D.C. Law 21-208. Automatic Voter Registration Amendment Act of 2016.

D.C. Law 21-208. Automatic Voter Registration Amendment Act of 2016.

AN ACT

To amend the District of Columbia Election Code of 1955 to provide that each Department of Motor Vehicles ("DMV") application for a DMV-issued driver's license (including any renewal application) or nondriver's identification card shall automatically serve as an application to register to vote in the District of Columbia, unless the applicant indicates on the application that he or she does not want the application to serve as a voter registration application, to change the voter registration deadline from the 30th day before an election to the 21st day before an election, to require the District of Columbia Board of Elections to accept electronic registration information from the DMV to register voters and maintain up-to-date voter rolls, and to provide a person the opportunity to decline automatic voter registration; to amend the District of Columbia Uniform Military and Overseas Voters Act of 2012 to change the voter registration deadline from the 30th day before an election to the 21st day before an election; and to amend the District of Columbia Traffic Act, 1925 to require the DMV to provide the District of Columbia Board of Elections with electronic records containing specified information on each person who may qualify as a qualified elector.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE COUNCIL OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, That this act may be cited as the "Automatic Voter Registration Amendment Act of 2016".

Sec. 2. The District of Columbia Election Code of 1955, approved August 12, 1955 (69 Stat. 699; D.C. Official Code § 1-1001.01 et seq.), is amended as follows:

Amend § 1-1001.07

(a) Section 7 (D.C. Official Code § 1-1001.07) is amended as follows:

(1) Subsection (a)(2) is amended to read as follows:

"(2)(A) He or she executes an application to register to vote by signature or mark (unless prevented by physical disability) on a form approved pursuant to subsection (b) of this section or by the Election Assistance Commission attesting that he or she meets the requirements of a qualified elector, and if he or she desires to vote in party elections, indicating his or her political party affiliation; or

"(B) He or she applies for a DMV-issued driver's license or non-driver's identification card pursuant to subsection (c) of this section; and".

(2) Subsection (c) is amended as follows:

(A) Paragraph (1) is amended as follows:

(i) Subparagraphs (A) and (B) are amended to read as follows:

"(A)(i) Each DMV application for a DMV-issued driver's license (including any renewal application) or nondriver's identification card shall automatically serve as an application to register to vote in the District of Columbia, unless the applicant indicates on the application that he or she does not want the application to serve as a voter registration application.

"(ii) For each applicant who did not decline to register to vote or update his or her voter registration information under sub-subparagraph (i) of this subparagraph and stated that he or she is a citizen of the United States, the DMV shall provide to the Board electronic records containing the applicant's:

"(I) Legal name;

"(II) Date of birth;

"(III) Residence;

"(IV) Mailing address;

"(V) Previous voter registration address;

"(VI) DMV-issued identification number or social security number;

"(VII) Party affiliation;

"(VIII) Response as to whether the applicant would like information on serving as a poll worker in the next election;

"(IX) Citizenship information; and

"(X) Electronic signature.

"(B) The DMV and the Board shall jointly develop a DMV application form that shall contain the necessary information for the:

"(i) Issuance, renewal, or correction of the applicant's driver's license or nondriver's identification card; and

"(ii) Means for the applicant to:

"(I) Provide a mailing address, if mail is not received at the residence address;

"(II) State whether the applicant is a United States citizen;

"(III) Indicate a choice of party affiliation (if any);

"(IV) Indicate the last address of voter registration (if known);

"(V) Indicate whether the applicant would like information on serving as a poll worker in the next election;

"(VI) Sign, under penalty of perjury, an attestation that sets forth the requirements for voter registration and states that the applicant meets each of those requirements; and

"(VII) Decline to register to vote, or, if already registered in the District, decline to update his or her voter registration.".

(ii) Subparagraph (D) is amended by striking the phrase "combined portion of the form" and inserting the word "application" in its place.

(iii) Subparagraphs (E) and (F) are repealed.

(iv) Subparagraph (I) is amended as follows:

(I) The existing text is designated as sub-subparagraph (i).

(II) The newly designated sub-subparagraph (i) is amended by striking the phrase "An application to register to vote or for change of address, party, or name" and inserting the phrase "An application" in its place.

(III) A new sub-subparagraph (ii) is added to read as follows:

"(ii) The Board shall consider an application that the DMV accepted for the purposes of voter registration on or before the voter registration deadline as timely received.".

(v) Subparagraph (J) is amended by striking the phrase "may state whether the change of address or name is" and inserting the phrase "may decline to correct or update the individual's address or name" in its place.

(B) A new paragraph (3) is added to read as follows:

"(3)(A) If a person who is not a qualified elector becomes registered to vote under this subsection, that person's voter registration:

"(i) Shall be presumed to have been effected with official authorization and not through the fault of that person;

"(ii) Shall not constitute a violation of section 14; and

"(iii) Shall not serve as a basis for holding that person civilly or criminally liable for the voter registration;

"(B) If a person who is not a qualified elector becomes registered to vote under this subsection and votes or attempts to vote in an election held after the effective date of that person's voter registration, that person shall not be in violation of section 14 or held civilly or criminally liable for voting, unless that person votes or attempts to vote knowing that he or she is not a qualified elector.".

(3) Subsection (e) is amended as follows:

(A) Paragraph (1) is amended by striking the phrase "from any applicant" and inserting the phrase "from any applicant, the DMV, pursuant to subsection (c)(1) of this section, or a voter registration agency, pursuant to subsection (d) of this section" in its place.

(B) Paragraph (2) is amended as follows:

(i) The existing text is designated as subparagraph (A).

(ii) A new subparagraph (B) is added to read as follows:

"(B) For applications received from the DMV, pursuant to subsection (c)(1) of this section, the notification, in addition to the information required under subparagraph (A) of this paragraph, shall include information regarding the process to decline voter registration and to change or adopt a political party affiliation, if one was not designated on the application.".

(4) Subsection (g) is amended as follows:

(A) Paragraph (1) is amended as follows:

(i) Strike the phrase "At any time except during the 30-day" and insert the phrase "Except as provided in paragraph (4) of this subsection, at any time except during the 21-day" in its place.

(ii) Strike the phrase "30th day" and insert the phrase "21st day" in its place.

(B) Paragraph (2) is amended to read as follows:

"(2) The Board shall process voter registration applications and voter registration update notifications that are received, whether received postmarked, non-postmarked, or digitally, by the Board by the 21st day preceding any election.".

(C) Paragraph (3) is amended by striking the phrase "30th" and inserting the phrase "21st" in its place.

(D) Paragraph (4) is amended by striking the phrase "30th" both times it appears and inserting the phrase "21st" in its place.

(5) Subsection (i)(4) is amended as follows:

(A) Subparagraph (A) is amended by striking the phrase "at the polling place serving the former residence address, subject to the requirements of section 302 of the Help America Vote Act, approved October 29, 2002 (116 Stat. 1706; 42 U.S.C. § 15483)" and inserting the phrase "at the polling place serving the current residence address" in its place.

(B) Subparagraph (C) is amended by striking the phrase "only within the polling place assigned by the Board before election day" and inserting the phrase "at the polling place serving the current residence address or the accessible polling place assigned by the Board pursuant to section 9(b)(3)" in its place.

(6) A new subsection (m) is added to read as follows:

"(m)(1) By October 1, 2017, the Board, in conjunction with the DMV, shall develop and implement electronic transmission of voter registration information from the DMV;

"(2) Upon implementation of electronic transmission of voter registration information required under paragraph (1) of this subsection, theDMV shall transmit any eligible voter registration application to the Board no later than 5 days after the date of the application's acceptance by the DMV.".

Amend § 1-1001.09

(b) Section 9(b)(3) (D.C. Official Code § 1-1001.09(b)(3)) is amended by striking the phrase "Except pursuant to section 7(i)(4), no" and inserting the phrase "No" in its place.

Amend § 1-1061.06

Sec. 3. Section 106(b) of the District of Columbia Uniform Military and Overseas Voters Act of 2012, effective June 5, 2012 (D.C. Law 19-137; D.C. Official Code § 1-1061.06(b)), is amended by striking the number "30" and inserting the number "21" in its place.

New § 50-1401.01c

Sec. 4. The District of Columbia Traffic Act, 1925, approved March 3, 1925 (43 Stat. 1119; codified in scattered cites of the D.C. Official Code), is amended by adding a new section 7c to read as follows:

"Sec. 7c. Electronic transmission of voter registration information.

"(a) Beginning October 1, 2017, the Department of Motor Vehicles ("Department") shall electronically transmit to the District of Columbia Board of Elections the voter registration information of each applicant who did not decline to register to vote and stated that he or she is a citizen of the United States no later than 5 days after the date of its acceptance by the DMV.

"(b) The electronic information submitted pursuant to subsection (a) of this section shall contain the applicant's:

"(1) Legal name;

"(2) Date of birth;

"(3) Residence;

"(4) Mailing address;

"(5) Previous voter registration address;

"(6) DMV-issued identification number or social security number;

"(7) Party affiliation;

"(8) Response as to whether the applicant would like information on serving as a poll worker in the next election;

"(9) Citizenship information; and

"(10) Electronic signature.".

Sec. 5. Applicability.

(a) Sections 2(a)(1), (2), (3), (4), and (6), and sections 3 and 4 shall apply upon the date of inclusion of their fiscal effect in an approved budget and financial plan.

(b) The Chief Financial Officer shall certify the date of the inclusion of the fiscal effect in an approved budget and financial plan, and provide notice to the Budget Director of the Council of the certification.

(c)(1) The Budget Director shall cause the notice of the certification to be published in the District of Columbia Register.

(2) The date of publication of the notice of the certification shall not affect the applicability of this act.

Sec. 6. Fiscal impact statement.

The Council adopts the fiscal impact statement in the committee report as the fiscal impact statement required by section 4a of the General Legislative Procedures Act of 1975, approved October 16, 2006 (120 Stat. 2038; D.C. Official Code § 1-301.47a).

Sec. 7. Effective date.

This act shall take effect following approval by the Mayor (or in the event of veto by the Mayor, action by the Council to override the veto), a 30-day period of congressional review as provided in section 602(c)(1) of the District of Columbia Home Rule Act, approved December 24, 1973 (87 Stat. 813; D.C. Official Code § 1-206.02(c)(1)), and publication in the District of Columbia Register.