§ 24.2-713 Emergency authority of the Commissioner of Elections
Overview of Statute
This section gives the Commissioner of Elections emergency authority to designate alternative methods and procedures to handle absentee ballot applications and absentee ballots. This authority would be given in a case in which there is not enough time for the distribution and handling of absentee ballot applications and absentee ballots for qualified voters who are unable to vote in person because of some emergency.
The provisions of this section shall apply in the case of an emergency that will not allow sufficient time for the distribution and handling of absentee ballot applications and absentee ballots, in accordance with the procedures of this title, for qualified voters who are unable to vote in person because of the emergency. The Commissioner of Elections shall have the authority to designate alternative methods and procedures to handle such applications and ballots. Nothing in this section shall authorize the counting of any absentee ballot returned after the polls have closed. For purposes of this section, “an emergency” shall mean (i) any emergency declared by the Governor pursuant to Chapter 3.2 (§ 44-146.13 et seq.) of Title 44, (ii) any emergency declared by the President of the United States or the governor of another state pursuant to law and confirmed by the Governor by the executive order as an emergency for the purposes of this section, or (iii) any public emergency that interferes with the electoral process or the opportunity for qualified voters to exercise their right to vote as determined by the Commissioner of Elections.
- Emergency Authority
- Early & Absentee Voting
- Commissioner & Department of Elections
- Administrative Guidance
1. Definition for 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.
2. Definition for Qualified voter
A person who is entitled to vote pursuant to the Constitution of Virginia and who is (i) 18 years of age on or before the day of the election or qualified pursuant to § 24.2-403 or subsection D of § 24.2-544, (ii) a resident of the Commonwealth and of the precinct in which he offers to vote, and (iii) a registered voter. No person who has been convicted of a felony shall be a qualified voter unless his civil rights have been restored by the Governor or other appropriate authority. No person adjudicated incapacitated shall be a qualified voter unless his capacity has been reestablished as provided by law. Whether a signature should be counted towards satisfying the signature requirement of any petition shall be determined based on the signer of the petition’s qualification to vote. For purposes of determining if a signature on a petition shall be included in the count toward meeting the signature requirements of any petition, “qualified voter” shall include only persons maintained on the Virginia voter registration system (a) with active status and (b) with inactive status who are qualified to vote for the office for which the petition was circulated.
3. Definition for 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.
4. Definition for Person
Any individual or corporation, partnership, business, labor organization, membership organization, association, cooperative, or other like entity.
For the purpose of applying the filing and reporting requirements of this chapter, the term “person” shall not include an organization holding tax-exempt status under § 501(c) (3), 501(c) (4), or 501(c) (6) of the United States Internal Revenue Code which, in providing information to voters, does not advocate or endorse the election or defeat of a particular candidate, group of candidates, or the candidates of a particular political party.
5. Definition for Election
A general, primary, or special election.