Topics
Code Section
Colorado > Colorado Electoral Code > Uniform Military And Overseas Voters Act

1-8.3-102. Definitions

Statute

In this article:


(1) “Ballot” means:

(a) A federal write-in absentee ballot;

(b) A ballot specifically prepared or distributed for use by a covered voter in accordance with this article; or

(c) A ballot cast by a covered voter in accordance with this article.

(2) “Covered voter” means:

(a) A uniformed-service voter defined in paragraph (a) of subsection (9) of this section who is a resident of this state but who is absent from this state by reason of active duty and who otherwise satisfies this state’s voter eligibility requirements;

(b) An overseas voter who, before leaving the United States, was last eligible to vote in this state and, except for a state residency requirement, otherwise satisfies this state’s voter eligibility requirements;

(c) An overseas voter who, before leaving the United States, would have been last eligible to vote in this state had the voter then been of voting age and, except for a state residency requirement, otherwise satisfies this state’s voter eligibility requirements; or

(d) An overseas voter who was born outside the United States, is not described in paragraph (b) or (c) of this subsection (2), and, except for a state residency requirement, otherwise satisfies this state’s voter eligibility requirements if the last place where a parent, legal guardian, spouse, or civil union partner of the voter was, or under this article would have been, eligible to vote before leaving the United States is within this state.

(3) “Dependent” means a spouse, civil union partner, or dependent of a covered voter described in subsection (2) of this section who is a resident of this state but who is absent from the state by reason of the active duty or service of the covered voter.

(4) “Federal postcard application” means the application prescribed under section 101 (b) (2) of the federal “Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act”, 42 U.S.C. sec. 1973ff (b) (2).

(5) “Federal write-in absentee ballot” means the ballot described in section 103 of the federal “Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act”, 42 U.S.C. sec. 1973ff-2.

(6) “Overseas voter” means a United States citizen who is outside the United States.

(7) “State” means a state of the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the United States Virgin Islands, or any territory or insular possession subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.

(8) “Uniformed service” means:

(a) Active and reserve components of the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, or Coast Guard of the United States;

(b) The merchant marine, the commissioned corps of the public health service, or the commissioned corps of the national oceanic and atmospheric administration of the United States; or

(c) The National Guard.

(9) “Uniformed-service voter” means an individual who is qualified to vote and is:

(a) A member of the active or reserve components of the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, or Coast Guard of the United States who is on active duty;

(b) A member of the merchant marine, the commissioned corps of the public health service, or the commissioned corps of the national oceanic and atmospheric administration of the United States;

(c) A member on activated status of the National Guard; or

(d) A spouse, civil union partner, or dependent of a member referred to in this subsection (9).

(10) “United States”, used in the territorial sense, means the several states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the United States Virgin Islands, and any territory or insular possession subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.

 

Source: L. 2011: Entire article added, (HB 11-1219), ch. 176, p. 664, § 1, effective May 13.L. 2013: (3) and (9)(d) amended, (HB 13-1303), ch. 185, p. 744, § 104, effective May 10.L. 2014: (2)(d) amended, (SB 14-161), ch. 160, p. 565, § 21, effective May 9.

 

Editor’s note: Section 34 of chapter 160 (SB 14-161), Session Laws of Colorado 2014, provides that changes to this section by the act apply to elections conducted on or after May 9, 2014.

Cross references: In 2013, subsections (3) and (9)(d) were amended by the “Voter Access and Modernized Elections Act”. For the short title and the legislative declaration, see sections 1 and 2 of chapter 185, Session Laws of Colorado 2013.
 
OFFICIAL COMMENT

The act’s definition of the term “covered voter” builds upon the definitions of “absent uniformed service voter” and “overseas voter” in the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (“UOCAVA”), 42 U.S.C. § 1973ff-6(1), but simplifies these definitions and expands them to cover members of the National Guard. However, unlike in the UOCAVA, the act’s coverage of uniformed service voters is based on a voter’s status as an active member of one of the defined services, whether or not the voter is absent from the place of voting. The definition of “uniformed service voter” does not specify that the place where the voter is qualified to vote be in the enacting state because that would create a problem for a spouse (or dependent) who is eligible to vote in this state but whose uniformed service member is eligible in another state. A uniformed service voter still must meet an enacting state’s eligibility requirements (including residency in that state) in order to vote in that state.

The definition of “covered voter,” in subsection (2), also extends the act’s coverage to U.S. citizens born abroad who have not established a voting residency in the United States. Although UOCAVA makes no provision for these citizens, eighteen states already permit these citizens to participate in at least some elections, if their parents are eligible to vote in that state (or in some cases if they are a spouse or dependent of a person eligible to vote in that state). These states include: Arizona, Colorado (federal offices only), Delaware (federal offices only), Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nebraska, New York (federal offices only), North Dakota (federal offices only), Oklahoma, Rhode Island (federal offices only), Tennessee, Washington, West Virginia, and Wisconsin (federal offices only).

The definition makes no distinction between overseas voters merely traveling abroad, voters temporarily living overseas, and voters permanently residing overseas. Other provisions of an enacting state’s existing law may do so, however, and may limit the elections in which voters permanently overseas can vote. Without such distinctions elsewhere in existing state law, this act would enable all overseas voters to vote in all elections covered in section 1-8.3-103. Because the act does not require that overseas voters “reside” abroad, it facilitates voting by a wide variety of U.S. citizens, including missionaries, students abroad, and even tourists who because of health or other unanticipated problems or events may have extended their time out of the United States beyond their original plans, but for whom a state’s regular absentee balloting process may be difficult to use.

Definition [United States]

Used in the territorial sense, means the several states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the United States Virgin Islands, and any territory or insular possession subject to the jurisdiction of the United States. C.R.S. § 1-8.3-102.

Definition [Overseas voter]

A United States citizen who is outside the United States. C.R.S. § 1-8.3-102.

Definition [Uniformed service]

(a) Active and reserve components of the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, or Coast Guard of the United States;

(b) The merchant marine, the commissioned corps of the public health service, or the commissioned corps of the national oceanic and atmospheric administration of the United States; or

(c) The National Guard.

C.R.S. § 1-8.3-102.

Definition [Uniformed-service voter]

An individual who is qualified to vote and is:

(a) A member of the active or reserve components of the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, or Coast Guard of the United States who is on active duty;

(b) A member of the merchant marine, the commissioned corps of the public health service, or the commissioned corps of the national oceanic and atmospheric administration of the United States;

(c) A member on activated status of the National Guard; or

(d) A spouse, civil union partner, or dependent of a member referred to in this subsection (9).

C.R.S. § 1-8.3-102.

Definition [Federal write-in absentee ballot]

The ballot described in section 103 of the federal “Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act”, 42 U.S.C. sec. 1973ff-2.2. C.R.S. § 1-8.3-102.

Definition [State]

A state of the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the United States Virgin Islands, or any territory or insular possession subject to the jurisdiction of the United States. C.R.S. § 1-8.3-102.

Definition [Ballot]

(a) A federal write-in absentee ballot;

(b) A ballot specifically prepared or distributed for use by a covered voter in accordance with this article; or

(c) A ballot cast by a covered voter in accordance with this article.

(2) “Covered voter” means:

(a) A uniformed-service voter defined in paragraph (a) of subsection (9) of this section who is a resident of this state but who is absent from this state by reason of active duty and who otherwise satisfies this state’s voter eligibility requirements;

(b) An overseas voter who, before leaving the United States, was last eligible to vote in this state and, except for a state residency requirement, otherwise satisfies this state’s voter eligibility requirements;

(c) An overseas voter who, before leaving the United States, would have been last eligible to vote in this state had the voter then been of voting age and, except for a state residency requirement, otherwise satisfies this state’s voter eligibility requirements; or

(d) An overseas voter who was born outside the United States, is not described in paragraph (b) or (c) of this subsection (2), and, except for a state residency requirement, otherwise satisfies this state’s voter eligibility requirements if the last place where a parent, legal guardian, spouse, or civil union partner of the voter was, or under this article would have been, eligible to vote before leaving the United States is within this state.

C.R.S. § 1-8.3-102.

Definition [Person]

Any natural person, partnership, committee, association, corporation, labor organization, political party, or other organization or group of persons. Section 2(11) of article XXVIII of the state constitution.

Definition [Election]

Any election under the “Uniform Election Code of 1992” or the “Colorado Municipal Election Code of 1965”, article 10 of title 31, C.R.S. C.R.S. § 1-7.5-103.

Definition [Dependent]

A spouse, civil union partner, or dependent of a covered voter described in subsection (2) of this section who is a resident of this state but who is absent from the state by reason of the active duty or service of the covered voter. C.R.S. § 1-8.3-102.

Regulations & Guidance