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State of Minnesota
S.F. No. 3021 - Election Policy Bill (First Engrossment)
Author: Senator Mary Kiffmeyer
Prepared By: Alexis C. Stangl, Senate Counsel (651/296-4397)
Date: April 3, 2018


Section 1 requires county auditors to submit postal verification card reports to the secretary of state by February 15 of each odd-numbered years. The report must cover the state general election from the previous year.

Section 2 includes language that is deleted in section 3 and moved into section 2. Section 3 includes additional clarifying language.

Section 4 specifies that if more than one voted ballot is returned in an absentee ballot envelope, the ballots are spoiled. This will allow voters at the presidential primary to vote one ballot and return a blank ballot without both being spoiled.

Section 5 allows cities to require write-in candidates to request that their votes be counted. The request must be made at least seven days before the election.  Alternatively, a city may opt to count write-in votes only if the total number of write-in votes for that candidate is equal to or greater than the fewest number of non-write-in votes for a ballot candidate. The city must adopt a resolution to make either of these changes.

Section 6 requires local governments to designate changes in polling places by December 31.  If no changes are made to polling places, the local government does not have to re-designate the same polling places.

Section 7 makes a clarifying change.

Section 8 allows mail elections to include an office when an election has overlapping school and municipality jurisdictions and one of the jurisdictions also has a question on the ballot.

Section 9 requires a person assisting a voter to leave the polling place as soon as the voter has voted.

Section 10 requires election judges to keep track of individuals that assist voters.  The individual providing the assistance must sign an oath.

Section 11 allows election judges to presume that the total count of prepackaged ballots is correct when counting ballots at the end of the election.

Section 12 clarifies that period to request a recount for a local election starts at the close of the canvass.

Sections 13 and 14 require special legislative elections to be held on a Tuesday.

Section 15 specifies that for a special primary contest for a legislative office, the notice of contest must be filed within two days after the canvass is completed.

Section 16 prohibits cities from shortening or lengthening the terms of incumbents when transitioning to a different election year.

Section 17 eliminates the requirement to listen to the entire audio ballot before the polls open.

Section 18 clarifies that the same ballot title is used regardless of whether the election is in an odd- or even-numbered year.

Section 19 changes the term “sample ballot” to “example ballot.”

Section 20 requires a person elected at a special election for a town office to take and subscribe the oath required by law within ten days after receiving a certificate or notice of election or appointment.


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