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Oregon Bulletin

December 1, 2013

Secretary of State, Elections Division, Chapter 165

Rule Caption: Amends account submission and circulator registration and certification methods, clarifies signature verification processes.

Adm. Order No.: ELECT 6-2013

Filed with Sec. of State: 11-8-2013

Certified to be Effective: 11-8-13

Notice Publication Date: 9-1-2013

Rules Amended: 165-014-0100, 165-014-0110, 165-014-0270, 165-014-0280

Subject: 165-014-0110 clarifies that statistical sampling will only be conducted on additional submission of signatures if the number of unverified signatures accepted for inclusion in the sample are equal to or greater than the remaining required number of signatures. Additionally reference is added to specify that the handwriting characteristics and factors set forth in the Vote by Mail Procedures Manual adopted under OAR 165-007-0030 will be used to evaluate and determine whether the signature on a petition matches signatures contained in the voter’s registration record.

   OAR 165-014-0100 designates which accounts need to be turned in on a monthly basis, removing the requirement that copies of paid petition sheets submitted for verification must also be submitted monthly for the purposes of accounts. Clarifies that authorized agent may sign SEL 320 on behalf of chief petitioner(s).

   OAR 165-014-0270 adopts the Circulator Certification Matrix contained in Appendix A. Minor revisions have been made to the standards used to determine if the circulator certification is sufficient.

   OAR 165-014-0280 adopts the 2013 Circulator Training Manual and incorporates the requirement that any person who will be paid to gather signatures on a state initiative, referendum, recall or prospective petition to submit their Criminal History Report as provided by the Oregon State Police Open Records Section when registering as a circulator.

Rules Coordinator: Brenda Bayes—(503) 986-1518

165-014-0100

Review of Specified Chief Petitioner Accounts

(1) Each chief petitioner of an initiative, referendum or prospective petition who pays any person money or other valuable consideration to obtain signatures on the petition shall keep detailed accounts in accordance with ORS 260.262. The Elections Division will review these accounts in the manner and in accordance with the schedule set out in paragraphs (2) and (3) of this rule.

(2) Chief petitioners shall submit digital copies of the applicable accounts described on the SEL 320 unless they receive prior written approval from the Elections Division to submit paper copies.

(a) Acceptable digital formats include pdf files, Excel files, or Word files submitted on CD-ROM or via electronic mail.

(b) The Elections Division may request original documentation of chief petitioner accounts, in addition to or in lieu of copies.

(c) The Elections Division may choose to conduct on-site reviews of chief petitioner accounts.

(3) Detailed copies of the applicable accounts described on the SEL 320, must be submitted by the 10th business day of each month after any month in which circulators were paid to collect signatures. The Elections Division may require accounts to be submitted in shortened time frame depending on the circumstances of each petition.

(4) The Elections Division reserves the right to demand all accounts described under ORS 260.262, including all circulated signature sheets.

(5) Chief petitioners, or their authorized agent, must submit a completed SEL 320, each time accounts are provided, detailing the nature of the accounts provided under ORS 260.262.

(6) The Elections Division shall review accounts to determine whether all of the required information appears to have been provided. If after review it is determined that the accounts submitted are incomplete or the chief petitioners fail to submit the requested accounts, the Elections Division may find that a violation of section 1b, Article IV of the Oregon Constitution, has occurred, suspend the petition from obtaining additional signatures, and/or issue a civil penalty under OAR 165-013-0020.

(7) If the Elections Division takes action under ORS 260.262(6) the chief petitioners may file notarized written explanation contesting the suspension and providing evidence that the accounts submitted are complete.

(8) If a petition is suspended under ORS 260.262(6) the chief petitioners are prohibited from obtaining any additional signatures on the petition until it has been determined by the Elections Division that the accounts are complete. Any signatures gathered in violation of the suspension will not be accepted for signature verification.

(9) If the petition has multiple chief petitioners, only one set of copies of the detailed accounts for each petition need to be produced by the deadline.

(10) Accounts must be kept current as of not later than the 7th calendar day after the date a payment is made to a person for obtaining signatures on a petition.

(11) The Elections Division reserves the right to conduct a review of all chief petitioner accounts in accordance with ORS 260.262(4).

Stat. Auth.: ORS 246.150, 260.262

Stats. Implemented: ORS 260.262

Hist.: ELECT 21-2007, f. & cert. ef. 12-31-07; ELECT 3-2008(Temp), f. & cert. ef. 3-14-08 thru 5-2-08; ELECT 6-2008(Temp), f. & cert. ef. 5-2-08 thru 9-10-08; ELECT 8-2008, f. & cert. ef. 8-12-08; ELECT 33-2009, f. & cert. ef. 12-31-09; ELECT 13-2011, f.. & cert. ef. 8-1-11; ELECT 6-2013, f. & cert. ef. 11-8-13

165-014-0110

Statistical Sampling Procedures for Other than State Initiative or Referendum Petitions

(1) This rule is adopted to implement ORS 248.008, 249.008, 249.875, 250.215, 250.315 and 255.175.

(2) For this rule, the term:

(a) Filing Officer refers to the person with whom the petition is filed for pre-processing. A minor political party formation petition and a recall petition against a State Public Officer are filed with the Elections Division. County petitions are filed with the county elections official, city petitions are filed with the city recorder and district petitions are filed with the county elections official of the county in which the administrative office of the district is located.

(b) Elections Official(s) refers to the person who verifies the sampling of petition signature lines against the voter’s registration record. For a minor political party formation petition or a recall petition against a State Public Officer the Elections Division may choose to verify sampled signatures or distribute to county elections officials for verification. The county elections official verifies signatures for all county, city and district petitions subject to this rule.

(3) The handwriting characteristics and factors set forth in the Vote by Mail Procedures Manual adopted under OAR 165-007-0030 will be used by Elections Officials to evaluate and determine whether the signature on any sampled signature line matches signatures contained in the voter’s registration record.

(a) Only a signature possessing obvious and predominantly matching characteristics with signatures contained in the voter’s registration record may be determined to be a match.

(b) A signature possessing more non-matching than matching characteristics with signatures contained in the voter’s registration record shall be reviewed by at least two different elections officials before it is rejected as a non-matching signature.

(4) A random sample for any petition submittal, will only be selected if the Filing Officer determines the petition signature sheets accepted for inclusion in the sample contain a number of unverified signatures equal to or greater than the required number of signatures necessary to accept the petition.

(5) Once chief petitioners or sponsors submit the required number of signatures and affirm the petition is complete, the process outlined in (6) through (16) is utilized to determine if the petition contains enough valid signatures to qualify for the ballot.

(6) Two signature samples may be selected in order to determine if the petition contains the required number of valid signatures. The statistical formula referred to in this rule is contained in Appendix 4, which is incorporated into this rule by reference.

(7) Prior to verification, each petition cover and signature sheet is reviewed by the Filing Officer, and removed if:

(a) The cover and signature sheet submitted is not a version that was approved for circulation.

(b) The circulator certification is insufficient as defined by OAR 165-014-0270.

(c) All information included in the optional information fields about the petition signers, such as their printed name, address and date signed, does not comply with OAR 165-014-0275.

(d) No sheet number is provided.

(8) The signature lines on each petition signature sheet accepted for inclusion in the sample will be reviewed and not accepted for sampling if:

(a) The signature line is not certified by the circulator’s certification date.

(b) The signature line does not comply with OAR 165-014-0275.

(9) The size of the first sample of signatures will be 10% of the total number of signatures accepted for verification. The size of the second sample of signatures will be the same number used in the first sample, plus at least one additional signature.

(10) The Elections Official separates the petition signature sheets containing signature lines selected in the first and second random samples from the signature sheets that are not selected in the samples.

(11) The first random sampling of petition signature lines is verified. If the sampled signature line is a blank or crossed out line, the next available line below will be verified. If there are no lines below, the line above will be verified. When the Filing Officer and Elections Official are not the same individual these changes must be noted on the signature sheet.

(12) The Elections Official will consolidate and tabulate the verification data generated from OCVR, for the first sample.

(13) The statistical formula will be applied to the consolidated data from the first sample. After determining the result of the first sample the Elections Official will notify the following individuals that the petition has either qualified to the ballot or that the second larger sample will be verified:

(a) The Filing Officer; or

(b) The chief petitioners or sponsors of the petition if the Filing Officer and Elections are the same individual.

(14) The second random sampling of petition signature lines is verified.. If the sampled signature line is a blank or crossed out line, the next available line below will be verified. If there are no lines below, the line above will be verified. When the Filing Officer and Elections Official are not the same individual these changes must be noted on the signature sheet.

(15) The verification data for the second sample will be added to the first sample data and the statistical formula applied to the combined results. If the petition is accepted after verification of the combined sample the Elections Division will notify:

(a) The Filing Officer; or

(b) The chief petitioners or sponsors of the petition if the Filing Officer and Elections are the same person.

(16) If after verification of the combined first and second samples the Filing Officer determines the petition does not contain the required number of valid signatures, chief petitioners may submit additional signature sheets as long as the filing deadline has not passed. Any additional submittals will be verified using the following process:

(a) The verification procedures applied to the first submittal will be applied to any additional submittal of signatures.

(b) The Elections Official has the option to either verify all additional signatures or to continue to use the sampling process described in this rule.

(c) A single sample that is the larger of 100 or a number of signatures that is directly proportional to the first submittal of signatures will be selected from the additional signatures accepted for inclusion in the sample.

(d) If fewer than 100 signatures are submitted then all signatures are verified.

(e) To determine acceptance or rejection of the petition, the verification data from additional submittals will be added to the verification data of the first submittal and the statistical formula applied to the combined results.

[ED. NOTE: Appendix referenced is available from the agency.]

Stat. Auth.: ORS 246.150, 250.105, 250.215, 250.315 & 255.175

Stats. Implemented: ORS 249.875, 250.105, 250.215, 250.315 & 255.175

Hist.: ELECT 19-1991(Temp), f. & cert. ef. 12-20-91; ELECT 13-1993, f. & cert. ef. 4-16-93; ELECT 7-2000, f. & cert. ef. 4-5-00; ELECT 3-2004, f. & cert. ef. 4-15-04; ELECT 3-2005, f. & cert. ef. 3-22-05; ELECT 10-2005, f. & cert. ef. 12-14-05; ELECT 18-2007, f. & cert. ef. 12-31-07; ELECT 19-2011, f. & cert. ef. 9-26-11; ELECT 6-2013, f. & cert. ef. 11-8-13

165-014-0270

Circulator Certification

(1) This rule applies to prospective initiative, initiative, referendum, recall, candidate nominating, minor political party formation and voters’ pamphlet petitions.

(2) Circulators must certify that they witnessed the signing of the signature sheet by each individual whose signature appears on the sheet and that they believe each signer is an elector by completing the certification at the bottom of the signature sheet.

(3) A petition signature sheet will be rejected if the circulator certification is not completed or determined to be insufficient.

(4) The circulator certification is considered complete if it consists of a signature and a date that have been determined to be sufficient under the Circulator Certification Matrix contained in Appendix A which is incorporated into this rule by reference.

(5) If the circulator’s certification signature is required to be verified by exemplar the handwriting characteristics and factors set forth in the Vote by Mail Procedures Manual adopted under OAR 165-007-0030 will be used to evaluate and determine whether the certification signature on a petition sheet matches:

(a) For circulators required to be registered under ORS 250.048, signatures provided as examples on any SEL 308, Circulator Registration, accepted for the petition cycle.

(b) For circulators not required to be registered under ORS 250.048, signatures contained in the circulator’s voter registration record.

(c) If the circulator is not required to be registered under ORS 250.048 and an Oregon voter registration record bearing the circulator’s signature is not available as an exemplar, the elections official will notify the chief petitioners or authorized agent by telephone and email, providing an opportunity to submit an alternative exemplar of the circulator’s signature.

(d) To be considered, the chief petitioners or authorized agent must deliver an alternative exemplar to the elections official no later than 5 pm of the following business day that is at least 24 hours from the time notification was made. Additional time to provide an alternative exemplar may be allowed only if the chief petitioners or authorized agent requests it and if allowing the additional time does not delay the signature verification process.

(e) The alternative exemplar must be a signature on an official government-issued document such as a driver’s license or passport, and must have been executed before the date of the attempted certification of the petition signature sheet.

(6) Only circulator certifications with a signature possessing obvious and predominantly matching characteristics to those signatures contained in the exemplar provided under (5) of this rule may be determined to be complete.

(7) Circulator certifications with a signature possessing more non-matching than matching characteristics to those signatures contained in the exemplar provided under (5) of this rule shall be reviewed by at least two different signature verification staff members before the petition sheet is rejected for insufficient circulator certification.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 246.150, 249.008, 250.105, 250.215, 250.315 & 255.175

Stats. Implemented: ORS 249.008, 249.061, 249.740, 249.865, 249.875, 250.045, 250.105, 250.215, 250.315 & 255.175

Hist.: ELECT 4-2005, f. & cert. ef. 4-8-05; ELECT 23-2007, f. & cert. ef. 12-31-07: ELECT 8-2012, f. & cert. ef. 1-3-12; ELECT 6-2013, f. & cert. ef. 11-8-13

165-014-0280

Designating the Circulator Training and Registration Manual and Forms

The Secretary of State designates the 2013 Circulator Training and Registration Manual and associated forms as the curriculum, procedures and forms to be used to register as required under ORS 250.048 by a person who will be paid to gather signatures on a state prospective initiative, initiative, referendum or recall petition.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 246.150, Sec. 2, Ch. 848 OL 2007

Stats. Implemented: Sec. 2, Ch. 848 OL 2007

Hist.: ELECT 7-2007, f. & cert. ef. 12-3-07; ELECT 34-2009, f. & cert. ef. 12-31-09; ELECT 6-2013, f. & cert. ef. 11-8-13

Notes
1.) This online version of the OREGON BULLETIN is provided for convenience of reference and enhanced access. The official, record copy of this publication is contained in the original Administrative Orders and Rulemaking Notices filed with the Secretary of State, Archives Division. Discrepancies, if any, are satisfied in favor of the original versions. Use the OAR Revision Cumulative Index found in the Oregon Bulletin to access a numerical list of rulemaking actions after November 15, 2012.

2.) Copyright 2013 Oregon Secretary of State: Terms and Conditions of Use

Oregon Secretary of State • 136 State Capitol • Salem, OR 97310-0722
Phone: (503) 986-1523 • Fax: (503) 986-1616 • oregon.sos@state.or.us

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