration application to your supervisor of elections so that it is received no later than the start of canvassing of absentee ballots, which occurs no earlier than the 15th day before election day.

6. Unless you meet one of the exemptions in Item 7., you must make a copy of one of the following forms of identification:

a. Identification which must include your name and photograph: United States passport; debit or credit card; military identification; student identification; retirement center identification; neighborhood association identification; or public assistance identification; or

b. Identification which shows your name and current residence address: current utility bill, bank statement, government check, paycheck, or government document (excluding voter identification card).

7. The identification requirements of Item 6. do not apply if you meet one of the following requirements:

a. You are 65 years of age or older.

b. You have a temporary or permanent physical disability.

c. You are a member of a uniformed service on active duty who, by reason of such active duty, will be absent from the county on election day.

d. You are a member of the Merchant Marine who, by reason of service in the Merchant Marine, will be absent from the county on election day.

e. You are the spouse or dependent of a member referred to in paragraph c. or paragraph d. who, by reason of the active duty or service of the member, will be absent from the county on election day.

f. You are currently residing outside the United States.

8. Place the envelope bearing the Voter’s Certificate into the mailing envelope addressed to the supervisor. Insert a copy of your identification in the mailing envelope. DO NOT PUT YOUR IDENTIFICATION INSIDE THE SECRECY ENVELOPE WITH THE BALLOT OR INSIDE THE ENVELOPE WHICH BEARS THE VOTER’S CERTIFICATE OR YOUR BALLOT WILL NOT COUNT.

9. Mail, deliver, or have delivered the completed mailing envelope. Be sure there is sufficient postage if mailed.

10. FELONY NOTICE. It is a felony under Florida law to accept any gift, payment, or gratuity in exchange for your vote for a candidate. It is also a felony under Florida law to vote in an election using a false identity or false address, or under any other circumstances making your ballot false or fraudulent.

History.s. 23, ch. 2003-415; s. 5, ch. 2004-232; s. 49, ch. 2005-277; s. 42, ch. 2005-278; s. 22, ch. 2008-95; s. 41, ch. 2011-40.
101.6925 Canvassing special absentee ballots.
(1) The supervisor of the county where the absent elector resides shall receive the voted special absentee ballot, at which time the mailing envelope shall be opened to determine if the voter has enclosed the identification required or has indicated on the Voter’s Certificate that he or she is exempt from the identification requirements.
(2) If the identification is enclosed or the voter has indicated that he or she is exempt from the identification requirements, the supervisor shall make the note on the registration records of the voter and proceed to canvass the absentee ballot as provided in s. 101.68.
(3) If the identification is not enclosed in the mailing envelope and the voter has not indicated that he or she is exempt from the identification requirements, the supervisor shall check the voter registration records to determine if the voter’s identification was previously received or the voter had previously notified the supervisor that he or she was exempt. The envelope with the Voter’s Certificate shall not be opened unless the identification has been received or the voter has indicated that he or she is exempt. The ballot shall be treated as a provisional ballot until 7 p.m. on election day and shall not be canvassed unless the supervisor has received the required identification or written indication of exemption by 7 p.m. on election day.
History.s. 24, ch. 2003-415.
101.694 Mailing of ballots upon receipt of federal postcard application.
(1) Upon receipt of a federal postcard application for an absentee ballot executed by a person whose registration is in order or whose application is sufficient to register or update the registration of that person, the supervisor shall send the ballot in accordance with s. 101.62(4).
(2) Upon receipt of a federal postcard application for an absentee ballot executed by a person whose registration is not in order and whose application is insufficient to register or update the registration of that person, the supervisor shall follow the procedure set forth in s. 97.073.
(3) Absentee envelopes printed for voters entitled to vote absentee under the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act shall meet the specifications as determined by the Federal Voting Assistance Program of the United States Department of Defense and the United States Postal Service.
(4) Cognizance shall be taken of the fact that absentee ballots and other materials such as instructions and envelopes are to be carried via air mail, and, to the maximum extent possible, such ballots and materials shall be reduced in size and weight of paper. The same ballot shall be used, however, as is used by other absentee voters.
History.s. 5, ch. 29904, 1955; ss. 4, 5, ch. 59-217; s. 41, ch. 65-380; s. 12, ch. 69-280; s. 23, ch. 77-175; s. 20, ch. 81-304; s. 37, ch. 94-224; s. 9, ch. 96-57; s. 25, ch. 2003-415; s. 50, ch. 2005-277; s. 8, ch. 2010-167.
101.6951 State write-in ballot.
(1) An overseas voter may request, not earlier than 180 days before a general election, a state write-in absentee ballot from the supervisor of elections in the county of registration. In order to receive a state write-in ballot, the voter shall state that due to military or other contingencies that preclude normal mail delivery, the voter cannot vote an absentee ballot during the normal absentee voting period. State write-in absentee ballots shall be made available to voters 90 to 180 days prior to a general election. The Department of State shall prescribe by rule the form of the state write-in ballot.
(2) In completing the ballot, the overseas voter may designate his or her choice by writing in the name of the candidate or by writing in the name of a political party, in which case the ballot must be counted for the candidate of that political party, if there is such a party candidate on the ballot.
(3) Any abbreviation, misspelling, or other minor variation in the form of the name of a candidate or a political party must be disregarded in determining the validity of the ballot if there is a clear indication on the ballot that the voter has made a definite choice.
(4) The state write-in ballot shall contain all offices, federal, state, and local, for which the voter would otherwise be entitled to vote.
History.s. 48, ch. 2001-40.
101.6952 Absentee ballots for absent uniformed services and overseas voters.
(1) If an absent uniformed services voter’s or an overseas voter’s request for an official absentee ballot pursuant to s. 101.62 includes an e-mail address, the supervisor of elections shall:
(a) Record the voter’s e-mail address in the absentee ballot record;
(b) Confirm by e-mail that the absentee ballot request was received and include in that e-mail the estimated date the absentee ballot will be sent to the voter; and
(c) Notify the voter by e-mail when the voted absentee ballot is received by the supervisor of elections.
(2)(a) An absent uniformed services voter or an overseas voter who makes timely application for but does not receive an official absentee ballot may use the federal write-in absentee ballot to vote in any federal election and any state or local election involving two or more candidates.
(b)1. In an election for federal office, an elector may designate a candidate by writing the name of a candidate on the ballot. Except for a primary or special primary election, the elector may alternatively designate a candidate by writing the name of a political party on the ballot. A written designation of the political party shall be counted as a vote for the candidate of that party if there is such a party candidate in the race.
2. In an election for a state or local office, an elector may vote in the section of the federal write-in absentee ballot designated for nonfederal races by writing on the ballot the title of each office and by writing on the ballot the name of the candidate for whom the elector is voting. Except for a primary, special primary, or nonpartisan election, the elector may alternatively designate a candidate by writing the name of a political party on the ballot. A written designation of the political party shall be counted as a vote for the candidate of that party if there is such a party candidate in the race.
(c) In the case of a joint candidacy, such as for the offices of President/Vice President or Governor/Lieutenant Governor, a valid vote for one or both qualified candidates on the same ticket shall constitute a vote for the joint candidacy.
(d) For purposes of this subsection and except where the context clearly indicates otherwise, such as where a candidate in the election is affiliated with a political party whose name includes the word “Independent,” “Independence,” or similar term, a voter designation of “No Party Affiliation” or “Independent,” or any minor variation, misspelling, or abbreviation thereof, shall be considered a designation for the candidate, other than a write-in candidate, who qualified to run in the race with no party affiliation. If more than one candidate qualifies to run as a candidate with no party affiliation, the designation shall not count for any candidate unless there is a valid, additional designation of the candidate’s name.
(e) Any abbreviation, misspelling, or other minor variation in the form of the name of an office, the name of a candidate, or the name of a political party must be disregarded in determining the validity of the ballot.
(3)(a) An absent uniformed services voter or an overseas voter who submits a federal write-in absentee ballot and later receives an official absentee ballot may submit the official absentee ballot. An elector who submits a federal write-in absentee ballot and later receives and submits an official absentee ballot should make every reasonable effort to inform the appropriate supervisor of elections that the elector has submitted more than one ballot.
(b) A federal write-in absentee ballot may not be canvassed until 7 p.m. on the day of the election. Each federal write-in absentee ballot received by 7 p.m. on the day of the election shall be canvassed pursuant to ss. 101.5614(5) and 101.68, unless the elector’s official absentee ballot is received by 7 p.m. on election day. If the elector’s official absentee ballot is received by 7 p.m. on election day, the federal write-in absentee ballot is invalid and the official absentee ballot shall be canvassed. The time shall be regulated by the customary time in standard use in the county seat of the locality.
(4) For absentee ballots received from absent uniformed services voters or overseas voters, there is a presumption that the envelope was mailed on the date stated on the outside of the return envelope, regardless of the absence of a postmark on the mailed envelope or the existence of a postmark date that is later than the date of the election.
History.s. 49, ch. 2001-40; s. 6, ch. 2004-232; s. 9, ch. 2010-167; s. 1, ch. 2011-162.
101.697 Electronic transmission of election materials.The Department of State shall determine whether secure electronic means can be established for receiving ballots from overseas voters. If such security can be established, the department shall adopt rules to authorize a supervisor of elections to accept from an overseas voter a request for an absentee ballot or a voted absentee ballot by secure facsimile machine transmission or other secure electronic means. The rules must provide that in order to accept a voted ballot, the verification of the voter must be established, the security of the transmission must be established, and each ballot received must be recorded.
History.s. 50, ch. 2001-40; s. 51, ch. 2005-277.
101.698 Absentee voting in emergency situations.If a national or local emergency or other situation arises which makes substantial compliance with the provisions of state or federal law relating to the methods of voting for overseas voters impossible or unreasonable, such as an armed conflict involving United States Armed Forces or mobilization of those forces, including state National Guard and reserve components, the Elections Canvassing Commission may adopt by emergency rules such special procedures or requirements necessary to facilitate absentee voting by those persons directly affected who are otherwise eligible to vote in the election.
History.s. 51, ch. 2001-40.
101.71 Polling place.
(1) There shall be in each precinct in each county one polling place which shall be accessible to the public on election day and is managed by a board of inspectors and clerk of election. Only one elector shall be allowed to enter any voting booth at a time; no one except inspectors shall be allowed to speak to the elector while casting his or her vote; and no inspector shall speak to or interfere with the elector concerning his or her voting, except to perform the duties as such inspector. Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, this section shall be applicable where the computer method of voting is in use, and adequate provision shall be made for the privacy of the elector while casting his or her vote.
(2) Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (1), whenever the supervisor of elections of any county determines that the accommodations for holding any election at a polling place designated for any precinct in the county are unavailable, are inadequate for the expeditious and efficient housing and handling of voting and voting paraphernalia, or do not comply with the requirements of s. 101.715, the supervisor shall, not less than 30 days prior to the holding of an election, provide for the voting place for such precinct to be moved to another site that is accessible to the public on election day in said precinct or, if such is not available, to another site that is accessible to the public on election day in a contiguous precinct. If such action of the supervisor results in the voting place for two or more precincts being located for the purposes of an election in one building, the supervisor of elections shall provide adequate supplies, equipment, and personnel are available to accommodate the voters for the precincts that are collocated. When any supervisor moves any polling place pursuant to this subsection, the supervisor shall, not more than 30 days or fewer than 7 days prior to the holding of an election, give notice of the change of the polling place for the precinct involved, with clear description of the voting place to which changed, at least once in a newspaper of general circulation in the county and on the supervisor of elections’ website. A notice of the change of the polling place involved shall be mailed, at least 14 days prior to an election, to each registered elector or to each household in which there is a registered elector.
(3) In cases of emergency and when time does not permit compliance with subsection (2), the supervisor of elections shall designate a new polling place which shall be accessible to the public on election day and shall cause a notice to be posted at the old polling place advising the electors of the location of the new polling place.
(4) Each polling place shall be conspicuously identified by a sign, on or near the premises of the polling place, designating the polling place by precinct number. Such sign shall be large enough to be clearly visible to occupants of passing vehicular traffic on roadways contiguous to the polling place, with letters no smaller than 3 inches high, and shall be displayed at all times while the polls are open on any election day.
(5) Public, tax-supported buildings shall be made available for use as polling places upon the request of the supervisor of elections.
History.s. 22, ch. 3879, 1889; RS 176; s. 26, ch. 4328, 1895; s. 1, ch. 4699, 1899; GS 208; RGS 252; CGL 308; s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 1, ch. 57-385; s. 3, ch. 67-530; s. 4, ch. 69-281; s. 23, ch. 77-175; s. 4, ch. 78-188; s. 2, ch. 80-189; s. 12, ch. 80-292; s. 1, ch. 85-38; s. 593, ch. 95-147; s. 25, ch. 2001-40; s. 15, ch. 2002-281; s. 10, ch. 2010-167.
Note.Former s. 99.06.
101.715 Accessibility of polling places for people having a disability.
(1) All polling places must be accessible and usable by people with disabilities, as provided in this section.
(2) Only those polling places complying with the Florida Americans With Disabilities Accessibility Implementation Act, ss. 553.501-553.513, for all portions of the polling place or the structure in which it is located that voters traverse going to and from the polling place and during the voting process, regardless of the age or function of the building, shall be used for federal, state, and local elections.
(3) The selection of a polling site must ensure accessibility with respect to the following accessible elements, spaces, scope, and technical requirements: accessible route, space allowance and reach ranges, protruding objects, ground and floor surfaces, parking and passenger loading zones, curb ramps, ramps, stairs, elevators, platform lifts, doors, entrances, path of egress, controls and operating mechanisms, signage, and all other minimum requirements.
(4) Standards required at each polling place, regardless of the age of the building or function of the building, include:
(a) For polling places that provide parking spaces for voters, one or more signed accessible parking spaces for disabled persons.
(b) Signage identifying an accessible path of travel to the polling place if it differs from the primary route or entrance.
(c) An unobstructed path of travel to the polling place.
(d) Level, firm, stable, and slip-resistant surfaces.
(e) An unobstructed area for voting.
(f) Sufficient lighting along the accessible path of travel and within the polling place.
(5) The Department of State may adopt rules in accordance with s. 120.54 which are necessary to administer this section.
History.s. 1, ch. 76-50; s. 16, ch. 2002-281.
101.731 Short title.Sections 101.731-101.74 may be cited as the “Elections Emergency Act.”
History.s. 1, ch. 92-16.
101.732 Definitions relating to Elections Emergency Act.As used in ss. 101.731-101.74:
(1) “Department” means the Department of State.
(2) “Division” means the Division of Elections of the Department of State.
(3) “Emergency” means any occurrence, or threat thereof, whether accidental, natural, or caused by human beings, in war or in peace, that results or may result in substantial injury or harm to the population or substantial damage to or loss of property to the extent it will prohibit an election officer’s ability to conduct a safe and orderly election.
History.s. 2, ch. 92-16; s. 595, ch. 95-147.
101.733 Election emergency; purpose; elections emergency contingency plan.Because of the existing and continuing possibility of an emergency or common disaster occurring before or during a regularly scheduled or special election, and in order to ensure maximum citizen participation in the electoral process and provide a safe and orderly procedure for persons seeking to exercise their right to vote, generally to minimize to whatever degree possible a person’s exposure to danger during declared states of emergency, and to protect the integrity of the electoral process, it is hereby found and declared to be necessary to designate a procedure for the emergency suspension or delay and rescheduling of elections.
(1) The Governor may, upon issuance of an executive order declaring a state of emergency or impending emergency, suspend or delay any election. The Governor may take such action independently or at the request of the Secretary of State, a supervisor of elections from a county affected by the emergency circumstances, or a municipal clerk from a municipality affected by the emergency circumstances.
(2) The Governor, upon consultation with the Secretary of State, shall reschedule any election suspended or delayed due to an emergency. The election shall be held within 10 days after the date of the suspended or delayed election or as soon thereafter as is practicable. Notice of the election shall be published at least once in a newspaper of general circulation in the affected area and, where practicable, broadcast as a public service announcement on radio and television stations at least 1 week prior to the date the election is to be held.
(3) The Division of Elections of the Department of State shall adopt, by rule, an elections emergency contingency plan, which shall contain goals and policies that give specific direction to state and local elections officials when an election has been suspended or delayed due to an emergency. The contingency plan shall be statewide in scope and shall address, but not be limited to, the following concerns:
(a) Providing a procedure for state and local elections officials to follow when an election has been suspended or delayed to ensure notice of the suspension or delay to the proper authorities, the electorate, the communications media, poll workers, and the custodians of polling places.
(b) Providing a procedure for the orderly conduct of a rescheduled election, whether municipal, county, district, or statewide in scope; coordinating those efforts with the appropriate elections official, and the members of the governing body holding such election, if appropriate; and working with the appropriate emergency management officials in determining the safety of existing polling places or designating additional polling places.
(c) Providing a procedure for the release and certification of election returns to the department for elections suspended or delayed and subsequently rescheduled under the provisions of ss. 101.731-101.74.
History.s. 3, ch. 92-16.
101.74 Temporary change of polling place in case of emergency.In case of an emergency existing in any precinct at the time of the holding of any election, the supervisor of elections may establish, at any safe and convenient point outside such precinct, an additional polling place for the electors of that precinct, in which place the qualified electors may vote. The registration books of the affected precinct shall be applicable to, and shall be used at, the polling place so established.
History.s. 39, ch. 3879, 1889; RS 193; s. 70, ch. 4328, 1895; GS 254; RGS 298; CGL 354; s. 5, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 44, ch. 65-380; s. 23, ch. 77-175; s. 2, ch. 83-334; s. 4, ch. 92-16.
Note.Former s. 99.55.
101.75 Municipal elections; change of dates for cause.
(1) In any municipality, when the date of the municipal election falls on the same date as any statewide or county election and the voting devices of the voting system used in the county are not available for both elections, the municipality may provide that the municipal election may be held within 30 days prior to or subsequent to the statewide or county election.
(2) The date of the municipal election shall be set by the municipality by ordinance.
(3) Notwithstanding any provision of local law or municipal charter, the governing body of a municipality may, by ordinance, move the date of any municipal election to a date concurrent with any statewide or countywide election. The dates for qualifying for the election moved by the passage of such ordinance shall be specifically provided for in the ordinance. The term of office for any elected municipal official shall commence as provided by the relevant municipal charter or ordinance.
History.ss. 1, 2, ch. 59-493; s. 1, ch. 76-68; s. 24, ch. 77-175; s. 5, ch. 92-16; s. 26, ch. 2001-40; s. 4, ch. 2007-30; s. 23, ch. 2008-95; s. 42, ch. 2011-40.
Note.Former s. 104.451.