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Duties CBE Members and Directors August 2014 SBE Statewide Training Carol Soles, Cabarrus CBE Director and former CBE Member Don Wright, SBE General Counsel.

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Presentation on theme: "Duties CBE Members and Directors August 2014 SBE Statewide Training Carol Soles, Cabarrus CBE Director and former CBE Member Don Wright, SBE General Counsel."— Presentation transcript:

1 Duties CBE Members and Directors August 2014 SBE Statewide Training Carol Soles, Cabarrus CBE Director and former CBE Member Don Wright, SBE General Counsel

2 The CBE Has the Ultimate Responsibility for CBE Operations There may be misunderstandings as in all relationships. The Director and CBE need to make sure everybody is aware of the facts and guidelines each party is acting upon in case disagreement is based upon a factual or legal error. The Director holds a red flag. If the Director waves it, CBE you ignore it at your own peril. No intimidation of the other by either the Director or CBE.

3 Protect One Another The County Board is legally responsible for the elections in your county, not the Director. Errors committed by precinct officials, CBE Staff, and the County Director reflect upon the Board. Keep the Board in the know on issues ASAP so they will not be blindsided or surprised. Get concurrence and direction from the Board on how to handle an issue so as to partner with them to prevent discord. Directors…when possible, protect your Board. Board…protect your Director when possible, they are the face of your office.

4 Failure to Communicate “My Director doesn’t tell me things I think I should know”. When in doubt…inform the Board. Directors, if you are over-informing the CBE, they will let you know. Communication is a two way street. CBE, don’t shoot the messenger. When the Director or a Board Member speaks, the public implies the statement to the whole CBE, be careful of what you say.

5 § 163 ‑ 33. Powers and duties of county boards of elections. The county boards of elections within their respective jurisdictions shall exercise all powers granted to such boards in this Chapter, and they shall perform all the duties imposed upon them by law, which shall include the following:

6 GS 163-33 (1) To make and issue such rules, regulations, and instructions, not inconsistent with law, with directives promulgated under the provisions of G.S. 163 ‑ 132.4, or with the rules, orders, and directives established by the State Board of Elections, as it may deem necessary for the guidance of election officers and voters. (2) To appoint all chief judges, judges, assistants, and other officers of elections, and designate the precinct in which each shall serve; and, after notice and hearing, to remove any chief judge, judge of elections, assistant, or other officer of election appointed by it for incompetency, failure to discharge the duties of office, failure to qualify within the time prescribed by law, fraud, or for any other satisfactory cause. In exercising the powers and duties of this subdivision, the board may act only when a majority of its members are present at any meeting at which such powers or duties are exercised. (3) To investigate irregularities, nonperformance of duties, and violations of laws by election officers and other persons, and to report violations to the State Board of Elections. In exercising the powers and duties of this subdivision, the board may act only when a majority of its members are present at any meeting at which such powers or duties are exercised. Provided that in any hearing on an irregularity no board of elections shall consider as evidence the testimony of a voter who cast a ballot, which ballot that voter was not eligible to cast, as to how that voter voted on that ballot. (4) As provided in G.S. 163 ‑ 128, to establish, define, provide, rearrange, discontinue, and combine election precincts as it may deem expedient, and to fix and provide for places of registration and for holding primaries and elections. (5) To review, examine, and certify the sufficiency and validity of petitions and nomination papers.

7 GS 163-33 (6) To advertise and contract for the printing of ballots and other supplies used in registration and elections; and to provide for the delivery of ballots, pollbooks, and other required papers and materials to the voting places. (7) To provide for the purchase, preservation, and maintenance of voting booths, ballot boxes, registration and pollbooks, maps, flags, cards of instruction, and other forms, papers, and equipment used in registration, nominations, and elections; and to cause the voting places to be suitably provided with voting booths and other supplies required by law. (8) To provide for the issuance of all notices, advertisements, and publications concerning elections required by law. If the election is on a State bond issue, an amendment to the Constitution, or approval of an act submitted to the voters of the State, the State Board of Elections shall reimburse the county boards of elections for their reasonable additional costs in placing such notices, advertisements, and publications. In addition, the county board of elections shall give notice at least 20 days prior to the date on which the registration books or records are closed that there will be a primary, general or special election, the date on which it will be held, and the hours the voting places will be open for voting in that election. The notice also shall describe the nature and type of election, and the issues, if any, to be submitted to the voters at that election. Notice shall be given by advertisement at least once weekly during the 20 ‑ day period in a newspaper having general circulation in the county and by posting a copy of the notice at the courthouse door. Notice may additionally be made on a radio or television station or both, but such notice shall be in addition to the newspaper and other required notice. This subdivision shall not apply in the case of bond elections called under the provisions of Chapter 159. (9) To receive the returns of primaries and elections, canvass the returns, make abstracts thereof, transmit such abstracts to the proper authorities, and to issue certificates of election to county officers and members of the General Assembly except those elected in districts composed of more than one county.

8 GS 163-33 (10) To appoint and remove the board's clerk, assistant clerks, and other employees; and to appoint and remove precinct transfer assistants as provided in G.S. 163 ‑ 82.15(g). (11) To prepare and submit to the proper appropriating officers a budget estimating the cost of elections for the ensuing fiscal year. (12) To perform such other duties as may be prescribed by this Chapter, by directives promulgated pursuant to G.S. 163 ‑ 132.4, or by the rules, orders, and directives of the State Board of Elections. (13) Notwithstanding the provisions of any other section of this Chapter, to have access to any ballot boxes and their contents, any voting machines and their contents, any registration records, pollbooks, voter authorization cards or voter lists, any lists of absentee voters, any lists of presidential registrants under the Voting Rights Act of 1965 as amended, and any other voting equipment or similar records, books or lists in any precinct or municipality over whose elections it has jurisdiction or for whose elections it has responsibility.

9 § 163 ‑ 166.1. Duties of county board of elections. The county board of elections shall: (1) Provide for the timely delivery to each voting place of the supplies, records, and equipment necessary for the conduct of the election. (2) Ensure that adequate procedures are in place at each voting place for a safe, secure, fair, and honest election. (3) Respond to precinct officials' questions and problems where necessary. (4) Provide adequate technical support for the voting system, which shall be done in conjunction with the State Board of Elections.

10 § 163 ‑ 182.17. Summary of officials' duties (c) Duties of the County Board of Elections. – The county board of elections, in accordance with rules of the State Board of Elections, shall perform all of the following: (1) Count absentee and provisional official ballots and other official ballots required to be initially counted by the county board of elections. G.S. 163 ‑ 182.2. (2) Canvass results in all ballot items on the official ballot in the county. G.S. 163 ‑ 182.5. (3) Order a recount in any ballot item on the official ballot in the county, where necessary to complete the canvass, and where not prohibited from doing so. G.S. 163 ‑ 182.7. (4) Conduct any recount that has been ordered by the county board of elections or the State Board of Elections or that has been properly demanded in accordance with G.S. 163 ‑ 182.7(b). (5) Conduct hearings in election protests as provided in G.S. 163 ‑ 182.10. (6) Prepare abstracts of returns in all the ballot items in the county. G.S. 163 ‑ 182.6. (7) Retain one original abstract and distribute the other two originals as follows: a. One to the clerk of superior court in the county. b. One to the State Board of Elections. G.S. 163 ‑ 182.6. (8) Issue a certificate of nomination or election or a certificate of the results of a referendum in each ballot item within the jurisdiction of the county board of elections. Provide a copy of the certificate to the clerk of court. G.S. 163 ‑ 182.15.

11 What is so special about the CBE Chairman? There are only a few duties of a county board of elections (CBE) that are exclusively limited to the Chairman. Usually the CBE acts a whole body. These specific duties of the Chairman are as follows: 1.Preside over CBE meetings. 2. Sign the official ballots. 3. Call for meetings of the CBE. 4. Preside over CBE hearings. 5. Certify notices of candidacy to SBE. 6. Unofficially serve as the spokesperson and “public face” for the CBE. Some of the above can be delegated to the Director by the Chairman under GS 163-35(d).

12 What is so Special about the CBE Secretary ? There are no specific statutory duties of the Secretary other than being responsible for making sure board minutes are prepared. (GS 163-31) The minute taking itself is usually delegated to CBE staff. Also traditionally they have acted as presiding officer in the absence of the Chairman.

13 Director’s Tasks The Director is the operational leader and responsible for the daily running of the office. The Director must also accomplish all duties specifically assigned by the Board and mandated to the Director by law.

14 The Director is Protected GS 163-35 gives the SBE Executive Director the authority to approve or not approve the actions of a CBE to dismiss a Director. Dismissal is for good cause. Dismissal cannot be for personal reasons unless it aversely affects job performance and credibility of the CBE. Use SBE as a resource or a “Sounding Board” to help work out issues.

15 County Election Directors New sense of professionalism. Mobility to move from county to county. Expectation of fair compensation. Expectation of legal support on the county level. IT talent and inclination is the greatest asset. A desire to integrate with county government while guarding their independence when in the public interest.

16 Assignment of Duties Must be done upon hiring of Director, GS 163-35. Best if reviewed and updated as needed. There should be a mutual understanding by both the CBE and Director as to what is expected. CBE members may create more harm than good in helping as to certain tasks, however the Director always should be able to explain and demonstrate tasks a CBE member is interested in.

17 Some Duties… Credit to Mike Ashe, Former Durham CBE Director 1. Ensure the citizens have free, safe, open, honest and professionally conducted elections. 2. Ensure that you and your staff are non-partisan, non-political and provide exemplary customer service to everyone. 3. Ensure that you and your staff function in total compliance with all Federal and State laws, rules, policies, SBOE numbered memoranda and directives. 4. Keep the Board informed of all operational activities. 5. Represent the Board of Elections office to the media. 6. Supervise the full-time and part-time personnel in the daily charge of the Board of Elections office. 7. Represent the Board of Elections as a county department head.

18 More Duties 8. As a department head and the Boards’ representative, prepare, sign, and submit for the Board all county budget, personnel, finance and other operating paperwork as required. 9. Perform administrative duties related to the efficient maintenance of the permanent registration system... adding all new registrations, effecting changes of address, party or name of existing registrants, and removing names of felons, deceased persons and persons no longer residing in the county. Ensure the proper implementation and execution of all SEIMS policies and procedures. 10. Prepare and maintain Board of Elections records including registration statistics and election results; attend to all Board of Elections correspondence, inform members of all matters requiring Board action. 11. Recruit, hire, and train all precinct officials. Work closely with the party chairs in this process. Maintain contact with precinct officials regarding schedules, duties and law changes. Train precinct officials in the conduct of elections including the provision of election materials.

19 More Duties 12. Contract for the printing of ballots and other supplies required for election administration. Provide for the delivery of ballots, registration books, equipment and other election materials to polling places. 13. Procure polling places for all precincts. 14. Conduct the pre-election testing of voting tabulators. 15. Conduct the SBOE mandated after election (before Canvass) hand-eye recount of randomly selected precincts. 16. Prepare abstracts following each election and assist the Board in canvassing election returns. Submit abstracts to the appropriate authorities. Prepare and transmit certificates of nomination and election. 17. Receive notification of candidacy and filing fees for elective office maintaining records accordingly.

20 More Duties 18. Manage all aspects of the campaign finance reporting system in accordance with law and SBOE policy. 19. Supply candidates with campaign reporting material. Explain reporting requirements. Notify candidates of campaign reporting deadlines. Provide assistance with campaign reporting upon request and maintain accurate records of reports. 20. Supervise the distribution of precinct lists upon request, including accepting appropriate fees for same. Manage all public information policies and procedures. Ensure the timely publication of all information. 21. Ensure that the BOE maintains an outstanding website. Check it on a regular basis. 22. Check and verify all candidate, political party and special election petitions. 23. Ensure the timely issuance of all public notices, advertisements and publications concerning meetings, registration and elections.

21 More Duties 26. Attend State Board of Elections training seminars and other appropriate election officials training opportunities. Earn and maintain status as a Certified Elections Administrator. Ensure that all staff earn and maintain status as a Certified Elections Administrator. 27. Provide assistance/cooperate with schools, colleges, universities, and other organizations in the conduct of their voter education and outreach programs. Provide voter education programs upon request. 28. Speak to civic and professional groups on elections topics. 29. Compose letters and memoranda pertaining to Board functions. 30. Carry out all other duties or responsibilities as assigned by Chapter 163 of the General Statutes of the State of North Carolina as requested by members of the Board in accordance with the laws of the State of North Carolina, G.S. 163-35 (d).

22 Funds and Audits CBE funds are public. Are you aware of your budget? CBE funds need to be protected Audits are friends to the 99.9999999% of county Directors and staff who are honest Embezzlement is caught sooner or later

23 CROSS TRAINING Is there more than one person available to perform all required election tasks? If the Director is unavailable for awhile what is the backup plan?

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