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PETITIONS Two Days of Elections-New Bern July 2010 Don Wright, General Counsel SBOE.

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Presentation on theme: "PETITIONS Two Days of Elections-New Bern July 2010 Don Wright, General Counsel SBOE."— Presentation transcript:

1 PETITIONS Two Days of Elections-New Bern July 2010 Don Wright, General Counsel SBOE


3 The SBOE Web site for Instructions for Filing Petitions in North Carolina is Divided into Five Areas Purpose of Petitions Viewing Ongoing Petitions Creating Petitions Legal Requirements Other Information

4 What are the obligations to verifying signatures on petitions? If a county elections worker's "common sense" or "first glance" raises concerns about the signature, then that worker should investigate further. For instance, if it appears a man has signed a woman's name or two different names back to back appear to be in the same handwriting, it should raise a red flag.

5 Signatures, PO Boxes and Wrong Date of Births If the voter prints his name in the signature area, count it as his signature. If a CBE can confirm the voter even if a PO Box is used instead of residential address, confirm. Since the date of birth is not required of a voter signing a petition but is requested to aid identification of the voter, an incorrect date of birth on the petition should not disqualify a voter.

6 How do you handle two signatures apparently signed by the same person or deceased voters signing? Count only one signature as to same person signing…..DO NOT COUNT BOTH Make a notation of the problem….i.e. Page 3 of Batch 2, lines 12 and 13 appeared to be signed by the same person, appears to be feminine handwriting. Line 20 has a deceased voters signature Report such problems to your Board Your Board will decide to forward to the SBE for investigation

7 Withdrawal of Names Up until a petition is certified, a voter signing the petition can withdraw his name from the petition. That withdrawal needs to be in writing and signed by the voter. This protects a CBE if an issue arises.

8 Copies of Petitions You do not have to continue to redact the signatures on a petition copy. You should continue to redact the date of birth on petition copies you provide the public.

9 Challenging Petition Signatures A voter eligible to sign the petition brings the concern over a name(s) to the attention of the county director The director reviews the concerns and responds If the voter is not satisfied with the response, the voter can present their concerns informally before the County Board of Elections. After the County Board review/response, the voter is free to file an election protest with the County Board of Elections. The County Board follows the election protest procedure and renders a decision on the protest. The voter may appeal the protest decision to the State Board of Elections, following the statutory protest appeal provisions.

10 ABC Petitions Always a wise move to make sure that someone has cleared that the jurisdiction is eligible to have the ABC provisions desired by the petition or referendum to apply. SBE General Counsel has a current listing of the ABC status of counties/towns. Understand this is a moral issue to many voters….emotions can run high. Observers are allowed in ABC referendums.

11 Who keeps what? The jurisdiction that certifies the petition keeps the original petition. So… the original petition for an ABC referendum or an unaffiliated county commissioner candidate stays with a CBE And…the original petition for a US House unaffiliated candidate will be sent to the SBE by the CBE

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