House Bill #8289 (2018)

AN ACT RELATING TO ELECTIONS - SCHEDULING

Establish a uniform election day for all local and special elections.

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  • 2018 – H 8289
  • 2018 – H 8289 SUBSTITUTE A
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  • LC005813
  • LC005813/SUB A
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  • S TATE OF RHODE IS L AND
  • IN GENERAL ASSEMBLY
  • JANUARY SESSION, A.D. 2018
  • ____________
  • A N A C T
  • RELATING TO ELECTIONS - SCHEDULING
  • S T A T E O F R H O D E I S L A N D
  • IN GENERAL ASSEMBLY
  • JANUARY SESSION, A.D. 2018
  • ____________
  • A N A C T
  • RELATING TO ELECTIONS - SCHEDULING
  • Introduced By: Representatives Perez, O'Brien, Ucci, Williams, and Ranglin-Vassell
  • Date Introduced: June 06, 2018
  • Referred To: House Judiciary
  • (Board of Elections)
  • It is enacted by the GeneralAssembly as follows:
  • It is enacted by the General Assembly as follows:
  • SECTION 1. Section 17-1-5 of the General Laws in Chapter 17-1 entitled "General Provisions" is hereby amended to read as follows:
  • 17-1-5. Effect of special statutes.
  • The provisions of any chapter or section under this title are subject to the provisions of any special statutes or charters respecting any particular town or city, none of which are repealed by this title; provided, that insofar as any special statute or charters adapted prior to April 22, 1935, conflicts with the provisions of chapter 19 of this title, the provisions of chapter 19 shall prevail; and provided, further, that insofar as any special statute or charter provision conflicts with the provisions of § 17-14-7, 17-14-9, or 17-19-7.1 of this title, the provisions of § 17-14-7, 17-14-9, or 17-19-7.1 shall prevail. Notwithstanding any charter provision of any city or town to the contrary, all local elections and special elections, as these terms are defined under §§ 17-1- 2(6) and 17-1-2(14), shall be held on the first Tuesday next after the first Monday in any month.
  • SECTION 2. Section 17-3-6 of the General Laws in Chapter 17-3 entitled "General Assembly Members"is hereby amended to read as follows:
  • SECTION 2. Section 17-3-6 of the General Laws in Chapter 17-3 entitled "General Assembly Members" is hereby amended to read as follows:
  • 17-3-6. Vacancy in general assembly – Special elections.
  • (a) Whenever from any cause a vacancy occurs in the representation of any senatorialor representative district in the general assembly while the general assembly is in session, the secretary of state shall cause the local board of the city or town to issue a warrant ordering an election to fill the vacancy, to be held in that district at least seventy (70) but not more than ninety (90) days from the occurrence of the vacancy; provided, that if the general assembly has nearly completed its January session so that it is doubtfulwhether the person to be chosen can serve as a member at that session, the election shall not be ordered within that time limit, but may be held at any later date within that calendar year, if that year is the first year of the biennial period for which a general assembly has been chosen. And, provided further, the election to fillthe vacancy shall be held on a Tuesday that falls between the seventieth and ninetieth day of the vacancy. If the vacancy occurs after the first Monday in February in the second year of the biennialperiod for which a general assembly was chosen, no warrant shall be issued for a specialelection to fillthe vacancy. If the vacancy occurs or exists at any other time when the general assembly is not in session, the secretary of state shall cause to be issued a warrant for an election to be held to fill the vacancy.
  • (a) Whenever from any cause a vacancy occurs in the representation of any senatorial or representative district in the general assembly while the general assembly is in session, the secretary of state shall cause the local board of the city or town to issue a warrant ordering an election to fill the vacancy, to be held in that district at least seventy (70) but not more than ninety (90) days from the occurrence of the vacancy; provided, that if the general assembly has nearly completed its January session so that it is doubtful whether the person to be chosen can serve as a member at that session, the election shall not be ordered within that time limit, but may be held at any later date within that calendar year, if that year is the first year of the biennial period for which a general assembly has been chosen. And, provided further, the election to fill the vacancy shall be held on a Tuesday that falls between the seventieth and ninetieth day of the vacancy. If the vacancy occurs after the first Monday in February in the second year of the biennial period for which a general assembly was chosen, no warrant shall be issued for a special election to fill the vacancy. If the vacancy occurs or exists at any other time when the general assembly is not in session, the secretary of state shall cause to be issued a warrant for an election to be held to fill the vacancy.
  • (b) Every person elected pursuant to the provisions of this section shall hold his or her office for the remainder of the term that person is elected to fill, and until his or her successor is elected and qualified.
  • SECTION 3. Section 17-4-8 and 17-4-9 of the General Laws in Chapter 17-4 entitled "Federal Elective Officers"are hereby amended to read as follows:
  • SECTION 3. Section 17-4-8 and 17-4-9 of the General Laws in Chapter 17-4 entitled "Federal Elective Officers" are hereby amended to read as follows:
  • 17-4-8. Special election to fill vacancy in office of representative.
  • Whenever any person elected a representative in congress from either district, at any time between the day of his or her election and the beginning of his or her term of office, refuses to serve andso declares to the secretary of state, or dies, becomes insane, removes from the state, or is otherwise incapacitated, or whenever a vacancy happens in the representation of this state in congress as contemplated in the second section of the first article of the Constitution of the United States, the governor shall immediately issue his or her writ of election directed to the severalcity and town clerks, or localboards as the case may be, ordering a new election of the representative in congress to be held in that district to fill the vacancy, at as early a date, to be stated in the writ, as will be in compliance with the provisions of law in relation to these elections, but no election provided for by this section shallbe held on Saturday on any day other than the first Tuesday next after the first Monday of any month; provided, that whenever a vacancy occurs between the first day of April and the first day of October in any even numbered year, the governor shall, unless in his or her opinion the public good requires an earlier special election, issue his or her writ for a special election to fill the vacancy to be held with the general election on the Tuesday next after the first Monday in November of that year.
  • Whenever any person elected a representative in congress from either district, at any time between the day of his or her election and the beginning of his or her term of office, refuses to serve and so declares to the secretary of state, or dies, becomes insane, removes from the state, or is otherwise incapacitated, or whenever a vacancy happens in the representation of this state in congress as contemplated in the second section of the first article of the Constitution of the United States, the governor shall immediately issue his or her writ of election directed to the several city and town clerks, or local boards as the case may be, ordering a new election of the representative in congress to be held in that district to fill the vacancy, at as early a date, to be stated in the writ, as will be in compliance with the provisions of law in relation to these elections, but no election provided for by this section shall be held on Saturday on any day other than the first Tuesday next after the first Monday of any month; provided, that whenever a vacancy occurs between the first day of April and the first day of October in any even numbered year, the governor shall, unless in his or her opinion the public good requires an earlier special election, issue his or her writ for a special election to fill the vacancy to be held with the general election on the Tuesday next after the first Monday in November of that year.
  • 17-4-9. Special election to fill senatorial vacancy.
  • Whenever a person elected a senator in congress, at any time between the day of that
  • LC005813 - Page 2of 6 person's election and the beginning of his or her term of office, refuses to serve and so declares to the secretary of state, or dies, becomes insane, removes from the state, or is otherwise incapacitated, or whenever a vacancy happens in the representation of this state in the United States senate, the governor shall issue his or her writ of election directed to the several city and town clerks, or local boards as the case may be, ordering a new election of senator to fill the vacancy to be held in the state at as early a date, to be stated in the writ, as willbe in compliance with the provisions of law in relation to these elections, but no election provided for by this section shall be held exclusively on Saturday on any day other than the first Tuesday next after the first Monday of any month; provided, that whenever a vacancyoccurs betweenthe first day of July and the first day of October in any even numbered year, the governor shall, unless in his or her opinion the public good requires an earlier special election, issue his or her writ for a special election to fill the vacancy to be held with the general election on the Tuesday next after the first Monday in November of that year.
  • SECTION 4. Section 17-5-1.1 of the General Laws in Chapter 17-5 entitled "Statewide Referenda Elections"is hereby amended to read as follows:
  • Whenever a person elected a senator in congress, at any time between the day of that person's election and the beginning of his or her term of office, refuses to serve and so declares to the secretary of state, or dies, becomes insane, removes from the state, or is otherwise incapacitated, or whenever a vacancy happens in the representation of this state in the United States senate, the governor shall issue his or her writ of election directed to the several city and town clerks, or local boards as the case may be, ordering a new election of senator to fill the vacancy to be held in the state at as early a date, to be stated in the writ, as will be in compliance with the provisions of law in relation to these elections, but no election provided for by this section shall be held exclusively on Saturday on any day other than the first Tuesday next after the first Monday of any month; provided, that whenever a vacancy occurs between the first day of July and the first day of October in any even numbered year, the governor shall, unless in his or her opinion the public good requires an earlier special election, issue his or her writ for a special election to fill the vacancy to be held with the general election on the Tuesday next after the first Monday in November of that year.
  • SECTION 4. Section 17-5-1.1 of the General Laws in Chapter 17-5 entitled "Statewide Referenda Elections" is hereby amended to read as follows:
  • 17-5-1.1. Special referenda elections.
  • Any proposition of amendment of the Constitution or any other public question submitted to the electors of the state at any election not a general election pursuant to § 17-1-2(2) shallbe held on the first Tuesday next after the first Monday of any month and shall be voted upon at town, ward, and district meetings, in accordance with the following procedure:
  • (1) When an act of the general assembly is passed authorizing the submission of a question to all of the electors of the state, the secretary of state is authorized to rephrase the question to appear on the ballot in a manner that would clearly apprise the voters of the question to be voted upon and to cause the ballot to contain a concise caption of the question, and the full text of the question as adopted by the general assembly need not appear on the ballot except for proposed amendments to the Constitution of the state of Rhode Island. The secretaryof state shall cause each question appearing on the ballot prepared by him or her to be designated by number, the first question to be designated by the numeral I and additional questions shall follow numbered so that all questions submitted to all the electors of the state and appearing upon the ballot are numbered consecutively; provided that local questions shall be printed on a distinctive colored background.
  • (2) Prior to the election at which public questions are to be submitted, the secretary of state shall cause to be printed and shall send one copy of the fulltext of each legislative act to be acted upon and applicable to the state at large, or the secretary of state may substitute a
  • LC005813 - Page 3of 6 description of the text of each act in lieu of the full text, to each residential unit in Rhode Island together with the following information:
  • Any proposition of amendment of the Constitution or any other public question submitted to the electors of the state at any election not a general election pursuant to § 17-1-2(2) shall be held on the first Tuesday next after the first Monday of any month and shall be voted upon at town, ward, and district meetings, in accordance with the following procedure:
  • (1) When an act of the general assembly is passed authorizing the submission of a question to all of the electors of the state, the secretary of state is authorized to rephrase the question to appear on the ballot in a manner that would clearly apprise the voters of the question to be voted upon and to cause the ballot to contain a concise caption of the question, and the full text of the question as adopted by the general assembly need not appear on the ballot except for proposed amendments to the Constitution of the state of Rhode Island. The secretary of state shall cause each question appearing on the ballot prepared by him or her to be designated by number, the first question to be designated by the numeral I and additional questions shall follow numbered so that all questions submitted to all the electors of the state and appearing upon the ballot are numbered consecutively; provided that local questions shall be printed on a distinctive colored background.
  • (2) Prior to the election at which public questions are to be submitted, the secretary of state shall cause to be printed and shall send one copy of the full text of each legislative act to be acted upon and applicable to the state at large, or the secretary of state may substitute a description of the text of each act in lieu of the full text, to each residential unit in Rhode Island together with the following information:
  • (i) The designated number of the question appearing on the ballot;
  • (ii) A brief caption of the question appearing on the ballot; and
  • (iii) A brief explanation of the measure being the subject matter of the question.
  • (3) Voting on a proposition of amendment of the Constitution or of a public question of statewide impact shall be by means of optical scan voting equipment and computer ballots authorized pursuant to this title.
  • SECTION 5. Section 17-12-14 of the General Laws in Chapter 17-12 entitled "Party Committees and Conventions" is hereby amended to read as follows:
  • 17-12-14. Election of delegates to national conventions.
  • The localboards of the severalcities and towns of the state are authorized and directed to furnish for the use of any political party in this state, upon written request of the chairperson of the state central committee, acting under a resolution of the committee, voting places in which primary meetings may be held to elect delegates to the national convention of the political party. The boards shall have the voting places open on the date and during the hours requested by the chairperson of the committee, so long as that election of delegates is scheduled on the first Tuesday next after the first Monday of any month, and shall furnish to the officers appointed to act at the primary meetings any paraphernalia, including check lists, that are generally required and used in elective meetings; provided, that the political party first requesting the use of the voting places on and for a certain date shall be entitled to the use of them on that date; and if the date is one requested by some other political party, the other political party, through the chairperson of the committee, may request another date. In cities a voting place and paraphernalia for voting shall be furnished and provided for each ward into which the cities may be divided; and in each of the towns of Burrillville, Cumberland, and Lincoln, at least two (2) voting places and the paraphernalia for voting, and in every other town at least one voting place and the paraphernalia for voting, shall be furnished and provided. The local boards shall not be required to provide for the compensation for services of the officers appointed to act at the primary meetings, nor shall anything contained in this section be held to affect the method of holding elections already provided for by law.
  • The local boards of the several cities and towns of the state are authorized and directed to furnish for the use of any political party in this state, upon written request of the chairperson of the state central committee, acting under a resolution of the committee, voting places in which primary meetings may be held to elect delegates to the national convention of the political party. The boards shall have the voting places open on the date and during the hours requested by the chairperson of the committee, so long as that election of delegates is scheduled on the first Tuesday next after the first Monday of any month, and shall furnish to the officers appointed to act at the primary meetings any paraphernalia, including check lists, that are generally required and used in elective meetings; provided, that the political party first requesting the use of the voting places on and for a certain date shall be entitled to the use of them on that date; and if the date is one requested by some other political party, the other political party, through the chairperson of the committee, may request another date. In cities a voting place and paraphernalia for voting shall be furnished and provided for each ward into which the cities may be divided; and in each of the towns of Burrillville, Cumberland, and Lincoln, at least two (2) voting places and the paraphernalia for voting, and in every other town at least one voting place and the paraphernalia for voting, shall be furnished and provided. The local boards shall not be required to provide for the compensation for services of the officers appointed to act at the primary meetings, nor shall anything contained in this section be held to affect the method of holding elections already provided for by law.
  • SECTION 6. Sections 17-15-3 and 17-15-4 of the General Laws in Chapter 17-15 entitled "Primary Elections" are hereby amended to read as follows:
  • 17-15-3. Special election primaries.
  • Party primary elections shall also be held for the purpose of nominating candidates for an
  • LC005813 - Page 4of 6 office or offices to be elected at any special election. In the event of a specialelection, the state board shall fix the date or dates on which the various party primary elections shall be held; provided, that all the party primary elections shall have been held by the thirtieth (30th) day preceding the date fixed for the specialelection; and provided, further, that the date or dates fixed by the state board shall not be a religious holiday or Saturday and shall be held on the first Tuesday next after the first Monday of any month.
  • Party primary elections shall also be held for the purpose of nominating candidates for an office or offices to be elected at any special election. In the event of a special election, the state board shall fix the date or dates on which the various party primary elections shall be held; provided, that all the party primary elections shall have been held by the thirtieth (30th) day preceding the date fixed for the special election; and provided, further, that the date or dates fixed by the state board shall not be a religious holiday or Saturday and shall be held on the first Tuesday next after the first Monday of any month.
  • 17-15-4. Municipal primaries other than at time of general primaries.
  • In those cities and towns which now by law hold elections for city or town officers on a day other than the Tuesday after the first Monday in November biennially in each even year, a primary election for the nomination of the city or town officials shall be held and the local board shall fix the date of the election; provided, that the primary election shall have been held by the thirtieth (30th) day preceding the date fixed for the election; and provided, further, that the date fixed by the local board shall not be a religious holiday or Saturday and shall be held on the first Tuesday next after the first Monday of any month.
  • SECTION 7. Section 17-18-5.1 of the General Laws in Chapter 17-18 entitled "Elective Meetings" is hereby amended to read as follows:
  • 17-18-5.1. Elections falling on religious holiday.
  • In the event that the date for the holding of any state or municipalelection, other than the general election held on the first Tuesday next after the first Monday in November in even numbered years, falls upon the day of a religious holiday on which the doctrines of a faith would prohibit its followers from voting, the election shall be held upon the next business day other than Saturday then following Tuesday following the religious holiday; provided, that nothing contained in this section shall be deemed to invalidate any election once it has been held.
  • SECTION 8. This act shalltake effect upon passage.
  • SECTION 7. This act shall take effect upon passage.
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  • LC005813
  • LC005813/SUB A
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  • EXPLANATION
  • BY THE LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL
  • EXPLANATION
  • BY THE LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL
  • OF
  • A N A C T
  • RELATING TO ELECTIONS - SCHEDULING
  • A N A C T
  • RELATING TO ELECTIONS - SCHEDULING
  • ***
  • This act would establish a uniform election day for all local and special elections.
  • This act would take effect upon passage. ======== LC005813 ========
  • LC005813 - Page 6of 6
  • This act would establish a uniform election day for all local and special elections.
  • This act would take effect upon passage. ======== LC005813/SUB A ========

Votes

NOTE: Electronic voting records are unofficial and may not be accurate. For an official vote tally, check the House or Senate Journal from the day of the vote.

Floor vote for PASSAGE

June 20, 2018 at 9:55pm
Yeas: 71 / Nays: 1 / Not voting: 3 / Recused: 0
Legislator Vote
Rep. Abney Y
Rep. Ackerman Y
Rep. Ajello Y
Rep. Almeida Y
Rep. Amore Y
Rep. Azzinaro Y
Rep. Barros Y
Rep. Bennett Y
Rep. Blazejewski Y
Rep. Canario Y
Rep. Carson Y
Rep. Casey Y
Rep. Casimiro Y
Rep. Chippendale Y
Rep. Corvese Y
Rep. Costantino Y
Rep. Coughlin Y
Rep. Craven Y
Rep. Cunha NV
Rep. Diaz Y
Rep. Donovan NV
Rep. Edwards Y
Rep. Fellela Y
Rep. Filippi Y
Rep. Fogarty Y
Rep. Giarrusso Y
Rep. Handy Y
Rep. Hearn Y
Rep. Hull Y
Rep. Jacquard Y
Rep. Johnston Y
Rep. Kazarian N
Rep. Keable Y
Rep. Kennedy Y
Rep. Knight Y
Rep. Lancia Y
Rep. Lima Y
Rep. Lombardi Y
Rep. Maldonado Y
Rep. Marshall Y
Rep. Marszalkowski Y
Rep. Mattiello Y
Rep. McEntee Y
Rep. McKiernan Y
Rep. McLaughlin Y
Rep. McNamara Y
Rep. Mendonca Y
Rep. Messier Y
Rep. Morgan Y
Rep. Morin Y
Rep. Nardolillo Y
Rep. Newberry Y
Rep. Nunes Y
Rep. O'Brien Y
Rep. O'Grady Y
Rep. Perez NV
Rep. Phillips Y
Rep. Price Y
Rep. Quattrocchi Y
Rep. Ranglin-Vassell Y
Rep. Regunberg Y
Rep. Roberts Y
Rep. Ruggiero Y
Rep. Serpa Y
Rep. Shanley Y
Rep. Shekarchi Y
Rep. Slater Y
Rep. Solomon Y
Rep. Tanzi Y
Rep. Tobon Y
Rep. Ucci Y
Rep. Vella-Wilkinson Y
Rep. Walsh Y
Rep. Williams Y
Rep. Winfield Y