HB 1471

A bill to be entitled
2An act relating to the petition process; providing a
3popular name; amending s. 99.097, F.S.; providing for
4certain petitions and petition revocations to be verified
5by a certain method; requiring certain provisions to be
6satisfied before a signature on a petition may be counted;
7prohibiting compensation to any paid petition circulator
8in certain circumstances; providing the procedure to
9contest and resolve the alleged improper verification of
10certain signatures; amending s. 100.371, F.S.; revising
11requirements for placement of constitutional amendments
12proposed by initiative on the ballot for the general
13election; revising and providing rulemaking authority;
14providing limitations on the contents of a petition form;
15establishing compliance criteria for petition forms;
16providing an elector's right to mail or deliver the form
17to an address provided for that purpose; providing notices
18that must be contained in each petition form; providing
19for revocation of an elector's signature; requiring
20payment of a fee to process petition revocation forms;
21revising the duties of supervisors of elections; revising
22requirements relating to the Financial Impact Estimating
23Conference and financial impact statements; creating s.
24100.372, F.S.; providing for the regulation of initiative
25petition circulators; providing definitions; providing
26qualification requirements; providing requirements for the
27practice of paid petition circulation; amending ss.
28101.161, and 101.62, F.S.; correcting cross references;
29amending s. 104.012, F.S.; providing criminal penalties
30for specified offenses involving voter registration
31applications; amending s. 104.185, F.S.; revising and
32providing violations involving petitions and providing
33penalties therefor; amending s. 104.42, F.S.; revising
34provisions relating to unlawful registrations, petitions,
35and voting and the investigation of such matters;
36requiring documentation and reporting thereof to the
37Florida Elections Commission within a specified time
38period; providing for the validity of certain petition
39signatures gathered before the effective date of the act;
40requiring previously approved petition forms to be
41resubmitted for approval in accordance with the
42requirements of the act; providing severability; providing
43an effective date.
45Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
47     Section 1.  This act may be cited as the "Petition Fraud
48and Voter Protection Act."
49     Section 2.  Subsections (1), (3), and (4) of section
5099.097, Florida Statutes, are amended, and subsection (6) is
51added to said section, to read:
52     99.097  Verification of signatures on petitions.--
53     (1)  As determined by each supervisor, based upon local
54conditions, the verification of signatures checking of names on
55petitions may be based on the most inexpensive and
56administratively feasible of either of the following methods of
58     (a)  A name-by-name, signature-by-signature check of the
59number of valid authorized signatures on the petitions; or
60     (b)  A check of a random sample, as provided by the
61Department of State, of names and signatures on the petitions.
62The sample must be such that a determination can be made as to
63whether or not the required number of valid signatures has have
64been obtained with a reliability of at least 99.5 percent. Rules
65and guidelines for this method of petition verification shall be
66promulgated by the Department of State, which may include a
67requirement that petitions bear an additional number of names
68and signatures, not to exceed 15 percent of the names and
69signatures otherwise required. If the petitions do not meet such
70criteria, then the use of the verification method described in
71this paragraph shall not be available to supervisors.
73Notwithstanding any other provision of law, petitions to secure
74ballot placement for an issue, and petition revocations pursuant
75to s. 100.371(7), must be verified by the method provided in
76paragraph (a).
77     (3)(a)  A signature name on a petition, in a which name
78that is not in substantially the same form as a name on the
79voter registration books, shall be counted as a valid signature
80if, after comparing the signature on the petition with the
81signature of the alleged signer as shown on the registration
82books, the supervisor determines that the person signing the
83petition and the person who registered to vote are one and the
84same. In any situation in which this code requires the form of
85the petition to be prescribed by the division, no signature
86shall be counted toward the number of signatures required unless
87it is on a petition form prescribed by the division. A signature
88on a petition may not be counted toward the number of valid
89signatures required for ballot placement unless all relevant
90provisions of this code have been satisfied.
91     (b)  If a voter signs a petition and lists an address other
92than the legal residence where the voter is registered, the
93supervisor shall treat the signature as if the voter had listed
94the address where the voter is registered.
95     (4)(a)  The supervisor shall be paid in advance the sum of
9610 cents for each signature checked or the actual cost of
97checking such signature, whichever is less, by the candidate or,
98in the case of a petition to have an issue placed on the ballot,
99by the person or organization submitting the petition. However,
100if a candidate, person, or organization seeking to have an issue
101placed upon the ballot cannot pay such charges without imposing
102an undue burden on personal resources or upon the resources
103otherwise available to such candidate, person, or organization,
104such candidate, person, or organization shall, upon written
105certification of such inability given under oath to the
106supervisor, be entitled to have the signatures verified at no
107charge. In the event a candidate, person, or organization
108submitting a petition to have an issue placed upon the ballot is
109entitled to have the signatures verified at no charge, the
110supervisor of elections of each county in which the signatures
111are verified at no charge shall submit the total number of such
112signatures checked in the county to the Chief Financial Officer
113no later than December 1 of the general election year, and the
114Chief Financial Officer shall cause such supervisor of elections
115to be reimbursed from the General Revenue Fund in an amount
116equal to 10 cents for each signature name checked or the actual
117cost of checking such signatures, whichever is less. In no event
118shall such reimbursement of costs be deemed or applied as extra
119compensation for the supervisor. Petitions shall be retained by
120the supervisors for a period of 1 year following the election
121for which the petitions were circulated.
122     (b)  A person or organization submitting a petition to
123secure ballot placement for an issue which has filed a
124certification of undue burden may not provide compensation to
125any paid petition circulator, as defined in s. 100.372, unless
126the person or organization first pays all supervisors for each
127signature checked or reimburses the General Revenue Fund for
128such costs. If a person or organization subject to this
129paragraph provides compensation to a paid petition circulator
130before the date the person or organization pays all supervisors
131for each signature checked or reimburses the General Revenue
132Fund for such costs, no signature on a petition circulated by
133the petition circulator before that date may be counted toward
134the number of valid signatures required for ballot placement.
135     (6)(a)  The alleged improper verification of a signature on
136a petition to secure ballot placement for an issue pursuant to
137this code may be contested in the circuit court by a political
138committee or by an elector. The contestant shall file a
139complaint setting forth the basis of the contest, together with
140the fees prescribed in chapter 28, with the clerk of the circuit
141court in the county in which the petition is certified or in
142Leon County if the complaint is directed to petitions certified
143in more than one county.
144     (b)  If the contestant demonstrates by a preponderance of
145the evidence that one or more petitions were improperly
146verified, the signatures appearing on such petitions may not be
147counted toward the number of valid signatures required for
148ballot placement. If an action brought under this subsection is
149resolved after the Secretary of State has issued a certificate
150of ballot position for the issue, but the contestant
151demonstrates by a preponderance of the evidence that the person
152or organization submitting the petition had obtained
153verification of an insufficient number of valid and verified
154signatures to qualify for ballot placement, the issue shall be
155removed from the ballot or, if such action is impractical, any
156votes cast for or against the issue may not be counted and shall
157be invalidated.
158     (c)  An action under this subsection must be commenced not
159later than 90 days after the Secretary of State issues a
160certificate of ballot position for the issue.
161     Section 3.  Section 100.371, Florida Statutes, as amended
162by section 9 of chapter 2002-281, Laws of Florida, is amended to
164     100.371  Initiatives; procedure for placement on ballot.--
165     (1)  Constitutional amendments proposed by initiative shall
166be placed on the ballot for the general election provided that
167an initiative petition is filed with the Secretary of State by
168February 1 of the year in which the general election is to be
169held occurring in excess of 90 days from the certification of
170ballot position by the Secretary of State.
171     (2)  Such Certification of ballot position shall be issued
172when the Secretary of State has received verification
173certificates from the supervisors of elections indicating that
174the requisite number and distribution of valid petitions bearing
175the signatures of electors have been submitted to and verified
176by the supervisors. Every signature shall be dated by the
177elector when made. Signatures are and shall be valid for a
178period of 4 years following such date, provided all other
179requirements of law are satisfied complied with.
180     (3)  The sponsor of an initiative amendment shall, prior to
181obtaining any signatures, register as a political committee
182pursuant to s. 106.03 and submit the text of the proposed
183amendment to the Secretary of State, with the form on which the
184signatures will be affixed, and shall obtain the approval of the
185Secretary of State of such form. The division Secretary of State
186shall adopt rules pursuant to s. 120.54 prescribing the style
187and requirements of such form. Upon filing with the Secretary of
188State, the text of the proposed amendment and all forms filed in
189connection with this section must, upon request, be made
190available in alternative formats. The contents of a petition
191form shall be limited to those items required by statute or
192rule. A petition form shall be deemed a political advertisement
193as defined in s. 106.011 and, as such, must comply with all
194relevant requirements of chapter 106.
195     (4)  The supervisor of elections shall record the date each
196petition form was received by the supervisor and the date the
197signature on the form was verified as valid. The supervisor
198shall verify that the signature on a petition form is valid only
199if the form complies with all of the following:
200     (a)  The form must contain the original signature of the
201purported elector;
202     (b)  The purported elector must accurately record on the
203form the date on which he or she signed the form;
204     (c)  The form must accurately set forth the purported
205elector's name, street address, county, voter registration
206number or date of birth, and any other information required by
207the division by rule;
208     (d)  The purported elector must be, at the time he or she
209signs the form, a duly qualified and registered elector
210authorized to vote in the county for which his or her signature
211is submitted;
212     (e)  The date the elector signed the form, as recorded by
213the elector, must be no more than 45 days from the date the form
214was received by the supervisor of elections;
215     (f)  The elector must accurately record on the form whether
216the elector was presented with the petition form for his or her
217signature by a petition circulator, as defined in s. 100.372(1);
219     (g)  If the elector was presented with the petition form
220for his or her signature by a petition circulator, the petition
221form must comply with the requirements of s. 100.372.
222     (5)  An elector has the right to submit his or her signed
223form to the sponsor of the initiative amendment, by mail or
224otherwise, at an address listed on the form for this purpose.
225     (6)  Each form must contain the following three notices at
226the top of the form in bold type and in a 16-point or larger
227font, immediately following the title "Constitutional Amendment
228Petition Form":
230RIGHT TO MAIL-IN - You have the right to take this
231petition home and study the issue before signing. If
232you choose to sign the petition, you may return it to
233the sponsors of the amendment at the following
234address: ___________________________________.
236PAID PETITION CIRCULATOR ? The person presenting this
237petition for your signature may be receiving
238compensation to do so. You have the right to ask for
239this information and the person's rate of compensation
240before you sign the petition.
242NATURE OF AMENDMENT ? The merits of the proposed
243change to the Florida Constitution appearing below
244have not been officially reviewed by any court or
245agency of state government.
247     (7)  An elector's signature on a petition form may be
248revoked by submitting to the supervisor a signed petition
249revocation form in a form and manner prescribed by rule by the
250division. The petition revocation form shall be subject to the
251same requirements as the corresponding petition form under this
252code. The petition revocation form shall be filed with the
253appropriate supervisor of elections no later than the January 1
254preceding the next general election or, if the initiative
255amendment is not certified for ballot position in that election,
256no later than the January 1 preceding the next successive
257general election. The supervisor of elections shall promptly
258verify the signature on the petition revocation form and process
259such revocation upon payment of a fee, in advance, of 10 cents
260or the actual cost of checking such signature, whichever is
262     (8)(4)  The sponsor shall submit signed and dated forms to
263the appropriate supervisor of elections for verification as to
264the number of registered electors whose valid signatures appear
265thereon. The supervisor shall promptly verify the signatures
266upon payment of the fee required by s. 99.097. Upon completion
267of verification, the supervisor shall execute a certificate
268indicating the total number of signatures checked, the number of
269signatures verified as valid and as being of registered
270electors, the number of signatures validly revoked pursuant to
271subsection (7), and the distribution of such signatures by
272congressional district. This certificate shall be immediately
273transmitted to the Secretary of State. The supervisor shall
274retain the signed signature forms and revocation forms for at
275least 1 year following the election in which the issue appeared
276on the ballot or until the Division of Elections notifies the
277supervisors of elections that the committee which circulated the
278petition is no longer seeking to obtain ballot position.
279     (9)(5)  The Secretary of State shall determine from the
280verification certificates received from supervisors of elections
281the total number of verified valid signatures and the
282distribution of such signatures by congressional districts. Upon
283a determination that the requisite number and distribution of
284valid signatures have been obtained, the secretary shall issue a
285certificate of ballot position for that proposed amendment and
286shall assign a designating number pursuant to s. 101.161. A
287petition shall be deemed to be filed with the Secretary of State
288upon the date of the receipt by the secretary of a certificate
289or certificates from supervisors of elections indicating the
290petition has been signed by the constitutionally required number
291of electors.
292     (10)(6)(a)  Within 45 days after receipt of a proposed
293revision or amendment to the State Constitution by initiative
294petition from the Secretary of State or, within 30 days after
295such receipt if receipt occurs 120 days or less before the
296election at which the question of ratifying the amendment will
297be presented, the Financial Impact Estimating Conference shall
298complete an analysis and financial impact statement to be placed
299on the ballot of the estimated increase or decrease in any
300revenues or costs to state or local governments resulting from
301the proposed initiative. The Financial Impact Estimating
302Conference shall submit the financial impact statement to the
303Attorney General and Secretary of State.
304     (b)1.  The Financial Impact Estimating Conference shall
305provide an opportunity for any proponents or opponents of the
306initiative to submit information and may solicit information or
307analysis from any other entities or agencies, including the
308Office of Economic and Demographic Research. All meetings of the
309Financial Impact Estimating Conference shall be open to the
310public as provided in chapter 286.
311     2.  The Financial Impact Estimating Conference is
312established to review, analyze, and estimate the financial
313impact of amendments to or revisions of the State Constitution
314proposed by initiative. The Financial Impact Estimating
315Conference shall consist of four principals: one person from the
316Executive Office of the Governor; the coordinator of the Office
317of Economic and Demographic Research, or his or her designee;
318one person from the professional staff of the Senate; and one
319person from the professional staff of the House of
320Representatives. Each principal shall have appropriate fiscal
321expertise in the subject matter of the initiative. A Financial
322Impact Estimating Conference may be appointed for each
324     3.  Principals of the Financial Impact Estimating
325Conference shall reach a consensus or majority concurrence on a
326clear and unambiguous financial impact statement, no more than
32775 words in length, and immediately submit the statement to the
328Attorney General. Nothing in this subsection prohibits the
329Financial Impact Estimating Conference from setting forth a
330range of potential impacts in the financial impact statement.
331Any financial impact statement that a court finds not to be in
332accordance with this section shall be remanded solely to the
333Financial Impact Estimating Conference for redrafting. The
334Financial Impact Estimating Conference shall redraft the
335financial impact statement within 15 days.
336     4.  If the members of the Financial Impact Estimating
337Conference are unable to agree on the statement required by this
338subsection, or if the Supreme Court has rejected the initial
339submission by the Financial Impact Estimating Conference and no
340redraft has been approved by the Supreme Court by April 1 of the
341year in which the general election is to be held 5 p.m. on the
34275th day before the election, the following statement shall
343appear on the ballot pursuant to s. 101.161(1): "The financial
344impact of this measure, if any, cannot be reasonably determined
345at this time."
346     (c)  The financial impact statement must be separately
347contained and be set forth after the ballot summary as required
348in s. 101.161(1).
349     (d)1.  Any financial impact statement that the Supreme
350Court finds not to be in accordance with this subsection shall
351be remanded solely to the Financial Impact Estimating Conference
352for redrafting, provided the court's advisory opinion is
353rendered by April 1 of the year in which the general election is
354to be held at least 75 days before the election at which the
355question of ratifying the amendment will be presented. The
356Financial Impact Estimating Conference shall prepare and adopt a
357revised financial impact statement no later than 5 p.m. on the
35815th day after the date of the court's opinion.
359     2.  If, by 5 p.m. on April 1 of the year in which the
360general election is to be held the 75th day before the election,
361the Supreme Court has not issued an advisory opinion on the
362initial financial impact statement prepared by the Financial
363Impact Estimating Conference for an initiative amendment that
364otherwise meets the legal requirements for ballot placement, the
365financial impact statement shall be deemed approved for
366placement on the ballot.
367     3.  In addition to the financial impact statement required
368by this subsection, the Financial Impact Estimating Conference
369shall draft an initiative financial information statement. The
370initiative financial information statement should describe in
371greater detail than the financial impact statement any projected
372increase or decrease in revenues or costs that the state or
373local governments would likely experience if the ballot measure
374were approved. If appropriate, the initiative financial
375information statement may include both estimated dollar amounts
376and a description placing the estimated dollar amounts into
377context. The initiative financial information statement must
378include both a summary of not more than 500 words and additional
379detailed information that includes the assumptions that were
380made to develop the financial impacts, workpapers, and any other
381information deemed relevant by the Financial Impact Estimating
383     4.  The Department of State shall have printed, and shall
384furnish to each supervisor of elections, a copy of the summary
385from the initiative financial information statements. The
386supervisors shall have the summary from the initiative financial
387information statements available at each polling place and at
388the main office of the supervisor of elections upon request.
389     5.  The Secretary of State and the Office of Economic and
390Demographic Research shall make available on the Internet each
391initiative financial information statement in its entirety. In
392addition, each supervisor of elections whose office has a
393website shall post the summary from each initiative financial
394information statement on the website. Each supervisor shall
395include the Internet addresses for the information statements on
396the Secretary of State's and the Office of Economic and
397Demographic Research's websites in the publication or mailing
398required by s. 101.20.
399     (11)(7)  The Department of State may adopt rules in
400accordance with s. 120.54 to carry out this section the
401provisions of subsections (1)-(6).
402     Section 4.  Section 100.372, Florida Statutes, is created
403to read:
404     100.372  Regulation of initiative petition circulators.--
405     (1)  For purposes of this section, a:
406     (a)  "Petition circulator" is any person who, in the
407context of a direct face-to-face conversation, presents to
408another person for his or her possible signature a petition form
409or petition revocation form regarding ballot placement for an
411     (b)  "Paid petition circulator" is a petition circulator
412who receives any compensation as either a direct or indirect
413consequence of the activities described in paragraph (a).
414     (2)  A petition circulator must be, at the time the
415petition circulator presents to any person for his or her
416possible signature a petition form or petition revocation form
417regarding ballot placement for an initiative, at least 18 years
418of age and eligible to register to vote in this state pursuant
419to s. 97.041.
420     (3)  A paid petition circulator shall, when engaged in the
421activities described in paragraph (1)(a), wear a prominent
422badge, in a form and manner prescribed by rule by the division,
423identifying him or her as a "PAID PETITION CIRCULATOR."
424     (4)  In addition to any other practice or action
425permissible under law, an owner, lessee, or other person
426lawfully exercising control over private property may:
427     (a)  Uniformly prohibit petition circulators from operating
428on the property and uniformly prohibit persons from engaging in
429other activities supporting or opposing an initiative; or
430     (b)  Permit such conduct on the property subject to time,
431place, and manner restrictions that are reasonable and uniformly
433     (5)  Prior to being presented to a possible elector for
434signature, a petition form or petition revocation form regarding
435ballot placement for an initiative must set forth the following
436information in a format and manner prescribed by rule by the
438     (a)  The name of any organization or entity with which the
439petition circulator is affiliated and on behalf of which the
440petition circulator is presenting forms to electors for possible
442     (b)  The name of the sponsor of the initiative if different
443from the entity with which the petition circulator is
445     (c)  A statement directing those seeking information about
446initiative sponsors and their contributors to the Internet
447address of the appropriate division website; and
448     (d)  A statement disclosing whether the petition circulator
449is a paid petition circulator, and, if so, the amount or rate of
450compensation and the name and address of the person or entity
451paying the compensation to the paid petition circulator.
452     (6)(a)  A paid petition circulator shall attach to each
453signed petition form, petition revocation form, or group of such
454forms obtained by the paid petition circulator a signed,
455notarized, and dated affidavit executed by the paid petition
456circulator in a form prescribed by rule by the division. If the
457affidavit pertains to a group of forms, the forms shall be
458consecutively numbered on their face by the paid petition
459circulator and the affidavit shall refer to the forms by number.
460     (b)  The affidavit shall include the paid petition
461circulator's printed name; the street address at which he or she
462resides, including county; the petition circulator's date of
463birth; the petition circulator's Florida voter registration
464number and county of registration, if applicable, or an
465identification number from a valid government-issued photo
466identification card along with information identifying the
467issuer; and the date he or she signed the affidavit.
468     (c)  The affidavit shall attest that the paid petition
469circulator has read and understands the laws governing the
470circulation of petition and petition revocation forms regarding
471ballot placement for an initiative; that he or she was 18 years
472of age and eligible to register to vote at the time the attached
473form or forms were circulated and signed by the listed electors;
474that he or she circulated the attached form or forms; that each
475signature thereon was affixed in the circulator's presence; that
476each signature thereon is the signature of the person whose name
477it purports to be; that to the best of the circulator's
478knowledge and belief each of the persons signing the form or
479forms was, at the time of signing, a registered elector; that
480the circulator has not provided or received, and will not in the
481future provide or receive, compensation that is based, directly
482or indirectly, upon the number of signatures obtained on
483petitions or petition revocation forms; and that he or she has
484not paid or will not in the future pay, and that he or she
485believes that no other person has paid or will pay, directly or
486indirectly, any money or other thing of value to any signer for
487the purpose of inducing or causing such signer to affix his or
488her signature to the form.
489     (d)  A signature on a petition form or petition revocation
490form regarding ballot placement for an initiative to which an
491affidavit required by this subsection is not attached is
492invalid, may not be verified by the supervisor of elections, and
493may not be counted toward the number of valid signatures
494required for ballot placement.
495     (7)  Each paid petition circulator shall provide to the
496sponsor of the initiative amendment for which he or she is
497circulating petitions a copy of a valid and current government-
498issued photo identification card that accurately indicates the
499address at which the paid petition circulator resides. The
500sponsor of the initiative shall maintain the copies of these
501identification cards in its files and shall make them available
502for inspection by the division, a supervisor of elections, or
503any law enforcement agency. If a sponsor fails to maintain such
504a copy with respect to a particular paid petition circulator,
505all petitions obtained by that paid petition circulator prior to
506the date the sponsor produces the required copy of the
507identification card are invalid, may not be verified by the
508supervisor of elections, and may not be counted toward the
509number of valid signatures required for ballot placement.
510     (8)  A signature on a petition form or petition revocation
511form regarding ballot placement for an initiative which does not
512fully comply with the applicable provisions of this chapter, or
513which was obtained in violation of the applicable provisions of
514this code, is invalid, may not be verified by the supervisor of
515elections, and may not be counted toward the number of valid
516signatures required for ballot placement.
517     Section 5.  Subsection (1) of section 101.161, Florida
518Statutes, is amended to read:
519     (1)  Whenever a constitutional amendment or other public
520measure is submitted to the vote of the people, the substance of
521such amendment or other public measure shall be printed in clear
522and unambiguous language on the ballot after the list of
523candidates, followed by the word "yes" and also by the word
524"no," and shall be styled in such a manner that a "yes" vote
525will indicate approval of the proposal and a "no" vote will
526indicate rejection. The wording of the substance of the
527amendment or other public measure and the ballot title to appear
528on the ballot shall be embodied in the joint resolution,
529constitutional revision commission proposal, constitutional
530convention proposal, taxation and budget reform commission
531proposal, or enabling resolution or ordinance. Except for
532amendments and ballot language proposed by joint resolution, the
533substance of the amendment or other public measure shall be an
534explanatory statement, not exceeding 75 words in length, of the
535chief purpose of the measure. In addition, for every amendment
536proposed by initiative, the ballot shall include, following the
537ballot summary, a separate financial impact statement concerning
538the measure prepared by the Financial Impact Estimating
539Conference in accordance with s. 100.371(10)(6). The ballot
540title shall consist of a caption, not exceeding 15 words in
541length, by which the measure is commonly referred to or spoken
543     Section 6.  Paragraph (a) of subsection (4) of section
544101.62, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
545     101.62  Request for absentee ballots.--
546     (4)(a)  To each absent qualified elector overseas who has
547requested an absentee ballot, the supervisor of elections shall,
548not fewer than 35 days before the first primary election, mail
549an absentee ballot. Not fewer than 45 days before the second
550primary and general election, the supervisor of elections shall
551mail an advance absentee ballot to those persons requesting
552ballots for such elections. The advance absentee ballot for the
553second primary shall be the same as the first primary absentee
554ballot as to the names of candidates, except that for any
555offices where there are only two candidates, those offices and
556all political party executive committee offices shall be
557omitted. Except as provided in ss. 99.063(4) and 100.371(10)(6),
558the advance absentee ballot for the general election shall be as
559specified in s. 101.151, except that in the case of candidates
560of political parties where nominations were not made in the
561first primary, the names of the candidates placing first and
562second in the first primary election shall be printed on the
563advance absentee ballot. The advance absentee ballot or advance
564absentee ballot information booklet shall be of a different
565color for each election and also a different color from the
566absentee ballots for the first primary, second primary, and
567general election. The supervisor shall mail an advance absentee
568ballot for the second primary and general election to each
569qualified absent elector for whom a request is received until
570the absentee ballots are printed. The supervisor shall enclose
571with the advance second primary absentee ballot and advance
572general election absentee ballot an explanation stating that the
573absentee ballot for the election will be mailed as soon as it is
574printed; and, if both the advance absentee ballot and the
575absentee ballot for the election are returned in time to be
576counted, only the absentee ballot will be counted. The
577Department of State may prescribe by rule the requirements for
578preparing and mailing absentee ballots to absent qualified
579electors overseas.
580     Section 7.  Subsection (5) is added to section 104.012,
581Florida Statutes, to read:
582     104.012  Consideration for registration; interference with
583registration; soliciting registrations for compensation;
584alteration of registration application; failing to submit
585registration application.--
586     (5)  Any person who obtains an executed voter registration
587application from another person and who willfully fails to
588submit this application to the appropriate supervisor of
589elections within 10 days commits a felony of the third degree,
590punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
591     Section 8.  Section 104.185, Florida Statutes, is amended
592to read:
593     104.185  Violations involving petitions; knowingly signing
594more than once; signing another person's name or a fictitious
596     (1)  A person who knowingly signs a petition or petitions
597to secure ballot position for a candidate, a minor political
598party, or an issue more than one time commits a misdemeanor of
599the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s.
600775.083 and, upon any subsequent conviction, commits a felony of
601the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s.
602775.083, or s. 775.084.
603     (2)  A person who signs another person's name or a
604fictitious name to any petition to secure ballot position for a
605candidate, a minor political party, or an issue, or to a
606petition revocation form, commits a misdemeanor of the first
607degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083 and,
608upon any subsequent conviction, commits a felony of the third
609degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s.
611     (3)  A person who willfully swears or affirms falsely to
612any oath or affirmation, or willfully procures another person to
613swear or affirm falsely to an oath or affirmation, in connection
614with or arising out of the petitioning process commits a
615misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s.
616775.082 or s. 775.083 and, upon any subsequent conviction,
617commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in
618s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
619     (4)  A person who willfully submits any false information
620on a petition or petition revocation form commits a misdemeanor
621of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s.
622775.083 and, upon any subsequent conviction, commits a felony of
623the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s.
624775.083, or s. 775.084.
625     (5)  A person who directly or indirectly gives or promises
626anything of value to any other person to induce that other
627person to sign a petition or petition revocation form commits a
628misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s.
629775.082 or s. 775.083 and, upon any subsequent conviction,
630commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in
631s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
632     (6)  A person who, by bribery, menace, threat, or other
633corruption, directly or indirectly influences, deceives, or
634deters, or attempts to influence, deceive, or deter, any person
635in the free exercise of that person's right to sign a petition
636or petition revocation form, upon the first conviction commits a
637misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s.
638775.082 or s. 775.083 and, upon any subsequent conviction,
639commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in
640s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
641     (7)  A person may not provide or receive compensation that
642is based, directly or indirectly, upon the number of signatures
643obtained on petitions or petition revocation forms. A person who
644violates this subsection commits a misdemeanor of the first
645degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083 and,
646upon any subsequent conviction, commits a felony of the third
647degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s.
649     (8)  A person who alters the petition or petition
650revocation form signed by any other person without the other
651person's knowledge and consent commits a misdemeanor of the
652first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083
653and, upon any subsequent conviction, commits a felony of the
654third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083,
655or s. 775.084.
656     (9)  A person perpetrating, or attempting to perpetrate or
657aid in the perpetration of, any fraud in connection with
658obtaining the signature of electors on petitions or petition
659revocation forms commits a misdemeanor of the first degree,
660punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083 and, upon any
661subsequent conviction, commits a felony of the third degree,
662punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
663     (10)  In addition to any other penalty provided for by law,
664if a paid petition circulator, as defined in s. 100.372(1),
665violates any provision of this section, the Florida Elections
666Commission may, pursuant to s. 106.265, impose a civil penalty
667in the form of a fine not to exceed $1,000 per violation on any
668person or entity on behalf of which the petition circulator was
669acting at the time of the violation.
670     Section 9.  Section 104.42, Florida Statutes, is amended to
672     104.42  Unlawful registrations, petitions, Fraudulent
673registration and illegal voting; investigation.--
674     (1)  The supervisor of elections is authorized to
675investigate unlawful fraudulent registrations, petitions, and
676illegal voting and to report his or her findings to the local
677state attorney, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, and
678the Florida Elections Commission.
679     (2)  The board of county commissioners in any county may
680appropriate funds to the supervisor of elections for the purpose
681of investigating unlawful fraudulent registrations, petitions,
682and illegal voting.
683     (3)  The supervisor of elections shall document and report
684suspected unlawful registrations, petitions, and voting to the
685Florida Elections Commission within 10 days of acquiring
686reasonable suspicion about the lawfulness of the registrations,
687petitions, and voting.
688     Section 10.  Any signature gathered on an authorized form
689for an initiative petition that has been submitted for
690verification prior to the effective date of this act may be
691verified and counted if otherwise valid. However, any petition
692form that is submitted for verification on or after the
693effective date of this act shall be verified and counted only if
694it complies with all the provisions of this act. Any initiative
695petition form approved by the Secretary of State prior to the
696effective date of this act is hereby invalidated, and a new
697petition form must be resubmitted to the Secretary of State for
698approval in accordance with the requirements of this act prior
699to obtaining elector signatures.
700     Section 11.  If any provision of this act or its
701application to any person or circumstance is held invalid, the
702invalidity does not affect other provisions or applications of
703the act which can be given effect without the invalid provision
704or application, and to this end the provisions of this act are
705declared severable.
706     Section 12.  This act shall take effect August 1, 2005.

CODING: Words stricken are deletions; words underlined are additions.