Concerning the role of election watchers in connection with the conduct of elections.
2016 Regular Session
Elections & Redistricting
In connection with the role of watchers in elections, the bill does the following:
- Section 2 of the bill requires the chairperson of the county central committee of each political party to select the names of the persons who will represent their political party in each precinct in the county as a watcher. If such chairperson is not able to make the appointments, the chairperson of the state central committee of the political party or another official of the state political party are required to make the appointments. To the extent possible, the chairperson is required to submit the names no later than the 25th day before the election.
- Section 3 of the bill requires that, in the case of an issue committee, the registered agent of the issue committee is the authorized representative of the issue committee entitled to appoint one or more watchers. To the extent possible, the particular appointing authority is required to submit the names no later than the 25th day before the election.
- Section 4 of the bill imposes the same requirements with respect to proponents and opponents of a ballot issue.
- Section 5 of the bill specifies procedures to be followed if a watcher sees a potential discrepancy. This section of the bill also allows the watcher to observe the process of signature verification. This section of the bill additionally contains an oath or affirmation that a person appointed as a watcher is to recite before beginning his or her service.
- Section 6 of the bill specifies that statutory provisions prohibiting the disclosure of certain election-related information does not apply to the disclosure of any such information to an individual performing the duties of a watcher who has also successfully passed a criminal background check. Nothing in the bill prohibits a watcher who has also successfully passed a criminal background check from viewing signatures during the conduct of an election.
- Section 7 of the bill requires that a background check be conducted of any individual who is to be appointed to serve as a watcher in any election with access to confidential election information. This section of the bill also allows a county clerk and recorder to access the criminal history records through the public website maintained by the Colorado bureau of investigation for any such watcher.
(Note: This summary applies to this bill as introduced.)