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florida > The Florida Election Code > Voting Methods And Procedure

§ 101.595 Analysis and reports of voting problems.

Overview of Statute

This statute governs the procedure for analyzing and reporting voting problems. By December 15 of every general election year, every supervisor of elections must report the number of over and undervotes in the President/Vice President or Governor/Lieutenant Governor race that appears first on the ballot to the Department of State. If neither of these races is first, then the supervisors must report the number of over and undervotes in whichever race is listed first on that ballot. Along with the numbers, the supervisors must explain why they think over and undervotes happen, and provide any other useful information to the Department of State.

The Department of State then has to write a public report on the performance of every voting system. The report must contain any problems with the ballot design, any voting system design flaws, and recommendations for fixing any identified problems. The Department then must submit the report to the Governor, the President of the Senate, and the Speaker of the House of Representatives by January 31st of the years following general elections.

Statute

(1) No later than December 15 of each general election year, the supervisor of elections in each county shall report to the Department of State the total number of overvotes and undervotes in the “President and Vice President” or “Governor and Lieutenant Governor” race that appears first on the ballot or, if neither appears, the first race appearing on the ballot pursuant to s. 101.151(2), along with the likely reasons for such overvotes and undervotes and other information as may be useful in evaluating the performance of the voting system and identifying problems with ballot design and instructions which may have contributed to voter confusion.

(2) The Department of State, upon receipt of such information, shall prepare a public report on the performance of each type of voting system. The report must contain, but is not limited to, the following information:

(a) An identification of problems with the ballot design or instructions which may have contributed to voter confusion;

(b) An identification of voting system design problems; and

(c) Recommendations for correcting any problems identified.

(3) The Department of State shall submit the report to the Governor, the President of the Senate, and the Speaker of the House of Representatives by January 31 of each year following a general election.

History:

s. 24, ch. 2001-40; s. 16, ch. 2002-17; s. 41, ch. 2005-277.

Definition [Department]

The Department of State.

Definition [Supervisor]

The supervisor of elections.

Definition [Voting System]
A method of casting and processing votes that functions wholly or partly by use of electromechanical or electronic apparatus or by use of marksense ballots and includes, but is not limited to, the procedures for casting and processing votes and the programs, operating manuals, supplies, printouts, and other software necessary for the system’s operation.
Definition [General Election]

An election held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November in the even-numbered years, for the purpose of filling national, state, county, and district offices and for voting on constitutional amendments not otherwise provided for by law.

Definition [Ballot]

As used in the Electronic Voting Systems Act, ballot means the card, tape, or other vehicle upon which the elector’s choices are recorded.

Definition [Election]

Any primary election, special primary election, special election, general election, or presidential preference primary election.

Definition [Overvote]

The elector marks or designates more names than there are persons to be elected to an office or designates more than one answer to a ballot question, and the tabulator records no vote for the office or question.

Definition [Undervote]

The elector does not properly designate any choice for an office or ballot question, and the tabulator records no vote for the office or question.

Additional Resources

Further Reading

  • Fla. Jur. 2d Elections s 146, Performance of voting system

  • “’Democracy Begins at Home’ – Notes from the Grassroots on Inequality, Voters, and Lawyers” 63 U. Miami L. Rev. 1

  • “Voting Technology and Democracy” 77 N.Y.U. L. Rev. 625