SUBCHAPTER 10b – VOTING, VOTING PLACES AND PRECINCT OFFICIALS' DUTIES AND TASKS

 

08 ncac 10B .0101          TASKS AND DUTIES OF PRECINCT OFFICALS AT VOTING PLACES

(a)  This Rule a Summary - The provisions of this Section provide a nonexclusive summary of the tasks and duties given to officials under G.S. 163. The legal duty is contained, not in this Rule, but in G.S. 163. For purposes of this Chapter, unless otherwise noted, the term "precinct officials" shall mean chief judge, precinct judge, assistants, emergency election-day assistants, and ballot counters. Observers are not precinct officials and shall not act or presume to act on behalf of a county board of elections. Observers shall only be allowed in partisan or ABC elections and are not legally authorized in any non-partisan election involving either candidates or issues. 

(b)  Tasks of Precinct Chief Judge - Precinct Chief Judges, in accordance with election statutes, within the Rules of the State Board of Elections, and under the supervision of the county board of elections, shall have the following tasks to perform as to each primary or election. Where the precinct chief judge does not have the exclusive statutory mandate to perform a task or duty, a precinct judge may be designated to perform such task or duty.

(1)           Attend an instructional meeting presented by the county board of elections prior to each primary or election as required by G.S. 163-46.

(2)           Upon learning that any parent, spouse, child, or sibling has filed for elective office, to inform the county board of elections so that the provisions of the law prohibiting a precinct official from serving in an election with a close relative as a candidates can be followed.

(3)           Inform the county board of elections if any blood relative of kinship of first cousin or nearer or a parent in-law, child in-law or sibling in-law is a precinct official/worker serving with you in the same precinct, and not to serve with that relative in the same precinct.  Also inform the county board of elections of any relationship, as described in the previous sentence, that you may have with an emergency election-day assistant and not serve with that person in the same precinct.

(4)           Prior to day of the primary or election, receive and review from the county board the precinct observer list and promptly make any objection for good cause to the county board as provided in G.S. 163-45.

(5)           Receive, prior to the election or primary, sample ballots from the county board of elections, and to post a sample ballot at the voting place prior to opening on the primary or election day as set out in G.S. 163-165.2.

(6)           Promptly notify the county board of elections of any sickness, emergency, or other circumstances that will or might prevent the person from performing as precinct chief judge on a primary or election day.

(7)           Receive, prior to the day of the primary or election, from the county board of elections any security keys or codes as to any voting systems or units that are to be operated at the precinct.

(8)           Prior to the opening of the polls, administer to any precinct official, not previously sworn, the oath of office as set out in G.S. 163-41.

(9)           Prior to the opening of the polls, to ensure there is open means of phone/radio communication between the voting place and the county board of elections office or director.

(10)         If at the time of opening the voting place, a judge has not appeared, to appoint another person to act as precinct judge, until the chairman of the county board of elections appoints a replacement as set out in G.S. 163-41, or ratifies the selection of the chief judge.

(11)         Be present at the voting place at 6:00 a.m., and ensure the prompt opening of the polls at 6:30 a.m. as mandated by G.S. 163-166 and any Rules promulgated under that statute.

(12)         Respond to any voter's request to have assistance to vote as set out in the provisions of G.S. 163-166.8(b).

(13)         Ensure the continued arrangement of the voting enclosure as required in G.S. 163-166.2.

(14)         Supervise the orderly closing of the voting place at 7:30 p.m. in compliance with procedures set out in G.S. 163-166.10 and any rules promulgated under that statute.

(15)         Handle challenges made on election or primary day in accordance with G.S. 163-87, and to conduct the hearing upon said challenge in accordance with G.S. 163-88.

(16)         Be responsible, as mandated by G.S. 163-182.3, for adherence to all rules pertaining to counting, reporting, and transmitting official ballots.

(17)         Be responsible for the maintenance of and appearance of efficient, impartial, and honest election administration at the precinct as required by G.S. 163-166.5(3).

(18)         Be responsible for the maintenance of the voting place buffer zone, and ensure compliance with the same.

(19)         Ensure peace and good order at the voting place as required by G.S. 163-48.

(20)         Ensure that voters are able to cast their votes in dignity, good order, impartiality, convenience, and privacy as required in G.S. 163-166.7(c) and any rules promulgated under that statute.

(21)         If needed, to check or assist in checking the registration of voters at the voting place.

(22)         If ballot counters are needed, receive the list of counters from the county board, or appoint counters if authorized to do so by the county board. Swear in any ballot counters prior to their county votes. Report to the county board of elections the names and addresses of any ballot counters to the county board at the county canvass as set out in G.S. 163-163-43.

(23)         Perform the required legal duties of chief precinct judge/judge or face criminal consequences as set out in G.S. 163-274 (1).   

(24)         Not accept money from candidates, commit fraud, false statements, or false writings in performing election duties, or face the criminal consequences set out in G.S. 163-275(3)(8)(9) and (12).

(c)  Tasks of Precinct Judge- Precinct Judges, in accordance with election statutes, within rules of the State Board of Elections, and under the supervision of the county board of elections, shall have the following tasks to perform as to each primary or election. A precinct judge may be designated to perform tasks and duties of a chief precinct judge, where those duties are not statutorily made exclusive to the chief precinct judge.

(1)           Attend an instructional meeting presented by the county board of elections prior to each primary or election as required by G.S. 163-46.

(2)           Upon learning that any parent, spouse, child, or sibling has filed for elective office, to inform the county board of elections so that the provisions of the law prohibiting a precinct official from serving in an election with a close relative as a candidates can be followed.

(3)           Inform the county board of elections if any blood relative of kinship of first cousin or nearer or a parent in-law, child in-law or sibling in-law is a precinct official/worker serving with you in the same precinct, and not to serve with that relative in the same precinct.  Also inform the county board of elections of any relationship, as described in the previous sentence, that you may have with an emergency election-day assistant and not serve with that person in the same precinct.

(4)           If the chief judge fails to appear at the opening of poll, to appoint, with the other precinct judge, a person to act as chief judge until the chairman of the county board appoints a new chief judge as per G.S. 163-41.

(5)           Promptly notify the county board of elections of any sickness, emergency, or other circumstances that will or might prevent the person from performing as precinct chief judge on a primary or election day.

(6)           Be present at the voting place at 6:00 a.m., and ensure the prompt opening of the polls at 6:30 a.m. as mandated by G.S. 163-166 and any rules promulgated under that statute.

(7)           Perform the required legal duties of chief precinct judge/judge or face criminal consequences as set out in G.S. 163-274 (1).   

(8)           Not accept money from candidates, commit fraud, false statements, or false writings in performing election duties, or face the criminal consequences set out in G.S. 163-275(3)(8)(9) and (12).

(9)           To aid and cooperate with the precinct chief judge, as requested or needed, as to those duties noted in Subparagraphs (12) through (21) of Paragraph (b) of this Rule.

(d)  Tasks of Election Assistants- Election Assistants, in accordance with election statutes, within the rules of the State Board of Elections, and under the supervision of the county board of elections, shall have the following tasks to perform as to each primary or election: Aid the chief judge and other precinct judges in the performances of their tasks and duties as needed or directed.

(1)           Check the registration of voters at the voting place as per G.S. 163-166.7(a).

(2)           Guide voters to voting units or provide voters ballots as per G.S. 163-166.7(b).

(3)           Prior to performing duties and tasks after being duly appointed, take the oath required by G.S. 163-41.

(4)           Promptly notify the county board of elections of any sickness, emergency, or other circumstances that will or might prevent the person from performing as an election assistant on a primary or election day.

(5)           Upon learning that any parent, spouse, child, or sibling has filed for elective office, to inform the county board of elections so that the provisions of the law prohibiting a precinct official from serving in an election with a close relative as a candidates can be followed.

(6)           Inform the county board of elections if any blood relative of kinship of first cousin or nearer or a parent in-law, child in-law or sibling in-law is a precinct official/worker serving with you in the same precinct, and not to serve with that relative in the same precinct.  Also inform the county board of elections of any relationship, as described in the previous sentence, that you may have with an emergency election-day assistant and not serve with that person in the same precinct.

(e)  Tasks of Emergency Election –Day Assistant-Emergency Election-Day Assistants, in accordance with election statutes, within the rules of the State Board of Elections, and under the supervision of the county board of elections, shall have the following tasks to perform as to each primary or election:

(1)           To be prepared prior to and on the day of a primary or election to serve, on short notice given by the county board of elections, to travel to and work at any voting place within the county.

(2)           Perform all the tasks and duties of an election assistant as set out in Paragraph (d) of this Rule.

(3)           Promptly notify the county board of elections of any sickness, emergency, or other circumstances that will or might prevent the person from performing as an election assistant on a primary or election day.

(4)           Upon learning that any parent, spouse, child, or sibling has filed for elective office, to inform the county board of elections so that the provisions of the law prohibiting a precinct official from serving in an election with a close relative as a candidates can be followed.

(5)           Inform the county board of elections if any blood relative of kinship of first cousin or nearer or a parent in-law, child in-law or sibling in-law is a precinct official/worker serving with you in the same precinct, and not to serve with that relative in the same precinct.  Also inform the county board of elections of any relationship, as described in the previous sentence, that you may have with an emergency election-day assistant and not serve with that person in the same precinct.

(f)  Tasks of Ballot Counters - All ballot counters, in accordance with election statutes, with the rules of the State Board of Elections and under supervision of the county board of elections, shall perform all the following. There is no requirement to have ballot counters appointed or used by a county board of elections unless they are needed.

(1)           After appointment, to appear at the poll immediately at close of the polls and to be prepared to count ballots under the direction and control of the chief and other precinct judges.

(2)           To be sworn into office, by the precinct chief judge prior to starting counting.

(3)           Upon learning that any parent, spouse, child, or sibling has filed for elective office, to inform the county board of elections so that the provisions of the law prohibiting a precinct official from serving in an election with a close relative as a candidates can be followed.

(4)           Inform the county board of elections if any blood relative of kinship of first cousin or nearer or a parent in-law, child in-law or sibling in-law is a precinct official/worker serving with you in the same precinct, and not to serve with that relative in the same precinct.  Also inform the county board of elections of any relationship, as described in the previous sentence, that you may have with an emergency election-day assistant and not serve with that person in the same precinct.

(g)  General duties of all Precinct Officials - All precinct officials, in accordance with election statutes, with the rules of the State Board of Elections and under the supervision of the county board of elections, shall perform all of the following:

(1)           Count votes when votes are required to be counted at the voting place, G.S. 163-182.2;

(2)           Make an unofficial report of returns to the county board of elections, G.S. 163- 182.2;

(3)           Certify the integrity of the vote and the security of the official ballots at the voting place, G.S. 163-182.2;

(4)           Return official ballots and equipment to the county board of elections, G.S. 163- 182.2;

(5)           Ensure that the voting system remains secure throughout the period voting is being conducted;

(6)           Ensure that only properly voted official ballots are introduced into the voting system;

(7)           Ensure that, except as provided by G.S. 163-166.9, no official ballots leave the voting enclosure during the time voting is being conducted there;

(8)           Ensure that all improperly voted official ballots are returned to the precinct officials and marked as spoiled;

(9)           Ensure that voters leave the voting place promptly after voting;

(10)         Ensure that voters not clearly eligible to vote in the precinct but who seek to vote there are given proper assistance in voting a provisional official ballot or guidance to another voting place where they are eligible to vote;

(11)         Ensure that information gleaned through the voting process that would be helpful to the accurate maintenance of the voter registration records is recorded and delivered to the county board of elections;

(12)         Ensure that registration records are kept secure;

(13)         Ensure that party observers are given access as provided by G.S. 163-45 to current information about which voters have voted;

(14)         Aid any voter, as needed, in curbside voting as provided for in G.S. 163-166.9;

(15)         Provide Spanish ballot instructions as needed to voters, when such instructions are required to be available by law. Direct all language needs which can not be handled at the precinct to the county board office;

(16)         Register and help, at the voting place, those persons eligible to register and vote on election day as allowed by G.S. 163-254 and G.S. 163-82.6(d);

(17)         Promptly report to the county board of elections, any physical or mental ailment, impairment, or deterioration that may adversely affect the performance of an election related task or duty. Report any such conditions known in any other precinct officials to the county board;

(18)         Promptly report any violation of election laws or regulations to the chief judge, or to the county board of elections if the chief precinct judge is involved in the violation;

(19)         Provide any person who requests it any information on how to contact the county director of elections, the county board of elections, or the office of the State Board of Elections; and

(20)         Work and stay at the voting place, at all times during the voting day, until closure. By prior agreement with the county board of elections and pursuant to G.S. 163-42, election assistants and emergency election-day assistants may work less than the entire voting day.

 

History Note:        Authority G.S. 163-22; 163-166.6;

Temporary Adoption Eff. April 15, 2002;

Eff. August 1, 2004.