Senate Study Bill 1078 - IntroducedA Bill ForAn Act 1relating to the administration of elections, providing
2penalties, and including effective date provisions.
3BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF IOWA:
1   Section 1.  Section 39.2, subsection 4, paragraph b, as
2amended by 2017 Iowa Acts, chapter 155, section 13, is amended
3to read as follows:
   4b.  For a city, in the odd-numbered year, the first
5Tuesday in March, the first Tuesday in May, the first Tuesday
6in August, or the first Tuesday after the first Monday in
7November. For a city, in the even-numbered year, the first
8Tuesday in March, the first Tuesday in May, or the first
9Tuesday in August, or the first Tuesday in December.
10   Sec. 2.  Section 39.2, subsection 4, paragraph c, Code 2019,
11is amended to read as follows:
   12c.  For a school district or merged area, in the odd-numbered
13year, the first Tuesday in February, the first Tuesday in
14April, the last Tuesday in June, or the second Tuesday in
15September. For a school district or merged area, in the
16even-numbered year, the first Tuesday in February, the first
17Tuesday in April, or the second Tuesday in September, or the
18second Tuesday in December
.
19   Sec. 3.  Section 39A.3, subsection 1, paragraph a, Code 2019,
20is amended by adding the following new subparagraph:
21   NEW SUBPARAGRAPH.  (5)  Falsely or fraudulently signs
22nomination papers on behalf of another person.
23   Sec. 4.  Section 39A.3, subsection 1, Code 2019, is amended
24by adding the following new paragraph:
25   NEW PARAGRAPH.  c.  Miscellaneous offenses.  Uses voter
26registration information, including resale or redistribution
27of the voter registration list without written permission of
28the state registrar, for purposes other than those permitted
29by section 48A.39.
30   Sec. 5.  Section 39A.4, subsection 1, paragraph c,
31subparagraph (5), Code 2019, is amended by striking the
32subparagraph.
33   Sec. 6.  Section 39A.6, Code 2019, is amended to read as
34follows:
   3539A.6  Technical infractions — notice.
-1-
   11.  If the state commissioner or county commissioner becomes
2aware of an apparent technical violation of a provision of
3chapters 39 through 53, the state commissioner or county
4commissioner may administratively provide a written notice
5and letter of instruction to the responsible person regarding
6proper compliance procedures.
   72.  If the state commissioner sends a notice of such a
8technical infraction to a county commissioner, the state
9commissioner may require a written explanation of the
10occurrence, and measures that the person took to redress the
11issues contained within the notice.
   123.  This notice is not a final determination of facts or law
13in the matter, and does not entitle a person to a proceeding
14under chapter 17A.
15   Sec. 7.  Section 43.14, subsection 1, Code 2019, is amended
16by adding the following new paragraph:
17   NEW PARAGRAPH.  g.  The printed name, signature, address,
18and phone number of the person responsible for circulating the
19petition page.
20   Sec. 8.  Section 43.14, subsection 2, Code 2019, is amended
21to read as follows:
   222.  a.  Signatures on a petition page shall be counted only
23if the information required in subsection 1 is written or
24printed at the top of the page.
   25b.  Nomination papers on behalf of candidates for seats in
26the general assembly need only designate the number of the
27senatorial or representative district, as appropriate, and
28not the county or counties, in which the candidate and the
29petitioners reside.
   30c.  A signature line shall not be counted if the line
31lacks the signature of the eligible elector and the signer’s
 32residential address, with street and number, if any, and city.
33A signature line shall not be counted if an eligible elector
34supplies only a partial address or a post office box address,
35or if
the signer’s address is obviously outside the boundaries
-2-1of the district.
   2d.  A signature line shall not be counted if any of the
3required information is crossed out or redacted at the time
4the nomination papers are filed with the state commissioner or
5commissioner.
6   Sec. 9.  Section 43.14, subsection 4, Code 2019, is amended
7by adding the following new paragraph:
8   NEW PARAGRAPH.  f.  Any other information required by section
943.18.
10   Sec. 10.  Section 43.15, subsection 2, Code 2019, is amended
11to read as follows:
   122.  Each signer shall add the signer’s residence residential
13address
, with street and number, if any, and the date of
14signing.
15   Sec. 11.  Section 43.22, unnumbered paragraph 1, Code 2019,
16is amended to read as follows:
   17The state commissioner shall, at least sixty-nine days
18before a primary election, or as soon as practicable if an
19objection under section 43.24 is pending,
furnish to the
20commissioner of each county a certificate under the state
21commissioner’s hand and seal, which certificate shall show:
22   Sec. 12.  Section 43.24, subsection 1, paragraph b,
23subparagraphs (1) and (2), Code 2019, are amended to read as
24follows:
   25(1)  Those filed with the state commissioner, not less than
26seventy-four days before the date of the election, or for
27certificates of nomination filed under section 43.23, not less
28than seventy days before the date of the election
.
   29(2)  Those filed with the commissioner, not less than
30sixty-four days before the date of the election, or for
31certificates of nomination filed under section 43.23, not less
32than sixty-two days before the date of the election
.
33   Sec. 13.  Section 45.5, subsection 1, Code 2019, is amended
34by adding the following new paragraph:
35   NEW PARAGRAPH.  f.  The printed name, signature, address,
-3-1and phone number of the person responsible for circulating the
2petition page.
3   Sec. 14.  Section 45.5, subsection 2, Code 2019, is amended
4to read as follows:
   52.  a.  Signatures on a petition page shall be counted only
6if the information required in subsection 1 is written or
7printed at the top of the page.
   8b.  Nomination papers on behalf of candidates for seats in
9the general assembly need only designate the number of the
10senatorial or representative district, as appropriate, and
11not the county or counties, in which the candidate and the
12petitioners reside.
   13c.  A signature line in a nomination petition shall not be
14counted if the line lacks the signature of the eligible elector
15and the signer’s residential address, with street and number,
16if any,
and city. A signature line shall not be counted if
 17an eligible elector supplies only a partial address or a post
18office box address, or if
the signer’s address is obviously
19outside the boundaries of the appropriate ward, city, school
20district or school district director district, legislative
21district, or other district.
   22d.  A signature line shall not be counted if any of the
23required information is crossed out or redacted at the time
24the nomination papers are filed with the state commissioner or
25commissioner.
26   Sec. 15.  Section 45.6, subsection 2, Code 2019, is amended
27to read as follows:
   282.  Each signer shall add the signer’s residence residential
29address
, with street and number, if any, and city.
30   Sec. 16.  Section 47.1, subsection 6, Code 2019, is amended
31to read as follows:
   326.  The state commissioner may, at the state commissioner’s
33discretion, examine the records of a commissioner to evaluate
34complaints and to ensure compliance with the provisions
35of chapters 39 through 53. This examination shall include
-4-1assessments conducted or authorized by private or government
2entities to evaluate a county’s security readiness for
3elections-related technology or physical facilities.
The state
4commissioner shall adopt rules pursuant to chapter 17A to
5require a commissioner to provide written explanations related
6to examinations conducted pursuant to this subsection. Any
7information that is requested by or in the possession of the
8state commissioner pursuant to this chapter shall not lose its
9confidential status pursuant to section 22.7, subsection 50.

10   Sec. 17.  Section 47.1, Code 2019, is amended by adding the
11following new subsections:
12   NEW SUBSECTION.  7.  The state commissioner may share
13information a county provides to an appropriate government
14agency to safeguard against cybersecurity or physical threats.
15   NEW SUBSECTION.  8.  The state commissioner may adopt rules
16pursuant to chapter 17A to create minimum security protocols
17applicable to county commissioners of elections. If a county
18fails to adhere to these protocols, the state commissioner may
19limit access to the statewide voter registration system.
20   Sec. 18.  Section 47.2, Code 2019, is amended by adding the
21following new subsection:
22   NEW SUBSECTION.  7.  The county commissioner of elections
23shall, to maintain election security, do all of the following:
   24a.  When the county commissioner believes that a
25cybersecurity incident or data breach has occurred, the county
26commissioner shall immediately inform the state commissioner
27of elections.
   28b.  If the county commissioner has no reason to believe
29that a cybersecurity incident or data breach has occurred,
30the county commissioner shall certify that fact to the state
31commissioner on an annual basis.
32   Sec. 19.  Section 47.7, subsection 2, paragraph d, Code 2019,
33is amended to read as follows:
   34d.  The state registrar shall prescribe by rule the
35procedures for access to the state voter registration file,
-5-1security requirements, and access protocols for adding,
2changing, or deleting information from the state voter
3registration file
 including all of the following:
   4(1)  Access protocols for adding, changing, or deleting
5information from the state voter registration file.
   6(2)  Training requirements for all state voter registration
7file users.
   8(3)  Technology safeguards, including county information
9technology network requirements, necessary to access the state
10voter registration file.
   11(4)  Breach incident response requirements and protocols on
12all matters related to elections
.
13   Sec. 20.  Section 47.7, subsection 2, Code 2019, is amended
14by adding the following new paragraph:
15   NEW PARAGRAPH.  e.  The state registrar may rescind access to
16the statewide voter registration file from a user who is not in
17compliance with the prescribed rules.
18   Sec. 21.  Section 48A.9, subsection 4, Code 2019, is amended
19to read as follows:
   204.  Registration forms submitted to voter registration
21agencies, to motor vehicle driver’s license stations, and to
22county treasurer’s offices participating in county issuance of
23driver’s licenses under chapter 321M shall be considered on
24time if they are received no later than 5:00 11:59 p.m.on the
25day registration closes for that election. Offices or agencies
26other than the county commissioner’s office are not required
27to be open for voter registration purposes at times other than
28their usual office hours.
29   Sec. 22.  Section 48A.26, subsection 1, Code 2019, is amended
30to read as follows:
   311.  a.  Except as otherwise provided in paragraph paragraphs
32 “b” and “c” of this subsectionor section 48A.26A, within seven
33working days of receipt of a voter registration form or change
34of information in a voter registration record the commissioner
35shall send an acknowledgment to the registrant at the mailing
-6-1address shown on the registration form. The acknowledgment
2shall be sent by nonforwardable mail.
   3b.  For a voter registration form or change of information
4in a voter registration record submitted at a precinct caucus,
5the commissioner shall send an acknowledgment within forty-five
6days of receipt of the form or change of information.
   7c.  For a voter registration form or change of information in
8a voter registration record submitted within fourteen days of a
9regularly scheduled election, the commissioner shall send an
10acknowledgment within forty-eight hours of receipt of the form
11or change of information.
12   Sec. 23.  Section 49.11, Code 2019, is amended by adding the
13following new subsection:
14   NEW SUBSECTION.  4.  Notice of changes made pursuant to
15subsection 3 shall be reported to the state commissioner at
16least twenty-five days before the next election in which the
17temporary precinct will be active, or, for elections held
18pursuant to section 69.14 while the general assembly is in
19session or within forty-five days of the convening of a session
20of the general assembly, at least ten days before election day.
21   Sec. 24.  Section 49.31, subsection 1, paragraph a, Code
222019, is amended to read as follows:
   23a.  All ballots shall be arranged with the names of
24candidates for each office listed below the office title.
25For partisan elections the name of the political party or
26organization which nominated each candidate shall be listed
27after or below each candidate’s name. The state commissioner
28may prescribe, and a county commissioner may use, uniform
29abbreviations for political parties and organizations.

30   Sec. 25.  Section 49.57, subsection 2, Code 2019, is amended
31to read as follows:
   322.  After the name of each candidate for a partisan office
33the name of the candidate’s political party shall be printed
34in at least six point type.  The names of political parties
35and nonparty political organizations may be abbreviated on
-7-1the remainder of the ballot if both the full name and the
2abbreviation appear in the voter instruction area of the
3ballot.

4   Sec. 26.  Section 50.51, subsection 6, Code 2019, is amended
5to read as follows:
   66.  The state commissioner shall adopt rules, pursuant
7to chapter 17A, to implement this section, which may include
8the establishment of pilot programs related to post-election
9audits
.
10   Sec. 27.  NEW SECTION.  53.1A  Rules.
   11The state commissioner shall adopt rules pursuant to chapter
1217A for the implementation of this chapter.
13   Sec. 28.  Section 53.8, subsection 1, paragraph a,
14unnumbered paragraph 1, Code 2019, is amended to read as
15follows:
   16Upon receipt of an application for an absentee ballot
17and immediately after the absentee ballots are printed,
18but not more than twenty-nine days before the election, the
19commissioner shall mail an absentee ballot to the applicant
20within twenty-four hours, except as otherwise provided in
21subsection 3. When the United States post office is closed
22in observance of a federal holiday and is not delivering mail
23on the twenty-ninth day before the election, the first day to
24mail absentee ballots is the next business day on which mail
25delivery is available.
The absentee ballot shall be sent to
26the registered voter by one of the following methods:
27   Sec. 29.  EFFECTIVE DATE.  This Act, being deemed of
28immediate importance, takes effect upon enactment.
29EXPLANATION
30The inclusion of this explanation does not constitute agreement with
31the explanation’s substance by the members of the general assembly.
   32This bill relates to the administration of elections.
   33The bill eliminates the second Tuesday in December as a
34possible date for a special election on a public measure in
35a school district or merged area in an even-numbered year.
-8-1The bill also eliminates the first Tuesday in December as a
2possible date for a special election on a public measure in a
3city in an even-numbered year.
   4The bill makes the false or fraudulent signing of nomination
5papers on behalf of another person and the misuse of voter
6registration information election misconduct in the second
7degree. Under current law, misuse of voter registration
8information is election misconduct in the third degree. A
9person who commits election misconduct in the second degree is
10guilty of an aggravated misdemeanor. An aggravated misdemeanor
11is punishable by confinement for no more than two years and a
12fine of at least $625 but not more than $6,250.
   13The bill permits the state commissioner of elections to
14require a written explanation from a county commissioner who
15has been issued a notice of technical infraction. Such an
16explanation must contain measures the county commissioner took
17to redress the issues in the notice.
   18The bill requires a person circulating a petition for
19nomination to include that person’s name, signature, address,
20and phone number. The bill also specifies that a signature
21line must contain a signer’s residential address. The bill
22prohibits a signature line from being counted if the signature
23line contains a partial address or a post office box address,
24or if any of the required information is crossed out or
25redacted at the time of filing. The bill requires nomination
26papers to be rejected if they do not contain information
27required by Code section 43.18 (affidavit of candidacy).
   28The bill requires the state commissioner to issue a
29certificate of nomination to each county commissioner as soon
30as is practicable if a challenge to the nomination pursuant
31to section 43.24 is pending. Current law requires the state
32commissioner to issue such a certificate at least 69 days
33before a primary election.
   34The bill permits objections to be filed to certificates of
35nomination for candidates to replace candidates who have died
-9-1or withdrawn their nomination.
   2The bill permits the state commissioner to examine election
3security assessments conducted or authorized by government or
4private entities. Such information retains its confidential
5status. The bill also permits the state commissioner to share
6information provided by a county to an appropriate government
7agency to safeguard against cybersecurity or physical threats
8and to adopt rules for minimum security standards to which
9county commissioners must adhere. The state commissioner may
10limit access to the statewide voter registration system if a
11county commissioner fails to meet these standards.
   12The bill requires a county commissioner of elections
13to report to the state commissioner of elections when the
14county commissioner believes that a cybersecurity incident or
15data breach has occurred. The bill also requires a county
16commissioner to report to the state commissioner on an annual
17basis if the county commissioner has no reason to believe that
18a cybersecurity incident or data breach has occurred.
   19The bill requires the state registrar of voters to adopt
20rules regarding access to the statewide voter registration
21system and training requirements, technology safeguards, and
22breach incident response requirements.
   23The bill extends the deadline by which voter registration
24forms must be submitted to voter registration agencies, motor
25vehicle driver’s license stations, and county treasurer’s
26offices participating in county issuance of driver’s licenses
27from 5:00 p.m.to 11:59 p.m.on the day registration closes for
28an election.
   29The bill changes the time frame for the state commissioner
30of elections to send an acknowledgment of receipt of a voter
31registration form or change of information, if that form was
32submitted within 14 days of a regularly scheduled election,
33from within 7 days to within 48 hours.
   34The bill requires county commissioners of elections to
35report temporary combinations of precincts to the state
-10-1commissioner of elections at least 25 days before the next
2election for which the precinct will be active, or at least 10
3days prior to an election held pursuant to section 69.14.
   4The bill allows the state commissioner of elections to
5prescribe, and county commissioners of elections to place
6on ballots, uniform abbreviations for political parties and
7organizations. The bill allows abbreviations for the names of
8political parties and organizations to be used on the remainder
9of the ballot if the full name and abbreviation appear in the
10voter instruction portion of the ballot.
   11The bill allows the state commissioner of elections to adopt
12rules to establish pilot programs related to post-election
13audits.
   14The bill requires the state commissioner of elections to
15adopt rules for the implementation of the absentee voting
16system.
   17The bill moves the first day to mail absentee ballots to
18the first business day on which mail delivery is available
19following the 29th day before an election in the event that the
20United States post office is closed and not delivering mail on
21the 29th day before an election.
   22The bill takes effect upon enactment.
-11-
ss/jh