CHAPTER 411

FORMERLY

SENATE SUBSTITUTE NO. 1 FOR

SENATE BILL NO. 72

AS AMENDED BY

HOUSE AMENDMENT NO. 1

AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 15 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO ELECTIONS.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE :

WHEREAS, it is necessary to further refine Title 15 of the Delaware Code in order to improve the efficiency and effectiveness in the voter registration and election process; and

WHEREAS, it is in the public interest to keep the ballot as simple as possible.

NOW THEREFORE:

BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE:

Section 1. Amend Chapter 20, Title 15, of the Delaware Code by striking the phrase "; Office Registration" as it appears in the title for Subchapter I, and by substituting in lieu thereof the mark ".":

Section 2. Amend Title 15 of the Delaware Code by striking § 2001 in its entirety and substituting in lieu thereof a new §2001 to read as follows:

"§ 2001. Appointment of registration officers; Conduct of registration.

(a) The department of elections for each county shall train and appoint such department employees and such other persons as deemed necessary to serve as registration officers. These persons shall serve at the pleasure of the department that appointed them.

(b) Compensation of registration officers shall be set by the department appointing them.

(c) Each department of elections shall conduct voter registration at its office each regular business day except during periods during which registration is closed in accordance with this Title. Departments may schedule additional periods for office registration as deemed necessary."

Section 3. Amend Title 15 of the Delaware Code, by striking § 2005 in its entirety and substituting in lieu thereof:

"§2005. Request for a voter registration application.

(a) Any citizen may apply in writing, in person or by telephone on any regular business day, except during the period beginning 20 days before each general election through election day, to the department for the county in which the voter resides, for a voter registration application to be provided by the department to the requestor or to a member of the citizens immediate family.

(b) The department to whom the request was made shall:

(1) Permit the person to complete the application for him or herself in the office or mail the application for that individual to him or her within three (3) business days of the request.

(2) Mail the voter registration application to a member of the requestor's immediate family within three (3) business days of the request.

(c) Applications requested in accordance with this section may be for the purposes of registering to vote, transferring the voter's address, changing the voter's name on his/her voter registration record and/or changing a voter's political party affiliation."

Section 4. Amend Title 15 of the Delaware Code, by striking in §2006(3) everything after the phrase "keep safe" and substituting in lieu thereof the phrase "registration applications in their custody and possession;".

Section 5. Amend Title 15 of the Delaware Code by striking subsection (b) of §2011 in its entirety, and substituting in lieu thereof a new subsection (b) to read as follows:

"(b) After the application for registration has been fully completed, a registration officer shall inspect the application for completeness, eligibility and legibility and such additions or corrections as may be necessary shall be made in the presence of the applicant. The applicant shall then submit for inspection by the aforesaid registration officer proof as to identity and residence as shown on the application. If the registration officer is satisfied that the applicant is eligible and has established his or her identity and that the application is complete and legible, the applicant shall sign the application and the registration officer shall sign his or her name in the space on the application provided for that purpose."

Section 6. Amend Title 15 of the Delaware Code by striking subsection (c) of §2011 in its entirety and substituting in lieu thereof a new subsection (c) to read as follows:

"(c) If unable to sign, the applicant shall make his or her mark on the application. If the applicant is unable to sign or make his or her mark because of physical disability, the registration officer shall indicate the fact in the space provided for the signature of the applicant. In either case, the registration officer shall write the phrase ‘Witnessed by’ followed by his or her initials in the space provided for the signature of the applicant."

Section 7. Amend §2011, Title 15, Delaware Code by striking subsection (d) in its entirety.

Section 8. Amend Title 15 of the Delaware Code by inserting in the first sentence of §2011(e), after the phrase "registration officers", the phrase ", except where registration is conducted in the offices of the departments of election,".

Section 9. Amend Title 15 of the Delaware Code by striking in §2013(a) the phrase "furnished to the election district" in its entirety.

Section 10. Amend Title 15 of the Delaware Code by striking in §2013(b), the second and third sentences as found therein in their entirety and substituting in lieu thereof the following:

"If the department is satisfied that the application is complete and legible and that the applicant's name does not appear on the list of disqualified voters and that the applicant is qualified to be registered, the department shall take the necessary steps to add the person to the list of registered voters."

Section 11. Amend Title 15 of the Delaware Code by striking subsection (d) of §2013 in its entirety.

Section 12. Amend Title 15 of the Delaware Code by striking subsection (c) of §2013 in its entirety and substituting in lieu thereof:

"(c) A person authorized by the department shall stamp his or her name on the application for registration to indicate that it has been approved and verified by the department, and the department shall then forward the original copy of the application to the Commissioner. The department shall then file a copy of the application in the County Master Record."

Section 13. Amend Title 15 of the Delaware Code by striking § 2021 in its entirety and substituting in lieu thereof a new §2021 to read as follows:

"§ 2021. Conduct of mobile registration.

(a) The department of elections for each county may consider applications to conduct voter registration at locations in the county from individuals or groups so as not to exceed the annual appropriation for this purpose. The aforesaid departments may expend funds appropriated for the purposes of conducting primary, general and special elections for such voter registration activities during the period prior to the aforesaid elections.

(b) Registration officers appointed in accordance with section 2001 of this Title shall conduct mobile registration as directed by the department that appointed them. Each mobile registration team shall consist of at least 2 registration officers, with at least 1 registration officer being from each of the two principal political parties.

(c) After July 1 in the year of a general election, the department of elections for each county shall conduct at least one countywide program of voter registration at locations reasonably convenient and accessible to the citizens.

(d) In allocating resources to registration activities, the department shall give first priority to countywide programs planned and scheduled in accordance with subsection (c) of this section.

(e) The respective department of elections shall publicize registration activities planned and scheduled by the department. Publicizing registration activities requested by individuals and groups is the responsibility of the respective individual or group."

Section 14. Amend Title 15 of the Delaware Code, by striking §2022, §2023 and §2024 in their entirety.

Section 15. Amend Title 15 of the Delaware Code by striking the second sentence in §2031(c) in its entirety.

Section 16. Amend Title 15 of the Delaware code by inserting §2032(d) to read as follows:

"(d) After all the verifications in subsection (b) of this section have been satisfactorily completed a department employee shall sign in the space provided on the application for the registration officer."

Section 17. Amend Title 15 of the Delaware Code by striking §2041 and §2042 in their entirety and substituting in lieu thereof:

"§ 2041. Transfer of registration.

(a) Any duly registered voter in the State who has moved to a new residence within the state may apply to transfer their voter registration to their new address by completing a voter registration application and submitting it to the department of elections in the county where their new residence is located.

(b) Upon receipt of a properly completed and duly signed application, the department shall complete the transfer in the accordance with department procedures.

(c) If it shall be determined that the applicant had not previously registered, his or her application shall be treated as an application for registration.

(d) If the applicant is registered to vote in another county in the state, the department of elections for the county in which the applicant resides shall request that the department of elections in which the applicant formerly resided send the applicants registration record to them. The request and sending of the record shall be accomplished as expeditiously as possible."

Section 18. Amend Title 15 of the Delaware Code by striking §2045 in its entirety.

Section 19. Amend Title 15 of the Delaware Code by striking in §2049(a), everything after the phrase "the applicants" as it appears in the last sentence and substituting in lieu thereof the phase "registration record in the County Master File and the applicants record in the Election System data base."

Section 20. Amend Title 15 of the Delaware Code by adding a new §3003, to read as follows:

"§ 3003. County ballots.

A county department of elections shall not list a political party on any ballot within the county unless at least one candidate for that political party qualifies to appear on at least one ballot in the county."

Section 21. Amend Title 15 of the Delaware Code by striking §4106 in its entirety.

Section 22. Amend Title 15 of the Delaware Code by striking §5004 in its entirety and substituting in lieu thereof:

"§5004. Number of voting machines per election district.

(a) In general elections, the polling place for every election district shall be supplied with at least one (1) voting machine for every 600 registered voters or majority fraction thereof.

(b) In primary and special elections, the polling place for every primary voting district or election district shall be provided with at least one (1) voting machine for every 750 registered voters or majority fraction thereof."

Section 23. Amend Title 15 of the Delaware Code by striking § 5004A in its entirety and substituting in lieu thereof a new §5004A to read as follows:

"§5004A. Number of voting devices per election district.

(a) In general elections, the polling place for every election district shall be supplied with at least one (1) voting machine for every 600 registered voters or majority fraction thereof.

(b) In primary and special elections, the polling place for every primary voting district or election district shall be provided with at least one (1) voting machine for every 750 registered voters or majority fraction thereof."

Approved August 5, 2004