HOUSE BILL NO. 4567

May 16, 2023, Introduced by Reps. Tsernoglou, Rogers, Price, Byrnes, Rheingans, Andrews, Wilson, Hood, Pohutsky, Conlin, Hoskins, Brixie, McFall, Hope, Breen, Arbit, MacDonell, Wegela, Miller, Dievendorf, Scott, Morgan, Young, Koleszar, Weiss, Grant, Farhat, Paiz, Brabec, McKinney, Steckloff, Coffia, Edwards, O'Neal, Neeley, Martus and Whitsett and referred to the Committee on Elections.

A bill to amend 1954 PA 116, entitled

"Michigan election law,"

by amending sections 497 and 761 (MCL 168.497 and 168.761), section 497 as amended by 2018 PA 603 and section 761 as amended by 2020 PA 302.

the people of the state of michigan enact:


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Sec. 497. (1) An individual who is not registered to vote but possesses the qualifications of an elector as provided in section 492 may apply for registration to the clerk of the county,


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township, or city in which he or she the individual resides in person, during the clerk's regular business hours, or by mail or online until the fifteenth day before an election.

(2) An individual who is not registered to vote but possesses the qualifications of an elector as provided in section 492 or an individual who is not registered to vote in the city or township in which he or she the individual is registering to vote may apply for registration in person at the city or township clerk's office of the city or township in which he or she the individual resides from the fourteenth day before an election and continuing through the day of the election. An individual who applies to register to vote under this subsection must provide to the city or township clerk proof of residency in that city or township. For purposes of this subsection, "proof of residency" includes, subject to subsection (3), any of the following:

(a) An operator's or chauffeur's license issued under the Michigan vehicle code, 1949 PA 300, MCL 257.1 to 257.923, or an enhanced driver license issued under the enhanced driver license and enhanced official state personal identification card act, 2008 PA 23, MCL 28.301 to 28.308.

(b) An official state personal identification card issued under 1972 PA 222, MCL 28.291 to 28.300, or an enhanced official state personal identification card issued under the enhanced driver license and enhanced official state personal identification card act, 2008 PA 23, MCL 28.301 to 28.308.

(3) If an applicant for voter registration under subsection (2) does not have proof of residency as that term is defined in subsection (2), the applicant may provide as his or her the applicant's proof of residency any other form of identification for


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election purposes as that term is defined in section 2 and 1 of the following documents that contains the applicant's name and current residence address:

(a) A current utility bill.

(b) A current bank statement.

(c) A current paycheck, government check, or other government document.

(4) If an applicant for voter registration under subsection (2) does not have identification for election purposes, the applicant may register to vote if he or she the applicant signs an affidavit indicating that the applicant does not have identification for election purposes and the applicant provides 1 of the following documents that contains the applicant's name and current residence address:

(a) A current utility bill.

(b) A current bank statement.

(c) A current paycheck, government check, or other government document.

(5) Immediately after approving a voter registration application, the city or township clerk shall provide to the individual registering to vote a voter registration receipt that is in a form as approved by the secretary of state. If an individual registers to vote in person 14 days or less before an election or registers to vote on election day, and that applicant registers to vote under subsection (3) or (4), the ballot of that elector must be prepared as a challenged ballot as provided in section 727 and must be counted as any other ballot is counted unless determined otherwise by a court of law under section 747 or 748 or any other applicable law.


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(6) Except as otherwise provided in sections 500a to 500e and 509v, an application for registration must not be executed at a place other than the office of the county, township, or city clerk or a public place or places designated by the clerk or deputy registrar for receiving registrations, but the clerk or deputy registrar may receive an application wherever he or she the clerk or deputy registrar may be. If a county, township, or city clerk does not regularly keep his or her the clerk's office open daily during certain hours, the clerk is not required to be at his or her the clerk's office for the purpose of receiving applications for registration on a particular day nor during specific hours of a day, except as provided in section 498. If an individual registers to vote with the secretary of state during the 14 days before the day of an election by mail, online, or by automatic voter registration, as described in section 493a, the individual must be given a notice on a form developed by the secretary of state informing the individual that he or she the individual is not eligible to vote in the next election unless he or she the individual applies in person at his or her the individual's city or township clerk's office as provided in subsection (2). Except as provided in sections 500a to 500e, the provisions of this section relating to registration apply.

Sec. 761. (1) If the clerk of a city or township receives an application for an absent voter ballot from a person an individual registered to vote in that city or township and if the signature on the application agrees with the signature for the person individual contained in the qualified voter file or on the registration card as required in subsection (2), the clerk immediately upon receipt of after receiving the application or, if the application is


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received before the printing of the absent voter ballots, as soon as the ballots are received by the clerk, shall forward by mail, postage prepaid, or shall deliver personally 1 of the ballots or set of ballots if there is more than 1 kind of ballot to be voted to the applicant. If the clerk of a city or township receives an application for an absent voter ballot from an applicant who is a program participant, as that term is defined in section 3 of the address confidentiality program act, 2020 PA 301, MCL 780.853, then the city or township clerk shall mail an absent voter ballot to that program participant at the designated address provided to that program participant by the department of the attorney general under the address confidentiality program act, 2020 PA 301, MCL 780.851 to 780.873. Subject to the identification requirement in subsection (6), absent voter ballots may be delivered to an applicant in person at the office of the clerk.

(2) The qualified voter file must be used to determine the genuineness of a signature on an application for an absent voter ballot. Signature comparisons must be made with the digitized signature in the qualified voter file. If the qualified voter file does not contain a digitized signature of an elector, or is not accessible to the clerk, the city or township clerk shall compare the signature appearing on the application for an absent voter ballot to the signature contained on the master card. If before 8 p.m. on the day before election day the clerk of a city or township rejects an absent voter ballot application because the signature on the absent voter ballot application does not agree sufficiently with the signature on the master card or the digitized signature contained in the qualified voter file so as to identify the elector or because the elector failed to sign the absent voter ballot


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application, the city or township clerk shall as soon as practicable, but in no event not later than 48 hours after determining the signatures do not agree sufficiently or that the signature is missing, or by 8 p.m. on the day before election day, whichever occurs first, notify the elector of the rejection by mail, telephone, or electronic mail.email.

(3) Subject to the identification requirement in subsection (6) and except as otherwise provided in this subsection, a person an individual may apply in person at the clerk's office before 8 p.m. on election day to vote as an absent voter. Except as otherwise provided in subsection (2), only an individual who is not a registered elector, or an individual who is not registered to vote in the city or township in which he or she the individual is registering to vote, and who registers to vote on election day in person with the clerk of the city or township in which the individual resides may apply for and complete an absent voter ballot in person at the clerk's office on election day. Except as otherwise provided in subsection (2), the clerk of a city or township shall not issue an absent voter ballot to a registered elector in that city or township after 4 p.m. on the day before the election. The applicant shall receive his or her the applicant's absent voter ballot and vote the ballot in the clerk's office. All other absent voter ballots, except ballots delivered pursuant to an emergency absent voter ballot application under section 759b, must be mailed or delivered to the registration address of the applicant unless the application requests delivery to an address outside the city or township or to a hospital or similar institution, in which case the absent voter ballots must be mailed or delivered to the address given in the application. However, a clerk may mail or


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deliver an absent voter ballot, upon on request of the absent voter, to a post office box if the post office box is where the absent voter normally receives personal mail and the absent voter does not receive mail at his or her the absent voter's registration address.

(4) Absent voter ballots must be issued in the same order in which applications are received by the clerk of a city, township, or village, as nearly as may be, and each ballot issued must bear the lowest number of each kind available for this purpose. However, this provision does not prohibit a clerk from immediately issuing an absent voter ballot to an absent voter who applies in person in the clerk's office for absent voter ballots. The clerk shall enclose with the ballot or ballots a return envelope properly addressed to the clerk and bearing upon on the back of the envelope a printed statement in substantially the following form:

TO BE COMPLETED

BY THE CLERK

___________________________

___________________________

Name of Voter

Street Address or R.R. or Program Participant Identification Number

___________________________

___________________________

City or Township

County

Ward ______ Precinct ______

Date of Election _____________

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TO BE COMPLETED BY THE ABSENT VOTER

I assert that I am a United States citizen and a qualified and registered elector of the city or township named above. I am voting


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as an absent voter in conformity with state election law. Unless otherwise indicated below, I personally marked the ballot enclosed in this envelope without exhibiting it to any other person.individual.

I further assert that this absent voter ballot is being returned to the clerk or an assistant of the clerk by me personally; by public postal service, express mail service, parcel post service, or other common carrier; by a member of my immediate family; or by a person an individual residing in my household.

DATE:______________

SIGN HERE X_____________________________

Signature of Absent Voter

The above form must be signed or your vote may not be counted.

AN ABSENT VOTER WHO KNOWINGLY MAKES A FALSE STATEMENT IS GUILTY

OF A MISDEMEANOR.

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TO BE COMPLETED ONLY IF VOTER IS ASSISTED IN VOTING

BY ANOTHER PERSONINDIVIDUAL

I assisted the above named absent voter who is disabled or otherwise unable to mark the ballot in marking his or her the absent voter's absent voter ballot pursuant to his or her the absent voter's directions. The absent voter ballot was inserted in the return envelope without being exhibited to any other person.individual.

____________________

____________________

____________________

Signature of PersonIndividual

Street Address

City or Township

Assisting Voter

or R.R.

________________________________________________________________


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Printed Name of Person Individual Assisting Voter

A PERSON AN INDIVIDUAL WHO ASSISTS AN ABSENT VOTER AND WHO KNOWINGLY MAKES A

FALSE STATEMENT IS GUILTY OF A FELONY.

==================================================================

WARNING

PERSONS INDIVIDUALS WHO CAN LEGALLY BE IN POSSESSION OF AN ABSENT VOTER BALLOT ISSUED TO AN ABSENT VOTER ARE LIMITED TO THE ABSENT VOTER; A PERSON AN INDIVIDUAL WHO IS A MEMBER OF THE ABSENT VOTER'S IMMEDIATE FAMILY OR RESIDES IN THE ABSENT VOTER'S HOUSEHOLD AND WHO HAS BEEN ASKED BY THE ABSENT VOTER TO RETURN THE BALLOT; A PERSON AN INDIVIDUAL WHOSE JOB IT IS TO HANDLE MAIL BEFORE, DURING, OR AFTER BEING TRANSPORTED BY A PUBLIC POSTAL SERVICE, EXPRESS MAIL SERVICE, PARCEL POST SERVICE, OR COMMON CARRIER, BUT ONLY DURING THE NORMAL COURSE OF HIS OR HER THE INDIVIDUAL'S EMPLOYMENT; AND THE CLERK, ASSISTANTS OF THE CLERK, AND OTHER AUTHORIZED ELECTION OFFICIALS OF THE CITY OR TOWNSHIP. ANY OTHER PERSON INDIVIDUAL IN POSSESSION OF AN ABSENT VOTER BALLOT IS GUILTY OF A FELONY.

(5) An absent voter who knowingly makes a false statement on the absent voter ballot return envelope is guilty of a misdemeanor. A person An individual who assists an absent voter and who knowingly makes a false statement on the absent voter ballot return envelope is guilty of a felony.

(6) If an elector obtains his or her the elector's absent voter ballot in person from the clerk of the city or township in which he or she the elector is registered, the clerk of the city or township shall not provide an absent voter ballot to that elector until the elector identifies himself or herself presents identification for election purposes to the clerk. by presenting


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identification for election purposes. If an elector does not have identification for election purposes, the elector may sign an affidavit to that effect before the clerk of the city or township and be allowed to obtain his or her the elector's absent voter ballot in person from the clerk. The clerk of the city or township shall indicate to each elector who is registered in that city or township and who obtains his or her the elector's absent voter ballot in person from the clerk that the elector may sign an affidavit indicating that the elector does not have identification for election purposes in order to obtain his or her the elector's absent voter ballot in person from the clerk. However, if an elector obtains his or her absent voter ballot in person from the clerk and votes by absent voter ballot without providing identification for election purposes required under this subsection, the absent voter ballot of that elector must be prepared as a challenged ballot as provided in section 727 and must be counted as any other ballot is counted unless determined otherwise by a court of law under section 747 or 748 or any other applicable law.