Senator   JOSEPH PENNACCHIO
District 26 (Essex, Morris and Passaic)
Requires use of paper ballots during conduct of election; requires use of open source voting technology; makes appropriation.
CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT
An Act concerning voting equipment, supplementing chapter 15 of Title 19 of the Revised Statues, and amending and repealing various parts of the statutory law, and making an appropriation.
Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:
1.       (New section)  a.  No later than five years following the effective date of this act, P.L.       , c.       (C.               ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill), each county board of elections or superintendent of elections, as the case may be, shall implement the provisions of this act.  A county board of election or superintendent of elections, as the case may be, may implement the provisions of this act at any time during the five-year phase-in of the use of paper ballots and open source voting technology during the conduct of elections in this State.
b.  In accordance with the timeframe specified in subsection a. of this section, all voting that occurs at a polling place during the early voting period of an election or on the day of an election shall be conducted using a paper ballot voting system that uses optical scanners or other voting equipment certified for use by the Secretary of State. The optical scanners or other voting equipment certified for use by the Secretary of State shall use open-source software technology.  As used in this subsection, the term    open-source    means the complete source code for the software technology is available to the public, under the terms of a general public license, to use, modify, or distribute freely without payment of royalties or other considerations.
No voting machines or electronic voting system shall be used to record the votes of voters voting during the early voting period of an election or on the day of an election, except that a limited number of voting machines or electronic voting systems shall be available for use by individuals with disabilities. The Secretary of State shall approve and certify for use any voting machine or electronic voting system intended for use by individuals with disabilities, except that the Secretary of State shall not certify for use any voting machine or electronic voting system that uses proprietary or nonpublic software technology.
c.  The paper ballot voting system shall:
(1)  provide local election officials with the ability to scan and tabulate a hand-marked paper ballot prepared by the voter at the polling place;
(2)  provide a record of votes cast for the election;
(3)  adhere to any federal laws or regulations concerning voting equipment; and
(4)  adhere to any other requirements the Secretary of State deems appropriate for the implementation of a paper ballot voting system in this State.
d.  No ballots other than the paper ballots required for use by subsection b. of this section, emergency ballots as provided in P.L.1992, c.3 (C.19:53B-1 et al), and provisional ballots as provided in P.L.1999, c. 232 (C.19:53C-1 et al.), shall be prepared or used at any election in any election district.
2.  (New section)  a.  The Secretary of State shall require each county board of elections or superintendent of elections, as the case may be, to maintain all paper ballots cast in an election under this act, P.L.       , c.       (C.               ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill), for a period of not less than two years following the date of an election. Thereafter, the ballots may be retained in accordance with procedures set forth by the Secretary of State.
b.  Prior to verification of the official election results by a county clerk or superintendent of elections or a municipal clerk, as the case may be, the county clerk or superintendent of elections or municipal clerk shall:
(1)  compare and reconcile the record of votes cast provided by the optical scanners or other voting equipment certified by the State with the number of voters who signed in at the polling place and who voted by mail-in, provisional, and military or overseas ballots;
(2)  compare and reconcile precinct totals with the totals for that election to ensure that the totals add up to the correct sum; and
(3)  review, and account for, all optical scanner or other voting equipment memory cards or flash drives to ensure the memory cards or flash drives are properly loaded into the tally server.
3.       Section 2 of P.L.1976, c.83 (C.19:4-11) is amended to read as follows:
2.   a.  Subject to the provisions of law as to redistricting, each election district [in which only one voting machine or four electronic system voting devices are used] shall contain no more than 750 voters, except an election district in which there is located a public or private institution where persons entitled to vote may reside, and in such district the number of voters shall be as near to 750 as is practicable.
b.       Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection a. of this section, no later than January 1, 2006 each election district shall also include at least one voting system capable of permitting individuals with disabilities to vote.
(cf: P.L.2005, c.145, s.5)
4.       Section 1 of P.L.2005, c.149 (C.19:12-7.1) is amended to read as follows:
1.  a.  A county board of elections shall have posted a voter information notice, which shall be referred to as a voter's bill of rights, in a conspicuous location in each polling place and each specially designated polling place used for early voting before voting begins.
The notice shall contain:
the date of the election and the hours during which polling places will be open;
a statement that sample ballots are available at the polling place for review by the voter;
instruction for the use of the voting [machine] equipment in tha