SB1092: General registrars; reassigning duties of the electoral board.


VIRGINIA ACTS OF ASSEMBLY -- CHAPTER
An Act to amend and reenact §§ 24.2-114, 24.2-701, 24.2-702, 24.2-703.2, 24.2-704, 24.2-705, 24.2-706 through 24.2-709, 24.2-712, 24.2-945.2, 24.2-946.1 through 24.2-946.5, 24.2-947.1, 24.2-947.3, 24.2-947.4, 24.2-947.5, 24.2-947.9, 24.2-948.1, 24.2-948.3, 24.2-950.8, 24.2-953, and 24.2-953.3 of the Code of Virginia, relating to general registrars; reassigning duties of the electoral board related to absentee voting and campaign finance.
[S 1092]
Approved

 

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of Virginia:

1. That §§ 24.2-114, 24.2-701, 24.2-702, 24.2-703.2, 24.2-704, 24.2-705, 24.2-706 through 24.2-709, 24.2-712, 24.2-945.2, 24.2-946.1 through 24.2-946.5, 24.2-947.1, 24.2-947.3, 24.2-947.4, 24.2-947.5, 24.2-947.9, 24.2-948.1, 24.2-948.3, 24.2-950.8, 24.2-953, and 24.2-953.3 of the Code of Virginia are amended and reenacted as follows:

§ 24.2-114. Duties and powers of general registrar.

In addition to the other duties required by this title, the general registrar, and the assistant registrars acting under his supervision, shall:

1. Maintain the office of the general registrar and establish and maintain additional public places for voter registration in accordance with the provisions of § 24.2-412.

2. Participate in programs to educate the general public concerning registration and encourage registration by the general public. No registrar shall actively solicit, in a selective manner, any application for registration or for a ballot or offer anything of value for any such application.

3. Perform his duties within the county or city he was appointed to serve, except that a registrar may (i) go into a county or city in the Commonwealth contiguous to his county or city to register voters of his county or city when conducting registration jointly with the registrar of the contiguous county or city or (ii) notwithstanding any other provision of law, participate in multijurisdictional staffing for voter registration offices, approved by the State Board, that are located at facilities of the Department of Motor Vehicles.

4. Provide the appropriate forms for applications to register and to obtain the information necessary to complete the applications pursuant to the provisions of the Constitution of Virginia and general law.

5. Indicate on the registration records for each accepted mail voter registration application form returned by mail pursuant to Article 3.1 (§ 24.2-416.1 et seq.) of Chapter 4 that the registrant has registered by mail. The general registrar shall fulfill this duty in accordance with the instructions of the State Board so that those persons who registered by mail are identified on the registration records, lists of registered voters furnished pursuant to § 24.2-405, lists of persons who voted furnished pursuant to § 24.2-406, and pollbooks used for the conduct of elections.

6. Accept a registration application or request for transfer or change of address submitted by or for a resident of any other county or city in the Commonwealth. Registrars shall process registration applications and requests for transfer or change of address from residents of other counties and cities in accordance with written instructions from the State Board and shall forward the completed application or request to the registrar of the applicant's residence. Notwithstanding the provisions of § 24.2-416, the registrar of the applicant's residence shall recognize as timely any application or request for transfer or change of address submitted to any person authorized to receive voter registration applications pursuant to Chapter 4 (§ 24.2-400 et seq.), prior to or on the final day of registration. The registrar of the applicant's residence shall determine the qualification of the applicant, including whether the applicant has ever been convicted of a felony, and if so, under what circumstances the applicant's right to vote has been restored, and promptly notify the applicant at the address shown on the application or request of the acceptance or denial of his registration or transfer. However, notification shall not be required when the registrar does not have an address for the applicant.

7. Preserve order at and in the vicinity of the place of registration. For this purpose, the registrar shall be vested with the powers of a conservator of the peace while engaged in the duties imposed by law. He may exclude from the place of registration persons whose presence disturbs the registration process. He may appoint special officers, not exceeding three in number, for a place of registration and may summon persons in the vicinity to assist whenever, in his judgment, it is necessary to preserve order. The general registrar and any assistant registrar shall be authorized to administer oaths for purposes of this title.

8. Maintain the official registration records for his county or city in the system approved by, and in accordance with the instructions of, the State Board; preserve the written applications of all persons who are registered; and preserve for a period of four years the written applications of all persons who are denied registration or whose registration is cancelled.

9. If a person is denied registration, promptly notify such person in writing of the denial and the reason for denial in accordance with § 24.2-422.

10. Verify the accuracy of the pollbooks provided for each election by the State Board, make the pollbooks available to the precincts, and according to the instructions of the State Board provide a copy of the data from the pollbooks to the State Board after each election for voting credit purposes.

11. Retain the pollbooks in his principal office for two years from the date of the election.

12. Maintain accurate and current registration records and comply with the requirements of this title for the transfer, inactivation, and cancellation of voter registrations.

13. Whenever election districts, precincts, or polling places are altered, provide for entry into the voter registration system of the proper district and precinct designations for each registered voter whose districts or precinct have changed and notify each affected voter of changes affecting his districts or polling place by mail.

14. Whenever any part of his county or city becomes part of another jurisdiction by annexation, merger, or other means, transfer to the appropriate general registrar the registration records of the affected registered voters. The general registrar for their new county or city shall notify them by mail of the transfer and their new election districts and polling places.

15. When he registers any person who was previously registered in another state, notify the appropriate authority in that state of the person's registration in Virginia.

16. Whenever any person is believed to be registered or voting in more than one state or territory of the United States at the same time, inquire about, or provide information from the voter's registration and voting records to any appropriate voter registration or other authority of another state or territory who inquires about, that person's registration and voting history.

17. At the request of the county or city chairman of any political party nominating a candidate for the General Assembly, constitutional office, or local office by a method other than a primary, review any petition required by the party in its nomination process to determine whether those signing the petition are registered voters with active status.

18. Carry out such other duties as prescribed by the electoral board in his capacity as the director of elections for the locality in which he serves.

19. Attend, or designate one member of his staff to attend, an annual training program provided by the State Board.

§ 24.2-701. Application for absentee ballot.

A. The State Board shall furnish each general registrar with a sufficient number of applications for official absentee ballots. The registrars shall furnish applications to persons requesting them.

The State Board shall implement a system that enables eligible persons to request and receive an absentee ballot application electronically through the Internet. Electronic absentee ballot applications shall be in a form approved by the State Board.

Except as provided in § 24.2-703, a separate application shall be completed for each election in which the applicant offers to vote. An application for an absentee ballot may be accepted the later of (i) 12 months before an election or (ii) the day following any election held in the twelfth month prior to the election in which the applicant is applying to vote.

An application that is completed in person at the same time that the applicant registers to vote shall be held and processed no sooner than the fifth day after the date that the applicant registered to vote; however, this requirement shall not be applicable to any person who is qualified to vote absentee under subdivision 2 of § 24.2-700.

Any application received before the ballots are printed shall be held and processed as soon as the printed ballots for the election are available.

For the purposes of this chapter, the general registrar's office shall be open a minimum of eight hours between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. on the first and second Saturday immediately preceding all general elections, except May general elections, and on the Saturday immediately preceding any primary election, May general election, or special election.

Unless the applicant is disabled, all applications for absentee ballots shall be signed by the applicant who shall state, subject to felony penalties for making false statements pursuant to § 24.2-1016, that to the best of his knowledge and belief the facts contained in the application are true and correct and that he has not and will not vote in the election at any other place in Virginia or in any other state. If the applicant is unable to sign the application, a person assisting the applicant will note this fact on the applicant signature line and provide his signature, name, and address.

B. Applications for absentee ballots shall be completed in the following manner:

1. An application completed in person shall be made not less than three days prior to the election in which the applicant offers to vote and completed only in the office of the general registrar. The applicant shall sign the application in the presence of a registrar or a member of the electoral board. The applicant shall provide one of the forms of identification specified in subsection B of § 24.2-643. Any applicant who does not show one of the forms of identification specified in subsection B of § 24.2-643 shall be offered a provisional ballot under the provisions of § 24.2-653. The State Board of Elections shall provide instructions to the electoral boards general registrar for the handling and counting of such provisional ballots pursuant to subsection B of § 24.2-653 and this section.

2. Any other application may be made by mail, electronic or telephonic transmission to a facsimile device if one is available to the office of the general registrar or the office of the State Board if a device is not available locally, or other means. The application shall be on a form furnished by the registrar or, if made under subdivision 2 of § 24.2-700, may be on a federal postcard application prescribed pursuant to 52 U.S.C. § 20301(b)(2). The federal postcard application may be accepted the later of (i) 12 months before an election or (ii) the day following any election held in the twelfth month prior to the election in which the applicant is applying to vote. The application shall be made to the appropriate registrar no later than 5:00 p.m. on the seventh day prior to the election in which the applicant offers to vote.

C. Applications for absentee ballots shall contain the following information:

1. The applicant's printed name, the last four digits of the applicant's social security number, and the reason the applicant will be absent or cannot vote at his polling place on the day of the election;

2. A statement that he is registered in the county or city in which he offers to vote and his residence address in such county or city. Any person temporarily residing outside the United States shall provide the last date of residency at his Virginia residence address, if that residence is no longer available to him. Any person who makes application under subdivision 2 of § 24.2-700 who is not a registered voter may file the applications to register and for a ballot simultaneously;

3. The complete address to which the ballot is to be sent directly to the applicant, unless the application is made in person at a time when the printed ballots for the election are available and the applicant chooses to vote in person at the time of completing his application. The address given shall be (i) the address of the applicant on file in the registration records; (ii) the address at which he will be located while absent from his county or city; or (iii) the address at which he will be located while temporarily confined due to a disability or illness. No ballot shall be sent to, or in care of, any other person; and

4. In the case of a person, or the spouse or dependent of a person, who is on active duty as a member of the uniformed services as defined in § 24.2-452, the branch of service to which he or the spouse belongs; or

5. In the case of a student, or the spouse of a student, who is attending a school or institution of learning, the name of the school or institution of learning; or

6. In the case of any duly registered person with a disability, as defined in § 24.2-101, who is unable to go in person to the polls on the day of the election because of his disability, illness, or pregnancy, that he is a person with a disability, illness, or pregnancy; or

7. In the case of a person who is confined awaiting trial or for having been convicted of a misdemeanor, the name of the institution of confinement; or

8. In the case of a person who will be absent on election day for business reasons, the name of his employer or business; or

9. In the case of a person who will be absent on election day for personal business or vacation reasons, the name of the county or city in Virginia or the state or country to which he is traveling; or

10. In the case of a person who is unable to go to the polls on the day of election because he is primarily and personally responsible for the care of an ill or disabled family member who is confined at home, his relationship to the family member; or

11. In the case of a person who is unable to go to the polls on the day of election because of an obligation occasioned by his religion, the nature of the obligation; or

12. In the case of a person who, in the regular and orderly course of his business, profession, or occupation, will be at his place of work and commuting to and from his home to his place of work for 11 or more hours of the 13 hours that the polls are open pursuant to § 24.2-603, the name of his business or employer and hours he will be at the workplace and commuting on election day; or

13. In the case of a law-enforcement officer, as defined in § 18.2-51.1; firefighter, as defined in § 65.2-102; volunteer firefighter, as defined in § 27-42; search and rescue personnel, as defined in § 18.2-51.1; or emergency medical services personnel, as defined in § 32.1-111.1, that he is a first responder; or

14. In the case of a person who has been designated by a political party, independent candidate, or candidate in a primary election to be a representative of the party or candidate inside a polling place on the day of the election pursuant to subsection C of § 24.2-604 and § 24.2-639, the fact that he is so designated.

§ 24.2-702. Application for early absentee ballot; procedures.

Notwithstanding any other provisions of this title, a person, who is eligible for an absentee ballot under subdivision 2 of § 24.2-700 and qualified under this section, may apply, not later than ninety days before that election, for an absentee ballot only for elections for Governor, Lieutenant Governor, or Attorney General.

The application may be made on the Federal Post Card Application.

In order to qualify for the absentee ballot, the voter shall state that he is unable to vote in any other manner due to overseas military service or due to living in an isolated or extremely remote overseas area. This statement may be made on the Federal Post Card Application.

On receipt of the application, the electoral board general registrar shall issue, at least ninety days before an election, the printed ballot only for elections for Governor, Lieutenant Governor, or Attorney General. No additional ballot or ballots shall be provided to such applicants for that election date.

§ 24.2-703.2. Replacement absentee ballots for certain disabled or ill voters; penalty.

A voter seeking to cast an absentee ballot may obtain a replacement absentee ballot subject to the following conditions: (i) the voter applied for an absentee ballot under subdivision 4 of § 24.2-700 because of a disability or illness; (ii) the application was approved and an absentee ballot mailed to the voter; and (iii) the voter did not receive or has lost the absentee ballot on or before the Saturday before the election. In such case, the voter may request a replacement absentee ballot by the close of business for the local elections office on the Saturday before election day and designate, in writing, a representative to obtain a replacement absentee ballot on his behalf from the electoral board or general registrar and to return the properly completed ballot as directed by the electoral board or general registrar no later than the close of polls on the day of election for which the absentee ballot is valid. The representative shall be age eighteen or older and shall not be an elected official, a candidate for elected office, or the deputy, spouse, parent, or child of an elected official or candidate. The voter and representative shall complete the form prescribed by the State Board to implement the provisions of this section. The form shall include a statement signed by the voter that he did not receive the ballot or has lost the ballot. Statements on the form shall be subject to felony penalties for making false statements pursuant to § 24.2-1016.

§ 24.2-704. Applications and ballots for persons requiring assistance in voting; penalty.

The application for an absentee ballot shall provide space for the applicant to indicate that he will require assistance to vote his absentee ballot by reason of blindness, disability, or inability to read or write. On receipt of an application from an applicant marked to indicate he will require assistance, the electoral board general registrar shall deliver, with the items required by § 24.2-706, the voter assistance form furnished by the State Board pursuant to § 24.2-649. The voter and any person assisting him shall complete the form by signing the request for assistance and statement required of the assistant. If the voter is unable to sign the request, the witness will note this fact on the line for signature of voter. The provisions of § 24.2-649 shall apply to absentee voting and assistance for absentee voters. Any person who willfully violates the provisions of this section or § 24.2-649 in providing assistance to a person who is voting absentee shall be guilty of a Class 5 felony.

§ 24.2-705. Emergency applications and absentee ballots for persons incapacitated or hospitalized.

Any person registered and otherwise qualified to vote who becomes incapacitated on or after the seventh day preceding an election may request at any time prior to 2:00 p.m. on the day preceding the election that an emergency absentee ballot application be delivered to him. A voter who becomes hospitalized on or after the fourteenth day preceding the election and who is unable, because of his condition, to request an absentee ballot earlier than the seventh day preceding the election may request at any time prior to 2:00 p.m. on the day before an election that an emergency absentee ballot be delivered to him in the hospital. For purposes of this section, "incapacitated" means hospitalized, ill and confined to his residence, bereaved by the death of a spouse, child, or parent, or otherwise incapacitated by an emergency which is found by the electoral board general registrar to justify providing an emergency ballot application; and "hospital" means a hospital as defined in § 32.1-123 or 37.2-100 and any comparable hospital in the District of Columbia or any state contiguous to Virginia.

On receipt of the request, the electoral board general registrar shall provide an emergency absentee ballot application to the incapacitated voter's designated representative who shall deliver the application to the voter. If the voter is hospitalized, the delivery shall be made to him at the hospital; and if the voter is otherwise incapacitated, the delivery shall be made to him at his current residence address as shown on the registration records. The representative shall be age eighteen or older and shall not be an elected official, a candidate for elected office, or the deputy, spouse, parent, or child of an elected official or candidate.

The application shall be on a form prescribed by the State Board and shall require the applicant (i) to state the cause of his incapacity, (ii) to state that he is unable to be present at the polls on election day, and that he was either incapacitated on or after the seventh day preceding the election or hospitalized on or after the fourteenth day preceding the election and unable to request the application earlier than the seventh day preceding the election, (iii) to designate a representative to receive, deliver and return the ballot, and (iv) to provide other information required by law for an absentee ballot application.

If the voter is hospitalized, a hospital administrative official, a licensed physician attending the applicant, or provider as defined in § 37.2-403, shall certify on the form to the hospitalization of the applicant and the applicant's inability to be present at the polls on election day. If the voter is ill and confined to his residence, a licensed physician, provider as defined in § 37.2-403, or an accredited religious practitioner attending the applicant shall certify on the form to the incapacity of the applicant and the applicant's inability to be present at the polls on election day. If the voter is bereaved, a licensed physician, an accredited religious practitioner, or a funeral service licensee (as defined in § 54.1-2800) shall certify on the form to the incapacity of the applicant and the applicant's inability to be present at the polls on election day. If the voter is otherwise incapacitated as determined by the electoral board general registrar, the secretary of the electoral board general registrar shall certify on the form to the incapacity of the applicant and the applicant's inability to be present at the polls on election day. The applicant shall sign the application and state, subject to felony penalties for making false statements pursuant to § 24.2-1016, that to the best of his knowledge and belief the facts contained in the application are true and correct. His signature shall be witnessed by the designated representative who shall sign and return the completed application to the office of the general registrar no later than 5:00 p.m. on the day preceding the election. For the purposes of this section, "accredited religious practitioner" means a person who has been trained in spiritual healing or the other healing arts and has been so accredited by a formal religious order.

On receipt of the completed application and a determination of the qualification of the applicant to vote, the general registrar or secretary of the electoral board shall provide, in accordance with the applicable provisions of this chapter, an absentee ballot to the designated representative for delivery to the incapacitated voter.

The incapacitated voter shall vote the absentee ballot as provided by law and mark it in the presence of the designated representative. The representative shall complete a statement, subject to felony penalties for making false statements pursuant to § 24.2-1016, that (i) he is the representative of the incapacitated voter; (ii) he personally delivered the ballot to the voter who applied for it; (iii) in his presence, the voter marked the ballot, the ballot was placed in the envelope provided, the envelope was sealed, and the statement on its reverse side was signed by the incapacitated voter; and (iv) the ballot was returned, under seal, to the electoral board general registrar at the registrar's office.

The ballot shall be counted only if the ballot is received by the electoral board general registrar prior to the close of polls, and the electoral board general registrar shall deliver the ballot to the officers of election at each appropriate precinct pursuant to § 24.2-710.

§ 24.2-706. Duty of general registrar on receipt of application; statement of voter.

On receipt of an application for an absentee ballot, the general registrar shall enroll the name and address of each registered applicant on an absentee voter applicant list that shall be maintained in the office of the general registrar with a file of the applications of the listed applicants. The list shall be available for inspection and copying and the applications shall be available for inspection only by any registered voter during regular office hours. Upon request and for a reasonable fee, the State Board of Elections shall provide an electronic copy of the absentee voter applicant list to any political party or candidate. Such list shall be used only for campaign and political purposes. Any list made available for inspection and copying under this section shall contain the post office box address in lieu of the residence street address for any individual who has furnished at the time of registration or subsequently, in addition to his street address, a post office box address pursuant to subsection B of § 24.2-418.

No list or application containing an individual's social security number, or any part thereof, or the individual's day and month of birth, shall be made available for inspection or copying by anyone. The State Board of Elections shall prescribe procedures for local electoral boards and general registrars to make the information in the lists and applications available in a manner that does not reveal social security numbers or parts thereof, or an individual's day and month of birth.

The completion and timely delivery of an application for an absentee ballot shall be construed to be an offer by the applicant to vote in the election.

The general registrar shall note on each application received whether the applicant is or is not a registered voter and notify the secretary of the electoral board. In reviewing the application for an absentee ballot, the general registrar and electoral board shall not reject the application of any individual because of an error or omission on any record or paper relating to the application, if such error or omission is not material in determining whether such individual is qualified to vote absentee.

If the application has been properly completed and signed and the applicant is a registered voter of the precinct in which he offers to vote, the electoral board general registrar shall, at the time when the printed ballots for the election are available, send by the deadline set out in § 24.2-612, obtaining a certificate of either first-class or expedited mailing or delivery from the United States Postal Service or other commercial delivery provider, or deliver to him in person in the office of the secretary or registrar, the following items and nothing else:

1. An envelope containing the folded ballot, sealed and marked "Ballot within. Do not open except in presence of a witness."

2. An envelope, with printing only on the flap side, for resealing the marked ballot, on which envelope is printed the following:

"Statement of Voter."

"I do hereby state, subject to felony penalties for making false statements pursuant to § 24.2-1016, that my FULL NAME is ______________ (last, first, middle); that I am now or have been at some time since last November's general election a legal resident of ______________ (STATE YOUR LEGAL RESIDENCE IN VIRGINIA including the house number, street name or rural route address, city, zip code); that I received the enclosed ballot(s) upon application to the registrar of such county or city; that I opened the envelope marked 'ballot within' and marked the ballot(s) in the presence of the witness, without assistance or knowledge on the part of anyone as to the manner in which I marked it (or I am returning the form required to report how I was assisted); that I then sealed the ballot(s) in this envelope; and that I have not voted and will not vote in this election at any other time or place.

Signature of Voter ____________________________________

Date _______________________

Signature of witness___________________________________"

For elections held after January 1, 2004, instead of the envelope containing the above oath, an envelope containing the standard oath prescribed by the presidential designee under § 101(b)(7) of the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (52 U.S.C. § 20301 et seq.) shall be sent to voters who are qualified to vote absentee under that Act.

3. A properly addressed envelope for the return of the ballot to the electoral board general registrar by mail or by the applicant in person.

4. Printed instructions for completing the ballot and statement on the envelope and returning the ballot.

For federal elections held after January 1, 2004, for any voter who is required by subparagraph (b) of 52 U.S.C. § 21083 of the Help America Vote Act of 2002 to show identification the first time the voter votes in a federal election in the state, the printed instructions shall direct the voter to submit with his ballot (i) a copy of a current and valid photo identification or (ii) a copy of a current utility bill, bank statement, government check, paycheck or other government document that shows the name and address of the voter. Such individual who desires to vote by mail but who does not submit one of the forms of identification specified in this paragraph may cast such ballot by mail and the ballot shall be counted as a provisional ballot under the provisions of § 24.2-653. The State Board of Elections shall provide instructions to the electoral boards for the handling and counting of such provisional ballots pursuant to subsection B of § 24.2-653 and this section.

5. For any voter entitled to vote absentee under the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (52 U.S.C. § 20301 et seq.), information provided by the State Board specific to the voting rights and responsibilities for such citizens, or information provided by the registrar specific to the status of the voter registration and absentee ballot application of such voter, may be included.

The envelopes and instructions shall be in the form prescribed by the State Board.

If the applicant makes his application to vote in person under § 24.2-701 at a time when the printed ballots for the election are available, the general registrar or the secretary of the electoral board, on the determination of the qualifications of the applicant to vote, shall provide to the applicant the items set forth in subdivisions 1 through 4, and no item shall be removed by the applicant from the office of the general registrar or the secretary of the electoral board. On the request of the applicant, made no later than 5:00 p.m. on the seventh day prior to the election in which the applicant offers to vote, the general registrar or the secretary may send the items set forth in subdivisions 1 through 4 to the applicant by mail, obtaining a certificate of mailing.

If the applicant states as the reason for his absence on election day any of the reasons set forth in subdivision 2 of § 24.2-700, the electoral board general registrar, at the time when the printed ballots for the election are available, shall mail by the deadline set forth in § 24.2-612 or deliver in person to the applicant in the office of the secretary or general registrar the items as set forth in subdivisions 1 through 4 and, if necessary, an application for registration. A certificate of mailing shall not be required. The electoral board general registrar, at the time when the printed ballots for the election are available, shall send by the deadline set forth in § 24.2-612 the blank ballot, the form for the envelope for returning the marked ballot, and instructions to the voter by electronic transmission if the voter so requests. The voted ballot shall be returned to the electoral board general registrar as otherwise required by this chapter.

When the statement prescribed in subdivision 2 has been properly completed and signed by the registered voter and witnessed, his ballot shall not be subject to challenge pursuant to § 24.2-651.

The circuit courts shall have jurisdiction to issue an injunction to enforce the provisions of this section upon the application of (i) any aggrieved voter, (ii) any candidate in an election district in whole or in part in the court's jurisdiction where a violation of this section has occurred, or is likely to occur, or (iii) the campaign committee or the appropriate district political party chairman of such candidate. Any person who fails to discharge his duty as provided in this section through willful neglect of duty and with malicious intent shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor as provided in subsection A of § 24.2-1001.

§ 24.2-707. How ballots marked and returned by mail; cast in person; cast on voting equipment.

On receipt of a mailed absentee ballot, the voter shall, in the presence of a witness, (i) open the sealed envelope marked "ballot within" and (ii) mark and refold the ballot, as provided in §§ 24.2-644 and 24.2-646 without assistance and without making known how he marked the ballot, except as provided by § 24.2-704.

After the voter has marked his absentee ballot, he shall (a) enclose the ballot in the envelope provided for that purpose, (b) seal the envelope, (c) fill in and sign the statement printed on the back of the envelope in the presence of a witness, who shall sign the same envelope, (d) enclose the ballot envelope and any required assistance form within the envelope directed to the electoral board general registrar, and (e) seal that envelope and mail it to the office of the electoral board general registrar or deliver it personally to the electoral board or the general registrar. A voter's failure to provide in the statement on the back of the envelope his full middle name or his middle initial shall not be a material omission, rendering his ballot void, unless the voter failed to provide in the statement on the back of the envelope his full first and last name. A voter's failure to provide the date, or any part of the date, including the year, on which he signed the statement printed on the back of the envelope shall not be considered a material omission and shall not render his ballot void. For purposes of this chapter, "mail" shall include delivery by a commercial delivery service, but shall not include delivery by a personal courier service or another individual except as provided by §§ 24.2-703.2 and 24.2-705.

An applicant who makes his application to vote in person at a time when the printed ballots for the election are available shall follow the same procedure set forth above except that he may complete the procedure in person in the office of the general registrar or secretary of the electoral board, or at another location or locations in the county or city approved by the electoral board, before a registrar or a member of the electoral board, or, if a ballot is cast at that time, before the officers of election appointed by the electoral board. Any such location shall be in a public building owned or leased by the city, the county, or a town within the county, with adequate facilities for the protection of all records concerning the absentee voters, the absentee ballots, both voted and unvoted, and any voting equipment in use at the location. Such location may be in a facility owned or leased by the Commonwealth and used as a location for Department of Motor Vehicles facilities and for an office of the general registrar. Such location shall be deemed the equivalent of the office of the general registrar or secretary of the electoral board for the purpose of completing the application for an absentee ballot in person pursuant to §§ 24.2-701 and 24.2-706. On the request of the applicant, made no later than 5:00 p.m. on the seventh day prior to the election in which the applicant offers to vote, the general registrar or the secretary may send the items set forth in subdivisions 1 through 4 of § 24.2-706 to the applicant by mail, obtaining a certificate of mailing.

Failure to follow the procedures set forth above shall render the applicant's ballot void.

The electoral board general registrar of any county or city using a central absentee voting precinct may provide for the casting of absentee ballots on voting equipment prior to election day by applicants who are voting in person. The State Board shall prescribe procedures for the use of voting equipment. The procedures shall provide for the casting of absentee ballots prior to election day by in-person applicants on voting equipment which has been certified, and is currently approved, by the State Board. The procedures shall be applicable and uniformly applied by the State Board to all jurisdictions using comparable voting equipment. At least two officers of election, one representing each political party, shall be present during all hours that absentee voting is available at any location at which absentee ballots are cast prior to election day.

The requirement that officers of election shall be present if ballots are cast on voting equipment prior to election day shall not be applicable when the voting equipment is located in the office of the general registrar or secretary of the electoral board and the general registrar, or an assistant registrar, or the secretary of the electoral board is present.

§ 24.2-708. Return of unused ballots; voting by applicant who did not receive or lost ballot; defaced ballots.

A. If for any reason a person, who has applied for and received a ballot, decides not to vote absentee, he shall return the ballot unopened, in the sealed envelope in which it was sent to him, to the electoral board or the general registrar, before the day of the election in which the ballot was intended to be used.

The electoral board general registrar shall note on the absentee voter applicant list, opposite the name of the person returning the ballot, the fact that the ballot was returned unused and the date of the return. The electoral board general registrar shall carefully preserve all ballots returned unused and deliver them, together with other returned ballots, to the officers of election on election day. A voter who has returned his unused ballot before the day of the election as provided herein shall be entitled to vote a regular ballot in person on election day at his proper polling place or at a central absentee voter precinct established by the governing body of the county or city where the person is registered to vote, upon confirmation by the electoral board, the general registrar, or an officer of election of the return of the unused ballot. If the electoral board, the general registrar, or an officer of election is unable to confirm the return of the unused ballot, the voter shall be entitled to cast a provisional ballot pursuant to § 24.2-653.1. Notwithstanding the provisions of this subsection, a voter may return his unused ballot to his proper polling place or central absentee voter precinct on election day and shall be entitled to vote a regular ballot, and his unused ballot shall be preserved with other unused ballots.

B. If for any reason a person who has applied for and has been sent an absentee ballot does not receive the ballot or loses the ballot, he shall be entitled to cast another ballot after presenting to the electoral board, general registrar or officer of election a statement signed by him that he did not receive the ballot or has lost the ballot, subject to felony penalties for making false statements as pursuant to § 24.2-1016. If such person offers to vote at his proper polling place or at a central absentee voter precinct established by the governing body of the county or city where he is registered to vote on the day of the elections, he shall be entitled to cast a provisional ballot pursuant to § 24.2-653.1.

C. If a person who has applied for and has been sent an absentee ballot has unintentionally or accidentally defaced and rendered the ballot unfit for voting, he shall be entitled to cast a ballot after presenting the defaced ballot to the electoral board, the general registrar, or an officer of election. The returned ballot shall be marked spoiled by the electoral board, the general registrar, or an officer of election and placed in a spoiled-ballot envelope to be retained with the ballots for the election. A voter who has returned his defaced ballot before the day of the election as provided herein shall be entitled to vote a regular ballot in person on election day at his proper polling place or at a central absentee voter precinct established by the governing body of the county or city where he is registered to vote, upon confirmation by the electoral board, the general registrar, or an officer of election of the return of the defaced ballot. If the electoral board, the general registrar, or an officer of election is unable to confirm the return of the defaced ballot, the voter shall be entitled to cast a provisional ballot pursuant to § 24.2-653.1. A voter who returns his defaced or unfit ballot to his proper polling place or central absentee voter precinct on election day shall be entitled to vote a regular ballot, and his defaced or unfit ballot shall be preserved with other spoiled ballots.

§ 24.2-709. Ballot to be returned in manner prescribed by law.

A. Any ballot returned to the office of the electoral board or general registrar in any manner except as prescribed by law shall be void. Absentee ballots shall be returned to the electoral board or general registrar before the closing of the polls. The board member or registrar receiving the ballot shall (i) seal the ballot in an envelope with the statement or declaration of the voter, or both, attached to the outside and (ii) mark on each envelope the date, time, and manner of delivery. For all ballots returned by the general registrar to the electoral board, the board shall give to the general registrar a receipt showing the time and date of the return. No returned absentee ballot shall be deemed void because the inner envelope containing the voted ballot is imperfectly sealed so long as the outside envelope containing the ballot envelope is sealed.

B. Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection A, absentee ballots (i) received after the close of the polls on any election day, (ii) received before 5:00 p.m. on the second business day before the State Board meets to ascertain the results of the election pursuant to this title, (iii) requested on or before but not sent by the deadline for making absentee ballots available under § 24.2-612, and (iv) cast by an absentee voter who is eligible for an absentee ballot under subdivision 2 of § 24.2-700 shall be counted pursuant to the procedures set forth in this chapter and, if the voter is found entitled to vote, included in the election returns. The electoral board shall prepare an amended certified abstract, which shall include the results of such ballots, and shall deliver such abstract to the State Board by the business day prior to its meeting pursuant to this title, and shall deliver a copy of such abstract to the general registrar to be available for inspection when his office is open for business.

C. Notwithstanding the provisions of clause (i) of subsection B of § 24.2-427, an absentee ballot returned by a voter in compliance with § 24.2-707 and this section who dies prior to the counting of absentee ballots on election day shall be counted pursuant to the procedures set forth in this chapter if the voter is found to have been entitled to vote at the time that he returned the ballot.

§ 24.2-712. Central absentee voter precincts; counting ballots.

A. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the governing body of each county or city may establish one or more central absentee voter precincts in the courthouse or other public buildings for the purpose of receiving, counting, and recording absentee ballots cast in the county or city. The decision to establish any absentee voter precinct shall be made by the governing body by ordinance; the ordinance shall state for which elections the precinct shall be used. The decision to abolish any absentee voter precinct shall be made by the governing body by ordinance. Immediate notification of either decision shall be sent to the State Board and the electoral board.

B. Each central absentee voter precinct shall have at least three officers of election as provided for other precincts. The number of officers shall be determined by the electoral board.

C. If any voter brings an unmarked ballot to the central absentee voter precinct on the day of the election, he shall be allowed to vote it. If any voter brings an unmarked ballot to the electoral board general registrar on or before the day of the election, he shall be allowed to vote it, and his ballot shall be delivered to the absentee voter precinct pursuant to § 24.2-710.

The officers at the absentee voter precinct shall determine any appeal by any other voter whose name appears on the absentee voter applicant list and who offers to vote in person. If the officers at the absentee voter precinct produce records showing the receipt of his application and the certificate of mailing for the ballot, they shall deny his appeal. If the officers cannot produce such records, the voter shall be allowed to vote in person at the absentee voter precinct and have his vote counted with other absentee votes. If the voter's appeal is denied, the provisions of § 24.2-708 shall be applicable, and the officers shall advise the voter that he may vote on presentation of a statement signed by him that he has not received an absentee ballot and subject to felony penalties for making false statements pursuant to § 24.2-1016.

D. Absentee ballots may be processed as required by § 24.2-711 by the officers of election at the central absentee voter precinct prior to the closing of the polls but the ballot container shall not be opened and the counting of ballots shall not begin prior to that time. In the case of machine-readable ballots, the ballot container may be opened and the absentee ballots may be inserted in the counting machines prior to the closing of the polls in accordance with procedures prescribed by the State Board, including procedures to preserve ballot secrecy, but no ballot count totals shall be initiated prior to that time.

As soon as the polls are closed in the county or city the officers of election at the central absentee voter precinct shall proceed promptly to ascertain and record the vote given by absentee ballot and report the results in the manner provided for counting and reporting ballots generally in Article 4 (§ 24.2-643 et seq.) of Chapter 6.

E. The electoral board may provide that the officers of election for a central absentee voter precinct may be assigned to work all or a portion of the time that the precinct is open on election day subject to the following conditions:

1. The chief officer and the assistant chief officer, appointed pursuant to § 24.2-115 to represent the two political parties, are on duty at all times; and

2. No officer, political party representative, or other candidate representative shall leave the precinct after any ballots have been counted until the polls are closed and the count for the precinct is completed and reported.

F. The electoral board, with the written agreement of the general registrar, may provide that the central absentee voter precinct will open after 6:00 a.m. on the day of the election provided that the office of the general registrar will be open for the receipt of absentee ballots until the central absentee voter precinct is open and that the officers of election for the central absentee voter precinct obtain the absentee ballots returned to the general registrar's office for the purpose of counting the absentee ballots at the central absentee voter precinct and provided further that the central absentee voter precinct is the same location as the office of the general registrar.

§ 24.2-945.2. Persons required to file independent expenditure disclosure reports; filing deadline.

A. Any person, candidate campaign committee, or political committee that makes independent expenditures, in the aggregate during an election cycle, of $1,000 or more for a statewide election or $200 or more for any other election shall maintain records and report pursuant to this chapter all such independent expenditures made for the purpose of expressly advocating the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate.

B. Independent expenditure reports shall be due (i) within 24 hours of the time when the funds were expended or (ii) within 24 hours of the time when materials, as described in subsection A of this section, are published or broadcast to the public, whichever (i) or (ii) first occurs. The reports shall be filed with the State Board if the funds were expended to support or oppose a candidate for statewide office or the General Assembly or with the local electoral board general registrar of the county or city in which the candidate resides if the funds were expended to support or oppose a candidate for local office. The report filed by a political action committee or political party committee shall include the information required for a statement of organization as listed in subdivisions A 1 through A 8 of § 24.2-949.2 or clauses 1 through 6 of § 24.2-950.2, as appropriate, unless the committee has a current statement of organization on file with the State Board.

C. Independent expenditure reports required by this section may be filed electronically pursuant to § 24.2-946.1 or in writing on a form developed by the State Board. If the report is filed in writing, the report shall be (i) received by the State Board or the local electoral board general registrar, as appropriate, within 24 hours of the time when the funds were expended or (ii) transmitted to the State Board or the local electoral board general registrar, as appropriate, by telephonic transmission to a facsimile device within 24 hours of the time when the funds were expended with an original copy of the report mailed to the State Board or the local electoral board general registrar, as appropriate, and postmarked within 24 hours of the time when the funds were expended.

§ 24.2-946.1. Standards and requirements for electronic preparation and transmittal of campaign finance disclosure reports; database.

A. The State Board shall review or cause to be developed and shall approve standards for the preparation, production, and transmittal by computer or electronic means of campaign finance reports required by this chapter. The State Board may prescribe the method of execution and certification of and the procedures for receiving electronically filed campaign finance reports required by this chapter in the office of the State Board or any local electoral board. The State Board may provide campaign finance report-creation software to filers without charge or at a reasonable cost.

B. The State Board shall accept any campaign finance report filed by candidates for the General Assembly and statewide office by computer or electronic means in accordance with the standards approved by the Board and using software meeting standards approved by it. This information shall be made available to the public promptly by the Board through the Internet.

C. By July 1, 2007, the State Board of Elections shall develop and implement a centralized system to accept reports from any candidate for local or constitutional office. Such reports shall be filed in accordance with, and using software that meets, standards approved by the State Board. The State Board shall promptly notify the electoral board general registrar of the locality in which a candidate resides and make the information contained in the report available to the electoral board general registrar.

D. The State Board shall enter or cause to be entered into a campaign finance database, available to the public through the Internet, the information from required campaign finance reports filed by computer, electronic, or other means by candidates for the General Assembly and statewide office.

E. Other campaign finance reports required by this chapter to be filed by a committee with the State Board or a local electoral board general registrar, or both, may be filed electronically on terms agreed to by the committee and the Board.

§ 24.2-946.2. Custody of reports; inspection and copying; exception for certain information.

A. All campaign finance reports required to be filed under this chapter shall be open to inspection by any person during the business hours of the office in which they are filed. Copies shall be produced for any person requesting them who shall pay the reasonable cost of the copies. Copies of such reports certified by the principal administrative officer in whose office they are kept shall be evidence in all courts to the same extent as the original report would be if produced and proved.

Upon request from an individual granted protected voter status under the provisions of subsection B of § 24.2-418, the State Board shall replace the individual's residence address in copies of campaign finance reports available to the public with the individual's alternative mailing address found in the Virginia voter registration system.

Nothing in this chapter shall be construed to grant public access to information not required to be entered into the campaign finance database under this chapter that candidates or committees may include in campaign finance report-creation software managed by or for the State Board.

B. The following applies to campaign finance reports filed by candidate campaign committees:

1. Every officer or local electoral board general registrar, with whom reports are required to be filed by this chapter, shall file and preserve such reports and keep them as part of the office's records for at least one year after the final report is filed, or through the next general election for the office to which they pertain, whichever is later; or in the case of a candidate who has not filed a final report and seeks election to the same office in a successive election, through the next general election for the office to which they pertain.

2. The State Board shall file and preserve as part of its records the reports required to be filed with it by this chapter for at least one year after the final report is filed, or through the next general election for the office to which they pertain, whichever is later; or in the case of a candidate who has not filed a final report and seeks election to the same office in a successive election, through the next general election for the office to which they pertain. Thereafter, the State Board shall forward the reports it preserves to The Library of Virginia for preservation under the Virginia Public Records Act (§ 42.1-76 et seq.).

C. The following applies to campaign finance reports filed by political committees:

1. Every officer or local electoral board general registrar, with whom reports are required to be filed by this chapter, shall file and preserve such reports as part of the office's records for at least four years after the reporting deadline or one year after the final report is filed.

2. The State Board shall file and preserve as part of its records the reports required to be filed with it by this chapter for at least four years after the reporting deadline or one year after the final report is filed. Thereafter, the State Board shall forward the reports it preserves to The Library of Virginia for preservation under the Virginia Public Records Act (§ 42.1-76 et seq.).

§ 24.2-946.3. Reporting of certain violations; penalties.

A. It shall be the duty of the State Board to report any violation of the provisions of this chapter to the appropriate attorney for the Commonwealth. The State Board shall report to the attorney for the Commonwealth of the City of Richmond in the case of reporting requirements for campaign committees for statewide office and to the attorney for the Commonwealth of the county or city of the residence of a candidate for the General Assembly. For political committees, the State Board shall report the violation to the attorney for the Commonwealth of the City of Richmond. If all the officers of a political committee are residents of one county or city as shown on the statement of organization required by this chapter, the State Board shall report violations for that political committee to the attorney for the Commonwealth of that county or city.

B. It shall be the duty of the electoral board general registrar of a county or city to report any violation of the provisions of this chapter relating to the filing of campaign finance reports required to be filed with the electoral board general registrar to the attorney for the Commonwealth for the county or city in which the electoral board general registrar has jurisdiction.

C. In order to fulfill the duty to report violations pursuant to subsections A and B, the Board shall establish and implement a system for receiving, cataloging, and reviewing reports filed pursuant to the provisions of this chapter and for verifying that reports are complete and submitted on time. As part of the system referred to in this subsection, the general registrar for each county and city, or the secretary of the electoral board in any county or city in which the electoral board chooses to perform the duties stated in this subsection, shall be required, in accordance with instructions provided by the Board, to receive, catalog, and review the reports filed with the local electoral board general registrar and to verify that the reports are complete and submitted on time.

D. The State Board, and the general registrar or secretary of the electoral board in accordance with the instructions of the State Board, (i) shall assess and collect the civil penalties provided in Article 8 24.2-953 et seq.) and (ii) if unable to collect the penalty, shall report the violation to the appropriate attorney for the Commonwealth for enforcement.

E. The State Board, or the general registrar or secretary of the electoral board in accordance with the instructions of the State Board, shall notify, no later than 21 days after the report due date, any person submitting an incomplete report of the need for additional information. The State Board, or the general registrar or secretary of the electoral board in accordance with the instructions of the State Board, may request additional information to correct obvious mathematical errors and to fulfill the requirements for information on the reports.

F. Upon notice of a violation of this chapter, the State Board or the general registrar or local electoral board, as appropriate, shall within 90 days of the report deadline notify the appropriate attorney for the Commonwealth, who shall initiate civil proceedings to enforce the civil penalties assessed by the State Board or the local electoral board general registrar as provided herein. Any civil penalties collected pursuant to action by the State Board shall be payable to the State Treasurer for deposit to the general fund, and any civil penalties collected pursuant to action by a general registrar or local electoral board shall be payable to the treasurer of the locality for deposit to its general fund.

G. In the case of any political committee that is required to file a statement of organization pursuant to this chapter, the State Board shall be authorized to waive a penalty that has been assessed if the filer demonstrates that there exists good cause to waive the penalty.

H. The State Board shall notify the public through its official Internet website of any violation based on the failure to file a required report by a candidate for statewide office or the General Assembly and the identity of the violator.

I. The State Board shall determine the schedule of civil penalties required to be followed by its staff and local electoral boards general registrars in assessing penalties under this chapter. No election official or staff may waive or reduce such penalties, except as provided in § 24.2-946.4.

§ 24.2-946.4. Right to grant extensions in special circumstances.

A. The State Board shall provide instructions to filers for delivery of campaign finance reports within the time periods prescribed by law.

B. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, any candidate or treasurer required to file a report pursuant to this chapter shall be entitled to a 72-hour extension of the filing deadline if his spouse, parent, grandparent, child, grandchild, or sibling died within the 72 hours before the deadline. The State Board or the local electoral board general registrar shall be authorized to grant an extension of the filing deadline for a period not to exceed five days for good cause shown by the filer and found by the Board or board registrar sufficient to justify the granting of the extension.

C. The Commissioner of Elections shall have additional authority to extend a deadline established in this chapter for filing reports in emergency situations that interfere with the timely filing of reports. The extension shall be limited in scope to the areas and times affected by the emergency. The provisions of this subsection shall be applicable only in the case of an emergency declared by the Governor pursuant to Chapter 3.2 (§ 44-146.13 et seq.) of Title 44 or declared by the President of the United States and confirmed by the Governor by executive order as an emergency for the purposes of this subsection.

D. The Commissioner of Elections shall have additional authority to extend a deadline established in this chapter for filing reports for a reasonable period for a candidate who serves as his own campaign treasurer and who is a member of a uniformed service of the United States called to active duty during a reporting period.

E. The State Board shall have authority to extend any deadline applicable to reports required to be filed by computer or electronic means in the event of a failure of the computer or electronic filing system that prevents timely filing. The extension shall not exceed a period of up to five days after restoration of the filing system to operating order.

F. The State Board shall have authority also to grant extensions as provided in §§ 24.2-503 and 24.2-948.3.

§ 24.2-946.5. Dormant committees.

A. The State Board or the electoral board general registrar of any county or city may close the file of any candidate campaign committee or political committee required to file with it provided the committee has not filed a final report and the Board or board registrar cannot locate either the candidate or his campaign treasurer, or in the case of any political committee, the Board or board registrar cannot locate the treasurer or custodian of the books of the committee. A candidate campaign committee file shall not be closed if the candidate has filed a report with the Board or board registrar for any campaign for any office within the prior five years. A political committee file shall not be closed if the committee has filed a report within the prior five years.

B. Once the committee's file has been closed, no more reports will be due and no additional penalties for failure to file will accrue. However, if the whereabouts of the candidate or his campaign treasurer, or in the case of any political committee, the treasurer or custodian of the books of the committee, later becomes known to the Board or board registrar, it may reopen the file and send notice to the candidate, or in the case of any political committee, the treasurer or custodian of the books of the committee, requesting that he file the appropriate reports and pay any penalties that were levied before the file was closed by it.

§ 24.2-947.1. Statement of organization.

A. Any individual seeking or campaigning for an office of the Commonwealth or one of its governmental units in a party nomination process or general, primary, or special election, shall file a statement of organization within 10 days of meeting any one of the following conditions:

1. Acceptance of a contribution;

2. Expenditure of any funds;

3. The payment of a filing fee for any party nomination method;

4. The filing of a candidate statement of qualification pursuant to § 24.2-501; or

5. The appointment of a campaign treasurer, designation of a campaign committee, or designation of a campaign depository.

B. Candidates for statewide office shall file the statement with the State Board. Candidates for the General Assembly shall file the statement with the State Board and a copy of the statement with the local electoral board general registrar of the locality of the candidate's residence. Candidates for local or constitutional office shall file the statement with the local electoral board general registrar and, if the statement indicates that the candidate committee will be filing electronically, a copy with the State Board.

C. The statement of organization shall include the following information:

1. The full name and residence address of the candidate;

2. The full name and mailing address for the campaign committee;

3. The full name, residence address, and daytime phone number of the treasurer;

4. The office being sought and district, if any, for the office;

5. The recognized political party affiliation of the candidate for statewide office or the General Assembly. In the absence of any political party affiliation, independent shall be used;

6. The name of the financial institution for his campaign depository; and

7. Such other information as shall be required by the State Board except that the account number for a designated depository account shall not be required.

D. In the case of any candidate who seeks election for successive terms in the same office, the statement of organization filed by the candidate shall continue in effect for such successive elections, but the candidate shall file notice of any changes in the information provided on the form within 10 days of the change with the State Board, local electoral board general registrar, or both, as appropriate.

§ 24.2-947.3. Campaign committee treasurer requirements and responsibilities.

A. Upon meeting any of the requirements of subsection A of § 24.2-947.1, the candidate shall appoint a single campaign treasurer who shall be a registered voter in Virginia. Every treasurer so appointed shall accept the appointment, in writing on the statement of organization, prior to the filing thereof. No individual shall act as treasurer unless the required statement of appointment has been filed. The same person may serve as campaign treasurer for more than one candidate.

B. In the event of the death, resignation, removal, or change of the treasurer, the candidate shall designate a successor and file the name and address of the successor within 10 days of the change with the State Board, local electoral board general registrar, or both, as provided in subsection B of § 24.2-947.1.

C. Any candidate who fails to appoint a treasurer or successor treasurer shall be deemed to have appointed himself treasurer and shall comply as such with the provisions of this chapter.

D. All contributions and expenditures received or made by any candidate, or received or made on his behalf or in relation to his candidacy by any person, except independent expenditures, shall be paid over or delivered to the candidate's treasurer or shall be reported to the treasurer in such detail and form as to allow him to comply fully with this chapter. An independent expenditure shall be reported pursuant to § 24.2-945.2 in lieu of being reported to the candidate's treasurer.

E. The candidate or his treasurer shall keep detailed and accurate accounts of all contributions turned over to and expenditures made by the candidate or his treasurer on behalf of the candidate or his campaign committee, or reported to any candidate or his treasurer pursuant to this article. Such account shall set forth the date of the contribution or expenditure, its amount or value, the name and address of the person or committee making the contribution or to whom the expenditure was made, and the object or purpose of the contribution or expenditure. Such books and records may be destroyed or discarded at any time after (i) one year from the date of filing the final report required by § 24.2-948.4 or (ii) three years after the December 31 immediately following the election, whichever last occurs, unless a court of competent jurisdiction shall order their retention for a longer period.

F. It shall be unlawful for any candidate, his treasurer, or any person receiving contributions or making expenditures on a candidate's behalf or in relation to his candidacy, to fail to report every contribution and expenditure as required by this article.

§ 24.2-947.4. Information to be included on campaign finance reports for campaign committees.

A. The reports required by this article shall be filed on a form prescribed by the State Board and shall include all financial activity of the campaign committee. All completed forms shall be submitted in typed, printed, or legibly hand printed format or electronically as provided in § 24.2-946.1. Persons submitting the forms shall do so subject to felony penalties for making false statements pursuant to § 24.2-1016.

B. The report of receipts shall include:

1. The total number of contributors, each of whom has contributed an aggregate of $100 or less, including cash and in-kind contributions, as of the date of the report, and the total amount of contributions from all such contributors;

2. For each contributor who has contributed an aggregate of more than $100, including cash and in-kind contributions, as of the ending date of the report, the campaign committee shall itemize each contributor on the report and list the following information:

a. the name of the contributor, listed alphabetically,

b. the mailing address of the contributor,

c. the amount of the contribution,

d. the aggregate amount of contributions from the contributor to date,

e. the date of the contribution,

f. the occupation of the contributor,

g. the name of his employer or principal business, and

h. the city and state where employed or where his business is located.

For each such contributor, other than an individual, the principal type of business and place of business of the contributor shall be substituted for subdivisions f and g, respectively. For each such contributor other than an individual, it shall be sufficient to list the address of the contributor one time on the report of receipts.

3. For each designated contribution received by the campaign committee from a political committee, out-of-state political committee, or federal political action committee, the campaign committee shall list the name of the person who designated the contribution and provide the information required by this subsection.

C. The report of disbursements shall include all expenditures and give:

1. The name and address of the person paid;

2. A brief description of the purpose of the expenditure;

3. The name of the person contracting for or arranging the expenditure;

4. The amount of the expenditure; and

5. The date of the expenditure.

The report of disbursements shall itemize any expenditure made by credit card payment.

D. Each report for a candidate shall list separately those receipts and expenditures reported to the candidate or his treasurer by any person, campaign committee, or political committee pursuant to subsection D of § 24.2-947.3, and in the case of in-kind contributions, shall set forth in each instance the source of the information reported.

E. The report shall list separately all loans and, for each loan, shall give:

1. The date the loan was made;

2. The name and address of the person making the loan and any person who is a co-borrower, guarantor, or endorser of the loan;

3. The amount of the loan;

4. The date and amount of any repayment of the loan; and

5. For any loan or part of a loan that is forgiven by the lender, the amount forgiven listed as both a contribution and loan repayment.

F. The State Board shall provide for a "no activity" report that may be filed for any reporting period in which the filer has no activity to report.

G. It is the joint responsibility of the candidate and his treasurer that the report of a candidate be filed, that the report be in full and accurate detail, and that the report be received by the State Board, local electoral board general registrar, or both, by the deadline for filing the report.

§ 24.2-947.5. With whom candidates file reports.

A. Candidates for statewide office shall file the reports required by this article by computer or electronic means in accordance with the standards approved by the State Board.

B. Candidates for the General Assembly may file reports required by this article with the State Board by computer or electronic means in accordance with the standards approved by the State Board. Nonelectronic reports for the General Assembly shall be filed with the State Board and with the electoral board general registrar of the locality where the candidate resides.

C. Except as provided in § 24.2-948.1, candidates for any other office who file reports in nonelectronic format shall file with the electoral board general registrar of the locality in which the candidate resides. Beginning July 1, 2007, candidates for local or constitutional office may file reports required by this article with the State Board by computer or other electronic means in accordance with standards approved by the State Board. Candidates who file by electronic means with the State Board do not have to file reports with the electoral board general registrar of the locality in which the candidate resides.

D. Any report that may be filed with the State Board by mail shall be (i) received by the State Board by the deadline for filing the report or (ii) transmitted to the State Board by telephonic transmission to a facsimile device by the deadline for filing the report with an original copy of the report mailed to the State Board and postmarked by the deadline for filing the report.

§ 24.2-947.9. Special report required of certain large pre-election contributions.

A. Any contribution reported pursuant to this section shall also be reported on the first report required by this article after any election.

B. Except as provided in subsection C, any single contribution of $5,000 or more for a statewide office, $1,000 or more for the General Assembly, or $500 or more for any other office, knowingly received or reported by the candidate or his treasurer on behalf of his candidacy (i) on and after the twelfth day preceding a primary and before the primary date, (ii) on and after the twelfth day preceding a general election and before the general election date, or (iii) on and after the eleventh day preceding any other election in which the individual is a candidate and before the election day, shall be reported in writing as provided in §§ 24.2-947.4 and 24.2-947.5 or electronically pursuant to § 24.2-946.1, and the report shall be received by the State Board or local electoral board general registrar, as appropriate, by 5:00 p.m. on the following day or for a contribution received on a Saturday by 5:00 p.m. on the following Monday. However, any such contribution received within the 24 hours prior to the election day shall be reported and a report thereof received on the day prior to the election.

C. The reports required by subsection B of this section shall also be required of any candidate for nomination by a political party to serve as the party's nominee in a general or special election if (i) the party nominates by convention or any method other than a primary and (ii) there are at least two candidates for nomination pursuant to the rules and procedures of the party. In such case, candidates for nomination shall be required to file the reports required by subsection B for the 12-day or 11-day period, as specified by subsection B, immediately preceding:

1. The caucus, mass meeting, convention, or other nominating event at which the party's nomination shall be finally determined pursuant to the rules and procedures of the party; and

2. Any caucus, mass meeting, convention, or other nominating event, other than that at which the party's nomination shall be finally determined, at which delegates are chosen who are pledged to support a specified candidate on at least one ballot at a subsequent district or state convention required as part of the nominating process.

D. No report shall be required pursuant to subsection C if the candidate is or has become, by virtue of the withdrawal of any opponent or the operation of the rules and procedures of the party, unopposed for nomination at the time such report otherwise would be required to be made.

§ 24.2-948.1. Exemption from reporting requirements for certain candidates for local office.

A. This section shall apply to candidates for local office. A candidate for local office may seek an exemption from the requirements for filing campaign finance disclosure reports set out in this chapter except for the filing requirements of §§ 24.2-945.2, 24.2-947.1, 24.2-947.9, and 24.2-948.4 pertaining to certain independent expenditures, the statement of organization, large contributions, and the filing of a final report. The request for an exemption shall be filed with the electoral board general registrar of the county or city where the candidate resides on a form prescribed by the State Board and in accordance with instructions by the State Board for the time for filing and the process for approval by the electoral board general registrar.

B. To qualify for an exemption, the candidate shall certify on the form that (i) he has not and will not solicit or accept any contribution from any other person or political committee during the course of his campaign, (ii) he has not and will not contribute to his own campaign more than $1,000, (iii) he has not and will not expend more than $1,000 in the course of his campaign, and (iv) that he has complied and will comply with the requirements of this chapter. This certification shall apply for the duration of the campaign until the filing of a final report in compliance with § 24.2-948.4 after the election. A candidate may rescind his certification and exemption at any time during the campaign and shall file in accordance with the appropriate filing schedule thereafter, provided that the candidate rescinds his certification prior to engaging in the activities described in clauses (i), (ii), and (iii) of this subsection. The first report filed shall account for all prior contributions and expenditures pertaining to his campaign.

C. Any candidate who has qualified for an exemption from reporting requirements pursuant to this section shall not be permitted to qualify for any office, enter upon the duties thereof, or receive any salary or emoluments therefrom until a final report has been filed that details all financial activity of the candidate's campaign and states that all reporting for the nomination and election is complete and final. No officer authorized by the laws of the Commonwealth to issue certificates of election shall issue one to any person determined to be elected to any such office, until copies of the final report cited above have been filed as required in this chapter.

D. A candidate who has a current exemption under the provisions of this section, or who is otherwise exempt from reporting contributions and expenditures under this chapter, may purchase voter lists from the State Board under the provisions of §§ 24.2-405 and 24.2-406 with a check drawn on the candidate's personal account.

§ 24.2-948.3. Compliance with reporting requirements of campaign finance disclosure act as requirement of candidacy for certain offices.

A. It shall be a requirement of candidacy in any election for statewide office or the General Assembly that the candidate shall have filed the disclosure reports required by this chapter for any election in which he participated as a candidate for any such office and which was held within the five years preceding the date of the election in which he seeks to be a candidate. For the purposes of this section, the candidate shall be presumed to have complied with the candidate disclosure reporting requirements unless (i) the State Board or local electoral board general registrar, whichever is appropriate, has notified the candidate, at least 60 days prior to the applicable deadline for him to file his written statement of qualification set out in § 24.2-503, that he has failed to file a required report or reports and (ii) the candidate fails to file the specified report or reports by the applicable deadline for filing his written statement of qualification.

B. The authority of the State Board to grant an extension of the deadline established in § 24.2-503 shall include the authority to grant such extension with respect to the requirements of this section.

§ 24.2-950.8. With whom political party committees file reports.

A. Except as provided in subsection B, a political party committee that is required by this chapter to file reports with the State Board, and that accepts contributions or makes expenditures in excess of $10,000 in any calendar year, or that accepted contributions or made expenditures in excess of $10,000 in the previous calendar year, shall file its reports with the State Board by computer or electronic means in accordance with the standards approved by the State Board until such time as the political party committee files a final report. Any political party committee that has been filing electronically, but does not anticipate accepting contributions or making expenditures in excess of $10,000 in the upcoming calendar year, may sign a waiver, on a form prescribed by the State Board, to exempt the committee from the electronic filing requirement for the calendar year. Such waiver form shall be submitted and received no later than the date the first report is due covering activity for that calendar year.

B. A county, city, or local district political party committee shall not be required to file by computer or electronic means if it files its reports with the electoral board general registrar of that county or city.

C. Other political party committees required to file reports by this article shall file all campaign finance reports with the State Board, if filing by electronic means, or with the State Board and the local electoral board general registrar for its jurisdiction if filing campaign finance reports by nonelectronic means.

§ 24.2-953. General provisions.

A. The procedures to enforce the provisions of this article are found in § 24.2-946.3.

B. Either the failure to file any statement or report or the late filing of any statement or report required by this chapter shall constitute a violation of this chapter subject to the penalties provided in this article.

C. Any person who violates, or aids, abets, or participates in the violation of, this chapter shall be subject to a civil penalty not to exceed $100, unless a greater penalty is imposed by this article.

D. In the case of a willful violation, the violator shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor. There shall be a rebuttable presumption that the violation of this chapter was willful if the violation is based on a person's failure to file a report required by this chapter and his failure to file continues for more than 60 days following his actual receipt of written notice of his failure to file sent to him by certified mail, return receipt requested, by the State Board or an electoral board a general registrar. Such notice shall be sent to the most recent mailing address provided by the candidate or committee.

E. In the case of a failure to file a required statement or report by the specified deadline, the length of the delinquency shall be a factor in determining the amount of the civil penalty assessed.

F. The statute of limitations applicable to a violation of this chapter is stated in § 19.2-8.

G. The requirements of this chapter for the filing of timely and complete statements and reports by any candidate campaign committee or political committee shall at all times remain in full force and effect and shall not be vacated, suspended, or modified as the result of any pending or completed criminal or civil investigation of the candidate campaign committee, the political committee, or any individual participant in the committee.

§ 24.2-953.3. Incomplete reports.

A. In the case of a violation of this chapter that relates to the filing of an incomplete report, the violator shall be subject to a civil penalty not to exceed $500 unless a greater penalty is imposed pursuant to this section. However the civil penalty shall in no case exceed $500 unless the total of the filer's reportable contributions or the total of the filer's reportable expenditures is $10,000 or more.

B. Prior to assessing a penalty pursuant to this section for the filing of an incomplete report, the Commissioner of Elections or the general registrar or secretary of the local electoral board, as appropriate, shall notify, by certified mail, the candidate and treasurer, or person or political committee required to file a report with that board, that a filed report has not been completed, citing the omissions from the report. No penalty shall be assessed if the information required to complete the report is filed within 10 days of the date of mailing the written notice.

C. If the information required to complete the report is not filed within the 10-day period, the Commissioner of Elections or the general registrar or secretary of the local electoral board, as appropriate, shall then assess against the candidate and treasurer, who shall be jointly and severally liable, or person or political committee required to file a report, a civil penalty not to exceed $500. The Commissioner of Elections or the general registrar or secretary of the local electoral board, as appropriate, shall consider the following factors in determining the civil penalty assessed: the number of omissions, the amount of money involved, and the proportion of contributions or expenditures containing omissions.

D. The Commissioner of Elections or the general registrar or secretary of the local electoral board may grant an additional period for compliance, not to exceed two weeks, to permit the completion of a filed report for good cause shown and in response to a request filed within the 10-day period. However, no additional period shall be granted thereafter for compliance.

E. The civil penalty assessed for filing an incomplete report shall be increased by $500 every 60 days following the date for compliance established pursuant to this section and until compliance is complete. If the failure to comply continues for more than 120 days following the date for compliances established pursuant to this section, there shall be a rebuttable presumption that the violation was willful, and the matter shall be forwarded to the appropriate attorney for the Commonwealth.

F. The civil penalty assessed for filing any subsequent incomplete report (i) that is filed more than 20 days after notice has been given of a violation or (ii) that is filed during the 60 days prior to the elections for which the person is a candidate shall be $1,000.

G. The State Board shall notify the public through its official Internet website of a failure to file a complete report by a candidate for statewide office or the General Assembly and the identity of the violator following the date for compliance established pursuant to this section.


SENATE BILL NO. 1092
AMENDMENT IN THE NATURE OF A SUBSTITUTE
(Proposed by the Senate Committee on Privileges and Elections
on January 27, 2015)
(Patron Prior to Substitute--Senator Vogel)
A BILL to amend and reenact §§ 24.2-114, 24.2-701, 24.2-702, 24.2-703.2, 24.2-704, 24.2-705, 24.2-706 through 24.2-709, 24.2-712, 24.2-945.2, 24.2-946.1 through 24.2-946.5, 24.2-947.1, 24.2-947.3, 24.2-947.4, 24.2-947.5, 24.2-947.9, 24.2-948.1, 24.2-948.3, 24.2-950.8, 24.2-953, and 24.2-953.3 of the Code of Virginia, relating to general registrars; reassigning duties of the electoral board related to absentee voting and campaign finance.

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of Virginia:

1. That §§ 24.2-114, 24.2-701, 24.2-702, 24.2-703.2, 24.2-704, 24.2-705, 24.2-706 through 24.2-709, 24.2-712, 24.2-945.2, 24.2-946.1 through 24.2-946.5, 24.2-947.1, 24.2-947.3, 24.2-947.4, 24.2-947.5, 24.2-947.9, 24.2-948.1, 24.2-948.3, 24.2-950.8, 24.2-953, and 24.2-953.3 of the Code of Virginia are amended and reenacted as follows:

§ 24.2-114. Duties and powers of general registrar.

In addition to the other duties required by this title, the general registrar, and the assistant registrars acting under his supervision, shall:

1. Maintain the office of the general registrar and establish and maintain additional public places for voter registration in accordance with the provisions of § 24.2-412.

2. Participate in programs to educate the general public concerning registration and encourage registration by the general public. No registrar shall actively solicit, in a selective manner, any application for registration or for a ballot or offer anything of value for any such application.

3. Perform his duties within the county or city he was appointed to serve, except that a registrar may (i) go into a county or city in the Commonwealth contiguous to his county or city to register voters of his county or city when conducting registration jointly with the registrar of the contiguous county or city or (ii) notwithstanding any other provision of law, participate in multijurisdictional staffing for voter registration offices, approved by the State Board, that are located at facilities of the Department of Motor Vehicles.

4. Provide the appropriate forms for applications to register and to obtain the information necessary to complete the applications pursuant to the provisions of the Constitution of Virginia and general law.

5. Indicate on the registration records for each accepted mail voter registration application form returned by mail pursuant to Article 3.1 (§ 24.2-416.1 et seq.) of Chapter 4 that the registrant has registered by mail. The general registrar shall fulfill this duty in accordance with the instructions of the State Board so that those persons who registered by mail are identified on the registration records, lists of registered voters furnished pursuant to § 24.2-405, lists of persons who voted furnished pursuant to § 24.2-406, and pollbooks used for the conduct of elections.

6. Accept a registration application or request for transfer or change of address submitted by or for a resident of any other county or city in the Commonwealth. Registrars shall process registration applications and requests for transfer or change of address from residents of other counties and cities in accordance with written instructions from the State Board and shall forward the completed application or request to the registrar of the applicant's residence. Notwithstanding the provisions of § 24.2-416, the registrar of the applicant's residence shall recognize as timely any application or request for transfer or change of address submitted to any person authorized to receive voter registration applications pursuant to Chapter 4 (§ 24.2-400 et seq.), prior to or on the final day of registration. The registrar of the applicant's residence shall determine the qualification of the applicant, including whether the applicant has ever been convicted of a felony, and if so, under what circumstances the applicant's right to vote has been restored, and promptly notify the applicant at the address shown on the application or request of the acceptance or denial of his registration or transfer. However, notification shall not be required when the registrar does not have an address for the applicant.

7. Preserve order at and in the vicinity of the place of registration. For this purpose, the registrar shall be vested with the powers of a conservator of the peace while engaged in the duties imposed by law. He may exclude from the place of registration persons whose presence disturbs the registration process. He may appoint special officers, not exceeding three in number, for a place of registration and may summon persons in the vicinity to assist whenever, in his judgment, it is necessary to preserve order. The general registrar and any assistant registrar shall be authorized to administer oaths for purposes of this title.

8. Maintain the official registration records for his county or city in the system approved by, and in accordance with the instructions of, the State Board; preserve the written applications of all persons who are registered; and preserve for a period of four years the written applications of all persons who are denied registration or whose registration is cancelled.

9. If a person is denied registration, promptly notify such person in writing of the denial and the reason for denial in accordance with § 24.2-422.

10. Verify the accuracy of the pollbooks provided for each election by the State Board, make the pollbooks available to the precincts, and according to the instructions of the State Board provide a copy of the data from the pollbooks to the State Board after each election for voting credit purposes.

11. Retain the pollbooks in his principal office for two years from the date of the election.

12. Maintain accurate and current registration records and comply with the requirements of this title for the transfer, inactivation, and cancellation of voter registrations.

13. Whenever election districts, precincts, or polling places are altered, provide for entry into the voter registration system of the proper district and precinct designations for each registered voter whose districts or precinct have changed and notify each affected voter of changes affecting his districts or polling place by mail.

14. Whenever any part of his county or city becomes part of another jurisdiction by annexation, merger, or other means, transfer to the appropriate general registrar the registration records of the affected registered voters. The general registrar for their new county or city shall notify them by mail of the transfer and their new election districts and polling places.

15. When he registers any person who was previously registered in another state, notify the appropriate authority in that state of the person's registration in Virginia.

16. Whenever any person is believed to be registered or voting in more than one state or territory of the United States at the same time, inquire about, or provide information from the voter's registration and voting records to any appropriate voter registration or other authority of another state or territory who inquires about, that person's registration and voting history.

17. At the request of the county or city chairman of any political party nominating a candidate for the General Assembly, constitutional office, or local office by a method other than a primary, review any petition required by the party in its nomination process to determine whether those signing the petition are registered voters with active status.

18. Carry out such other duties as prescribed by the electoral board in his capacity as the director of elections for the locality in which he serves.

19. Attend, or designate one member of his staff to attend, an annual training program provided by the State Board.

§ 24.2-701. Application for absentee ballot.

A. The State Board shall furnish each general registrar with a sufficient number of applications for official absentee ballots. The registrars shall furnish applications to persons requesting them.

The State Board shall implement a system that enables eligible persons to request and receive an absentee ballot application electronically through the Internet. Electronic absentee ballot applications shall be in a form approved by the State Board.

Except as provided in § 24.2-703, a separate application shall be completed for each election in which the applicant offers to vote. An application for an absentee ballot may be accepted the later of (i) 12 months before an election or (ii) the day following any election held in the twelfth month prior to the election in which the applicant is applying to vote.

An application that is completed in person at the same time that the applicant registers to vote shall be held and processed no sooner than the fifth day after the date that the applicant registered to vote; however, this requirement shall not be applicable to any person who is qualified to vote absentee under subdivision 2 of § 24.2-700.

Any application received before the ballots are printed shall be held and processed as soon as the printed ballots for the election are available.

For the purposes of this chapter, the general registrar's office shall be open a minimum of eight hours between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. on the first and second Saturday immediately preceding all general elections, except May general elections, and on the Saturday immediately preceding any primary election, May general election, or special election.

Unless the applicant is disabled, all applications for absentee ballots shall be signed by the applicant who shall state, subject to felony penalties for making false statements pursuant to § 24.2-1016, that to the best of his knowledge and belief the facts contained in the application are true and correct and that he has not and will not vote in the election at any other place in Virginia or in any other state. If the applicant is unable to sign the application, a person assisting the applicant will note this fact on the applicant signature line and provide his signature, name, and address.

B. Applications for absentee ballots shall be completed in the following manner:

1. An application completed in person shall be made not less than three days prior to the election in which the applicant offers to vote and completed only in the office of the general registrar. The applicant shall sign the application in the presence of a registrar or a member of the electoral board. The applicant shall provide one of the forms of identification specified in subsection B of § 24.2-643. Any applicant who does not show one of the forms of identification specified in subsection B of § 24.2-643 shall be offered a provisional ballot under the provisions of § 24.2-653. The State Board of Elections shall provide instructions to the electoral boards general registrar for the handling and counting of such provisional ballots pursuant to subsection B of § 24.2-653 and this section.

2. Any other application may be made by mail, electronic or telephonic transmission to a facsimile device if one is available to the office of the general registrar or the office of the State Board if a device is not available locally, or other means. The application shall be on a form furnished by the registrar or, if made under subdivision 2 of § 24.2-700, may be on a federal postcard application prescribed pursuant to 52 U.S.C. § 20301(b)(2). The federal postcard application may be accepted the later of (i) 12 months before an election or (ii) the day following any election held in the twelfth month prior to the election in which the applicant is applying to vote. The application shall be made to the appropriate registrar no later than 5:00 p.m. on the seventh day prior to the election in which the applicant offers to vote.

C. Applications for absentee ballots shall contain the following information:

1. The applicant's printed name, the last four digits of the applicant's social security number, and the reason the applicant will be absent or cannot vote at his polling place on the day of the election;

2. A statement that he is registered in the county or city in which he offers to vote and his residence address in such county or city. Any person temporarily residing outside the United States shall provide the last date of residency at his Virginia residence address, if that residence is no longer available to him. Any person who makes application under subdivision 2 of § 24.2-700 who is not a registered voter may file the applications to register and for a ballot simultaneously;

3. The complete address to which the ballot is to be sent directly to the applicant, unless the application is made in person at a time when the printed ballots for the election are available and the applicant chooses to vote in person at the time of completing his application. The address given shall be (i) the address of the applicant on file in the registration records; (ii) the address at which he will be located while absent from his county or city; or (iii) the address at which he will be located while temporarily confined due to a disability or illness. No ballot shall be sent to, or in care of, any other person; and

4. In the case of a person, or the spouse or dependent of a person, who is on active duty as a member of the uniformed services as defined in § 24.2-452, the branch of service to which he or the spouse belongs; or

5. In the case of a student, or the spouse of a student, who is attending a school or institution of learning, the name of the school or institution of learning; or

6. In the case of any duly registered person with a disability, as defined in § 24.2-101, who is unable to go in person to the polls on the day of the election because of his disability, illness, or pregnancy, that he is a person with a disability, illness, or pregnancy; or

7. In the case of a person who is confined awaiting trial or for having been convicted of a misdemeanor, the name of the institution of confinement; or

8. In the case of a person who will be absent on election day for business reasons, the name of his employer or business; or

9. In the case of a person who will be absent on election day for personal business or vacation reasons, the name of the county or city in Virginia or the state or country to which he is traveling; or

10. In the case of a person who is unable to go to the polls on the day of election because he is primarily and personally responsible for the care of an ill or disabled family member who is confined at home, his relationship to the family member; or

11. In the case of a person who is unable to go to the polls on the day of election because of an obligation occasioned by his religion, the nature of the obligation; or

12. In the case of a person who, in the regular and orderly course of his business, profession, or occupation, will be at his place of work and commuting to and from his home to his place of work for 11 or more hours of the 13 hours that the polls are open pursuant to § 24.2-603, the name of his business or employer and hours he will be at the workplace and commuting on election day; or

13. In the case of a law-enforcement officer, as defined in § 18.2-51.1; firefighter, as defined in § 65.2-102; volunteer firefighter, as defined in § 27-42; search and rescue personnel, as defined in § 18.2-51.1; or emergency medical services personnel, as defined in § 32.1-111.1, that he is a first responder; or

14. In the case of a person who has been designated by a political party, independent candidate, or candidate in a primary election to be a representative of the party or candidate inside a polling place on the day of the election pursuant to subsection C of § 24.2-604 and § 24.2-639, the fact that he is so designated.

§ 24.2-702. Application for early absentee ballot; procedures.

Notwithstanding any other provisions of this title, a person, who is eligible for an absentee ballot under subdivision 2 of § 24.2-700 and qualified under this section, may apply, not later than ninety days before that election, for an absentee ballot only for elections for Governor, Lieutenant Governor, or Attorney General.

The application may be made on the Federal Post Card Application.

In order to qualify for the absentee ballot, the voter shall state that he is unable to vote in any other manner due to overseas military service or due to living in an isolated or extremely remote overseas area. This statement may be made on the Federal Post Card Application.

On receipt of the application, the electoral board general registrar shall issue, at least ninety days before an election, the printed ballot only for elections for Governor, Lieutenant Governor, or Attorney General. No additional ballot or ballots shall be provided to such applicants for that election date.

§ 24.2-703.2. Replacement absentee ballots for certain disabled or ill voters; penalty.

A voter seeking to cast an absentee ballot may obtain a replacement absentee ballot subject to the following conditions: (i) the voter applied for an absentee ballot under subdivision 4 of § 24.2-700 because of a disability or illness; (ii) the application was approved and an absentee ballot mailed to the voter; and (iii) the voter did not receive or has lost the absentee ballot on or before the Saturday before the election. In such case, the voter may request a replacement absentee ballot by the close of business for the local elections office on the Saturday before election day and designate, in writing, a representative to obtain a replacement absentee ballot on his behalf from the electoral board or general registrar and to return the properly completed ballot as directed by the electoral board or general registrar no later than the close of polls on the day of election for which the absentee ballot is valid. The representative shall be age eighteen or older and shall not be an elected official, a candidate for elected office, or the deputy, spouse, parent, or child of an elected official or candidate. The voter and representative shall complete the form prescribed by the State Board to implement the provisions of this section. The form shall include a statement signed by the voter that he did not receive the ballot or has lost the ballot. Statements on the form shall be subject to felony penalties for making false statements pursuant to § 24.2-1016.

§ 24.2-704. Applications and ballots for persons requiring assistance in voting; penalty.

The application for an absentee ballot shall provide space for the applicant to indicate that he will require assistance to vote his absentee ballot by reason of blindness, disability, or inability to read or write. On receipt of an application from an applicant marked to indicate he will require assistance, the electoral board general registrar shall deliver, with the items required by § 24.2-706, the voter assistance form furnished by the State Board pursuant to § 24.2-649. The voter and any person assisting him shall complete the form by signing the request for assistance and statement required of the assistant. If the voter is unable to sign the request, the witness will note this fact on the line for signature of voter. The provisions of § 24.2-649 shall apply to absentee voting and assistance for absentee voters. Any person who willfully violates the provisions of this section or § 24.2-649 in providing assistance to a person who is voting absentee shall be guilty of a Class 5 felony.

§ 24.2-705. Emergency applications and absentee ballots for persons incapacitated or hospitalized.

Any person registered and otherwise qualified to vote who becomes incapacitated on or after the seventh day preceding an election may request at any time prior to 2:00 p.m. on the day preceding the election that an emergency absentee ballot application be delivered to him. A voter who becomes hospitalized on or after the fourteenth day preceding the election and who is unable, because of his condition, to request an absentee ballot earlier than the seventh day preceding the election may request at any time prior to 2:00 p.m. on the day before an election that an emergency absentee ballot be delivered to him in the hospital. For purposes of this section, "incapacitated" means hospitalized, ill and confined to his residence, bereaved by the death of a spouse, child, or parent, or otherwise incapacitated by an emergency which is found by the electoral board general registrar to justify providing an emergency ballot application; and "hospital" means a hospital as defined in § 32.1-123 or 37.2-100 and any comparable hospital in the District of Columbia or any state contiguous to Virginia.

On receipt of the request, the electoral board general registrar shall provide an emergency absentee ballot application to the incapacitated voter's designated representative who shall deliver the application to the voter. If the voter is hospitalized, the delivery shall be made to him at the hospital; and if the voter is otherwise incapacitated, the delivery shall be made to him at his current residence address as shown on the registration records. The representative shall be age eighteen or older and shall not be an elected official, a candidate for elected office, or the deputy, spouse, parent, or child of an elected official or candidate.

The application shall be on a form prescribed by the State Board and shall require the applicant (i) to state the cause of his incapacity, (ii) to state that he is unable to be present at the polls on election day, and that he was either incapacitated on or after the seventh day preceding the election or hospitalized on or after the fourteenth day preceding the election and unable to request the application earlier than the seventh day preceding the election, (iii) to designate a representative to receive, deliver and return the ballot, and (iv) to provide other information required by law for an absentee ballot application.

If the voter is hospitalized, a hospital administrative official, a licensed physician attending the applicant, or provider as defined in § 37.2-403, shall certify on the form to the hospitalization of the applicant and the applicant's inability to be present at the polls on election day. If the voter is ill and confined to his residence, a licensed physician, provider as defined in § 37.2-403, or an accredited religious practitioner attending the applicant shall certify on the form to the incapacity of the applicant and the applicant's inability to be present at the polls on election day. If the voter is bereaved, a licensed physician, an accredited religious practitioner, or a funeral service licensee (as defined in § 54.1-2800) shall certify on the form to the incapacity of the applicant and the applicant's inability to be present at the polls on election day. If the voter is otherwise incapacitated as determined by the electoral board general registrar, the secretary of the electoral board general registrar shall certify on the form to the incapacity of the applicant and the applicant's inability to be present at the polls on election day. The applicant shall sign the application and state, subject to felony penalties for making false statements pursuant to § 24.2-1016, that to the best of his knowledge and belief the facts contained in the application are true and correct. His signature shall be witnessed by the designated representative who shall sign and return the completed application to the office of the general registrar no later than 5:00 p.m. on the day preceding the election. For the purposes of this section, "accredited religious practitioner" means a person who has been trained in spiritual healing or the other healing arts and has been so accredited by a formal religious order.

On receipt of the completed application and a determination of the qualification of the applicant to vote, the general registrar or secretary of the electoral board shall provide, in accordance with the applicable provisions of this chapter, an absentee ballot to the designated representative for delivery to the incapacitated voter.

The incapacitated voter shall vote the absentee ballot as provided by law and mark it in the presence of the designated representative. The representative shall complete a statement, subject to felony penalties for making false statements pursuant to § 24.2-1016, that (i) he is the representative of the incapacitated voter; (ii) he personally delivered the ballot to the voter who applied for it; (iii) in his presence, the voter marked the ballot, the ballot was placed in the envelope provided, the envelope was sealed, and the statement on its reverse side was signed by the incapacitated voter; and (iv) the ballot was returned, under seal, to the electoral board general registrar at the registrar's office.

The ballot shall be counted only if the ballot is received by the electoral board general registrar prior to the close of polls, and the electoral board general registrar shall deliver the ballot to the officers of election at each appropriate precinct pursuant to § 24.2-710.

§ 24.2-706. Duty of general registrar on receipt of application; statement of voter.

On receipt of an application for an absentee ballot, the general registrar shall enroll the name and address of each registered applicant on an absentee voter applicant list that shall be maintained in the office of the general registrar with a file of the applications of the listed applicants. The list shall be available for inspection and copying and the applications shall be available for inspection only by any registered voter during regular office hours. Upon request and for a reasonable fee, the State Board of Elections shall provide an electronic copy of the absentee voter applicant list to any political party or candidate. Such list shall be used only for campaign and political purposes. Any list made available for inspection and copying under this section shall contain the post office box address in lieu of the residence street address for any individual who has furnished at the time of registration or subsequently, in addition to his street address, a post office box address pursuant to subsection B of § 24.2-418.

No list or application containing an individual's social security number, or any part thereof, or the individual's day and month of birth, shall be made available for inspection or copying by anyone. The State Board of Elections shall prescribe procedures for local electoral boards and general registrars to make the information in the lists and applications available in a manner that does not reveal social security numbers or parts thereof, or an individual's day and month of birth.

The completion and timely delivery of an application for an absentee ballot shall be construed to be an offer by the applicant to vote in the election.

The general registrar shall note on each application received whether the applicant is or is not a registered voter and notify the secretary of the electoral board. In reviewing the application for an absentee ballot, the general registrar and electoral board shall not reject the application of any individual because of an error or omission on any record or paper relating to the application, if such error or omission is not material in determining whether such individual is qualified to vote absentee.

If the application has been properly completed and signed and the applicant is a registered voter of the precinct in which he offers to vote, the electoral board general registrar shall, at the time when the printed ballots for the election are available, send by the deadline set out in § 24.2-612, obtaining a certificate of either first-class or expedited mailing or delivery from the United States Postal Service or other commercial delivery provider, or deliver to him in person in the office of the secretary or registrar, the following items and nothing else:

1. An envelope containing the folded ballot, sealed and marked "Ballot within. Do not open except in presence of a witness."

2. An envelope, with printing only on the flap side, for resealing the marked ballot, on which envelope is printed the following:

"Statement of Voter."

"I do hereby state, subject to felony penalties for making false statements pursuant to § 24.2-1016, that my FULL NAME is ______________ (last, first, middle); that I am now or have been at some time since last November's general election a legal resident of ______________ (STATE YOUR LEGAL RESIDENCE IN VIRGINIA including the house number, street name or rural route address, city, zip code); that I received the enclosed ballot(s) upon application to the registrar of such county or city; that I opened the envelope marked 'ballot within' and marked the ballot(s) in the presence of the witness, without assistance or knowledge on the part of anyone as to the manner in which I marked it (or I am returning the form required to report how I was assisted); that I then sealed the ballot(s) in this envelope; and that I have not voted and will not vote in this election at any other time or place.

Signature of Voter ____________________________________

Date _______________________

Signature of witness___________________________________"

For elections held after January 1, 2004, instead of the envelope containing the above oath, an envelope containing the standard oath prescribed by the presidential designee under § 101(b)(7) of the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (52 U.S.C. § 20301 et seq.) shall be sent to voters who are qualified to vote absentee under that Act.

3. A properly addressed envelope for the return of the ballot to the electoral board general registrar by mail or by the applicant in person.

4. Printed instructions for completing the ballot and statement on the envelope and returning the ballot.

For federal elections held after January 1, 2004, for any voter who is required by subparagraph (b) of 52 U.S.C. § 21083 of the Help America Vote Act of 2002 to show identification the first time the voter votes in a federal election in the state, the printed instructions shall direct the voter to submit with his ballot (i) a copy of a current and valid photo identification or (ii) a copy of a current utility bill, bank statement, government check, paycheck or other government document that shows the name and address of the voter. Such individual who desires to vote by mail but who does not submit one of the forms of identification specified in this paragraph may cast such ballot by mail and the ballot shall be counted as a provisional ballot under the provisions of § 24.2-653. The State Board of Elections shall provide instructions to the electoral boards for the handling and counting of such provisional ballots pursuant to subsection B of § 24.2-653 and this section.

5. For any voter entitled to vote absentee under the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (52 U.S.C. § 20301 et seq.), information provided by the State Board specific to the voting rights and responsibilities for such citizens, or information provided by the registrar specific to the status of the voter registration and absentee ballot application of such voter, may be included.

The envelopes and instructions shall be in the form prescribed by the State Board.

If the applicant makes his application to vote in person under § 24.2-701 at a time when the printed ballots for the election are available, the general registrar or the secretary of the electoral board, on the determination of the qualifications of the applicant to vote, shall provide to the applicant the items set forth in subdivisions 1 through 4, and no item shall be removed by the applicant from the office of the general registrar or the secretary of the electoral board. On the request of the applicant, made no later than 5:00 p.m. on the seventh day prior to the election in which the applicant offers to vote, the general registrar or the secretary may send the items set forth in subdivisions 1 through 4 to the applicant by mail, obtaining a certificate of mailing.

If the applicant states as the reason for his absence on election day any of the reasons set forth in subdivision 2 of § 24.2-700, the electoral board general registrar, at the time when the printed ballots for the election are available, shall mail by the deadline set forth in § 24.2-612 or deliver in person to the applicant in the office of the secretary or general registrar the items as set forth in subdivisions 1 through 4 and, if necessary, an application for registration. A certificate of mailing shall not be required. The electoral board general registrar, at the time when the printed ballots for the election are available, shall send by the deadline set forth in § 24.2-612 the blank ballot, the form for the envelope for returning the marked ballot, and instructions to the voter by electronic transmission if the voter so requests. The voted ballot shall be returned to the electoral board general registrar as otherwise required by this chapter.

When the statement prescribed in subdivision 2 has been properly completed and signed by the registered voter and witnessed, his ballot shall not be subject to challenge pursuant to § 24.2-651.

The circuit courts shall have jurisdiction to issue an injunction to enforce the provisions of this section upon the application of (i) any aggrieved voter, (ii) any candidate in an election district in whole or in part in the court's jurisdiction where a violation of this section has occurred, or is likely to occur, or (iii) the campaign committee or the appropriate district political party chairman of such candidate. Any person who fails to discharge his duty as provided in this section through willful neglect of duty and with malicious intent shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor as provided in subsection A of § 24.2-1001.

§ 24.2-707. How ballots marked and returned by mail; cast in person; cast on voting equipment.

On receipt of a mailed absentee ballot, the voter shall, in the presence of a witness, (i) open the sealed envelope marked "ballot within" and (ii) mark and refold the ballot, as provided in §§ 24.2-644 and 24.2-646 without assistance and without making known how he marked the ballot, except as provided by § 24.2-704.

After the voter has marked his absentee ballot, he shall (a) enclose the ballot in the envelope provided for that purpose, (b) seal the envelope, (c) fill in and sign the statement printed on the back of the envelope in the presence of a witness, who shall sign the same envelope, (d) enclose the ballot envelope and any required assistance form within the envelope directed to the electoral board general registrar, and (e) seal that envelope and mail it to the office of the electoral board general registrar or deliver it personally to the electoral board or the general registrar. A voter's failure to provide in the statement on the back of the envelope his full middle name or his middle initial shall not be a material omission, rendering his ballot void, unless the voter failed to provide in the statement on the back of the envelope his full first and last name. A voter's failure to provide the date, or any part of the date, including the year, on which he signed the statement printed on the back of the envelope shall not be considered a material omission and shall not render his ballot void. For purposes of this chapter, "mail" shall include delivery by a commercial delivery service, but shall not include delivery by a personal courier service or another individual except as provided by §§ 24.2-703.2 and 24.2-705.

An applicant who makes his application to vote in person at a time when the printed ballots for the election are available shall follow the same procedure set forth above except that he may complete the procedure in person in the office of the general registrar or secretary of the electoral board, or at another location or locations in the county or city approved by the electoral board, before a registrar or a member of the electoral board, or, if a ballot is cast at that time, before the officers of election appointed by the electoral board. Any such location shall be in a public building owned or leased by the city, the county, or a town within the county, with adequate facilities for the protection of all records concerning the absentee voters, the absentee ballots, both voted and unvoted, and any voting equipment in use at the location. Such location may be in a facility owned or leased by the Commonwealth and used as a location for Department of Motor Vehicles facilities and for an office of the general registrar. Such location shall be deemed the equivalent of the office of the general registrar or secretary of the electoral board for the purpose of completing the application for an absentee ballot in person pursuant to §§ 24.2-701 and 24.2-706. On the request of the applicant, made no later than 5:00 p.m. on the seventh day prior to the election in which the applicant offers to vote, the general registrar or the secretary may send the items set forth in subdivisions 1 through 4 of § 24.2-706 to the applicant by mail, obtaining a certificate of mailing.

Failure to follow the procedures set forth above shall render the applicant's ballot void.

The electoral board general registrar of any county or city using a central absentee voting precinct may provide for the casting of absentee ballots on voting equipment prior to election day by applicants who are voting in person. The State Board shall prescribe procedures for the use of voting equipment. The procedures shall provide for the casting of absentee ballots prior to election day by in-person applicants on voting equipment which has been certified, and is currently approved, by the State Board. The procedures shall be applicable and uniformly applied by the State Board to all jurisdictions using comparable voting equipment. At least two officers of election, one representing each political party, shall be present during all hours that absentee voting is available at any location at which absentee ballots are cast prior to election day.

The requirement that officers of election shall be present if ballots are cast on voting equipment prior to election day shall not be applicable when the voting equipment is located in the office of the general registrar or secretary of the electoral board and the general registrar, or an assistant registrar, or the secretary of the electoral board is present.

§ 24.2-708. Return of unused ballots; voting by applicant who did not receive or lost ballot; defaced ballots.

A. If for any reason a person, who has applied for and received a ballot, decides not to vote absentee, he shall return the ballot unopened, in the sealed envelope in which it was sent to him, to the electoral board or the general registrar, before the day of the election in which the ballot was intended to be used.

The electoral board general registrar shall note on the absentee voter applicant list, opposite the name of the person returning the ballot, the fact that the ballot was returned unused and the date of the return. The electoral board general registrar shall carefully preserve all ballots returned unused and deliver them, together with other returned ballots, to the officers of election on election day. A voter who has returned his unused ballot before the day of the election as provided herein shall be entitled to vote a regular ballot in person on election day at his proper polling place or at a central absentee voter precinct established by the governing body of the county or city where the person is registered to vote, upon confirmation by the electoral board, the general registrar, or an officer of election of the return of the unused ballot. If the electoral board, the general registrar, or an officer of election is unable to confirm the return of the unused ballot, the voter shall be entitled to cast a provisional ballot pursuant to § 24.2-653.1. Notwithstanding the provisions of this subsection, a voter may return his unused ballot to his proper polling place or central absentee voter precinct on election day and shall be entitled to vote a regular ballot, and his unused ballot shall be preserved with other unused ballots.

B. If for any reason a person who has applied for and has been sent an absentee ballot does not receive the ballot or loses the ballot, he shall be entitled to cast another ballot after presenting to the electoral board, general registrar or officer of election a statement signed by him that he did not receive the ballot or has lost the ballot, subject to felony penalties for making false statements as pursuant to § 24.2-1016. If such person offers to vote at his proper polling place or at a central absentee voter precinct established by the governing body of the county or city where he is registered to vote on the day of the elections, he shall be entitled to cast a provisional ballot pursuant to § 24.2-653.1.

C. If a person who has applied for and has been sent an absentee ballot has unintentionally or accidentally defaced and rendered the ballot unfit for voting, he shall be entitled to cast a ballot after presenting the defaced ballot to the electoral board, the general registrar, or an officer of election. The returned ballot shall be marked spoiled by the electoral board, the general registrar, or an officer of election and placed in a spoiled-ballot envelope to be retained with the ballots for the election. A voter who has returned his defaced ballot before the day of the election as provided herein shall be entitled to vote a regular ballot in person on election day at his proper polling place or at a central absentee voter precinct established by the governing body of the county or city where he is registered to vote, upon confirmation by the electoral board, the general registrar, or an officer of election of the return of the defaced ballot. If the electoral board, the general registrar, or an officer of election is unable to confirm the return of the defaced ballot, the voter shall be entitled to cast a provisional ballot pursuant to § 24.2-653.1. A voter who returns his defaced or unfit ballot to his proper polling place or central absentee voter precinct on election day shall be entitled to vote a regular ballot, and his defaced or unfit ballot shall be preserved with other spoiled ballots.

§ 24.2-709. Ballot to be returned in manner prescribed by law.

A. Any ballot returned to the office of the electoral board or general registrar in any manner except as prescribed by law shall be void. Absentee ballots shall be returned to the electoral board or general registrar before the closing of the polls. The board member or registrar receiving the ballot shall (i) seal the ballot in an envelope with the statement or declaration of the voter, or both, attached to the outside and (ii) mark on each envelope the date, time, and manner of delivery. For all ballots returned by the general registrar to the electoral board, the board shall give to the general registrar a receipt showing the time and date of the return. No returned absentee ballot shall be deemed void because the inner envelope containing the voted ballot is imperfectly sealed so long as the outside envelope containing the ballot envelope is sealed.

B. Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection A, absentee ballots (i) received after the close of the polls on any election day, (ii) received before 5:00 p.m. on the second business day before the State Board meets to ascertain the results of the election pursuant to this title, (iii) requested on or before but not sent by the deadline for making absentee ballots available under § 24.2-612, and (iv) cast by an absentee voter who is eligible for an absentee ballot under subdivision 2 of § 24.2-700 shall be counted pursuant to the procedures set forth in this chapter and, if the voter is found entitled to vote, included in the election returns. The electoral board shall prepare an amended certified abstract, which shall include the results of such ballots, and shall deliver such abstract to the State Board by the business day prior to its meeting pursuant to this title, and shall deliver a copy of such abstract to the general registrar to be available for inspection when his office is open for business.

C. Notwithstanding the provisions of clause (i) of subsection B of § 24.2-427, an absentee ballot returned by a voter in compliance with § 24.2-707 and this section who dies prior to the counting of absentee ballots on election day shall be counted pursuant to the procedures set forth in this chapter if the voter is found to have been entitled to vote at the time that he returned the ballot.

§ 24.2-712. Central absentee voter precincts; counting ballots.

A. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the governing body of each county or city may establish one or more central absentee voter precincts in the courthouse or other public buildings for the purpose of receiving, counting, and recording absentee ballots cast in the county or city. The decision to establish any absentee voter precinct shall be made by the governing body by ordinance; the ordinance shall state for which elections the precinct shall be used. The decision to abolish any absentee voter precinct shall be made by the governing body by ordinance. Immediate notification of either decision shall be sent to the State Board and the electoral board.

B. Each central absentee voter precinct shall have at least three officers of election as provided for other precincts. The number of officers shall be determined by the electoral board.

C. If any voter brings an unmarked ballot to the central absentee voter precinct on the day of the election, he shall be allowed to vote it. If any voter brings an unmarked ballot to the electoral board general registrar on or before the day of the election, he shall be allowed to vote it, and his ballot shall be delivered to the absentee voter precinct pursuant to § 24.2-710.

The officers at the absentee voter precinct shall determine any appeal by any other voter whose name appears on the absentee voter applicant list and who offers to vote in person. If the officers at the absentee voter precinct produce records showing the receipt of his application and the certificate of mailing for the ballot, they shall deny his appeal. If the officers cannot produce such records, the voter shall be allowed to vote in person at the absentee voter precinct and have his vote counted with other absentee votes. If the voter's appeal is denied, the provisions of § 24.2-708 shall be applicable, and the officers shall advise the voter that he may vote on presentation of a statement signed by him that he has not received an absentee ballot and subject to felony penalties for making false statements pursuant to § 24.2-1016.

D. Absentee ballots may be processed as required by § 24.2-711 by the officers of election at the central absentee voter precinct prior to the closing of the polls but the ballot container shall not be opened and the counting of ballots shall not begin prior to that time. In the case of machine-readable ballots, the ballot container may be opened and the absentee ballots may be inserted in the counting machines prior to the closing of the polls in accordance with procedures prescribed by the State Board, including procedures to preserve ballot secrecy, but no ballot count totals shall be initiated prior to that time.

As soon as the polls are closed in the county or city the officers of election at the central absentee voter precinct shall proceed promptly to ascertain and record the vote given by absentee ballot and report the results in the manner provided for counting and reporting ballots generally in Article 4 (§ 24.2-643 et seq.) of Chapter 6.

E. The electoral board may provide that the officers of election for a central absentee voter precinct may be assigned to work all or a portion of the time that the precinct is open on election day subject to the following conditions:

1. The chief officer and the assistant chief officer, appointed pursuant to § 24.2-115 to represent the two political parties, are on duty at all times; and

2. No officer, political party representative, or other candidate representative shall leave the precinct after any ballots have been counted until the polls are closed and the count for the precinct is completed and reported.

F. The electoral board, with the written agreement of the general registrar, may provide that the central absentee voter precinct will open after 6:00 a.m. on the day of the election provided that the office of the general registrar will be open for the receipt of absentee ballots until the central absentee voter precinct is open and that the officers of election for the central absentee voter precinct obtain the absentee ballots returned to the general registrar's office for the purpose of counting the absentee ballots at the central absentee voter precinct and provided further that the central absentee voter precinct is the same location as the office of the general registrar.

§ 24.2-945.2. Persons required to file independent expenditure disclosure reports; filing deadline.

A. Any person, candidate campaign committee, or political committee that makes independent expenditures, in the aggregate during an election cycle, of $1,000 or more for a statewide election or $200 or more for any other election shall maintain records and report pursuant to this chapter all such independent expenditures made for the purpose of expressly advocating the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate.

B. Independent expenditure reports shall be due (i) within 24 hours of the time when the funds were expended or (ii) within 24 hours of the time when materials, as described in subsection A of this section, are published or broadcast to the public, whichever (i) or (ii) first occurs. The reports shall be filed with the State Board if the funds were expended to support or oppose a candidate for statewide office or the General Assembly or with the local electoral board general registrar of the county or city in which the candidate resides if the funds were expended to support or oppose a candidate for local office. The report filed by a political action committee or political party committee shall include the information required for a statement of organization as listed in subdivisions A 1 through A 8 of § 24.2-949.2 or clauses 1 through 6 of § 24.2-950.2, as appropriate, unless the committee has a current statement of organization on file with the State Board.

C. Independent expenditure reports required by this section may be filed electronically pursuant to § 24.2-946.1 or in writing on a form developed by the State Board. If the report is filed in writing, the report shall be (i) received by the State Board or the local electoral board general registrar, as appropriate, within 24 hours of the time when the funds were expended or (ii) transmitted to the State Board or the local electoral board general registrar, as appropriate, by telephonic transmission to a facsimile device within 24 hours of the time when the funds were expended with an original copy of the report mailed to the State Board or the local electoral board general registrar, as appropriate, and postmarked within 24 hours of the time when the funds were expended.

§ 24.2-946.1. Standards and requirements for electronic preparation and transmittal of campaign finance disclosure reports; database.

A. The State Board shall review or cause to be developed and shall approve standards for the preparation, production, and transmittal by computer or electronic means of campaign finance reports required by this chapter. The State Board may prescribe the method of execution and certification of and the procedures for receiving electronically filed campaign finance reports required by this chapter in the office of the State Board or any local electoral board. The State Board may provide campaign finance report-creation software to filers without charge or at a reasonable cost.

B. The State Board shall accept any campaign finance report filed by candidates for the General Assembly and statewide office by computer or electronic means in accordance with the standards approved by the Board and using software meeting standards approved by it. This information shall be made available to the public promptly by the Board through the Internet.

C. By July 1, 2007, the State Board of Elections shall develop and implement a centralized system to accept reports from any candidate for local or constitutional office. Such reports shall be filed in accordance with, and using software that meets, standards approved by the State Board. The State Board shall promptly notify the electoral board general registrar of the locality in which a candidate resides and make the information contained in the report available to the electoral board general registrar.

D. The State Board shall enter or cause to be entered into a campaign finance database, available to the public through the Internet, the information from required campaign finance reports filed by computer, electronic, or other means by candidates for the General Assembly and statewide office.

E. Other campaign finance reports required by this chapter to be filed by a committee with the State Board or a local electoral board general registrar, or both, may be filed electronically on terms agreed to by the committee and the Board.

§ 24.2-946.2. Custody of reports; inspection and copying; exception for certain information.

A. All campaign finance reports required to be filed under this chapter shall be open to inspection by any person during the business hours of the office in which they are filed. Copies shall be produced for any person requesting them who shall pay the reasonable cost of the copies. Copies of such reports certified by the principal administrative officer in whose office they are kept shall be evidence in all courts to the same extent as the original report would be if produced and proved.

Upon request from an individual granted protected voter status under the provisions of subsection B of § 24.2-418, the State Board shall replace the individual's residence address in copies of campaign finance reports available to the public with the individual's alternative mailing address found in the Virginia voter registration system.

Nothing in this chapter shall be construed to grant public access to information not required to be entered into the campaign finance database under this chapter that candidates or committees may include in campaign finance report-creation software managed by or for the State Board.

B. The following applies to campaign finance reports filed by candidate campaign committees:

1. Every officer or local electoral board general registrar, with whom reports are required to be filed by this chapter, shall file and preserve such reports and keep them as part of the office's records for at least one year after the final report is filed, or through the next general election for the office to which they pertain, whichever is later; or in the case of a candidate who has not filed a final report and seeks election to the same office in a successive election, through the next general election for the office to which they pertain.

2. The State Board shall file and preserve as part of its records the reports required to be filed with it by this chapter for at least one year after the final report is filed, or through the next general election for the office to which they pertain, whichever is later; or in the case of a candidate who has not filed a final report and seeks election to the same office in a successive election, through the next general election for the office to which they pertain. Thereafter, the State Board shall forward the reports it preserves to The Library of Virginia for preservation under the Virginia Public Records Act (§ 42.1-76 et seq.).

C. The following applies to campaign finance reports filed by political committees:

1. Every officer or local electoral board general registrar, with whom reports are required to be filed by this chapter, shall file and preserve such reports as part of the office's records for at least four years after the reporting deadline or one year after the final report is filed.

2. The State Board shall file and preserve as part of its records the reports required to be filed with it by this chapter for at least four years after the reporting deadline or one year after the final report is filed. Thereafter, the State Board shall forward the reports it preserves to The Library of Virginia for preservation under the Virginia Public Records Act (§ 42.1-76 et seq.).

§ 24.2-946.3. Reporting of certain violations; penalties.

A. It shall be the duty of the State Board to report any violation of the provisions of this chapter to the appropriate attorney for the Commonwealth. The State Board shall report to the attorney for the Commonwealth of the City of Richmond in the case of reporting requirements for campaign committees for statewide office and to the attorney for the Commonwealth of the county or city of the residence of a candidate for the General Assembly. For political committees, the State Board shall report the violation to the attorney for the Commonwealth of the City of Richmond. If all the officers of a political committee are residents of one county or city as shown on the statement of organization required by this chapter, the State Board shall report violations for that political committee to the attorney for the Commonwealth of that county or city.

B. It shall be the duty of the electoral board general registrar of a county or city to report any violation of the provisions of this chapter relating to the filing of campaign finance reports required to be filed with the electoral board general registrar to the attorney for the Commonwealth for the county or city in which the electoral board general registrar has jurisdiction.

C. In order to fulfill the duty to report violations pursuant to subsections A and B, the Board shall establish and implement a system for receiving, cataloging, and reviewing reports filed pursuant to the provisions of this chapter and for verifying that reports are complete and submitted on time. As part of the system referred to in this subsection, the general registrar for each county and city, or the secretary of the electoral board in any county or city in which the electoral board chooses to perform the duties stated in this subsection, shall be required, in accordance with instructions provided by the Board, to receive, catalog, and review the reports filed with the local electoral board general registrar and to verify that the reports are complete and submitted on time.

D. The State Board, and the general registrar or secretary of the electoral board in accordance with the instructions of the State Board, (i) shall assess and collect the civil penalties provided in Article 8 24.2-953 et seq.) and (ii) if unable to collect the penalty, shall report the violation to the appropriate attorney for the Commonwealth for enforcement.

E. The State Board, or the general registrar or secretary of the electoral board in accordance with the instructions of the State Board, shall notify, no later than 21 days after the report due date, any person submitting an incomplete report of the need for additional information. The State Board, or the general registrar or secretary of the electoral board in accordance with the instructions of the State Board, may request additional information to correct obvious mathematical errors and to fulfill the requirements for information on the reports.

F. Upon notice of a violation of this chapter, the State Board or the general registrar or local electoral board, as appropriate, shall within 90 days of the report deadline notify the appropriate attorney for the Commonwealth, who shall initiate civil proceedings to enforce the civil penalties assessed by the State Board or the local electoral board general registrar as provided herein. Any civil penalties collected pursuant to action by the State Board shall be payable to the State Treasurer for deposit to the general fund, and any civil penalties collected pursuant to action by a general registrar or local electoral board shall be payable to the treasurer of the locality for deposit to its general fund.

G. In the case of any political committee that is required to file a statement of organization pursuant to this chapter, the State Board shall be authorized to waive a penalty that has been assessed if the filer demonstrates that there exists good cause to waive the penalty.

H. The State Board shall notify the public through its official Internet website of any violation based on the failure to file a required report by a candidate for statewide office or the General Assembly and the identity of the violator.

I. The State Board shall determine the schedule of civil penalties required to be followed by its staff and local electoral boards general registrars in assessing penalties under this chapter. No election official or staff may waive or reduce such penalties, except as provided in § 24.2-946.4.

§ 24.2-946.4. Right to grant extensions in special circumstances.

A. The State Board shall provide instructions to filers for delivery of campaign finance reports within the time periods prescribed by law.

B. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, any candidate or treasurer required to file a report pursuant to this chapter shall be entitled to a 72-hour extension of the filing deadline if his spouse, parent, grandparent, child, grandchild, or sibling died within the 72 hours before the deadline. The State Board or the local electoral board general registrar shall be authorized to grant an extension of the filing deadline for a period not to exceed five days for good cause shown by the filer and found by the Board or board registrar sufficient to justify the granting of the extension.

C. The Commissioner of Elections shall have additional authority to extend a deadline established in this chapter for filing reports in emergency situations that interfere with the timely filing of reports. The extension shall be limited in scope to the areas and times affected by the emergency. The provisions of this subsection shall be applicable only in the case of an emergency declared by the Governor pursuant to Chapter 3.2 (§ 44-146.13 et seq.) of Title 44 or declared by the President of the United States and confirmed by the Governor by executive order as an emergency for the purposes of this subsection.

D. The Commissioner of Elections shall have additional authority to extend a deadline established in this chapter for filing reports for a reasonable period for a candidate who serves as his own campaign treasurer and who is a member of a uniformed service of the United States called to active duty during a reporting period.

E. The State Board shall have authority to extend any deadline applicable to reports required to be filed by computer or electronic means in the event of a failure of the computer or electronic filing system that prevents timely filing. The extension shall not exceed a period of up to five days after restoration of the filing system to operating order.

F. The State Board shall have authority also to grant extensions as provided in §§ 24.2-503 and 24.2-948.3.

§ 24.2-946.5. Dormant committees.

A. The State Board or the electoral board general registrar of any county or city may close the file of any candidate campaign committee or political committee required to file with it provided the committee has not filed a final report and the Board or board registrar cannot locate either the candidate or his campaign treasurer, or in the case of any political committee, the Board or board registrar cannot locate the treasurer or custodian of the books of the committee. A candidate campaign committee file shall not be closed if the candidate has filed a report with the Board or board registrar for any campaign for any office within the prior five years. A political committee file shall not be closed if the committee has filed a report within the prior five years.

B. Once the committee's file has been closed, no more reports will be due and no additional penalties for failure to file will accrue. However, if the whereabouts of the candidate or his campaign treasurer, or in the case of any political committee, the treasurer or custodian of the books of the committee, later becomes known to the Board or board registrar, it may reopen the file and send notice to the candidate, or in the case of any political committee, the treasurer or custodian of the books of the committee, requesting that he file the appropriate reports and pay any penalties that were levied before the file was closed by it.

§ 24.2-947.1. Statement of organization.

A. Any individual seeking or campaigning for an office of the Commonwealth or one of its governmental units in a party nomination process or general, primary, or special election, shall file a statement of organization within 10 days of meeting any one of the following conditions:

1. Acceptance of a contribution;

2. Expenditure of any funds;

3. The payment of a filing fee for any party nomination method;

4. The filing of a candidate statement of qualification pursuant to § 24.2-501; or

5. The appointment of a campaign treasurer, designation of a campaign committee, or designation of a campaign depository.

B. Candidates for statewide office shall file the statement with the State Board. Candidates for the General Assembly shall file the statement with the State Board and a copy of the statement with the local electoral board general registrar of the locality of the candidate's residence. Candidates for local or constitutional office shall file the statement with the local electoral board general registrar and, if the statement indicates that the candidate committee will be filing electronically, a copy with the State Board.

C. The statement of organization shall include the following information:

1. The full name and residence address of the candidate;

2. The full name and mailing address for the campaign committee;

3. The full name, residence address, and daytime phone number of the treasurer;

4. The office being sought and district, if any, for the office;

5. The recognized political party affiliation of the candidate for statewide office or the General Assembly. In the absence of any political party affiliation, independent shall be used;

6. The name of the financial institution for his campaign depository; and

7. Such other information as shall be required by the State Board except that the account number for a designated depository account shall not be required.

D. In the case of any candidate who seeks election for successive terms in the same office, the statement of organization filed by the candidate shall continue in effect for such successive elections, but the candidate shall file notice of any changes in the information provided on the form within 10 days of the change with the State Board, local electoral board general registrar, or both, as appropriate.

§ 24.2-947.3. Campaign committee treasurer requirements and responsibilities.

A. Upon meeting any of the requirements of subsection A of § 24.2-947.1, the candidate shall appoint a single campaign treasurer who shall be a registered voter in Virginia. Every treasurer so appointed shall accept the appointment, in writing on the statement of organization, prior to the filing thereof. No individual shall act as treasurer unless the required statement of appointment has been filed. The same person may serve as campaign treasurer for more than one candidate.

B. In the event of the death, resignation, removal, or change of the treasurer, the candidate shall designate a successor and file the name and address of the successor within 10 days of the change with the State Board, local electoral board general registrar, or both, as provided in subsection B of § 24.2-947.1.

C. Any candidate who fails to appoint a treasurer or successor treasurer shall be deemed to have appointed himself treasurer and shall comply as such with the provisions of this chapter.

D. All contributions and expenditures received or made by any candidate, or received or made on his behalf or in relation to his candidacy by any person, except independent expenditures, shall be paid over or delivered to the candidate's treasurer or shall be reported to the treasurer in such detail and form as to allow him to comply fully with this chapter. An independent expenditure shall be reported pursuant to § 24.2-945.2 in lieu of being reported to the candidate's treasurer.

E. The candidate or his treasurer shall keep detailed and accurate accounts of all contributions turned over to and expenditures made by the candidate or his treasurer on behalf of the candidate or his campaign committee, or reported to any candidate or his treasurer pursuant to this article. Such account shall set forth the date of the contribution or expenditure, its amount or value, the name and address of the person or committee making the contribution or to whom the expenditure was made, and the object or purpose of the contribution or expenditure. Such books and records may be destroyed or discarded at any time after (i) one year from the date of filing the final report required by § 24.2-948.4 or (ii) three years after the December 31 immediately following the election, whichever last occurs, unless a court of competent jurisdiction shall order their retention for a longer period.

F. It shall be unlawful for any candidate, his treasurer, or any person receiving contributions or making expenditures on a candidate's behalf or in relation to his candidacy, to fail to report every contribution and expenditure as required by this article.

§ 24.2-947.4. Information to be included on campaign finance reports for campaign committees.

A. The reports required by this article shall be filed on a form prescribed by the State Board and shall include all financial activity of the campaign committee. All completed forms shall be submitted in typed, printed, or legibly hand printed format or electronically as provided in § 24.2-946.1. Persons submitting the forms shall do so subject to felony penalties for making false statements pursuant to § 24.2-1016.

B. The report of receipts shall include:

1. The total number of contributors, each of whom has contributed an aggregate of $100 or less, including cash and in-kind contributions, as of the date of the report, and the total amount of contributions from all such contributors;

2. For each contributor who has contributed an aggregate of more than $100, including cash and in-kind contributions, as of the ending date of the report, the campaign committee shall itemize each contributor on the report and list the following information:

a. the name of the contributor, listed alphabetically,

b. the mailing address of the contributor,

c. the amount of the contribution,

d. the aggregate amount of contributions from the contributor to date,

e. the date of the contribution,

f. the occupation of the contributor,

g. the name of his employer or principal business, and

h. the city and state where employed or where his business is located.

For each such contributor, other than an individual, the principal type of business and place of business of the contributor shall be substituted for subdivisions f and g, respectively. For each such contributor other than an individual, it shall be sufficient to list the address of the contributor one time on the report of receipts.

3. For each designated contribution received by the campaign committee from a political committee, out-of-state political committee, or federal political action committee, the campaign committee shall list the name of the person who designated the contribution and provide the information required by this subsection.

C. The report of disbursements shall include all expenditures and give:

1. The name and address of the person paid;

2. A brief description of the purpose of the expenditure;

3. The name of the person contracting for or arranging the expenditure;

4. The amount of the expenditure; and

5. The date of the expenditure.

The report of disbursements shall itemize any expenditure made by credit card payment.

D. Each report for a candidate shall list separately those receipts and expenditures reported to the candidate or his treasurer by any person, campaign committee, or political committee pursuant to subsection D of § 24.2-947.3, and in the case of in-kind contributions, shall set forth in each instance the source of the information reported.

E. The report shall list separately all loans and, for each loan, shall give:

1. The date the loan was made;

2. The name and address of the person making the loan and any person who is a co-borrower, guarantor, or endorser of the loan;

3. The amount of the loan;

4. The date and amount of any repayment of the loan; and

5. For any loan or part of a loan that is forgiven by the lender, the amount forgiven listed as both a contribution and loan repayment.

F. The State Board shall provide for a "no activity" report that may be filed for any reporting period in which the filer has no activity to report.

G. It is the joint responsibility of the candidate and his treasurer that the report of a candidate be filed, that the report be in full and accurate detail, and that the report be received by the State Board, local electoral board general registrar, or both, by the deadline for filing the report.

§ 24.2-947.5. With whom candidates file reports.

A. Candidates for statewide office shall file the reports required by this article by computer or electronic means in accordance with the standards approved by the State Board.

B. Candidates for the General Assembly may file reports required by this article with the State Board by computer or electronic means in accordance with the standards approved by the State Board. Nonelectronic reports for the General Assembly shall be filed with the State Board and with the electoral board general registrar of the locality where the candidate resides.

C. Except as provided in § 24.2-948.1, candidates for any other office who file reports in nonelectronic format shall file with the electoral board general registrar of the locality in which the candidate resides. Beginning July 1, 2007, candidates for local or constitutional office may file reports required by this article with the State Board by computer or other electronic means in accordance with standards approved by the State Board. Candidates who file by electronic means with the State Board do not have to file reports with the electoral board general registrar of the locality in which the candidate resides.

D. Any report that may be filed with the State Board by mail shall be (i) received by the State Board by the deadline for filing the report or (ii) transmitted to the State Board by telephonic transmission to a facsimile device by the deadline for filing the report with an original copy of the report mailed to the State Board and postmarked by the deadline for filing the report.

§ 24.2-947.9. Special report required of certain large pre-election contributions.

A. Any contribution reported pursuant to this section shall also be reported on the first report required by this article after any election.

B. Except as provided in subsection C, any single contribution of $5,000 or more for a statewide office, $1,000 or more for the General Assembly, or $500 or more for any other office, knowingly received or reported by the candidate or his treasurer on behalf of his candidacy (i) on and after the twelfth day preceding a primary and before the primary date, (ii) on and after the twelfth day preceding a general election and before the general election date, or (iii) on and after the eleventh day preceding any other election in which the individual is a candidate and before the election day, shall be reported in writing as provided in §§ 24.2-947.4 and 24.2-947.5 or electronically pursuant to § 24.2-946.1, and the report shall be received by the State Board or local electoral board general registrar, as appropriate, by 5:00 p.m. on the following day or for a contribution received on a Saturday by 5:00 p.m. on the following Monday. However, any such contribution received within the 24 hours prior to the election day shall be reported and a report thereof received on the day prior to the election.

C. The reports required by subsection B of this section shall also be required of any candidate for nomination by a political party to serve as the party's nominee in a general or special election if (i) the party nominates by convention or any method other than a primary and (ii) there are at least two candidates for nomination pursuant to the rules and procedures of the party. In such case, candidates for nomination shall be required to file the reports required by subsection B for the 12-day or 11-day period, as specified by subsection B, immediately preceding:

1. The caucus, mass meeting, convention, or other nominating event at which the party's nomination shall be finally determined pursuant to the rules and procedures of the party; and

2. Any caucus, mass meeting, convention, or other nominating event, other than that at which the party's nomination shall be finally determined, at which delegates are chosen who are pledged to support a specified candidate on at least one ballot at a subsequent district or state convention required as part of the nominating process.

D. No report shall be required pursuant to subsection C if the candidate is or has become, by virtue of the withdrawal of any opponent or the operation of the rules and procedures of the party, unopposed for nomination at the time such report otherwise would be required to be made.

§ 24.2-948.1. Exemption from reporting requirements for certain candidates for local office.

A. This section shall apply to candidates for local office. A candidate for local office may seek an exemption from the requirements for filing campaign finance disclosure reports set out in this chapter except for the filing requirements of §§ 24.2-945.2, 24.2-947.1, 24.2-947.9, and 24.2-948.4 pertaining to certain independent expenditures, the statement of organization, large contributions, and the filing of a final report. The request for an exemption shall be filed with the electoral board general registrar of the county or city where the candidate resides on a form prescribed by the State Board and in accordance with instructions by the State Board for the time for filing and the process for approval by the electoral board general registrar.

B. To qualify for an exemption, the candidate shall certify on the form that (i) he has not and will not solicit or accept any contribution from any other person or political committee during the course of his campaign, (ii) he has not and will not contribute to his own campaign more than $1,000, (iii) he has not and will not expend more than $1,000 in the course of his campaign, and (iv) that he has complied and will comply with the requirements of this chapter. This certification shall apply for the duration of the campaign until the filing of a final report in compliance with § 24.2-948.4 after the election. A candidate may rescind his certification and exemption at any time during the campaign and shall file in accordance with the appropriate filing schedule thereafter, provided that the candidate rescinds his certification prior to engaging in the activities described in clauses (i), (ii), and (iii) of this subsection. The first report filed shall account for all prior contributions and expenditures pertaining to his campaign.

C. Any candidate who has qualified for an exemption from reporting requirements pursuant to this section shall not be permitted to qualify for any office, enter upon the duties thereof, or receive any salary or emoluments therefrom until a final report has been filed that details all financial activity of the candidate's campaign and states that all reporting for the nomination and election is complete and final. No officer authorized by the laws of the Commonwealth to issue certificates of election shall issue one to any person determined to be elected to any such office, until copies of the final report cited above have been filed as required in this chapter.

D. A candidate who has a current exemption under the provisions of this section, or who is otherwise exempt from reporting contributions and expenditures under this chapter, may purchase voter lists from the State Board under the provisions of §§ 24.2-405 and 24.2-406 with a check drawn on the candidate's personal account.

§ 24.2-948.3. Compliance with reporting requirements of campaign finance disclosure act as requirement of candidacy for certain offices.

A. It shall be a requirement of candidacy in any election for statewide office or the General Assembly that the candidate shall have filed the disclosure reports required by this chapter for any election in which he participated as a candidate for any such office and which was held within the five years preceding the date of the election in which he seeks to be a candidate. For the purposes of this section, the candidate shall be presumed to have complied with the candidate disclosure reporting requirements unless (i) the State Board or local electoral board general registrar, whichever is appropriate, has notified the candidate, at least 60 days prior to the applicable deadline for him to file his written statement of qualification set out in § 24.2-503, that he has failed to file a required report or reports and (ii) the candidate fails to file the specified report or reports by the applicable deadline for filing his written statement of qualification.

B. The authority of the State Board to grant an extension of the deadline established in § 24.2-503 shall include the authority to grant such extension with respect to the requirements of this section.

§ 24.2-950.8. With whom political party committees file reports.

A. Except as provided in subsection B, a political party committee that is required by this chapter to file reports with the State Board, and that accepts contributions or makes expenditures in excess of $10,000 in any calendar year, or that accepted contributions or made expenditures in excess of $10,000 in the previous calendar year, shall file its reports with the State Board by computer or electronic means in accordance with the standards approved by the State Board until such time as the political party committee files a final report. Any political party committee that has been filing electronically, but does not anticipate accepting contributions or making expenditures in excess of $10,000 in the upcoming calendar year, may sign a waiver, on a form prescribed by the State Board, to exempt the committee from the electronic filing requirement for the calendar year. Such waiver form shall be submitted and received no later than the date the first report is due covering activity for that calendar year.

B. A county, city, or local district political party committee shall not be required to file by computer or electronic means if it files its reports with the electoral board general registrar of that county or city.

C. Other political party committees required to file reports by this article shall file all campaign finance reports with the State Board, if filing by electronic means, or with the State Board and the local electoral board general registrar for its jurisdiction if filing campaign finance reports by nonelectronic means.

§ 24.2-953. General provisions.

A. The procedures to enforce the provisions of this article are found in § 24.2-946.3.

B. Either the failure to file any statement or report or the late filing of any statement or report required by this chapter shall constitute a violation of this chapter subject to the penalties provided in this article.

C. Any person who violates, or aids, abets, or participates in the violation of, this chapter shall be subject to a civil penalty not to exceed $100, unless a greater penalty is imposed by this article.

D. In the case of a willful violation, the violator shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor. There shall be a rebuttable presumption that the violation of this chapter was willful if the violation is based on a person's failure to file a report required by this chapter and his failure to file continues for more than 60 days following his actual receipt of written notice of his failure to file sent to him by certified mail, return receipt requested, by the State Board or an electoral board a general registrar. Such notice shall be sent to the most recent mailing address provided by the candidate or committee.

E. In the case of a failure to file a required statement or report by the specified deadline, the length of the delinquency shall be a factor in determining the amount of the civil penalty assessed.

F. The statute of limitations applicable to a violation of this chapter is stated in § 19.2-8.

G. The requirements of this chapter for the filing of timely and complete statements and reports by any candidate campaign committee or political committee shall at all times remain in full force and effect and shall not be vacated, suspended, or modified as the result of any pending or completed criminal or civil investigation of the candidate campaign committee, the political committee, or any individual participant in the committee.

§ 24.2-953.3. Incomplete reports.

A. In the case of a violation of this chapter that relates to the filing of an incomplete report, the violator shall be subject to a civil penalty not to exceed $500 unless a greater penalty is imposed pursuant to this section. However the civil penalty shall in no case exceed $500 unless the total of the filer's reportable contributions or the total of the filer's reportable expenditures is $10,000 or more.

B. Prior to assessing a penalty pursuant to this section for the filing of an incomplete report, the Commissioner of Elections or the general registrar or secretary of the local electoral board, as appropriate, shall notify, by certified mail, the candidate and treasurer, or person or political committee required to file a report with that board, that a filed report has not been completed, citing the omissions from the report. No penalty shall be assessed if the information required to complete the report is filed within 10 days of the date of mailing the written notice.

C. If the information required to complete the report is not filed within the 10-day period, the Commissioner of Elections or the general registrar or secretary of the local electoral board, as appropriate, shall then assess against the candidate and treasurer, who shall be jointly and severally liable, or person or political committee required to file a report, a civil penalty not to exceed $500. The Commissioner of Elections or the general registrar or secretary of the local electoral board, as appropriate, shall consider the following factors in determining the civil penalty assessed: the number of omissions, the amount of money involved, and the proportion of contributions or expenditures containing omissions.

D. The Commissioner of Elections or the general registrar or secretary of the local electoral board may grant an additional period for compliance, not to exceed two weeks, to permit the completion of a filed report for good cause shown and in response to a request filed within the 10-day period. However, no additional period shall be granted thereafter for compliance.

E. The civil penalty assessed for filing an incomplete report shall be increased by $500 every 60 days following the date for compliance established pursuant to this section and until compliance is complete. If the failure to comply continues for more than 120 days following the date for compliances established pursuant to this section, there shall be a rebuttable presumption that the violation was willful, and the matter shall be forwarded to the appropriate attorney for the Commonwealth.

F. The civil penalty assessed for filing any subsequent incomplete report (i) that is filed more than 20 days after notice has been given of a violation or (ii) that is filed during the 60 days prior to the elections for which the person is a candidate shall be $1,000.

G. The State Board shall notify the public through its official Internet website of a failure to file a complete report by a candidate for statewide office or the General Assembly and the identity of the violator following the date for compliance established pursuant to this section.

SENATE BILL NO. 1092

Offered January 14, 2015
Prefiled January 13, 2015
A BILL to amend and reenact §§ 24.2-108, 24.2-111, 24.2-114, 24.2-701, 24.2-702, 24.2-703.2, 24.2-704, 24.2-705, 24.2-706, 24.2-707, 24.2-708, 24.2-709, 24.2-712, 24.2-945.2, 24.2-946.1 through 24.2-946.5, 24.2-947.1, 24.2-947.3, 24.2-947.4, 24.2-947.5, 24.2-947.9, 24.2-948.1, 24.2-948.3, 24.2-950.8, 24.2-953, and 24.2-953.3 of the Code of Virginia, relating to general registrars; reassigning duties of the electoral board related to absentee voting and campaign finance.
Patron-- Vogel

Referred to Committee on Privileges and Elections

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of Virginia:

1. That §§ 24.2-108, 24.2-111, 24.2-114, 24.2-701, 24.2-702, 24.2-703.2, 24.2-704, 24.2-705, 24.2-706, 24.2-707, 24.2-708, 24.2-709, 24.2-712, 24.2-945.2, 24.2-946.1 through 24.2-946.5, 24.2-947.1, 24.2-947.3, 24.2-947.4, 24.2-947.5, 24.2-947.9, 24.2-948.1, 24.2-948.3, 24.2-950.8, 24.2-953, and 24.2-953.3 of the Code of Virginia are amended and reenacted as follows:

§ 24.2-108. Compensation and expenses of members.

The General Assembly shall establish a compensation and expense plan in the general appropriation act for the secretaries and members of the electoral boards. The governing body for the county or city of each electoral board shall pay the compensation, expenses, and mileage of the secretary and members of the electoral board in accordance with the plan and shall be reimbursed annually as authorized by the act by the Commonwealth for the full amount of such compensation, expenses, and mileage, notwithstanding any provision of the appropriation act to the contrary. The reasonable costs of electoral board members attending annual training programs provided by the State Board shall be included in the expense plan for electoral boards.

Each electoral board member shall submit a written claim for mileage and expenses authorized by the plan. The claim, when filed and found to be correct, shall be paid by the county or city. The county or city shall pay claims for mileage at the rate payable to members of the General Assembly.

The governing body of any county or city may pay to the secretary of the electoral board any additional allowance for expenses it deems appropriate and may pay to a full-time secretary any additional compensation it deems appropriate.

Each county and city shall furnish necessary postage and office supplies for the electoral board.

§ 24.2-111. Compensation and expenses of general registrars.

The General Assembly shall establish a compensation and expense plan in the general appropriation act for the general registrars. The governing body for the county or city of each general registrar shall pay the compensation and reasonable expenses of the general registrar in accordance with the plan and shall be reimbursed annually as authorized in the act by the Commonwealth for the full amount of such compensation and expenses, notwithstanding any provision of the appropriation act to the contrary. The governing body shall be required to provide benefits to the general and assistant registrars and staff as provided to other employees of the locality, and shall be authorized to supplement the salary of the general registrar to the extent provided in the act.

Each locality shall pay the The reasonable expenses of the general registrar, including include reimbursement for mileage at the rate payable to members of the General Assembly. In case of a dispute, the State Board shall approve or disapprove the reimbursement. Reasonable expenses include, but are not limited to, costs for: (i) an adequately trained registrar's staff, including training in the use of computers and other technology to the extent provided to other local employees with similar job responsibilities, and reasonable costs for the general registrar or at least one member of the registrar's staff to attend the annual training offered by the State Board; (ii) adequate training for officers of election; (iii) conducting elections as required by this title; and (iv) voter education.

§ 24.2-114. Duties and powers of general registrar.

In addition to the other duties required by this title, the general registrar, and the assistant registrars acting under his supervision, shall:

1. Maintain the office of the general registrar and establish and maintain additional public places for voter registration in accordance with the provisions of § 24.2-412.

2. Participate in programs to educate the general public concerning registration and encourage registration by the general public. No registrar shall actively solicit, in a selective manner, any application for registration or for a ballot or offer anything of value for any such application.

3. Perform his duties within the county or city he was appointed to serve, except that a registrar may (i) go into a county or city in the Commonwealth contiguous to his county or city to register voters of his county or city when conducting registration jointly with the registrar of the contiguous county or city or (ii) notwithstanding any other provision of law, participate in multijurisdictional staffing for voter registration offices, approved by the State Board, that are located at facilities of the Department of Motor Vehicles.

4. Provide the appropriate forms for applications to register and to obtain the information necessary to complete the applications pursuant to the provisions of the Constitution of Virginia and general law.

5. Indicate on the registration records for each accepted mail voter registration application form returned by mail pursuant to Article 3.1 (§ 24.2-416.1 et seq.) of Chapter 4 that the registrant has registered by mail. The general registrar shall fulfill this duty in accordance with the instructions of the State Board so that those persons who registered by mail are identified on the registration records, lists of registered voters furnished pursuant to § 24.2-405, lists of persons who voted furnished pursuant to § 24.2-406, and pollbooks used for the conduct of elections.

6. Accept a registration application or request for transfer or change of address submitted by or for a resident of any other county or city in the Commonwealth. Registrars shall process registration applications and requests for transfer or change of address from residents of other counties and cities in accordance with written instructions from the State Board and shall forward the completed application or request to the registrar of the applicant's residence. Notwithstanding the provisions of § 24.2-416, the registrar of the applicant's residence shall recognize as timely any application or request for transfer or change of address submitted to any person authorized to receive voter registration applications pursuant to Chapter 4 (§ 24.2-400 et seq.), prior to or on the final day of registration. The registrar of the applicant's residence shall determine the qualification of the applicant, including whether the applicant has ever been convicted of a felony, and if so, under what circumstances the applicant's right to vote has been restored, and promptly notify the applicant at the address shown on the application or request of the acceptance or denial of his registration or transfer. However, notification shall not be required when the registrar does not have an address for the applicant.

7. Preserve order at and in the vicinity of the place of registration. For this purpose, the registrar shall be vested with the powers of a conservator of the peace while engaged in the duties imposed by law. He may exclude from the place of registration persons whose presence disturbs the registration process. He may appoint special officers, not exceeding three in number, for a place of registration and may summon persons in the vicinity to assist whenever, in his judgment, it is necessary to preserve order. The general registrar and any assistant registrar shall be authorized to administer oaths for purposes of this title.

8. Maintain the official registration records for his county or city in the system approved by, and in accordance with the instructions of, the State Board; preserve the written applications of all persons who are registered; and preserve for a period of four years the written applications of all persons who are denied registration or whose registration is cancelled.

9. If a person is denied registration, promptly notify such person in writing of the denial and the reason for denial in accordance with § 24.2-422.

10. Verify the accuracy of the pollbooks provided for each election by the State Board, make the pollbooks available to the precincts, and according to the instructions of the State Board provide a copy of the data from the pollbooks to the State Board after each election for voting credit purposes.

11. Retain the pollbooks in his principal office for two years from the date of the election.

12. Maintain accurate and current registration records and comply with the requirements of this title for the transfer, inactivation, and cancellation of voter registrations.

13. Whenever election districts, precincts, or polling places are altered, provide for entry into the voter registration system of the proper district and precinct designations for each registered voter whose districts or precinct have changed and notify each affected voter of changes affecting his districts or polling place by mail.

14. Whenever any part of his county or city becomes part of another jurisdiction by annexation, merger, or other means, transfer to the appropriate general registrar the registration records of the affected registered voters. The general registrar for their new county or city shall notify them by mail of the transfer and their new election districts and polling places.

15. When he registers any person who was previously registered in another state, notify the appropriate authority in that state of the person's registration in Virginia.

16. Whenever any person is believed to be registered or voting in more than one state or territory of the United States at the same time, inquire about, or provide information from the voter's registration and voting records to any appropriate voter registration or other authority of another state or territory who inquires about, that person's registration and voting history.

17. At the request of the county or city chairman of any political party nominating a candidate for the General Assembly, constitutional office, or local office by a method other than a primary, review any petition required by the party in its nomination process to determine whether those signing the petition are registered voters with active status.

18. Carry out such other duties as prescribed by the electoral board in his capacity as the director of elections for the locality in which he serves.

19. Attend, or designate one member of his staff to attend, an annual training program provided by the State Board.

§ 24.2-701. Application for absentee ballot.

A. The State Board shall furnish each general registrar with a sufficient number of applications for official absentee ballots. The registrars shall furnish applications to persons requesting them.

The State Board shall implement a system that enables eligible persons to request and receive an absentee ballot application electronically through the Internet. Electronic absentee ballot applications shall be in a form approved by the State Board.

Except as provided in § 24.2-703, a separate application shall be completed for each election in which the applicant offers to vote. An application for an absentee ballot may be accepted the later of (i) 12 months before an election or (ii) the day following any election held in the twelfth month prior to the election in which the applicant is applying to vote.

An application that is completed in person at the same time that the applicant registers to vote shall be held and processed no sooner than the fifth day after the date that the applicant registered to vote; however, this requirement shall not be applicable to any person who is qualified to vote absentee under subdivision 2 of § 24.2-700.

Any application received before the ballots are printed shall be held and processed as soon as the printed ballots for the election are available.

For the purposes of this chapter, the general registrar's office shall be open a minimum of eight hours between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. on the first and second Saturday immediately preceding all general elections, except May general elections, and on the Saturday immediately preceding any primary election, May general election, or special election.

Unless the applicant is disabled, all applications for absentee ballots shall be signed by the applicant who shall state, subject to felony penalties for making false statements pursuant to § 24.2-1016, that to the best of his knowledge and belief the facts contained in the application are true and correct and that he has not and will not vote in the election at any other place in Virginia or in any other state. If the applicant is unable to sign the application, a person assisting the applicant will note this fact on the applicant signature line and provide his signature, name, and address.

B. Applications for absentee ballots shall be completed in the following manner:

1. An application completed in person shall be made not less than three days prior to the election in which the applicant offers to vote and completed only in the office of the general registrar. The applicant shall sign the application in the presence of a registrar or a member of the electoral board. The applicant shall provide one of the forms of identification specified in subsection B of § 24.2-643. Any applicant who does not show one of the forms of identification specified in subsection B of § 24.2-643 shall be offered a provisional ballot under the provisions of § 24.2-653. The State Board of Elections shall provide instructions to the electoral boards general registrar for the handling and counting of such provisional ballots pursuant to subsection B of § 24.2-653 and this section.

2. Any other application may be made by mail, electronic or telephonic transmission to a facsimile device if one is available to the office of the general registrar or the office of the State Board if a device is not available locally, or other means. The application shall be on a form furnished by the registrar or, if made under subdivision 2 of § 24.2-700, may be on a federal postcard application prescribed pursuant to 52 U.S.C. § 20301(b)(2). The federal postcard application may be accepted the later of (i) 12 months before an election or (ii) the day following any election held in the twelfth month prior to the election in which the applicant is applying to vote. The application shall be made to the appropriate registrar no later than 5:00 p.m. on the seventh day prior to the election in which the applicant offers to vote.

C. Applications for absentee ballots shall contain the following information:

1. The applicant's printed name, the last four digits of the applicant's social security number, and the reason the applicant will be absent or cannot vote at his polling place on the day of the election;

2. A statement that he is registered in the county or city in which he offers to vote and his residence address in such county or city. Any person temporarily residing outside the United States shall provide the last date of residency at his Virginia residence address, if that residence is no longer available to him. Any person who makes application under subdivision 2 of § 24.2-700 who is not a registered voter may file the applications to register and for a ballot simultaneously;

3. The complete address to which the ballot is to be sent directly to the applicant, unless the application is made in person at a time when the printed ballots for the election are available and the applicant chooses to vote in person at the time of completing his application. The address given shall be (i) the address of the applicant on file in the registration records; (ii) the address at which he will be located while absent from his county or city; or (iii) the address at which he will be located while temporarily confined due to a disability or illness. No ballot shall be sent to, or in care of, any other person; and

4. In the case of a person, or the spouse or dependent of a person, who is on active duty as a member of the uniformed services as defined in § 24.2-452, the branch of service to which he or the spouse belongs; or

5. In the case of a student, or the spouse of a student, who is attending a school or institution of learning, the name of the school or institution of learning; or

6. In the case of any duly registered person with a disability, as defined in § 24.2-101, who is unable to go in person to the polls on the day of the election because of his disability, illness, or pregnancy, that he is a person with a disability, illness, or pregnancy; or

7. In the case of a person who is confined awaiting trial or for having been convicted of a misdemeanor, the name of the institution of confinement; or

8. In the case of a person who will be absent on election day for business reasons, the name of his employer or business; or

9. In the case of a person who will be absent on election day for personal business or vacation reasons, the name of the county or city in Virginia or the state or country to which he is traveling; or

10. In the case of a person who is unable to go to the polls on the day of election because he is primarily and personally responsible for the care of an ill or disabled family member who is confined at home, his relationship to the family member; or

11. In the case of a person who is unable to go to the polls on the day of election because of an obligation occasioned by his religion, the nature of the obligation; or

12. In the case of a person who, in the regular and orderly course of his business, profession, or occupation, will be at his place of work and commuting to and from his home to his place of work for 11 or more hours of the 13 hours that the polls are open pursuant to § 24.2-603, the name of his business or employer and hours he will be at the workplace and commuting on election day; or

13. In the case of a law-enforcement officer, as defined in § 18.2-51.1; firefighter, as defined in § 65.2-102; volunteer firefighter, as defined in § 27-42; search and rescue personnel, as defined in § 18.2-51.1; or emergency medical services personnel, as defined in § 32.1-111.1, that he is a first responder; or

14. In the case of a person who has been designated by a political party, independent candidate, or candidate in a primary election to be a representative of the party or candidate inside a polling place on the day of the election pursuant to subsection C of § 24.2-604 and § 24.2-639, the fact that he is so designated.

§ 24.2-702. Application for early absentee ballot; procedures.

Notwithstanding any other provisions of this title, a person, who is eligible for an absentee ballot under subdivision 2 of § 24.2-700 and qualified under this section, may apply, not later than ninety days before that election, for an absentee ballot only for elections for Governor, Lieutenant Governor, or Attorney General.

The application may be made on the Federal Post Card Application.

In order to qualify for the absentee ballot, the voter shall state that he is unable to vote in any other manner due to overseas military service or due to living in an isolated or extremely remote overseas area. This statement may be made on the Federal Post Card Application.

On receipt of the application, the electoral board general registrar shall issue, at least ninety days before an election, the printed ballot only for elections for Governor, Lieutenant Governor, or Attorney General. No additional ballot or ballots shall be provided to such applicants for that election date.

§ 24.2-703.2. Replacement absentee ballots for certain disabled or ill voters; penalty.

A voter seeking to cast an absentee ballot may obtain a replacement absentee ballot subject to the following conditions: (i) the voter applied for an absentee ballot under subdivision 4 of § 24.2-700 because of a disability or illness; (ii) the application was approved and an absentee ballot mailed to the voter; and (iii) the voter did not receive or has lost the absentee ballot on or before the Saturday before the election. In such case, the voter may request a replacement absentee ballot by the close of business for the local elections office on the Saturday before election day and designate, in writing, a representative to obtain a replacement absentee ballot on his behalf from the electoral board or general registrar and to return the properly completed ballot as directed by the electoral board or general registrar no later than the close of polls on the day of election for which the absentee ballot is valid. The representative shall be age eighteen or older and shall not be an elected official, a candidate for elected office, or the deputy, spouse, parent, or child of an elected official or candidate. The voter and representative shall complete the form prescribed by the State Board to implement the provisions of this section. The form shall include a statement signed by the voter that he did not receive the ballot or has lost the ballot. Statements on the form shall be subject to felony penalties for making false statements pursuant to § 24.2-1016.

§ 24.2-704. Applications and ballots for persons requiring assistance in voting; penalty.

The application for an absentee ballot shall provide space for the applicant to indicate that he will require assistance to vote his absentee ballot by reason of blindness, disability, or inability to read or write. On receipt of an application from an applicant marked to indicate he will require assistance, the electoral board general registrar shall deliver, with the items required by § 24.2-706, the voter assistance form furnished by the State Board pursuant to § 24.2-649. The voter and any person assisting him shall complete the form by signing the request for assistance and statement required of the assistant. If the voter is unable to sign the request, the witness will note this fact on the line for signature of voter. The provisions of § 24.2-649 shall apply to absentee voting and assistance for absentee voters. Any person who willfully violates the provisions of this section or § 24.2-649 in providing assistance to a person who is voting absentee shall be guilty of a Class 5 felony.

§ 24.2-705. Emergency applications and absentee ballots for persons incapacitated or hospitalized.

Any person registered and otherwise qualified to vote who becomes incapacitated on or after the seventh day preceding an election may request at any time prior to 2:00 p.m. on the day preceding the election that an emergency absentee ballot application be delivered to him. A voter who becomes hospitalized on or after the fourteenth day preceding the election and who is unable, because of his condition, to request an absentee ballot earlier than the seventh day preceding the election may request at any time prior to 2:00 p.m. on the day before an election that an emergency absentee ballot be delivered to him in the hospital. For purposes of this section, "incapacitated" means hospitalized, ill and confined to his residence, bereaved by the death of a spouse, child, or parent, or otherwise incapacitated by an emergency which is found by the electoral board general registrar to justify providing an emergency ballot application; and "hospital" means a hospital as defined in § 32.1-123 or 37.2-100 and any comparable hospital in the District of Columbia or any state contiguous to Virginia.

On receipt of the request, the electoral board general registrar shall provide an emergency absentee ballot application to the incapacitated voter's designated representative who shall deliver the application to the voter. If the voter is hospitalized, the delivery shall be made to him at the hospital; and if the voter is otherwise incapacitated, the delivery shall be made to him at his current residence address as shown on the registration records. The representative shall be age eighteen or older and shall not be an elected official, a candidate for elected office, or the deputy, spouse, parent, or child of an elected official or candidate.

The application shall be on a form prescribed by the State Board and shall require the applicant (i) to state the cause of his incapacity, (ii) to state that he is unable to be present at the polls on election day, and that he was either incapacitated on or after the seventh day preceding the election or hospitalized on or after the fourteenth day preceding the election and unable to request the application earlier than the seventh day preceding the election, (iii) to designate a representative to receive, deliver and return the ballot, and (iv) to provide other information required by law for an absentee ballot application.

If the voter is hospitalized, a hospital administrative official, a licensed physician attending the applicant, or provider as defined in § 37.2-403, shall certify on the form to the hospitalization of the applicant and the applicant's inability to be present at the polls on election day. If the voter is ill and confined to his residence, a licensed physician, provider as defined in § 37.2-403, or an accredited religious practitioner attending the applicant shall certify on the form to the incapacity of the applicant and the applicant's inability to be present at the polls on election day. If the voter is bereaved, a licensed physician, an accredited religious practitioner, or a funeral service licensee (as defined in § 54.1-2800) shall certify on the form to the incapacity of the applicant and the applicant's inability to be present at the polls on election day. If the voter is otherwise incapacitated as determined by the electoral board general registrar, the secretary of the electoral board general registrar shall certify on the form to the incapacity of the applicant and the applicant's inability to be present at the polls on election day. The applicant shall sign the application and state, subject to felony penalties for making false statements pursuant to § 24.2-1016, that to the best of his knowledge and belief the facts contained in the application are true and correct. His signature shall be witnessed by the designated representative who shall sign and return the completed application to the office of the general registrar no later than 5:00 p.m. on the day preceding the election. For the purposes of this section, "accredited religious practitioner" means a person who has been trained in spiritual healing or the other healing arts and has been so accredited by a formal religious order.

On receipt of the completed application and a determination of the qualification of the applicant to vote, the general registrar or secretary of the electoral board shall provide, in accordance with the applicable provisions of this chapter, an absentee ballot to the designated representative for delivery to the incapacitated voter.

The incapacitated voter shall vote the absentee ballot as provided by law and mark it in the presence of the designated representative. The representative shall complete a statement, subject to felony penalties for making false statements pursuant to § 24.2-1016, that (i) he is the representative of the incapacitated voter; (ii) he personally delivered the ballot to the voter who applied for it; (iii) in his presence, the voter marked the ballot, the ballot was placed in the envelope provided, the envelope was sealed, and the statement on its reverse side was signed by the incapacitated voter; and (iv) the ballot was returned, under seal, to the electoral board general registrar at the registrar's office.

The ballot shall be counted only if the ballot is received by the electoral board general registrar prior to the close of polls, and the electoral board general registrar shall deliver the ballot to the officers of election at each appropriate precinct pursuant to § 24.2-710.

§ 24.2-706. Duty of general registrar on receipt of application; statement of voter.

On receipt of an application for an absentee ballot, the general registrar shall enroll the name and address of each registered applicant on an absentee voter applicant list that shall be maintained in the office of the general registrar with a file of the applications of the listed applicants. The list shall be available for inspection and copying and the applications shall be available for inspection only by any registered voter during regular office hours. Upon request and for a reasonable fee, the State Board of Elections shall provide an electronic copy of the absentee voter applicant list to any political party or candidate. Such list shall be used only for campaign and political purposes. Any list made available for inspection and copying under this section shall contain the post office box address in lieu of the residence street address for any individual who has furnished at the time of registration or subsequently, in addition to his street address, a post office box address pursuant to subsection B of § 24.2-418.

No list or application containing an individual's social security number, or any part thereof, or the individual's day and month of birth, shall be made available for inspection or copying by anyone. The State Board of Elections shall prescribe procedures for local electoral boards and general registrars to make the information in the lists and applications available in a manner that does not reveal social security numbers or parts thereof, or an individual's day and month of birth.

The completion and timely delivery of an application for an absentee ballot shall be construed to be an offer by the applicant to vote in the election.

The general registrar shall note on each application received whether the applicant is or is not a registered voter and notify the secretary of the electoral board. In reviewing the application for an absentee ballot, the general registrar and electoral board shall not reject the application of any individual because of an error or omission on any record or paper relating to the application, if such error or omission is not material in determining whether such individual is qualified to vote absentee.

If the application has been properly completed and signed and the applicant is a registered voter of the precinct in which he offers to vote, the electoral board general registrar shall, at the time when the printed ballots for the election are available, send by the deadline set out in § 24.2-612, obtaining a certificate of either first-class or expedited mailing or delivery from the United States Postal Service or other commercial delivery provider, or deliver to him in person in the office of the secretary or registrar, the following items and nothing else:

1. An envelope containing the folded ballot, sealed and marked "Ballot within. Do not open except in presence of a witness."

2. An envelope, with printing only on the flap side, for resealing the marked ballot, on which envelope is printed the following:

"Statement of Voter."

"I do hereby state, subject to felony penalties for making false statements pursuant to § 24.2-1016, that my FULL NAME is ______________ (last, first, middle); that I am now or have been at some time since last November's general election a legal resident of ______________ (STATE YOUR LEGAL RESIDENCE IN VIRGINIA including the house number, street name or rural route address, city, zip code); that I received the enclosed ballot(s) upon application to the registrar of such county or city; that I opened the envelope marked 'ballot within' and marked the ballot(s) in the presence of the witness, without assistance or knowledge on the part of anyone as to the manner in which I marked it (or I am returning the form required to report how I was assisted); that I then sealed the ballot(s) in this envelope; and that I have not voted and will not vote in this election at any other time or place.

Signature of Voter ____________________________________

Date _______________________

Signature of witness___________________________________"

For elections held after January 1, 2004, instead of the envelope containing the above oath, an envelope containing the standard oath prescribed by the presidential designee under § 101(b)(7) of the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (52 U.S.C. § 20301 et seq.) shall be sent to voters who are qualified to vote absentee under that Act.

3. A properly addressed envelope for the return of the ballot to the electoral board general registrar by mail or by the applicant in person.

4. Printed instructions for completing the ballot and statement on the envelope and returning the ballot.

For federal elections held after January 1, 2004, for any voter who is required by subparagraph (b) of 52 U.S.C. § 21083 of the Help America Vote Act of 2002 to show identification the first time the voter votes in a federal election in the state, the printed instructions shall direct the voter to submit with his ballot (i) a copy of a current and valid photo identification or (ii) a copy of a current utility bill, bank statement, government check, paycheck or other government document that shows the name and address of the voter. Such individual who desires to vote by mail but who does not submit one of the forms of identification specified in this paragraph may cast such ballot by mail and the ballot shall be counted as a provisional ballot under the provisions of § 24.2-653. The State Board of Elections shall provide instructions to the electoral boards for the handling and counting of such provisional ballots pursuant to subsection B of § 24.2-653 and this section.

5. For any voter entitled to vote absentee under the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (52 U.S.C. § 20301 et seq.), information provided by the State Board specific to the voting rights and responsibilities for such citizens, or information provided by the registrar specific to the status of the voter registration and absentee ballot application of such voter, may be included.

The envelopes and instructions shall be in the form prescribed by the State Board.

If the applicant makes his application to vote in person under § 24.2-701 at a time when the printed ballots for the election are available, the general registrar or the secretary of the electoral board, on the determination of the qualifications of the applicant to vote, shall provide to the applicant the items set forth in subdivisions 1 through 4, and no item shall be removed by the applicant from the office of the general registrar or the secretary of the electoral board. On the request of the applicant, made no later than 5:00 p.m. on the seventh day prior to the election in which the applicant offers to vote, the general registrar or the secretary may send the items set forth in subdivisions 1 through 4 to the applicant by mail, obtaining a certificate of mailing.

If the applicant states as the reason for his absence on election day any of the reasons set forth in subdivision 2 of § 24.2-700, the electoral board general registrar, at the time when the printed ballots for the election are available, shall mail by the deadline set forth in § 24.2-612 or deliver in person to the applicant in the office of the secretary or general registrar the items as set forth in subdivisions 1 through 4 and, if necessary, an application for registration. A certificate of mailing shall not be required. The electoral board general registrar, at the time when the printed ballots for the election are available, shall send by the deadline set forth in § 24.2-612 the blank ballot, the form for the envelope for returning the marked ballot, and instructions to the voter by electronic transmission if the voter so requests. The voted ballot shall be returned to the electoral board general registrar as otherwise required by this chapter.

When the statement prescribed in subdivision 2 has been properly completed and signed by the registered voter and witnessed, his ballot shall not be subject to challenge pursuant to § 24.2-651.

The circuit courts shall have jurisdiction to issue an injunction to enforce the provisions of this section upon the application of (i) any aggrieved voter, (ii) any candidate in an election district in whole or in part in the court's jurisdiction where a violation of this section has occurred, or is likely to occur, or (iii) the campaign committee or the appropriate district political party chairman of such candidate. Any person who fails to discharge his duty as provided in this section through willful neglect of duty and with malicious intent shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor as provided in subsection A of § 24.2-1001.

§ 24.2-707. How ballots marked and returned by mail; cast in person; cast on voting equipment.

On receipt of a mailed absentee ballot, the voter shall, in the presence of a witness, (i) open the sealed envelope marked "ballot within" and (ii) mark and refold the ballot, as provided in §§ 24.2-644 and 24.2-646 without assistance and without making known how he marked the ballot, except as provided by § 24.2-704.

After the voter has marked his absentee ballot, he shall (a) enclose the ballot in the envelope provided for that purpose, (b) seal the envelope, (c) fill in and sign the statement printed on the back of the envelope in the presence of a witness, who shall sign the same envelope, (d) enclose the ballot envelope and any required assistance form within the envelope directed to the electoral board general registrar, and (e) seal that envelope and mail it to the office of the electoral board general registrar or deliver it personally to the electoral board or the general registrar. A voter's failure to provide in the statement on the back of the envelope his full middle name or his middle initial shall not be a material omission, rendering his ballot void, unless the voter failed to provide in the statement on the back of the envelope his full first and last name. A voter's failure to provide the date, or any part of the date, including the year, on which he signed the statement printed on the back of the envelope shall not be considered a material omission and shall not render his ballot void. For purposes of this chapter, "mail" shall include delivery by a commercial delivery service, but shall not include delivery by a personal courier service or another individual except as provided by §§ 24.2-703.2 and 24.2-705.

An applicant who makes his application to vote in person at a time when the printed ballots for the election are available shall follow the same procedure set forth above except that he may complete the procedure in person in the office of the general registrar or secretary of the electoral board, or at another location or locations in the county or city approved by the electoral board, before a registrar or a member of the electoral board, or, if a ballot is cast at that time, before the officers of election appointed by the electoral board. Any such location shall be in a public building owned or leased by the city, the county, or a town within the county, with adequate facilities for the protection of all records concerning the absentee voters, the absentee ballots, both voted and unvoted, and any voting equipment in use at the location. Such location may be in a facility owned or leased by the Commonwealth and used as a location for Department of Motor Vehicles facilities and for an office of the general registrar. Such location shall be deemed the equivalent of the office of the general registrar or secretary of the electoral board for the purpose of completing the application for an absentee ballot in person pursuant to §§ 24.2-701 and 24.2-706. On the request of the applicant, made no later than 5:00 p.m. on the seventh day prior to the election in which the applicant offers to vote, the general registrar or the secretary may send the items set forth in subdivisions 1 through 4 of § 24.2-706 to the applicant by mail, obtaining a certificate of mailing.

Failure to follow the procedures set forth above shall render the applicant's ballot void.

The electoral board general registrar of any county or city using a central absentee voting precinct may provide for the casting of absentee ballots on voting equipment prior to election day by applicants who are voting in person. The State Board shall prescribe procedures for the use of voting equipment. The procedures shall provide for the casting of absentee ballots prior to election day by in-person applicants on voting equipment which has been certified, and is currently approved, by the State Board. The procedures shall be applicable and uniformly applied by the State Board to all jurisdictions using comparable voting equipment. At least two officers of election, one representing each political party, shall be present during all hours that absentee voting is available at any location at which absentee ballots are cast prior to election day.

The requirement that officers of election shall be present if ballots are cast on voting equipment prior to election day shall not be applicable when the voting equipment is located in the office of the general registrar or secretary of the electoral board and the general registrar, or an assistant registrar, or the secretary of the electoral board is present.

§ 24.2-708. Return of unused ballots; voting by applicant who did not receive or lost ballot; defaced ballots.

A. If for any reason a person, who has applied for and received a ballot, decides not to vote absentee, he shall return the ballot unopened, in the sealed envelope in which it was sent to him, to the electoral board or the general registrar, before the day of the election in which the ballot was intended to be used.

The electoral board general registrar shall note on the absentee voter applicant list, opposite the name of the person returning the ballot, the fact that the ballot was returned unused and the date of the return. The electoral board general registrar shall carefully preserve all ballots returned unused and deliver them, together with other returned ballots, to the officers of election on election day. A voter who has returned his unused ballot before the day of the election as provided herein shall be entitled to vote a regular ballot in person on election day at his proper polling place or at a central absentee voter precinct established by the governing body of the county or city where the person is registered to vote, upon confirmation by the electoral board, the general registrar, or an officer of election of the return of the unused ballot. If the electoral board, the general registrar, or an officer of election is unable to confirm the return of the unused ballot, the voter shall be entitled to cast a provisional ballot pursuant to § 24.2-653.1. Notwithstanding the provisions of this subsection, a voter may return his unused ballot to his proper polling place or central absentee voter precinct on election day and shall be entitled to vote a regular ballot, and his unused ballot shall be preserved with other unused ballots.

B. If for any reason a person who has applied for and has been sent an absentee ballot does not receive the ballot or loses the ballot, he shall be entitled to cast another ballot after presenting to the electoral board, general registrar or officer of election a statement signed by him that he did not receive the ballot or has lost the ballot, subject to felony penalties for making false statements as pursuant to § 24.2-1016. If such person offers to vote at his proper polling place or at a central absentee voter precinct established by the governing body of the county or city where he is registered to vote on the day of the elections, he shall be entitled to cast a provisional ballot pursuant to § 24.2-653.1.

C. If a person who has applied for and has been sent an absentee ballot has unintentionally or accidentally defaced and rendered the ballot unfit for voting, he shall be entitled to cast a ballot after presenting the defaced ballot to the electoral board, the general registrar, or an officer of election. The returned ballot shall be marked spoiled by the electoral board, the general registrar, or an officer of election and placed in a spoiled-ballot envelope to be retained with the ballots for the election. A voter who has returned his defaced ballot before the day of the election as provided herein shall be entitled to vote a regular ballot in person on election day at his proper polling place or at a central absentee voter precinct established by the governing body of the county or city where he is registered to vote, upon confirmation by the electoral board, the general registrar, or an officer of election of the return of the defaced ballot. If the electoral board, the general registrar, or an officer of election is unable to confirm the return of the defaced ballot, the voter shall be entitled to cast a provisional ballot pursuant to § 24.2-653.1. A voter who returns his defaced or unfit ballot to his proper polling place or central absentee voter precinct on election day shall be entitled to vote a regular ballot, and his defaced or unfit ballot shall be preserved with other spoiled ballots.

§ 24.2-709. Ballot to be returned in manner prescribed by law.

A. Any ballot returned to the office of the electoral board or general registrar in any manner except as prescribed by law shall be void. Absentee ballots shall be returned to the electoral board or general registrar before the closing of the polls. The board member or registrar receiving the ballot shall (i) seal the ballot in an envelope with the statement or declaration of the voter, or both, attached to the outside and (ii) mark on each envelope the date, time, and manner of delivery. For all ballots returned by the general registrar to the electoral board, the board shall give to the general registrar a receipt showing the time and date of the return. No returned absentee ballot shall be deemed void because the inner envelope containing the voted ballot is imperfectly sealed so long as the outside envelope containing the ballot envelope is sealed.

B. Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection A, absentee ballots (i) received after the close of the polls on any election day, (ii) received before 5:00 p.m. on the second business day before the State Board meets to ascertain the results of the election pursuant to this title, (iii) requested on or before but not sent by the deadline for making absentee ballots available under § 24.2-612, and (iv) cast by an absentee voter who is eligible for an absentee ballot under subdivision 2 of § 24.2-700 shall be counted pursuant to the procedures set forth in this chapter and, if the voter is found entitled to vote, included in the election returns. The electoral board shall prepare an amended certified abstract, which shall include the results of such ballots, and shall deliver such abstract to the State Board by the business day prior to its meeting pursuant to this title, and shall deliver a copy of such abstract to the general registrar to be available for inspection when his office is open for business.

C. Notwithstanding the provisions of clause (i) of subsection B of § 24.2-427, an absentee ballot returned by a voter in compliance with § 24.2-707 and this section who dies prior to the counting of absentee ballots on election day shall be counted pursuant to the procedures set forth in this chapter if the voter is found to have been entitled to vote at the time that he returned the ballot.

§ 24.2-712. Central absentee voter precincts; counting ballots.

A. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the governing body of each county or city may establish one or more central absentee voter precincts in the courthouse or other public buildings for the purpose of receiving, counting, and recording absentee ballots cast in the county or city. The decision to establish any absentee voter precinct shall be made by the governing body by ordinance; the ordinance shall state for which elections the precinct shall be used. The decision to abolish any absentee voter precinct shall be made by the governing body by ordinance. Immediate notification of either decision shall be sent to the State Board and the electoral board.

B. Each central absentee voter precinct shall have at least three officers of election as provided for other precincts. The number of officers shall be determined by the electoral board.

C. If any voter brings an unmarked ballot to the central absentee voter precinct on the day of the election, he shall be allowed to vote it. If any voter brings an unmarked ballot to the electoral board general registrar on or before the day of the election, he shall be allowed to vote it, and his ballot shall be delivered to the absentee voter precinct pursuant to § 24.2-710.

The officers at the absentee voter precinct shall determine any appeal by any other voter whose name appears on the absentee voter applicant list and who offers to vote in person. If the officers at the absentee voter precinct produce records showing the receipt of his application and the certificate of mailing for the ballot, they shall deny his appeal. If the officers cannot produce such records, the voter shall be allowed to vote in person at the absentee voter precinct and have his vote counted with other absentee votes. If the voter's appeal is denied, the provisions of § 24.2-708 shall be applicable, and the officers shall advise the voter that he may vote on presentation of a statement signed by him that he has not received an absentee ballot and subject to felony penalties for making false statements pursuant to § 24.2-1016.

D. Absentee ballots may be processed as required by § 24.2-711 by the officers of election at the central absentee voter precinct prior to the closing of the polls but the ballot container shall not be opened and the counting of ballots shall not begin prior to that time. In the case of machine-readable ballots, the ballot container may be opened and the absentee ballots may be inserted in the counting machines prior to the closing of the polls in accordance with procedures prescribed by the State Board, including procedures to preserve ballot secrecy, but no ballot count totals shall be initiated prior to that time.

As soon as the polls are closed in the county or city the officers of election at the central absentee voter precinct shall proceed promptly to ascertain and record the vote given by absentee ballot and report the results in the manner provided for counting and reporting ballots generally in Article 4 (§ 24.2-643 et seq.) of Chapter 6.

E. The electoral board may provide that the officers of election for a central absentee voter precinct may be assigned to work all or a portion of the time that the precinct is open on election day subject to the following conditions:

1. The chief officer and the assistant chief officer, appointed pursuant to § 24.2-115 to represent the two political parties, are on duty at all times; and

2. No officer, political party representative, or other candidate representative shall leave the precinct after any ballots have been counted until the polls are closed and the count for the precinct is completed and reported.

F. The electoral board, with the written agreement of the general registrar, may provide that the central absentee voter precinct will open after 6:00 a.m. on the day of the election provided that the office of the general registrar will be open for the receipt of absentee ballots until the central absentee voter precinct is open and that the officers of election for the central absentee voter precinct obtain the absentee ballots returned to the general registrar's office for the purpose of counting the absentee ballots at the central absentee voter precinct and provided further that the central absentee voter precinct is the same location as the office of the general registrar.

§ 24.2-945.2. Persons required to file independent expenditure disclosure reports; filing deadline.

A. Any person, candidate campaign committee, or political committee that makes independent expenditures, in the aggregate during an election cycle, of $1,000 or more for a statewide election or $200 or more for any other election shall maintain records and report pursuant to this chapter all such independent expenditures made for the purpose of expressly advocating the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate.

B. Independent expenditure reports shall be due (i) within 24 hours of the time when the funds were expended or (ii) within 24 hours of the time when materials, as described in subsection A of this section, are published or broadcast to the public, whichever (i) or (ii) first occurs. The reports shall be filed with the State Board if the funds were expended to support or oppose a candidate for statewide office or the General Assembly or with the local electoral board general registrar of the county or city in which the candidate resides if the funds were expended to support or oppose a candidate for local office. The report filed by a political action committee or political party committee shall include the information required for a statement of organization as listed in subdivisions A 1 through A 8 of § 24.2-949.2 or clauses 1 through 6 of § 24.2-950.2, as appropriate, unless the committee has a current statement of organization on file with the State Board.

C. Independent expenditure reports required by this section may be filed electronically pursuant to § 24.2-946.1 or in writing on a form developed by the State Board. If the report is filed in writing, the report shall be (i) received by the State Board or the local electoral board general registrar, as appropriate, within 24 hours of the time when the funds were expended or (ii) transmitted to the State Board or the local electoral board general registrar, as appropriate, by telephonic transmission to a facsimile device within 24 hours of the time when the funds were expended with an original copy of the report mailed to the State Board or the local electoral board general registrar, as appropriate, and postmarked within 24 hours of the time when the funds were expended.

§ 24.2-946.1. Standards and requirements for electronic preparation and transmittal of campaign finance disclosure reports; database.

A. The State Board shall review or cause to be developed and shall approve standards for the preparation, production, and transmittal by computer or electronic means of campaign finance reports required by this chapter. The State Board may prescribe the method of execution and certification of and the procedures for receiving electronically filed campaign finance reports required by this chapter in the office of the State Board or any local electoral board. The State Board may provide campaign finance report-creation software to filers without charge or at a reasonable cost.

B. The State Board shall accept any campaign finance report filed by candidates for the General Assembly and statewide office by computer or electronic means in accordance with the standards approved by the Board and using software meeting standards approved by it. This information shall be made available to the public promptly by the Board through the Internet.

C. By July 1, 2007, the State Board of Elections shall develop and implement a centralized system to accept reports from any candidate for local or constitutional office. Such reports shall be filed in accordance with, and using software that meets, standards approved by the State Board. The State Board shall promptly notify the electoral board general registrar of the locality in which a candidate resides and make the information contained in the report available to the electoral board general registrar.

D. The State Board shall enter or cause to be entered into a campaign finance database, available to the public through the Internet, the information from required campaign finance reports filed by computer, electronic, or other means by candidates for the General Assembly and statewide office.

E. Other campaign finance reports required by this chapter to be filed by a committee with the State Board or a local electoral board general registrar, or both, may be filed electronically on terms agreed to by the committee and the Board.

§ 24.2-946.2. Custody of reports; inspection and copying; exception for certain information.

A. All campaign finance reports required to be filed under this chapter shall be open to inspection by any person during the business hours of the office in which they are filed. Copies shall be produced for any person requesting them who shall pay the reasonable cost of the copies. Copies of such reports certified by the principal administrative officer in whose office they are kept shall be evidence in all courts to the same extent as the original report would be if produced and proved.

Upon request from an individual granted protected voter status under the provisions of subsection B of § 24.2-418, the State Board shall replace the individual's residence address in copies of campaign finance reports available to the public with the individual's alternative mailing address found in the Virginia voter registration system.

Nothing in this chapter shall be construed to grant public access to information not required to be entered into the campaign finance database under this chapter that candidates or committees may include in campaign finance report-creation software managed by or for the State Board.

B. The following applies to campaign finance reports filed by candidate campaign committees:

1. Every officer or local electoral board general registrar, with whom reports are required to be filed by this chapter, shall file and preserve such reports and keep them as part of the office's records for at least one year after the final report is filed, or through the next general election for the office to which they pertain, whichever is later; or in the case of a candidate who has not filed a final report and seeks election to the same office in a successive election, through the next general election for the office to which they pertain.

2. The State Board shall file and preserve as part of its records the reports required to be filed with it by this chapter for at least one year after the final report is filed, or through the next general election for the office to which they pertain, whichever is later; or in the case of a candidate who has not filed a final report and seeks election to the same office in a successive election, through the next general election for the office to which they pertain. Thereafter, the State Board shall forward the reports it preserves to The Library of Virginia for preservation under the Virginia Public Records Act (§ 42.1-76 et seq.).

C. The following applies to campaign finance reports filed by political committees:

1. Every officer or local electoral board general registrar, with whom reports are required to be filed by this chapter, shall file and preserve such reports as part of the office's records for at least four years after the reporting deadline or one year after the final report is filed.

2. The State Board shall file and preserve as part of its records the reports required to be filed with it by this chapter for at least four years after the reporting deadline or one year after the final report is filed. Thereafter, the State Board shall forward the reports it preserves to The Library of Virginia for preservation under the Virginia Public Records Act (§ 42.1-76 et seq.).

§ 24.2-946.3. Reporting of certain violations; penalties.

A. It shall be the duty of the State Board to report any violation of the provisions of this chapter to the appropriate attorney for the Commonwealth. The State Board shall report to the attorney for the Commonwealth of the City of Richmond in the case of reporting requirements for campaign committees for statewide office and to the attorney for the Commonwealth of the county or city of the residence of a candidate for the General Assembly. For political committees, the State Board shall report the violation to the attorney for the Commonwealth of the City of Richmond. If all the officers of a political committee are residents of one county or city as shown on the statement of organization required by this chapter, the State Board shall report violations for that political committee to the attorney for the Commonwealth of that county or city.

B. It shall be the duty of the electoral board general registrar of a county or city to report any violation of the provisions of this chapter relating to the filing of campaign finance reports required to be filed with the electoral board general registrar to the attorney for the Commonwealth for the county or city in which the electoral board general registrar has jurisdiction.

C. In order to fulfill the duty to report violations pursuant to subsections A and B, the Board shall establish and implement a system for receiving, cataloging, and reviewing reports filed pursuant to the provisions of this chapter and for verifying that reports are complete and submitted on time. As part of the system referred to in this subsection, the general registrar for each county and city, or the secretary of the electoral board in any county or city in which the electoral board chooses to perform the duties stated in this subsection, shall be required, in accordance with instructions provided by the Board, to receive, catalog, and review the reports filed with the local electoral board general registrar and to verify that the reports are complete and submitted on time.

D. The State Board, and the general registrar or secretary of the electoral board in accordance with the instructions of the State Board, (i) shall assess and collect the civil penalties provided in Article 8 24.2-953 et seq.) and (ii) if unable to collect the penalty, shall report the violation to the appropriate attorney for the Commonwealth for enforcement.

E. The State Board, or the general registrar or secretary of the electoral board in accordance with the instructions of the State Board, shall notify, no later than 21 days after the report due date, any person submitting an incomplete report of the need for additional information. The State Board, or the general registrar or secretary of the electoral board in accordance with the instructions of the State Board, may request additional information to correct obvious mathematical errors and to fulfill the requirements for information on the reports.

F. Upon notice of a violation of this chapter, the State Board or the general registrar or local electoral board, as appropriate, shall within 90 days of the report deadline notify the appropriate attorney for the Commonwealth, who shall initiate civil proceedings to enforce the civil penalties assessed by the State Board or the local electoral board general registrar as provided herein. Any civil penalties collected pursuant to action by the State Board shall be payable to the State Treasurer for deposit to the general fund, and any civil penalties collected pursuant to action by a general registrar or local electoral board shall be payable to the treasurer of the locality for deposit to its general fund.

G. In the case of any political committee that is required to file a statement of organization pursuant to this chapter, the State Board shall be authorized to waive a penalty that has been assessed if the filer demonstrates that there exists good cause to waive the penalty.

H. The State Board shall notify the public through its official Internet website of any violation based on the failure to file a required report by a candidate for statewide office or the General Assembly and the identity of the violator.

I. The State Board shall determine the schedule of civil penalties required to be followed by its staff and local electoral boards general registrars in assessing penalties under this chapter. No election official or staff may waive or reduce such penalties, except as provided in § 24.2-946.4.

§ 24.2-946.4. Right to grant extensions in special circumstances.

A. The State Board shall provide instructions to filers for delivery of campaign finance reports within the time periods prescribed by law.

B. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, any candidate or treasurer required to file a report pursuant to this chapter shall be entitled to a 72-hour extension of the filing deadline if his spouse, parent, grandparent, child, grandchild, or sibling died within the 72 hours before the deadline. The State Board or the local electoral board general registrar shall be authorized to grant an extension of the filing deadline for a period not to exceed five days for good cause shown by the filer and found by the Board or board registrar sufficient to justify the granting of the extension.

C. The Commissioner of Elections shall have additional authority to extend a deadline established in this chapter for filing reports in emergency situations that interfere with the timely filing of reports. The extension shall be limited in scope to the areas and times affected by the emergency. The provisions of this subsection shall be applicable only in the case of an emergency declared by the Governor pursuant to Chapter 3.2 (§ 44-146.13 et seq.) of Title 44 or declared by the President of the United States and confirmed by the Governor by executive order as an emergency for the purposes of this subsection.

D. The Commissioner of Elections shall have additional authority to extend a deadline established in this chapter for filing reports for a reasonable period for a candidate who serves as his own campaign treasurer and who is a member of a uniformed service of the United States called to active duty during a reporting period.

E. The State Board shall have authority to extend any deadline applicable to reports required to be filed by computer or electronic means in the event of a failure of the computer or electronic filing system that prevents timely filing. The extension shall not exceed a period of up to five days after restoration of the filing system to operating order.

F. The State Board shall have authority also to grant extensions as provided in §§ 24.2-503 and 24.2-948.3.

§ 24.2-946.5. Dormant committees.

A. The State Board or the electoral board general registrar of any county or city may close the file of any candidate campaign committee or political committee required to file with it provided the committee has not filed a final report and the Board or board registrar cannot locate either the candidate or his campaign treasurer, or in the case of any political committee, the Board or board registrar cannot locate the treasurer or custodian of the books of the committee. A candidate campaign committee file shall not be closed if the candidate has filed a report with the Board or board registrar for any campaign for any office within the prior five years. A political committee file shall not be closed if the committee has filed a report within the prior five years.

B. Once the committee's file has been closed, no more reports will be due and no additional penalties for failure to file will accrue. However, if the whereabouts of the candidate or his campaign treasurer, or in the case of any political committee, the treasurer or custodian of the books of the committee, later becomes known to the Board or board registrar, it may reopen the file and send notice to the candidate, or in the case of any political committee, the treasurer or custodian of the books of the committee, requesting that he file the appropriate reports and pay any penalties that were levied before the file was closed by it.

§ 24.2-947.1. Statement of organization.

A. Any individual seeking or campaigning for an office of the Commonwealth or one of its governmental units in a party nomination process or general, primary, or special election, shall file a statement of organization within 10 days of meeting any one of the following conditions:

1. Acceptance of a contribution;

2. Expenditure of any funds;

3. The payment of a filing fee for any party nomination method;

4. The filing of a candidate statement of qualification pursuant to § 24.2-501; or

5. The appointment of a campaign treasurer, designation of a campaign committee, or designation of a campaign depository.

B. Candidates for statewide office shall file the statement with the State Board. Candidates for the General Assembly shall file the statement with the State Board and a copy of the statement with the local electoral board general registrar of the locality of the candidate's residence. Candidates for local or constitutional office shall file the statement with the local electoral board general registrar and, if the statement indicates that the candidate committee will be filing electronically, a copy with the State Board.

C. The statement of organization shall include the following information:

1. The full name and residence address of the candidate;

2. The full name and mailing address for the campaign committee;

3. The full name, residence address, and daytime phone number of the treasurer;

4. The office being sought and district, if any, for the office;

5. The recognized political party affiliation of the candidate for statewide office or the General Assembly. In the absence of any political party affiliation, independent shall be used;

6. The name of the financial institution for his campaign depository; and

7. Such other information as shall be required by the State Board except that the account number for a designated depository account shall not be required.

D. In the case of any candidate who seeks election for successive terms in the same office, the statement of organization filed by the candidate shall continue in effect for such successive elections, but the candidate shall file notice of any changes in the information provided on the form within 10 days of the change with the State Board, local electoral board general registrar, or both, as appropriate.

§ 24.2-947.3. Campaign committee treasurer requirements and responsibilities.

A. Upon meeting any of the requirements of subsection A of § 24.2-947.1, the candidate shall appoint a single campaign treasurer who shall be a registered voter in Virginia. Every treasurer so appointed shall accept the appointment, in writing on the statement of organization, prior to the filing thereof. No individual shall act as treasurer unless the required statement of appointment has been filed. The same person may serve as campaign treasurer for more than one candidate.

B. In the event of the death, resignation, removal, or change of the treasurer, the candidate shall designate a successor and file the name and address of the successor within 10 days of the change with the State Board, local electoral board general registrar, or both, as provided in subsection B of § 24.2-947.1.

C. Any candidate who fails to appoint a treasurer or successor treasurer shall be deemed to have appointed himself treasurer and shall comply as such with the provisions of this chapter.

D. All contributions and expenditures received or made by any candidate, or received or made on his behalf or in relation to his candidacy by any person, except independent expenditures, shall be paid over or delivered to the candidate's treasurer or shall be reported to the treasurer in such detail and form as to allow him to comply fully with this chapter. An independent expenditure shall be reported pursuant to § 24.2-945.2 in lieu of being reported to the candidate's treasurer.

E. The candidate or his treasurer shall keep detailed and accurate accounts of all contributions turned over to and expenditures made by the candidate or his treasurer on behalf of the candidate or his campaign committee, or reported to any candidate or his treasurer pursuant to this article. Such account shall set forth the date of the contribution or expenditure, its amount or value, the name and address of the person or committee making the contribution or to whom the expenditure was made, and the object or purpose of the contribution or expenditure. Such books and records may be destroyed or discarded at any time after (i) one year from the date of filing the final report required by § 24.2-948.4 or (ii) three years after the December 31 immediately following the election, whichever last occurs, unless a court of competent jurisdiction shall order their retention for a longer period.

F. It shall be unlawful for any candidate, his treasurer, or any person receiving contributions or making expenditures on a candidate's behalf or in relation to his candidacy, to fail to report every contribution and expenditure as required by this article.

§ 24.2-947.4. Information to be included on campaign finance reports for campaign committees.

A. The reports required by this article shall be filed on a form prescribed by the State Board and shall include all financial activity of the campaign committee. All completed forms shall be submitted in typed, printed, or legibly hand printed format or electronically as provided in § 24.2-946.1. Persons submitting the forms shall do so subject to felony penalties for making false statements pursuant to § 24.2-1016.

B. The report of receipts shall include:

1. The total number of contributors, each of whom has contributed an aggregate of $100 or less, including cash and in-kind contributions, as of the date of the report, and the total amount of contributions from all such contributors;

2. For each contributor who has contributed an aggregate of more than $100, including cash and in-kind contributions, as of the ending date of the report, the campaign committee shall itemize each contributor on the report and list the following information:

a. the name of the contributor, listed alphabetically,

b. the mailing address of the contributor,

c. the amount of the contribution,

d. the aggregate amount of contributions from the contributor to date,

e. the date of the contribution,

f. the occupation of the contributor,

g. the name of his employer or principal business, and

h. the city and state where employed or where his business is located.

For each such contributor, other than an individual, the principal type of business and place of business of the contributor shall be substituted for subdivisions f and g, respectively. For each such contributor other than an individual, it shall be sufficient to list the address of the contributor one time on the report of receipts.

3. For each designated contribution received by the campaign committee from a political committee, out-of-state political committee, or federal political action committee, the campaign committee shall list the name of the person who designated the contribution and provide the information required by this subsection.

C. The report of disbursements shall include all expenditures and give:

1. The name and address of the person paid;

2. A brief description of the purpose of the expenditure;

3. The name of the person contracting for or arranging the expenditure;

4. The amount of the expenditure; and

5. The date of the expenditure.

The report of disbursements shall itemize any expenditure made by credit card payment.

D. Each report for a candidate shall list separately those receipts and expenditures reported to the candidate or his treasurer by any person, campaign committee, or political committee pursuant to subsection D of § 24.2-947.3, and in the case of in-kind contributions, shall set forth in each instance the source of the information reported.

E. The report shall list separately all loans and, for each loan, shall give:

1. The date the loan was made;

2. The name and address of the person making the loan and any person who is a co-borrower, guarantor, or endorser of the loan;

3. The amount of the loan;

4. The date and amount of any repayment of the loan; and

5. For any loan or part of a loan that is forgiven by the lender, the amount forgiven listed as both a contribution and loan repayment.

F. The State Board shall provide for a "no activity" report that may be filed for any reporting period in which the filer has no activity to report.

G. It is the joint responsibility of the candidate and his treasurer that the report of a candidate be filed, that the report be in full and accurate detail, and that the report be received by the State Board, local electoral board general registrar, or both, by the deadline for filing the report.

§ 24.2-947.5. With whom candidates file reports.

A. Candidates for statewide office shall file the reports required by this article by computer or electronic means in accordance with the standards approved by the State Board.

B. Candidates for the General Assembly may file reports required by this article with the State Board by computer or electronic means in accordance with the standards approved by the State Board. Nonelectronic reports for the General Assembly shall be filed with the State Board and with the electoral board general registrar of the locality where the candidate resides.

C. Except as provided in § 24.2-948.1, candidates for any other office who file reports in nonelectronic format shall file with the electoral board general registrar of the locality in which the candidate resides. Beginning July 1, 2007, candidates for local or constitutional office may file reports required by this article with the State Board by computer or other electronic means in accordance with standards approved by the State Board. Candidates who file by electronic means with the State Board do not have to file reports with the electoral board general registrar of the locality in which the candidate resides.

D. Any report that may be filed with the State Board by mail shall be (i) received by the State Board by the deadline for filing the report or (ii) transmitted to the State Board by telephonic transmission to a facsimile device by the deadline for filing the report with an original copy of the report mailed to the State Board and postmarked by the deadline for filing the report.

§ 24.2-947.9. Special report required of certain large pre-election contributions.

A. Any contribution reported pursuant to this section shall also be reported on the first report required by this article after any election.

B. Except as provided in subsection C, any single contribution of $5,000 or more for a statewide office, $1,000 or more for the General Assembly, or $500 or more for any other office, knowingly received or reported by the candidate or his treasurer on behalf of his candidacy (i) on and after the twelfth day preceding a primary and before the primary date, (ii) on and after the twelfth day preceding a general election and before the general election date, or (iii) on and after the eleventh day preceding any other election in which the individual is a candidate and before the election day, shall be reported in writing as provided in §§ 24.2-947.4 and 24.2-947.5 or electronically pursuant to § 24.2-946.1, and the report shall be received by the State Board or local electoral board general registrar, as appropriate, by 5:00 p.m. on the following day or for a contribution received on a Saturday by 5:00 p.m. on the following Monday. However, any such contribution received within the 24 hours prior to the election day shall be reported and a report thereof received on the day prior to the election.

C. The reports required by subsection B of this section shall also be required of any candidate for nomination by a political party to serve as the party's nominee in a general or special election if (i) the party nominates by convention or any method other than a primary and (ii) there are at least two candidates for nomination pursuant to the rules and procedures of the party. In such case, candidates for nomination shall be required to file the reports required by subsection B for the 12-day or 11-day period, as specified by subsection B, immediately preceding:

1. The caucus, mass meeting, convention, or other nominating event at which the party's nomination shall be finally determined pursuant to the rules and procedures of the party; and

2. Any caucus, mass meeting, convention, or other nominating event, other than that at which the party's nomination shall be finally determined, at which delegates are chosen who are pledged to support a specified candidate on at least one ballot at a subsequent district or state convention required as part of the nominating process.

D. No report shall be required pursuant to subsection C if the candidate is or has become, by virtue of the withdrawal of any opponent or the operation of the rules and procedures of the party, unopposed for nomination at the time such report otherwise would be required to be made.

§ 24.2-948.1. Exemption from reporting requirements for certain candidates for local office.

A. This section shall apply to candidates for local office. A candidate for local office may seek an exemption from the requirements for filing campaign finance disclosure reports set out in this chapter except for the filing requirements of §§ 24.2-945.2, 24.2-947.1, 24.2-947.9, and 24.2-948.4 pertaining to certain independent expenditures, the statement of organization, large contributions, and the filing of a final report. The request for an exemption shall be filed with the electoral board general registrar of the county or city where the candidate resides on a form prescribed by the State Board and in accordance with instructions by the State Board for the time for filing and the process for approval by the electoral board general registrar.

B. To qualify for an exemption, the candidate shall certify on the form that (i) he has not and will not solicit or accept any contribution from any other person or political committee during the course of his campaign, (ii) he has not and will not contribute to his own campaign more than $1,000, (iii) he has not and will not expend more than $1,000 in the course of his campaign, and (iv) that he has complied and will comply with the requirements of this chapter. This certification shall apply for the duration of the campaign until the filing of a final report in compliance with § 24.2-948.4 after the election. A candidate may rescind his certification and exemption at any time during the campaign and shall file in accordance with the appropriate filing schedule thereafter, provided that the candidate rescinds his certification prior to engaging in the activities described in clauses (i), (ii), and (iii) of this subsection. The first report filed shall account for all prior contributions and expenditures pertaining to his campaign.

C. Any candidate who has qualified for an exemption from reporting requirements pursuant to this section shall not be permitted to qualify for any office, enter upon the duties thereof, or receive any salary or emoluments therefrom until a final report has been filed that details all financial activity of the candidate's campaign and states that all reporting for the nomination and election is complete and final. No officer authorized by the laws of the Commonwealth to issue certificates of election shall issue one to any person determined to be elected to any such office, until copies of the final report cited above have been filed as required in this chapter.

D. A candidate who has a current exemption under the provisions of this section, or who is otherwise exempt from reporting contributions and expenditures under this chapter, may purchase voter lists from the State Board under the provisions of §§ 24.2-405 and 24.2-406 with a check drawn on the candidate's personal account.

§ 24.2-948.3. Compliance with reporting requirements of campaign finance disclosure act as requirement of candidacy for certain offices.

A. It shall be a requirement of candidacy in any election for statewide office or the General Assembly that the candidate shall have filed the disclosure reports required by this chapter for any election in which he participated as a candidate for any such office and which was held within the five years preceding the date of the election in which he seeks to be a candidate. For the purposes of this section, the candidate shall be presumed to have complied with the candidate disclosure reporting requirements unless (i) the State Board or local electoral board general registrar, whichever is appropriate, has notified the candidate, at least 60 days prior to the applicable deadline for him to file his written statement of qualification set out in § 24.2-503, that he has failed to file a required report or reports and (ii) the candidate fails to file the specified report or reports by the applicable deadline for filing his written statement of qualification.

B. The authority of the State Board to grant an extension of the deadline established in § 24.2-503 shall include the authority to grant such extension with respect to the requirements of this section.

§ 24.2-950.8. With whom political party committees file reports.

A. Except as provided in subsection B, a political party committee that is required by this chapter to file reports with the State Board, and that accepts contributions or makes expenditures in excess of $10,000 in any calendar year, or that accepted contributions or made expenditures in excess of $10,000 in the previous calendar year, shall file its reports with the State Board by computer or electronic means in accordance with the standards approved by the State Board until such time as the political party committee files a final report. Any political party committee that has been filing electronically, but does not anticipate accepting contributions or making expenditures in excess of $10,000 in the upcoming calendar year, may sign a waiver, on a form prescribed by the State Board, to exempt the committee from the electronic filing requirement for the calendar year. Such waiver form shall be submitted and received no later than the date the first report is due covering activity for that calendar year.

B. A county, city, or local district political party committee shall not be required to file by computer or electronic means if it files its reports with the electoral board general registrar of that county or city.

C. Other political party committees required to file reports by this article shall file all campaign finance reports with the State Board, if filing by electronic means, or with the State Board and the local electoral board general registrar for its jurisdiction if filing campaign finance reports by nonelectronic means.

§ 24.2-953. General provisions.

A. The procedures to enforce the provisions of this article are found in § 24.2-946.3.

B. Either the failure to file any statement or report or the late filing of any statement or report required by this chapter shall constitute a violation of this chapter subject to the penalties provided in this article.

C. Any person who violates, or aids, abets, or participates in the violation of, this chapter shall be subject to a civil penalty not to exceed $100, unless a greater penalty is imposed by this article.

D. In the case of a willful violation, the violator shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor. There shall be a rebuttable presumption that the violation of this chapter was willful if the violation is based on a person's failure to file a report required by this chapter and his failure to file continues for more than 60 days following his actual receipt of written notice of his failure to file sent to him by certified mail, return receipt requested, by the State Board or an electoral board a general registrar. Such notice shall be sent to the most recent mailing address provided by the candidate or committee.

E. In the case of a failure to file a required statement or report by the specified deadline, the length of the delinquency shall be a factor in determining the amount of the civil penalty assessed.

F. The statute of limitations applicable to a violation of this chapter is stated in § 19.2-8.

G. The requirements of this chapter for the filing of timely and complete statements and reports by any candidate campaign committee or political committee shall at all times remain in full force and effect and shall not be vacated, suspended, or modified as the result of any pending or completed criminal or civil investigation of the candidate campaign committee, the political committee, or any individual participant in the committee.

§ 24.2-953.3. Incomplete reports.

A. In the case of a violation of this chapter that relates to the filing of an incomplete report, the violator shall be subject to a civil penalty not to exceed $500 unless a greater penalty is imposed pursuant to this section. However the civil penalty shall in no case exceed $500 unless the total of the filer's reportable contributions or the total of the filer's reportable expenditures is $10,000 or more.

B. Prior to assessing a penalty pursuant to this section for the filing of an incomplete report, the Commissioner of Elections or the general registrar or secretary of the local electoral board, as appropriate, shall notify, by certified mail, the candidate and treasurer, or person or political committee required to file a report with that board, that a filed report has not been completed, citing the omissions from the report. No penalty shall be assessed if the information required to complete the report is filed within 10 days of the date of mailing the written notice.

C. If the information required to complete the report is not filed within the 10-day period, the Commissioner of Elections or the general registrar or secretary of the local electoral board, as appropriate, shall then assess against the candidate and treasurer, who shall be jointly and severally liable, or person or political committee required to file a report, a civil penalty not to exceed $500. The Commissioner of Elections or the general registrar or secretary of the local electoral board, as appropriate, shall consider the following factors in determining the civil penalty assessed: the number of omissions, the amount of money involved, and the proportion of contributions or expenditures containing omissions.

D. The Commissioner of Elections or the general registrar or secretary of the local electoral board may grant an additional period for compliance, not to exceed two weeks, to permit the completion of a filed report for good cause shown and in response to a request filed within the 10-day period. However, no additional period shall be granted thereafter for compliance.

E. The civil penalty assessed for filing an incomplete report shall be increased by $500 every 60 days following the date for compliance established pursuant to this section and until compliance is complete. If the failure to comply continues for more than 120 days following the date for compliances established pursuant to this section, there shall be a rebuttable presumption that the violation was willful, and the matter shall be forwarded to the appropriate attorney for the Commonwealth.

F. The civil penalty assessed for filing any subsequent incomplete report (i) that is filed more than 20 days after notice has been given of a violation or (ii) that is filed during the 60 days prior to the elections for which the person is a candidate shall be $1,000.

G. The State Board shall notify the public through its official Internet website of a failure to file a complete report by a candidate for statewide office or the General Assembly and the identity of the violator following the date for compliance established pursuant to this section.