Voting rights of military and overseas citizens

Expands the ability of overseas military and citizens to vote in
Hawaii elections by absentee ballot.

THE SENATE                              S.B. NO.           1422
TWENTIETH LEGISLATURE, 1999                                
STATE OF HAWAII                                            

                   A  BILL  FOR  AN  ACT



 1      SECTION 1.  Chapter 15, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended
 2 by adding a new section to be appropriately designated and to
 3 read as follows:  
 4      "   Forty five (45) day transit time.  For all elections,
 5 the official charged with the printing and distribution of
 6 ballots and election materials shall print as many absentee
 7 ballots as may be necessary as soon as possible after receiving
 8 the information concerning candidates and measures to be voted on
 9 at an election, and balloting materials shall be mailed not later
10 than the forty fifth (45th) day before the election."
11      SECTION 2.  Chapter 15, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended
12 by adding a new section to be appropriately designated and to
13 read as follows:
14      "  Late registration procedures.  An individual,
15 oraccompanying family member who has been discharged or separated
16 from the Uniformed Services, the merchant marines, or from
17 employment outside the territorial limits of the United States,
18 too late to enable him or her to register by the regular state
19 deadline for registration, shall be entitled to register for the
20 purpose of voting at the next ensuing election after such
21 discharge, separation, or termination of employment."
Page 2                                                     
                                     S.B. NO.           1422

 1      SECTION 3.  Section 15-2, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is
 2 amended to read as follows:
 3      "15-2 Who may vote by absentee ballot.  (a) Any person
 4 registered to vote may cast an absentee ballot in the manner
 5 provided in this chapter and in the rules adopted by the chief
 6 election officer.  
 7      (b) If a United States citizen, domiciled outside the United
 8 States, who has never lived in the United States has a parent who
 9 is a qualified elector in the State of Hawaii, then that person
10 is eligible to register and vote by absentee ballot, on federal
11 elections, in the State of Hawaii."
12      SECTION 4.  Section 15-3.5, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is
13 amended to read as follows:
14      "15-3.5  Federal write-in absentee ballot.  (a)
15 Notwithstanding the provisions of this chapter and chapters 11
16 and 16, the federal write-in absentee ballot for overseas voters
17 in general elections for federal office which must be prescribed
18 under section 1973ff of title 42, United States Code, as amended,
19 may be used in general elections for federal offices.  
20      (b) If the voter is residing outside the United States or is
21 a member of the United States Armed Forces, or a family member of
22 a member of the Armed Forces and a qualified elector, he or she

Page 3                                                     
                                     S.B. NO.           1422

 1 may use the Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot in general, special,
 2 primary, and run-off elections for local, state, and federal
 3 offices. 
 4      (c) Voters meeting the definition in sub-section (b) of this
 5 section may use the Federal Write-In Ballot transmission
 6 envelope, as a request for registration, simultaneously with the
 7 submission of the ballot if the following criteria are met: 
 8           (1) the information submitted complies with the
 9           registration requirements of the State; 
10           (2) the voter is otherwise eligible to vote absentee in
11           the jurisdiction where the request is submitted; and
12           (3) the request is received by the appropriate state
13           election official not less than thirty (30) days before
14           the election."
15      SECTION 5.  Section 15-4, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is
16 amended to read as follows:
17      "15-4 Request for absentee ballot.  Any person registered
18 to vote may request an absentee ballot in person or in writing
19 from the clerk [not earlier than on the sixtieth day and] not
20 later than 4:30 p.m. on the seventh day prior to the election.
21 Any mailed requests for an absentee ballot shall be mailed by the
22 person directly to the clerk.  The clerk may waive any or all of
23 the foregoing requirements in special cases as provided in the

Page 4                                                     
                                     S.B. NO.           1422

 1 rules adopted by the chief election officer.
 2      The single absentee ballot application must permit the
 3 person to register to vote and to request an absentee ballot for
 4 each election held within that calendar year for which the voter
 5 is eligible to vote.
 6      The request shall include information such as the person's
 7 social security number, date of birth, and the address under
 8 which the person is registered to vote.  The request shall also
 9 include the address to which the person wishes the requested
10 ballot forwarded.  The request, when made for any primary or
11 special primary election, may include an additional request for
12 an absentee ballot to be voted at any election immediately
13 following the primary or special primary provided the person so
14 indicates in the person's request.
15      Subsequent to the closing of registration for each election,
16 the clerk may mail a request form for an absentee ballot to each
17 voter in a remote area who has not already made such a request.
18 The request form shall be accompanied by:
19      (1)  A stamped, self-addressed envelope; and
20      (2)  Instructions regarding the manner of completing and
21           returning the request form."
22      SECTION 6.  If any provision of this Act, or the application
23 thereof to any person or circumstance is held invalid, the

Page 5                                                     
                                     S.B. NO.           1422

 1 invalidity does not affect other provisions or applications of
 2 the Act which can be given effect without the invalid provision
 3 or application, and to this end the provisions of this Act are
 4 severable.
 5      SECTION 7.  Statutory material to be repealed is bracketed.
 6 New statutory material is underscored.
 7      SECTION 8.  This Act shall take effect upon its approval.
 9                           INTRODUCED BY:  _______________________