Colorado Revised Statutes Title 1. Elections § 1-7.5-107. Procedures for conducting mail ballot election--primary elections--first-time voters casting a mail ballot after having registered by mail to vote--in-person request for ballot--repeal

(1) Official ballots shall be prepared and all other preelection procedures followed as otherwise provided by law or rules promulgated by the secretary of state;  except that mail ballot packets shall be prepared in accordance with this article.

(2.7) Subsequent to the preparation of ballots in accordance with section 1-5-402 but prior to the mailing required under subsection (3) of this section, and no sooner than forty-five days nor later than thirty-two days before an election, a designated election official shall provide a mail ballot to a registered elector requesting the ballot at the designated election official's office or the office designated in the mail ballot plan filed with the secretary of state.

(3)(a)(I) Except as provided in subparagraph (II) of this paragraph (a), not sooner than twenty-two days before a general, primary, or other mail ballot election, and no later than eighteen days before the election, the county clerk and recorder or designated election official shall mail to each active eligible elector, at the last mailing address appearing in the registration records and in accordance with United States postal service regulations, a mail ballot packet, which must be marked “DO NOT FORWARD.  ADDRESS CORRECTION REQUESTED.”, or any other similar statement that is in accordance with United States postal service regulations.  Nothing in this subsection (3) affects any provision of this code governing the delivery of mail ballots to an absent uniformed services elector, nonresident overseas elector, or resident overseas elector covered by the federal “Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act”, 52 U.S.C. sec. 20301 et seq.

(II) For a primary mail ballot election, the mail ballot packet must be mailed only to active registered electors.  If the twenty-second day before an election is a Saturday, Sunday, or legal holiday, the county clerk and recorder or designated election official may mail ballot packets pursuant to subparagraph (I) of this paragraph (a) on the Friday immediately preceding the twenty-second day.

(b) The ballot or ballot label shall contain the following warning:

WARNING:

Any person who, by use of force or other means, unduly influences an eligible elector to vote in any particular manner or to refrain from voting, or who falsely makes, alters, forges, or counterfeits any mail ballot before or after it has been cast, or who destroys, defaces, mutilates, or tampers with a ballot is subject, upon conviction, to imprisonment, or to a fine, or both.

(b.5)(I) The return envelope shall have printed on it a self-affirmation substantially in the following form:

I state under penalty of perjury that I am an eligible elector;  that my signature and name are as shown on this envelope;  that I have not and will not cast any vote in this election except by the enclosed ballot;  and that my ballot is enclosed in accord with the provisions of the “Uniform Election Code of 1992”.

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Date

Signature of voter

(II) The signing of the self-affirmation on the return envelope shall constitute an affirmation by the eligible elector, under penalty of perjury, that the facts stated in the self-affirmation are true.  If the eligible elector is unable to sign, the eligible elector may affirm by making a mark on the self-affirmation, with or without assistance, witnessed by another person.

(III) The return envelope shall not be required to have a flap covering the signature or otherwise impede the use of a signature verification device.

(d) An eligible elector may obtain a replacement ballot if the ballot was destroyed, spoiled, lost, or for some other reason not received by the eligible elector.  An eligible elector may obtain a ballot if a mail ballot packet was not sent to the elector because the eligibility of the elector could not be determined at the time the mail ballot packets were mailed.  The designated election official shall keep a record of each ballot issued in accordance with this paragraph (d).

(3.5)(a) Unless otherwise provided by section 1-2-201(5) , the requirements of this subsection (3.5) apply to a person who registered to vote in accordance with article 2 of this title and who has not previously voted in an election in Colorado.

(b) Any person who matches either of the descriptions specified in subparagraph (I) or (II) of paragraph (a) of this subsection (3.5) and intends to cast his or her ballot by mail in accordance with this article shall submit with his or her mail ballot a copy of identification within the meaning of section 1-1-104(19.5) .

(c) The county clerk and recorder or designated election official shall include with the mail ballot packet required by paragraph (a) of subsection (3) of this section written instructions advising an elector who matches the description specified in paragraph (a) of this subsection (3.5) of the manner in which the elector shall be in compliance with the requirements contained in paragraph (a) of this subsection (3.5).

(d) Any person who desires to cast his or her ballot by mail but does not satisfy the requirements of paragraph (b) of this subsection (3.5) may cast such ballot by mail.  The county clerk and recorder or designated election official shall, within three days after the receipt of a mail ballot that does not contain a copy of identification as defined in section 1-1-104(19.5) , but in no event later than two days after election day, send to the eligible elector at the address indicated in the registration records a letter explaining the lack of compliance with paragraph (b) of this subsection (3.5).  If the county clerk and recorder or designated election official receives a copy of identification in compliance with paragraph (b) of this subsection (3.5) within eight days after election day, and if the mail ballot is otherwise valid, the mail ballot shall be counted.

(e) The requirements of this subsection (3.5) shall be implemented by state and local election officials in a uniform and nondiscriminatory manner.

(f) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the requirements of this subsection (3.5) do not apply to any person who is:

(I) Entitled to vote by absentee ballot under the federal “Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act”, 52 U.S.C. sec. 20301 et seq. ;

(II) Provided the right to vote otherwise than in person under section (b)(2)(B)(ii) of the federal “Voting Accessibility for the Elderly and Handicapped Act”, 52 U.S.C. sec. 20102 et seq. ;  or

(III) Entitled to vote otherwise than in person under any other federal law.

(4)(a) Upon receipt of a ballot, the eligible elector shall mark the ballot, sign and complete the self-affirmation on the return envelope, enclose identification if required by subsection (3.5) of this section, and comply with the instructions provided with the ballot.

(b)(I) The eligible elector may:

(A) Return the marked ballot to the county clerk and recorder or designated election official by United States mail or by depositing the ballot at the office of the county clerk and recorder or designated election official or any voter service and polling center or drop-off location designated by the county clerk and recorder or designated election official as specified in the mail ballot plan filed with the secretary of state.  The ballot must be returned in the return envelope.

(B) Deliver the ballot to any person of the elector's own choice or to any duly authorized agent of the county clerk and recorder or designated election official for mailing or personal delivery;  except that no person other than a duly authorized agent of the county clerk and recorder or designated election official may receive more than ten mail ballots in any election for mailing or delivery;  or

(C) Cast his or her vote in person at the voter service and polling center.

(II) If an eligible elector returns the ballot by mail, the elector must provide postage.  The ballot shall be received at the office of the county clerk and recorder or designated election official or a designated drop-off location, which shall remain open until 7 p.m. on election day.  All envelopes containing mail ballots must be in the hands of the county clerk and recorder or designated election official no later than 7 p.m. on the day of the election.  Mail ballot envelopes received after 7 p.m. on the day of the election but postmarked on or before the day of the election will remain sealed and uncounted, but the elector's registration record shall not be canceled for failure to vote in a general election.  For an election coordinated by the county clerk and recorder, the drop-off location other than secure drop boxes shall be designated by the county clerk and recorder and located in a secure place under the supervision of a municipal clerk, an election judge, or a member of the clerk and recorder's staff.  For a mail ballot election not coordinated by the county clerk and recorder, the drop-off location shall be designated by the designated election official and located in a secure place under the supervision of the designated election official, an election judge, or another person designated by the designated election official.

(III) A person who delivers a ballot on behalf of an elector pursuant to sub-subparagraph (B) of subparagraph (I) of this paragraph (b) is not deemed to be voting more than once pursuant to section 1-13-710 .

(IV) Nothing in subparagraph (II) of this paragraph (b) affects or supersedes provisions regarding the timely casting and counting of ballots under section 1-8.3-111 or 1-8.3-113 .

(4.3)(a) For any election, other than a general election, for which a county clerk and recorder is the designated election official, there must be a minimum number of mail ballot drop-off locations where mail ballots may be deposited equal to at least one drop-off location for each thirty thousand active registered electors in the county;  except that, if the district or political subdivision for which the election is being conducted is less populous than the county, the county clerk and recorder shall designate at least one mail ballot drop-off location for each thirty thousand current active registered electors eligible to vote in that election.  The drop-off locations shall be arrayed throughout the county in a manner that provides the greatest convenience to electors.

(b) The minimum number of drop-off locations described in paragraph (a) of this subsection (4.3) shall accept mail ballots delivered by electors during, at a minimum, the four days prior to and including the day of the election;  except that mail ballots are not required to be accepted on Sundays.  Mail ballots shall be accepted from electors at drop-off locations during, at a minimum, reasonable business hours.

(4.5)(a)(I) For any primary or November coordinated election, the county clerk and recorder shall designate voter service and polling centers equal to no fewer than the number of county motor vehicle offices in the county;  except that each county shall have no fewer than one voter service and polling center, and, for counties with fewer than twenty-five thousand active electors, as that term is described in subparagraph (II) of this paragraph (a), only one voter service and polling center is required.  The county clerk and recorder may add additional voter service and polling center locations as necessary.

(B) On and after November 8, 2016, for the purposes of subparagraph (I) of this paragraph (a), the number of active electors in a county is the number of active electors registered in the county on the date of the previous presidential election.

(b.5) For any election, other than a general, primary, or November coordinated election, for which the county clerk and recorder is the designated election official, the county clerk and recorder shall designate at least one voter service and polling center for each thirty thousand current active registered electors who are eligible to vote in that election.

(c) The minimum number of voter service and polling centers shall be open during, at a minimum, the eight days prior to and including the day of the election;  except that voter service and polling centers are not required to be open on Sundays.

(d) In designating voter service and polling centers under this subsection (4.5), a county clerk and recorder shall take into account the factors described under section 1-5-102.9(1)(c)(I) .

(5)(a) Once the ballot is returned, an election judge shall first qualify the submitted ballot by comparing the information on the return envelope with the registration records to determine whether the ballot was submitted by an eligible elector who has not previously voted in the election.  If the ballot so qualifies and is otherwise valid, the election judge shall indicate in the pollbook that the eligible elector cast a ballot and deposit the ballot in an official ballot box.

(c) For any election conducted with or coordinated by a county clerk and recorder, the signature of the eligible elector on the return envelope shall be compared with the signature of the eligible elector on file in the office of the county clerk and recorder or in the statewide voter registration system in accordance with section 1-7.5-107.3 .

(6) All deposited ballots shall be counted as provided in this article and by rules promulgated by the secretary of state.  A mail ballot is valid and shall be counted only if it is returned in the return envelope, the self-affirmation on the return envelope is signed and completed by the eligible elector to whom the ballot was issued, and the information on the return envelope is verified in accordance with subsection (5) of this section.  Mail ballots shall be counted in the same manner provided by section 1-7-307 for counting paper ballots or section 1-7-507 for counting electronic ballots.  If the election official determines that an eligible elector to whom a replacement ballot has been issued has returned more than one ballot, the first ballot received is the accepted ballot.  All candidates and issues for which the voter is eligible to vote will be counted on the accepted ballot.  Rejected ballots shall be handled in the same manner as provided in sections 1-7.5-204 and 1-7.5-210 .

(7) If, by the close of polls, an elector deposits a ballot at a drop-off location in a county in which the elector does not reside, the county clerk and recorder, upon discovering that fact, shall timely deliver the ballot to the county clerk and recorder of the county in which the elector resides, who shall accept the ballot for processing.


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