Florida Senate - 2022 SB 524 By Senator Hutson 7-00305B-22 2022524__ 1 A bill to be entitled 2 An act relating to elections; amending s. 97.0575, 3 F.S.; removing the limitation on the amount of 4 aggregate fines that may be assessed in a calendar 5 year against a third-party voter registration 6 organization for specified violations; amending s. 7 99.021, F.S.; revising the candidate oath to require a 8 candidate to subscribe to an oath or affirmation 9 regarding outstanding fines, fees, or penalties owed 10 for certain ethics or campaign finance violations; 11 creating s. 101.019, F.S.; prohibiting the use of 12 ranked-choice voting to determine election or 13 nomination to elective office; voiding existing or 14 future local ordinances authorizing the use of ranked 15 choice voting; amending s. 101.657, F.S.; authorizing 16 the supervisor of elections to designate up to two 17 additional early voting sites per election in areas of 18 a county that do not have otherwise eligible 19 locations; amending s. 105.031, F.S.; revising the 20 oath for judicial candidates to require a candidate to 21 subscribe to an oath or affirmation regarding 22 outstanding fines, fees, or penalties owed for certain 23 ethics or campaign finance violations; providing 24 effective dates. 25 26 Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida: 27 28 Section 1. Paragraph (a) of subsection (3) of section 29 97.0575, Florida Statutes, is amended to read: 30 97.0575 Third-party voter registrations.— 31 (3)(a) A third-party voter registration organization that 32 collects voter registration applications serves as a fiduciary 33 to the applicant, ensuring that any voter registration 34 application entrusted to the organization, irrespective of party 35 affiliation, race, ethnicity, or gender, must be promptly 36 delivered to the division or the supervisor of elections in the 37 county in which the applicant resides within 14 days after the 38 application was completed by the applicant, but not after 39 registration closes for the next ensuing election. A third-party 40 voter registration organization must notify the applicant at the 41 time the application is collected that the organization might 42 not deliver the application to the division or the supervisor of 43 elections in the county in which the applicant resides in less 44 than 14 days or before registration closes for the next ensuing 45 election and must advise the applicant that he or she may 46 deliver the application in person or by mail. The third-party 47 voter registration organization must also inform the applicant 48 how to register online with the division and how to determine 49 whether the application has been delivered. If a voter 50 registration application collected by any third-party voter 51 registration organization is not promptly delivered to the 52 division or supervisor of elections in the county in which the 53 applicant resides, the third-party voter registration 54 organization is liable for the following fines: 55 1. A fine in the amount of $50 for each application 56 received by the division or the supervisor of elections in the 57 county in which the applicant resides more than 14 days after 58 the applicant delivered the completed voter registration 59 application to the third-party voter registration organization 60 or any person, entity, or agent acting on its behalf. A fine in 61 the amount of $250 for each application received if the third 62 party voter registration organization or person, entity, or 63 agency acting on its behalf acted willfully. 64 2. A fine in the amount of $100 for each application 65 collected by a third-party voter registration organization or 66 any person, entity, or agent acting on its behalf, before book 67 closing for any given election for federal or state office and 68 received by the division or the supervisor of elections in the 69 county in which the applicant resides after the book-closing 70 deadline for such election. A fine in the amount of $500 for 71 each application received if the third-party registration 72 organization or person, entity, or agency acting on its behalf 73 acted willfully. 74 3. A fine in the amount of $500 for each application 75 collected by a third-party voter registration organization or 76 any person, entity, or agent acting on its behalf, which is not 77 submitted to the division or supervisor of elections in the 78 county in which the applicant resides. A fine in the amount of 79 $1,000 for any application not submitted if the third-party 80 voter registration organization or person, entity, or agency 81 acting on its behalf acted willfully. 82 83
The aggregate fine pursuant to this paragraph which may be84 assessed against a third-party voter registration organization,85 including affiliate organizations, for violations committed in a86 calendar year is $1,000.87 Section 2. Effective January 1, 2023, present paragraph (d) 88 of subsection (1) of section 99.021, Florida Statutes, is 89 redesignated as paragraph (e), and a new paragraph (d) is added 90 to that subsection, to read: 91 99.021 Form of candidate oath.— 92 (1) 93 (d) In addition, each candidate, whether a party candidate, 94 a candidate with no party affiliation, or a write-in candidate, 95 shall, at the time of subscribing to the oath or affirmation, 96 state in writing whether he or she owes any outstanding fines, 97 fees, or penalties that cumulatively exceed $250 for any 98 violations of s. 8, Art. II of the State Constitution, the Code 99 of Ethics for Public Officers and Employees under part III of 100 chapter 112, any local ethics ordinance governing standards of 101 conduct and disclosure requirements, or chapter 106. If the 102 candidate owes any outstanding fines, fees, or penalties 103 exceeding the threshold amount specified in this paragraph, he 104 or she must also specify in the oath or affirmation the amount 105 owed and each entity that levied such fine, fee, or penalty. For 106 purposes of this paragraph, any such fines, fees, or penalties 107 that have been paid in full at the time of subscribing to the 108 oath or affirmation are not deemed to be outstanding. 109 Section 3. Section 101.019, Florida Statutes, is created to 110 read: 111 101.019 Ranked-choice voting prohibited.— 112 (1) A ranked-choice voting method that allows voters to 113 rank candidates for an office in order of preference and have 114 ballots cast be tabulated in multiple rounds following the 115 elimination of a candidate until a single candidate attains a 116 majority may not be used in determining the election or the 117 nomination of any candidate to any local, state, or federal 118 elective office in this state. 119 (2) Any existing or future ordinance enacted or adopted by 120 a county, a municipality, or any other local governmental entity 121 which is in conflict with this section is void. 122 Section 4. Paragraph (a) of subsection (1) of section 123 101.657, Florida Statutes, is amended to read: 124 101.657 Early voting.— 125 (1)(a) As a convenience to the voter, the supervisor of 126 elections shall allow an elector to vote early in the main or 127 branch office of the supervisor. The supervisor shall mark, 128 code, indicate on, or otherwise track the voter’s precinct for 129 each early voted ballot. In order for a branch office to be used 130 for early voting, it shall be a permanent facility of the 131 supervisor and shall have been designated and used as such for 132 at least 1 year prior to the election. The supervisor may also 133 designate any city hall, permanent public library facility, 134 fairground, civic center, courthouse, county commission 135 building, stadium, convention center, government-owned senior 136 center, or government-owned community center as an early voting 137 site; however, if so designated, the sites must be 138 geographically located so as to provide all voters in the county 139 an equal opportunity to cast a ballot, insofar as is 140 practicable, and must provide sufficient nonpermitted parking to 141 accommodate the anticipated amount of voters. In addition, a 142 supervisor may designate up to two oneearly voting sites site143 per election in areas an areaof the county that do doesnot 144 have any of the eligible early voting locations. Such additional 145 early voting sites sitemust be geographically located so as to 146 provide all voters in such areas that areawith an equal 147 opportunity to cast a ballot, insofar as is practicable, and 148 must provide sufficient nonpermitted parking to accommodate the 149 anticipated amount of voters. Each county shall, at a minimum, 150 operate the same total number of early voting sites for a 151 general election which the county operated for the 2012 general 152 election. The results or tabulation of votes cast during early 153 voting may not be made before the close of the polls on election 154 day. Results shall be reported by precinct. 155 Section 5. Effective January 1, 2023, paragraph (a) of 156 subsection (5) of section 105.031, Florida Statutes, is amended 157 to read: 158 105.031 Qualification; filing fee; candidate’s oath; items 159 required to be filed.— 160 (5) ITEMS REQUIRED TO BE FILED.— 161 (a) In order for a candidate for judicial office or the 162 office of school board member to be qualified, the following 163 items must be received by the filing officer by the end of the 164 qualifying period: 165 1. Except for candidates for retention to judicial office, 166 a properly executed check drawn upon the candidate’s campaign 167 account in an amount not less than the fee required by 168 subsection (3) or, in lieu thereof, the copy of the notice of 169 obtaining ballot position pursuant to s. 105.035. If a 170 candidate’s check is returned by the bank for any reason, the 171 filing officer shall immediately notify the candidate and the 172 candidate shall, the end of qualifying notwithstanding, have 48 173 hours from the time such notification is received, excluding 174 Saturdays, Sundays, and legal holidays, to pay the fee with a 175 cashier’s check purchased from funds of the campaign account. 176 Failure to pay the fee as provided in this subparagraph shall 177 disqualify the candidate. 178 2. The candidate’s oath required by subsection (4), which 179 must contain the name of the candidate as it is to appear on the 180 ballot; the office sought, including the district or group 181 number if applicable; a statement declaring whether the 182 candidate owes any outstanding fines, fees, or penalties that 183 cumulatively exceed $250 for any violations of s. 8, Art. II of 184 the State Constitution, the Code of Ethics for Public Officers 185 and Employees under part III of chapter 112, any local ethics 186 ordinance governing standards of conduct and disclosure 187 requirements, or chapter 106; and the signature of the 188 candidate, duly acknowledged. If the candidate owes any 189 outstanding fines, fees, or penalties exceeding the threshold 190 amount specified in this paragraph, he or she must also specify 191 in the oath or affirmation the amount owed and each entity that 192 levied such fine, fee, or penalty. For purposes of this 193 subparagraph, any such fines, fees, or penalties that have been 194 paid in full at the time of subscribing to the oath or 195 affirmation are not deemed to be outstanding. 196 3. The loyalty oath required by s. 876.05, signed by the 197 candidate and duly acknowledged. 198 4. The completed form for the appointment of campaign 199 treasurer and designation of campaign depository, as required by 200 s. 106.021. In addition, each candidate for judicial office, 201 including an incumbent judge, shall file a statement with the 202 qualifying officer, within 10 days after filing the appointment 203 of campaign treasurer and designation of campaign depository, 204 stating that the candidate has read and understands the 205 requirements of the Florida Code of Judicial Conduct. Such 206 statement shall be in substantially the following form: 207 208 Statement of Candidate for Judicial Office 209 210 I, ...(name of candidate)..., a judicial candidate, have 211 received, read, and understand the requirements of the Florida 212 Code of Judicial Conduct. 213 ...(Signature of candidate)... 214 ...(Date)... 215 216 5. The full and public disclosure of financial interests 217 required by s. 8, Art. II of the State Constitution or the 218 statement of financial interests required by s. 112.3145, 219 whichever is applicable. A public officer who has filed the full 220 and public disclosure or statement of financial interests with 221 the Commission on Ethics or the supervisor of elections prior to 222 qualifying for office may file a copy of that disclosure at the 223 time of qualifying. 224 Section 6. Except as otherwise expressly provided in this 225 act, this act shall take effect July 1, 2022.