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electionlineWeekly — March 15, 2018

Table of Contents

 IV. Legislative Updates

Georgia: The House Government Affairs Committee has approved Senate Bill 403 which would replace the state’s aging electronic voting equipment with paper-based system.

Kentucky: A bill that would have required Kentucky voters to show a valid, government-issued photo ID in order to vote failed to pass a House committee.

Maryland: The House of Delegates has approved a bill that would allow for same day registration. The bill next moves to the Senate.

Michigan: The Senate Elections Committee has unanimously approved a five-bill package that would, among other things, allow the state to implement online voter registration.

New Hampshire: The Senate has approved a bill that will give the secretary of state the power to cancel elections in limited circumstances, such as bad weather.

Oklahoma: Under Senate Bill 926, voters would be allowed to leave work without penalty to vote by an in-person absentee ballot — currently voters are only afforded that on Election Day. Senate Bill 948 would expand Saturday early voting hours to 5pm instead of 2pm. Senate Bill 1269 specifies that there will be no statewide elections called in odd-numbered years in November unless there is a vacancy.

Pennsylvania: Rep. Marcia Hahn (R-Northampton) and Sen. Mario Scavello (R-Monroe) have each introduced bills that seek to curtail the use of schools as polling places.

South Dakota: A ballot initiative which would have put the a question in front of voters about whether or not they wanted control of redistricting taken from legislators and instead given to an independent commission has failed to gather enough signatures to make the ballot.

Utah: The Legislature has approved a series of election reform measures that would require drivers to tell the state department of licensing whether or not they want to register to vote. They would still have to opt-in to register to vote. Also under the bill, residents will now be able to register and vote on election day and voters who fail to vote in back-to-back vote-by-mail elections would be removed from the vote-by-mail list.