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SF 1361

as introduced - 90th Legislature (2017 - 2018) Posted on 06/21/2017 11:31am

KEY: stricken = removed, old language. underscored = added, new language.

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Current Version - as introduced

A bill for an act
relating to elections; authorizing recall elections for school board members;
amending Minnesota Statutes 2016, sections 123B.09, subdivisions 3, 5b; 351.14,
subdivisions 3, 5, by adding a subdivision; 351.15; 351.16, subdivisions 1, 2, 3,
4; 351.18; 351.19, subdivision 4; 351.20; 351.21; 351.22, subdivisions 1, 2.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA:

Section 1.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 123B.09, subdivision 3, is amended to read:


Subd. 3.

Causes for school board member vacancy.

A vacancy in any board occurs
when a member (a) (1) dies, (b) (2) resigns, (c) (3) ceases to be a resident of the district, (4)
has been recalled under sections 351.14 to 351.23,
or (d) (5) is unable to serve on such board
and attend its meetings for not less than 90 days because of illness or prolonged absence
from the district.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 2.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 123B.09, subdivision 5b, is amended to read:


Subd. 5b.

Appointments to fill vacancies; special elections.

(a) Any vacancy on the
board, other than a vacancy described in subdivision 4 or a removal election under sections
351.14 to 351.23
, must be filled by board appointment at a regular or special meeting. The
appointment shall be evidenced by a resolution entered in the minutes and shall be effective
30 days following adoption of the resolution, subject to paragraph (b). If the appointment
becomes effective, it shall continue until an election is held under this subdivision. All
elections to fill vacancies shall be for the unexpired term. A vacancy caused by a removal
election must be filled by a special election.
A special election to fill the vacancy must be
held no later than the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November following the
vacancy. If the vacancy occurs less than 90 days prior to the first Tuesday after the first
Monday in November in the year in which the vacancy occurs, the special election must be
held no later than the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November of the following
calendar year. If the vacancy occurs less than 90 days prior to the first Tuesday after the
first Monday in November in the third year of the term, no special election is required.

(b) An appointment made under paragraph (a) shall not be effective if a petition to reject
the appointee is filed with the school district clerk. To be valid, a petition to reject an
appointee must be signed by a number of eligible voters residing in the district equal to at
least five percent of the total number of voters voting in the district at the most recent state
general election, and must be filed within 30 days of the board's adoption of the resolution
making the appointment. If a valid petition is filed according to the requirements of this
paragraph, the appointment by the school board is ineffective and the board must name a
new appointee as provided in paragraph (a).

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 3.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 351.14, subdivision 3, is amended to read:


Subd. 3.

Nonfeasance.

"Nonfeasance" means the willful failure to perform a specific
act which is a required part of the duties of the public official or the willful failure to uphold
the intent and purpose of a voter-approved policy
.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 4.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 351.14, subdivision 5, is amended to read:


Subd. 5.

Elected county local official.

"Elected county local official" means:

(1) any public official who is elected to countywide office or appointed to an elective
countywide office, including county attorney, county sheriff, county auditor, county recorder,
county treasurer, and soil and water conservation supervisor. "Elected county official" also
means
;

(2) a county commissioner elected or appointed from a commissioner district or a soil
and water conservation district supervisor elected or appointed from a supervisor district
established under section 103C.311, subdivision 2 ; or

(3) a school board member.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 5.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 351.14, is amended by adding a subdivision to
read:


Subd. 6.

Filing official.

"Filing official" means:

(1) for county offices, the county auditor; or

(2) for school board members, the school district clerk.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 6.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 351.15, is amended to read:


351.15 REMOVAL OF ELECTED COUNTY LOCAL OFFICIAL.

An elected county local official may be removed from office in accordance with the
procedures established in sections 351.14 to 351.23.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 7.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 351.16, subdivision 1, is amended to read:


Subdivision 1.

Form of petition.

Any registered voter may petition the county auditor
filing official requesting a removal election and setting forth facts which allege with
specificity that an elected county local official committed malfeasance or nonfeasance in
the performance of official duties during the current or any previous term in the office held
by the elected county local official, except that a petition may not be submitted during the
180 days immediately preceding a general election for the office which is held by the county
elected local official named in the petition. The petitioner must attach to the petition
documents which contain the signatures of supporters who are registered voters totaling at
least 25 percent of the number of persons who voted in the preceding election for the office
which is held by the county elected local official named in the petition. Each page on which
signatures are included must clearly identify the purpose of the petition. In a removal election
involving a countywide office,
the registered voters must be residents of the county or, . In
a removal election involving a county commissioner, the registered voters must be residents
of the commissioner district which elected the named county commissioner. In a removal
election involving a school board member, the registered voters must be residents of the
school district.
The signatures of supporters must be on forms provided by the county auditor
filing official
.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 8.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 351.16, subdivision 2, is amended to read:


Subd. 2.

County auditor's Filing official's duties.

The county auditor filing official
shall examine the petition to determine whether it contains the requisite number of valid
signatures of registered voters. If so, the county auditor filing official shall forward the
petition, but not the signatures, to the clerk of appellate courts within 15 days of receipt of
the petition. If the county auditor filing official determines that the petition does not include
the requisite number of signatures, the county auditor filing official shall deny the petition
within 15 days of receipt of the petition.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 9.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 351.16, subdivision 3, is amended to read:


Subd. 3.

Removal of county auditor.

If the county auditor is the named elected county
official, the petition must be submitted to the chair of the county board of commissioners
who shall appoint a county official to perform the duties of the county auditor filing official
specified in sections 351.14 to 351.23.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 10.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 351.16, subdivision 4, is amended to read:


Subd. 4.

Limitation.

An elected county local official is not subject to a removal election
on the ground that misfeasance in the performance of official duties was committed, or on
the ground of disagreement with actions taken that were within the lawful discretion of the
elected county local official.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 11.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 351.18, is amended to read:


351.18 WAIVER.

An elected county local official who is the subject of a petition under section 351.16
may waive in writing the right to a public hearing. If the hearing is waived, the case must
be certified by order of the chief justice to the county auditor filing official for a removal
election to be held within 30 days of the receipt of the order.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 12.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 351.19, subdivision 4, is amended to read:


Subd. 4.

Legal counsel.

(a) In a removal election involving a county official, the
petitioners and the elected county official shall be represented by legal counsel at their own
expense, and shall pay their costs associated with the hearing, except that the county may
assume the legal costs incurred by the elected county official. The county shall pay all other
costs of the hearing.

(b) In a removal election involving a school board member, the petitioners and the school
board member shall be represented by legal counsel at their own expense and shall pay their
costs associated with the hearing, except that the school district may assume the legal costs
incurred by the school board member. The school district shall pay all other costs of the
hearing.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 13.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 351.20, is amended to read:


351.20 DECISION; CERTIFICATION.

If the special master determines that the elected county local official committed
malfeasance or nonfeasance in the performance of official duties, the case must be certified
to the county auditor filing official for a removal election on a date to be fixed by the county
auditor
filing official and held within 30 days of the order of the special master.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 14.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 351.21, is amended to read:


351.21 APPEAL.

An elected county local official may appeal the decision of a special master under section
351.20 to the Supreme Court within ten days. The removal election is stayed until 20 days
after the Supreme Court issues a decision on the appeal. The Supreme Court shall grant an
expedited appeal.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 15.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 351.22, subdivision 1, is amended to read:


Subdivision 1.

Majority vote; form of question.

An elected county local official may
be removed pursuant to sections 351.14 to 351.23 by majority vote. The A removal election
for a county official is a special election conducted under applicable provisions of section
375.20. The question submitted to the voters must be:

"Should .................................................. (Name) elected (appointed) to the office of
.............................................. (title) be removed from that office?

Yes .
No .
"

Any resulting vacancy must be filled as provided by law.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Sec. 16.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 351.22, subdivision 2, is amended to read:


Subd. 2.

Disqualification.

A removed county elected local official may not thereafter
hold the same office for the remainder of the term to which the official was elected.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

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