Senator ANDREW ZWICKER
District 16 (Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex and Somerset)
Changes MVC voter registration procedures.
CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT
An Act concerning voter registration with the Motor Vehicle Commission and amending various parts of the statutory law.
Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:
1. R.S.19:31-6 is amended to read as follows:
19:31-6. Any person qualified to vote in an election shall be entitled to vote in the election if the person shall have registered to vote on or before the 21st day preceding the election by:
a. registering in person at any offices designated by the commissioner of registration for providing and receiving registration forms;
b. [completing a voter registration form] registering or being registered to vote while applying for a motor vehicle driver's license from an agent of the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission, as provided for in section 24 of P.L.1994, c.182 (C.39:2-3.2);
c. completing and returning to the Secretary of State or having returned thereto a voter registration form received from a voter registration agency, as defined in subsection a. of section 26 of P.L.1994, c.182 (C.19:31-6.11), while applying for services or assistance or seeking a recertification, renewal or change of address at an office of that agency;
d. completing and returning to the Secretary of State a voter registration form obtained from a public agency, as defined in subsection a. of section 15 of P.L.1974, c.30 (C.19:31-6.3);
e. completing and returning to the Secretary of State or having returned thereto a voter registration form received from a door-to-door canvass or mobile registration drive, as provided for in section 19 of P.L.1974, c.30 (C.19:31-6.7);
f. completing and returning to the Secretary of State a federal mail voter registration form, as prescribed in subsection (b) of section 9 of the "National Voter Registration Act of 1993," (42 U.S.C. s. 1973gg et seq.);
g. completing and returning to the Secretary of State or the appropriate county clerk an application for a federal postcard application form to register to vote, as permitted pursuant to the federal "Uniform and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act" 52 U.S.C. s.120301 et seq.) and section 4 of P.L.1976, c.23 (C.19:59-4);
h. completing a provisional ballot affirmation statement and voting the provisional ballot in the previous election, if the person who submitted the provisional ballot in that election is determined not to be a registered voter; or
i. completing and submitting an online voter registration form available on the Secretary of State's Internet website, as provided under section 1 of P.L.2019, c.382 (C.19:31-6.4c).
When the commissioner has designated a place or places other than his office for receiving registrations, the commissioner shall cause to be published a notice in a newspaper circulated in the municipality wherein such place or places of registration shall be located. Such notice shall be published pursuant to R.S.19:12-7.
Any office designated by the commissioner of registration for receiving registration forms shall have displayed, in a conspicuous location, registration and voting instructions. These instructions shall be the same as those provided for polling places under R.S.19:9-2 and shall be provided by the commissioner
(cf: P.L.2022, c.72, s.16)
2. Section 17 of P.L.1974, c.30 (C.19:31-6.5) is amended to read as follows:
17. a. Upon receipt of any completed registration form, the commissioner of registration shall review it, and if it is found to be in order, shall:
(1) Send to the registrant written notification that such registrant is duly registered to vote. No registrant shall be considered a registered voter until the commissioner of registration reviews the application submitted by the registrant and deems it acceptable. On the face of such notification in the upper left-hand corner shall be printed the words: "Do Not Forward. Return Postage Guaranteed. If not delivered in 2 days, return to the Commissioner of Registration."
(2) In as timely a manner as possible, enter the information provided for the registrant on the completed registration form, or electronically transfer the information from an online voter registration form completed pursuant to section 1 of P.L.2019, c.382 (C.19:31-6.4c) or received electronically from the Motor Vehicle Commission pursuant to section 24 of P.L.1994, c.182 (C.39:2-3.2), into the Statewide voter registration system established pursuant to section 1 of P.L.2005, c.145 (C.19:31-31).
(3) Paste, tape, or photocopy the completed registration form onto an original registration form, and shall paste or tape a copy of such completed registration form onto a duplicate registration form, both of which shall be filed as provided in R.S.19:31-10. Nothing in this paragraph shall preclude any commissioner of registration from keeping the original mail registration form on file.
(4) In the case of a registrant currently registered in another county of this State, notify the commissioner of registration of such other county to remove the individual's name from the registry list of voters of the county and place into an appropriate retention file all registration documents or material relating to that voter. The commissioner of registration of the current county of the registrant shall secure and maintain the entire voting history of that registrant.
b. The commissioner shall notify a registrant of the reasons for any refusal to approve his registration.
c. (Deleted by amendment, P.L.1994, c.182.)
(cf: P.L.2019, c.382, s.3)
3. Section 4 of P.L.2018, c.6 (C.19:31-6.14) is amended to read as follows:
4. a. Any State agency, except for the Motor Vehicle Commission, that the Secretary of State verifies already collects sufficient information, including through documents or database verification, that would provide proof of eligibility, including age, citizenship, and residence address, may establish and implement, upon approval by the Secretary of State, a procedure for automatically and electronically transmitting voter registration information to the Secretary of State of persons who are eligible to vote for the purpose of registering such persons to vote or updating their voter registration. Each person from whom such information is collected shall be offered an opportunity to decline automatic voter registration. Any such agency, as well as the Secretary of State and each county commissioner of registration, shall comply with the requirements, to the extent applicable as determined by the Secretary of State, as established in subsections b. through d. of section 24 of P.L.1994, c.182 (C.39:2-3.2).
b. Subject to compliance with all applicable federal laws and regulations, the Division of Medical Assistance and Health Services in the Department of Human Services shall automatically and electronical