HOUSE COMMITTEE ON ELECTIONS AND RULES

 

 

April 15, 2005 Hearing Room Grants Pass

4:00 P.M.  Tapes 39 - 40

 

MEMBERS PRESENT:            Rep. Derrick Kitts, Chair

Rep. Kim Thatcher, Vice-Chair

Rep. Debi Farr

Rep. Mitch Greenlick

Rep. Paul Holvey

Rep. Steve March

 

MEMBER EXCUSED:            Rep. Billy Dalto

 

VISITING MEMBER                  Rep. Gordon Anderson

 

STAFF PRESENT:                  Cletus Moore, Committee Administrator

Annetta Mullins, Committee Assistant

 

MEASURES/ISSUES HEARD:        

HB 3338 – Public Hearing

HB 2758 – Public Hearing

HB 2583 – Public Hearing

HB 2551 – Public Hearing

 

 

These minutes are in compliance with Senate and House Rules.  Only text enclosed in quotation marks reports a speaker’s exact words.  For complete contents, please refer to the tapes.

H

TAPE/#

Speaker

Comments

TAPE 39, A

003

Chair Kitts

Call meeting to order at 4:14 p.m.

 

Committee Members and Rep. Anderson

Introduce themselves.  Rep. Anderson is visiting.

048

Chair Kitts

Opens a public hearing on HB 3338.

HB 3338 – PUBLIC HEARING

058

Chair Kitts

Explains that HB 3338 is sponsored by Rep. Anderson and that the Judiciary Committee has allowed this committee to borrow the bill for the purpose of this hearing. 

061

Cletus Moore

Committee Administrator.  Reads summary of HB 3338.

068

Rep. Gordon Anderson

HD 3.  Comments there are over 20 measures on methamphetamine  in the legislature this year.  Understands that the Judiciary Committee will probably be merging many of them into one committee bill.  Comments he had consultations with the county sheriff and former district attorney and has sponsored HB 3338.  Adds that the governors on the west coast have outlined main areas:  protect drug-endangered children and increase the penalties to be very stringent; laws will be put in place to reduce incidents of labs.  HB 3457 includes forfeiture of personal property much like RICO and Little RICO that were federal laws that will allow law enforcement agencies, when they have clear and convincing proof, to get a default judgment against someone who is a fugitive for prosecution for methamphetamine.  This would provide ability for forfeiture if the person fleas.  HB 2508 talks about danger of welfare of a minor.  It would increase the penalty for conviction to a five-year jail sentence or $125,000 fine or both.  Another bill creates the crime of criminal mistreatment.  That means exposing a dependent in a way that causes physical injury with a very stiff penalty of 10 years and $250,000 fine.  States it is unlikely the fines will be left that high, but they are now in the legislation.  States that when Sheriff Daniel and their District Attorney brought this to him they wanted to increase the classification of methamphetamine.  Currently it is more of a crime to violate the laws on marijuana use than methamphetamine use and methamphetamine is 20 times more dangerous.   This bill says the Board of Pharmacy shall increase the status of methamphetamine from Schedule I Schedule II.  The change would put methamphetamine in the same classification as heroine or morphine or any of the dangerous narcotic drugs.  States that some medications use substances in methamphetamine in medications for children who have ADHD.  A few medically prescribed medications will be excluded from this category.   

155

Chair Kitts

Comments that in Washington County methamphetamine has been identified as the reason for 100 percent of identity thefts.  Asks what Rep. Anderson expects the fiscal impact to be to incarcerate these people.   

 

Rep. Anderson

Responds it would have some impact on the Department of Corrections.  States he will have to wait to see if the provisions get in the final bill.  Knows that the governor has a high priority on dealing with the people who are abusing the drug and especially in relationship to children.  States they may not be able to get it this year but down the line they will be working to get more and more of a penalty for those who are abusing this medication.

 

Chair Kits

Commends Rep. Anderson for his efforts on this issue.

 

Rep. Anderson

Adds that another bill that has been proposed allows forfeiture of property which will bring in fair amounts of money to be able to run not only the courts but possibly cover some of the corrections costs. 

212

Chair Kitts

Comments he thinks the cost to society as a whole with these people in the general population far exceeds the costs to get tough on this drug and we need to let people know if they do the crime, they will do the time. 

219

Rep. Thatcher

Asks if the Board of Pharmacy has the ability to reschedule the drug and if Rep. Anderson has talked to the Board of Pharmacy.

 

Rep. Anderson

Responds he talked to the Pharmacy Association and has encouraged them to move methamphetamine from Schedule II to Schedule I. 

 

Rep. Thatcher

Asks if this would just ensure that the Board of Pharmacy would make the move.

 

Rep. Anderson

Responds affirmatively and states that it will also formalize it in legislation.

214

Chair Kitts

Comments this drug is more addictive than heroin.  It is the most addictive drug out there and can be made with virtually anything.

219

Stephen Campbell

Josephine County District Attorney.  States he is also testifying on behalf of the Oregon District Attorneys Association that supports this bill.  States the Federal Controlled Substance Act was adopt into the state rubric for state controlled substances.  At the same time the Board of Pharmacy was given the authority to change it.  The idea of scheduling controlled substances is that the ones that are most problematic to society and most likely to be misused and abused should be scheduled the highest.  For quite some time methamphetamine has been the biggest problem in Oregon.  The problem of methamphetamine is significant, particularly in property crimes and identity theft.  States that it is appropriate to move it to a Schedule 1 because it is the most misused and abused and is causing the biggest problem in the state.  The bill alone will do very little for the prosecutors for the State of Oregon because the Oregon Sentencing Guidelines controls the sentences.  The effect of the bill is that it would raise a possession to a Class B felony and therefore persons convicted of that would not be eligible to have that conviction expunged two years after they were off probation or after their sentence.  States this has to come in step with other legislation to really be effective and help the prosecutors and the community deal with the problem.  States they do support other legislation that Rep. Anderson talked about. 

297

Chair Kitts

Closes the public hearing on HB 3338 and opens a public hearing on HB 2758.

HB 2758 – PUBLIC HEARING

312

Cletus Moore

Committee Administrator.  Reads summary of HB 2758.

 

Rep. Greenlick

Having arrived after introductions, introduces himself. 

330

Rep. Gordon Anderson

HD 3.  Comments we would be much more in favor of people who owe taxes paying their taxes than having to raise taxes.  Taxpayers are often caught without the means to pay taxes or just miss deadlines.  States some are embarrassed or afraid to come forward because of the penalties and interest.  Some are also criminally negligent.  Whether they are criminals or just forgetful, they still owe the taxes.  Several bills are attempting to correct that loss of revenue.  SB 480 passed the Senate yesterday and HB 2455 deals with tax amnesty or collecting those taxes in the most creative way we can think of.  They also contain a voluntary compliance initiative as well.  That is not to just bring in the taxes through an amnesty period of time where people can pay their back taxes and be relieved of any penalties, it says if they have been involved in an abusive tax shelter where they have been trying to avoid taxes fraudulently, there is also a way for them to pay those taxes and get caught up with the state.  States his bill does not do that, it is just a tax amnesty.  It may be merged into the larger bill as it comes out of Judiciary later in the year.  The idea behind HB 2758 is to allow people time, from the beginning of January to the beginning of March next year, to pay those taxes.  If they cannot pay in a lump sum, the bill allows them to pay over a period of time—until 2012.  There would be interest but no penalties.  Illinois passed tax amnesty and almost $100 million was brought in.  Several years ago they estimated $5 million could be recouped in Oregon and now it would be between $10 and $20 million.  The bill says if the time period of amnesty passes, those who are negligent in paying their taxes will be brought under the normal law with interest and penalties.

419

Chair Kitts

Asks what the estimate of delinquent taxes owed to Oregon is.

 

Anderson

Responds he doesn’t know, but has to think it is probably in the $50 million category and $10 to $20 million might come in. 

430

Chair Kitts

Closes the public hearing on HB 2758.

TAPE 40, SIDE A

006

Chair Kitts

Opens a public hearing on HB 2583.

007

Cletus Moore

Committee Administrator.  Reads summary of HB 2583.

HB 2583 – PUBLIC HEARING

016

Chair Kitts

Explains to the audience that HB 2583 and HB 2551 have been the center pieces for the committee’s statewide tour dealing with the potential election reforms and to make sure Oregon does not end up as a Florida or Washington state.

020

Art Harvey

Chief Deputy County Clerk, Josephine County.  States he would like to express his concern about HB 2583 which requires evidence of citizenship for persons registering to vote.  States that while he supports efforts to strengthen the requirement, he believes this bill goes too far and would make it very difficult for many of our citizens to register, perhaps nearly impossible for some.  States that their office here in Josephine County serves as a passport acceptance agency.  One of the requirements to obtain a passport is to prove citizenship.  It is done in one of three ways: presenting a certified copy of your birth certificate; your original naturalization papers; or an old expired passport.  This would not be an issue for those people who have those items, but for those who don’t, which he believes is most of the citizens, it would force them to spend money to become a registered voter.  Fees go as high as $40 for a birth certificate, depending on the state and jurisdiction.  For low income Oregonians that could be a big impediment.  The unintended effect of this bill would be to charge people to register to vote.  Timing is also an issue.  In Oregon, people can register to vote up until 21 days before an election.  States they hear stories of people getting passports from other states that require four to five weeks to get.  There are also people who cannot get a birth certificate.  In order to get a passport, people who were born in the home, not a hospital, have to go back and try to find  news clippings with their birth announcement, baptismal records, etc.  That can take an extended period of time.   Believes if this obstacle is put in front of people the percentage of people eligible to register and vote would go down significantly, particularly among the 18-25 year olds. 

066

Harvey

States he believes there is a simple and reasonable approach to this that goes a long way toward a fix.  That would be for the State of Oregon to simply mirror the federal Help America Vote Act (HAVA) legislation requirements which would require people registering for the first time to submit either a copy of photo identification, a utility bill, or bank statement with their name and address on it proving residence.  That would work a lot better than the inefficient way they would have to deal with those people now.  At first blush it sounds good to make sure registered voters are all citizens because it is a right only our citizens should be eligible for.  But believes this places an undue burden particularly low income persons to register to vote.  Urges the committee not to pass HB 2583 out of committee. 

084

Chair Kitts

Asks how a utility bill can verify one is a citizen.

 

Harvey

Responds it verifies the residency in the county.

 

Chair Kitts

Asks if it verifies residency or a mailing address.

 

Harvey

States a photo identification, as long as it is not expired and it can be from another address because they have the picture, can be used.  If it is a utility bill, it has to have the name and residence address on it. 

090

Chair Kitts

States he is very sympathetic to the low income and asked what if there were an exemption in the bill for low income folks or for those Harvey has described—maybe an exemption from paying for a birth certificate if the person is a recipient of some type of a subsidized government program such as an Oregon Trail card.

 

Harvey

Responds that would deal with one of his concerns.

097

Chair Kitts

States there could be an exemption for those born in their home or if they were adopted, and other circumstances where people are not able to obtain a birth certificate because of the lack of knowledge where they were born.  Asks what Harvey’s objections would be if the exemptions were included in the bill.

 

Harvey

Responds that there would still be the timing issue.  States it would make the 21 days insignificant because if it takes four or five weeks to obtain proof of citizenship, they could go past the 21st day. 

112

Chair Kitts

Ask what if the 21 days was raised to four or five weeks.

 

Harvey

Responds that would be a great idea.  States one of the biggest issues for him is just how it would discourage people from registering, particularly that younger age group.  As easy as it is now, less than three out of four take the time to do it.

128

Rep. Farr

Asks if we were able to waive the fee for getting an original copy of a birth certificate, it would be difficult if the resident was born in another state unless this state were willing to pay for it. 

136

Rep. Thatcher

Comments that before a federal election, a list of HAVA identification is required and when people are registering to vote they do not provide that identification.  Asks how many notices of deficient identification  the county clerk sends out before the person is “de-registered”.

 

Harvey

Responds they never inactivate a voter for that.  Explains that currently they have 274 people who are in their “no photo” category.  That means they have registered but they have not submitted the identification.  They stay in the category until they furnish the identification or vote in a federal election.  Of those 274, they still have 68 people who have been in that category since 2003.  That is extra work load and money for the counties because the county has to mail them their original notice and then before an election the county has to send them another notice.  Then the county has to mark their ballot so that the county knows the person is in that category so if their ballot comes back, it has to be handled differently.  If the person votes and if it is not a federal election, they do not move out of that category and the county has to go through the whole process again.

166

Rep. Thatcher

Ask Harvey if he said they stay on the list until they vote in a federal election, and then they are deemed identified.

 

Harvey

Responds that is correct or they can submit the proper documentation.

 

Rep. Thatcher

Asks if all they would have had to have done is vote in a federal election.

 

Harvey

Responds that is correct; they are sent a toothless letter.

174

Rep. Thatcher

Ask if the county will continue to request identification of those who did not vote in the last federal election.

 

Harvey

Responds as far as he knows.  States there was talk of this going away with the centralized voter registration system and perhaps there would be more stringent requirements but he doesn’t know if that is happening.

182

Rep. Thatcher

Comments that it seems the HAVA legislation does not do a whole lot.  Asks if Harvey has any suggestion on making it mean more in Oregon.

 

Harvey

Responds that his own opinion is that if we are going to have this requirement for an identification, the person should have to show the identification before they are registered.  States his own opinion is that it doesn’t make sense to send somebody a notice that says you have to show identification and then send them the second notice, then send them a ballot and let them vote repeatedly.  It is a waste of resources and there is very little security in it.

194

Chair Kitts

Asks if the person could still vote if he signs the registration card and send it in without identification. 

 

Harvey

Responds that the person would be notified, sent a ballot and his vote would be counted.

220

Chair Kitts

Asks if it is accurate that if he mails in his ballot without having fulfilled the identification requirement, his ballot would be counted and continue to be counted even though he would be in violation of the identification requirements.

225

Harvey

Responds affirmatively.  Adds that if Rep. Kitts voted in a federal election, he would be taken out of the no photo category.

230

Rep. Kitts

Comments that voting in a federal election preempts the need to fulfill one of the minimum HAVA requirements.

 

Harvey

Responds that is correct.

232

Rep. Greenlick

Comments that the county clerks check on the age, that the person is who they say they are, and that they live where they say they live.  Then the question is whether they are a  U. S. citizen.  Asks if there is a different process of verifying that someone lives at a certain address than it is finding out if they are 18 years of age.  The gas bill with the address would not be used to find out if the person is 18 years of age. 

 

Harvey

Responds that the gas bill would prove where they live and would have nothing to do with the age. 

260

Rep. Greenlick

Comments that the gas bill also would have nothing to do with their citizenship.  Asks how the county clerk finds out how old a person is.

 

Harvey

Responds that they check the box that says they are 18 or will be 18 years of age by the next election and they sign that under penalty of perjury. 

270

Rep. Greenlick

Asks if they feel satisfied if someone comes in and says they are 18 and not some 14 year old alien that is trying to pretend they are 18.

 

Harvey

States he does not believe they have an issue with that but cannot speak for some of the larger counties.

275

Rep. Greenlick

Asks if the person who walks into the office to register is required to mail in a gas bill.

 

Harvey

Responds no, if they register in person that requirement is not necessary.

 

Rep. Greenlick

Asks how they know the person lives at an address if they walk in.

 

Harvey

Responds that once they register, the county clerk sends the person an identification card, a verification card to their address.  If that card comes back, the person is removed.

292

Rep. Greenlick

Asks why they send the person something to verify the address, but if they mail it in, the county clerk has to wait until the person sends in something to verify the address. 

 

Harvey

Responds that complies with Oregon election law.  The reason they do what they do with the mailing of the notification and sending the ballot anyway is the way the Oregon election law is written.

297

Rep. Greenlick

Comments it may make the job of the county clerks easier if we change the Oregon election law to treat mail-in registrations the same way we treat walk-in registrations.

 

Harvey

Responds that procedurally it would but believes that would be flying in the face of HAVA requirements.

304

Chair Kitts

Comments he believes the HAVA guidelines serve as the bare minimum that is required and the states can expound upon that as the states see fit.

306

Harvey

Responds that his understanding is that the Oregon election law supersedes HAVA. 

313

Chair Kitts

Comments his understanding is that the state cannot reduce the bare minimum requirements of HAVA, but can expound upon them. 

 

Harvey

Responds he would not know that for certain.

316

Rep. Greenlick

States that to verify that someone is 18 when they walk in or mail in, they swear under the offense of perjury that they are 18.  In order to deal with citizenship, whether they walk in or they mail in, they swear under a $10,000 fine and years in prison that they are a citizen.  The main problem the county clerk has if they mail in as opposed to walk in is getting certification that they actually live where they live, except if they walk in, the county clerk gets the certification by mailing something out.  If they mail in, because of Oregon law, the person has to send in a copy of a gas bill or something.

332

Harvey

Responds they do send that identification card to all registrants regardless of how the card is received.  The part about requiring additional documentation is correct.

313

Rep. Farr

Asks how many cases of potential or actual voter fraud Harvey has encountered.

 

Harvey

States he has been there almost eight years and does not think they have had one case.

345

Rep. March

Comments there were some problems last election around voter registration.  The problem reported was some people were paying a bounty to people for going out and registering people of one party or another and if they didn’t register for the right party, they would throw them away.   Ask if they had that problem in this county.

 

Harvey

Responds not that he knows of.  States they had one person who thought they had registered through a voter registration drive and they weren’t.  There were not a lot of them where they would have suspected anything like that.

364

Chair Kitts

Comments he was born in Washington and was in Florida all 36 days of the post election.  Comments on discrepancies in Washington state and Florida and states that Harvey has said they have 274 people who have registered to vote on the rolls but have not fulfilled the minimum requirement.   Thirty six counties times the 274 people is 9,864 that could potentially vote but would not have fulfilled the requirement.  The number could be much larger in the bigger counties.  Asks if that causes concern for Harvey. 

411

Harvey

Responds that his own personal opinion is that the intent of HAVA requirements are sabotaged by the way they are told to do this.

417

Chair Kitts

Comments there have been issues brought up here today that have not been brought in other cities.  States that he did not realize that if a person did not provide the minimum requirements that the person could still vote.  Comments that if someone votes in a federal election they don’t have to provide one of the requirements and that is not stated on the voter registration card. 

444

Chair Kitts

Asks what happens if he walks in to register to vote and does not have photo identification.

 

Harvey

Responds that if Rep. Kitts is in person, he is not required to show identification. 

456

Chair Kitts

States that the county clerk would then mail him the identification card to  the address he used.  Ask if the county clerk would follow that up with a ballot, or would he be required to do something else.

 

Harvey

Responds that Rep. Kitts would be registered.  States that Rep. Kitts would first get the identification card and if it isn’t returned to the county clerk, he would be a registered voter and in the next election cycle he would be sent a ballot.

477

Chair Kitts

Asks if the county clerk could ask his 14 year old cousin for identification.

 

Harvey

States he does not know the legality of it but in their office they would ask for identification. 

 

Chair Kitts

Asks if they would be in a predicament of not treating everybody the same

 

Harvey

Responds that he does not know.

TAPE 39, B

012

Rep. Greenlick

States if he mails in his registration there is a separate process.  Asks if the federal election vote is counted as well as other votes that were not part of the federal election.

 

Harvey

Responds the ballot is counted, whether the person has furnished the identification or not.  The difference is if they vote in a federal election, it takes them out of that identification-required category and they will not be sent any more letters.  That is the way Oregon has interpreted HAVA.

022

Chair Kitts

States he is thinking about a bill that would say that if they have not voted in four elections, two primaries and two general elections, they would be taken off the automatic mailing.  Asks Harvey what his thoughts are on that.

 

Harvey

Responds they do have something similar to that—believes it is two general elections or five years and the person is inactivated.  States the person is mailed a notice before they do that asking what is up.

035

Rep. Thatcher

Comments there could be a house full of people who do not exist getting ballots and being counted because nobody asked for identification or follows through to determine if the person is a valid person. 

 

Harvey

Responds conceivably that could be.  States that the centralized voter registration system that is coming on line is going to help a lot with that because it is going to ask for a driver license number, last four digits of social security and it will do a check statewide for duplications. 

058

Rep. Anderson

States he is concerned because he thinks a lot of people in this county and in many other rural counties throughout Oregon are concerned more about helping and healing Americans than helping Americans vote.  Asks how the system would protect against someone who might come and prove that he lives here.  It would not prove that he is an American citizen and he could be a terrorist. 

071

Harvey

Responds he does not know if he can answer that. 

080

Alfred Day

States he is a citizen and did not vote prior to 1996.   States he has seen and is still seeing a huge increase of illegal aliens.  In Oregon alone there are 90,000 illegal aliens.  States he is hearing from Harvey that if some representative of those 90,000 illegal aliens had been sitting in here tonight, there would be a real mess.  States he is very much concerned about illegals being treated by the media as immigrants; media drops the illegal, conveniently, particularly in California and other areas.

 

Chair Kitts

Advises that the committee has received testimony and a request that it be read into the record.

119

Rep. Greenlick

Comments that our society works the way it works because we internalize the laws of our society.  Comments on proceeding through a green light, the tax amnesty bill, and states that when we swear in a court matter, we swear or affirm that we are going to tell the truth and the assumption is we are going to tell the truth and most people do.  States we are operating here that people are not going to tell the truth and who are trying to corrupt the system.  It seems it is important that we base our society on the faith that most of us are trying to do something appropriate because it is appropriate to do.  We could not live in a society if we did not make that assumption.  It helps in going through life knowing that when someone signs their name to a document that says it is true, he is willing to accept that it is true and when it is not he wants to make sure we punish them. 

152

Rep. March

Comments he is aware of the testimony received and knows it will be entered into the record officially.  In deference to the people who are here personally, asks that the people who are here be heard before the testimony is read into the record.

157

Chair Kitts

Reads testimony from Mike Balanesi and Ruth Bendl, sponsors of HB 2583, in response to the editor of The Oregonian relating to HB 2583 (EXHIBIT A).

202

Rep. Greenlick

Comments that the people in Antelope had the proper documentation when they tried to take over.

 

Chair Kitts

Closes the public hearing on HB 2583 and opens a public hearing on HB 2551.

HB 2551 – PUBLIC HEARING

227

Cletus Moore

Committee Administrator.  Reads summary of HB 2551

 

Alex Zeltvay

States he is a registered voter and has met all the requirements and was fortunate to be an observer during the last election for 12 days.  States he is opposed HB 2551.  States he and other observers witnessed the process from signature verification to opening ballots and through counting the votes.  States he still cannot believe the amount of work the 20 people that were involved in opening the ballot envelopes and pulling out the ballots did in two weeks.  States if they have to wait until election day to open the ballots, it is impossible to find out what the results will be in one to four days.  It will take 100 or 150 people to open the ballots in eight or nine hours.  States that security measures have been put in place in Josephine County.  There were minor problems but were mostly over-the-counter problems because as observers they also listened to the phone calls and watched the voters over the counter.  Encourages the committee to vote against HB 2551 or to kill it quickly because he does not want to wait two or three weeks to find out who won the election.

259

Georgette Brown

Josephine County Clerk.  Presents a prepared statement in opposition to HB 2551 (EXHIBIT B).

364

Chair Kitts

Asks why it is not possible on election day to secure a high school gym secured by the sheriff, set up the equipment needed and increase the staffing if the state provided the money from HAVA.

387

Brown

Responds they would have to find and hire 150 people and train them.  States she has experienced, dedicated people who know how to handle the ballots and know what they see and know what they have to do.  If they have to train inexperienced people, a level of efficiency goes away.  States the county does not have any extra funds to hire the extra people and extra security.  States more supervisors would be needed and it would not be efficient.    

 

Chair Kitts

Comments he included “If he state pays for it with HAVA funds” in his question.

 

Brown

Responds that she does not know if HAVA covers that.

419

Rep. March

Asks if there are legislative concepts or pieces of legislation that Brown would like to put on the record that would help the electoral process. 

 

Brown

Responds that Josephine county has not had a lot of problems.  States she has dedicated staff and every time they have had a recount, it has come out fine.  States there are problems with registrations.  States she know there are problems in other states but we do not have those same problems in Oregon. 

455

Rep. March

Comments he thinks Oregon has a good electoral process.  Ask Brown to submit concepts of changes to the registration system and he will be happy to submit them as a minority report to either of these bills. 

466

Rep. Holvey

Comments he gets the sense that the system is not broken so why fix it.  Asks if there have been any allegations of fraud or anything like that in handling the secrecy ballots or opening the secrecy envelopes.

474

Brown

Responds there have never been problems in opening them.  When they check signatures, the signature may not be correct and they investigate the signatures when the ballots come in.  Explains that when the ballots are opened, the boards count them to make sure they have the same number of ballots as envelopes and they check and double check.  Everything is locked up every day so any ballots that have been opened are not available to anybody.   

TAPE 40, B

032

Rep. Thatcher

Asks if they resolved the problem they had talked about people thinking they had registered to vote.

 

Brown

Responds that when people register at the Department of Motor Vehicles or at some of the drives, they think they are registered to vote and they are not on the rolls so they don’t receive a ballot.  They come into the office and wonder why they did not get a ballot.  If they are not registered, they do not get a ballot. 

050

Rep. Farr

Comments that one point covered in HB 2551 is the drop sites for ballots.  The committee has heard testimony that in some counties they do not have secured ballot drop sites.  Gives example of drop box being in the library and when the library was not open, people would shove their ballots under the door.  Asks if Josephine County has any drop sites like that.

055

Brown

Responds they do not have anything where people push their ballots through.  States they have 14-hour stand alone drop sites, like a mailbox.  Ballots cannot be removed unless it is unlocked.  States they also have one at the side doors of the courthouse that is like a mail drop box.  It is inside and is locked.  States Cave Junction has a ballot box and the city recorder is deputized by he.  The city recorder has the ballot box in front of where he works.  That ballot box is put in a safe at night.

079

Brown

Submits a prepared statement from the Josephine County Commissioners in opposition to HB 2551 (EXHIBIT C).

089

Hal B. Anthony

Chair, Three Pines Neighborhood Association.  States their association is in support of HB 2551 but as chair he has some questions about the wording in the bill.  Asks how the language of the bill prohibiting ballot drop sites established by persons other than election officials would prohibit picking up ballots from other people.  Comments on two political parties picking up ballots to deliver to drop sites for disabled people and elderly people.  Asks that the committee discuss that language before its final vote. 

103

Rep. Thatcher

Asks if Anthony supports the bill.

 

Anthony

Responds he would oppose it if it prohibits picking up ballots for elderly and disabled people.  Adds that he supports anything that generates more participation. 

126

Pat Hilton

Grants Pass resident.  Submits a prepared statement describing her experience working in elections in Traverse City,  Michigan, and information on counting machines.  Testifies against using counting machines in elections (EXHIBIT D)

178

Chair Kitts

Closes the public hearing on HB 2551 and postpones the hearing on  HJR 1 until tomorrow in Medford. 

180

Chair Kitts

Adjourns the meeting at 5:48 p.m.

 

 

EXHIBIT SUMMARY

 

  1. HB 2583, prepared statement, Mile Balanesi and Ruth Bendl, 3 pp
  2. HB 2551, prepared statement, Georgette Brown, 1 p
  3. HB 25551, prepared statement of Josephine County Board of Commissioners, Georgette Brown, 1 p
  4. HB 2551, prepared statement and counting machine information, Pat Hilton, 13 pp