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CHAPTER 206. VOTING SYSTEMS

Table of Sections
SectionHeadnote
206.01MS 1957 Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1206.01 MS 1982 Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.02MS 1957 Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1206.02 MS 1982 Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.025Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.026Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.03MS 1957 Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1206.03 MS 1982 Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.04MS 1957 Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1206.04 MS 1982 Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.05MS 1957 Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1206.05 MS 1982 Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.06MS 1957 Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1206.06 MS 1982 Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.065Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79
206.07MS 1957 Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1206.07 MS 1982 Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.075Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.08MS 1957 Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1
206.09MS 1957 Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1206.09 MS 1983 Supp Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.095Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.10MS 1957 Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1206.10 MS 1982 Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.11MS 1957 Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1206.11 MS 1983 Supp Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.12MS 1957 Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1206.12 MS 1982 Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.13MS 1957 Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1206.13 MS 1982 Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.14MS 1957 Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1206.14 MS 1982 Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.15MS 1957 Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1206.15 MS 1982 Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.16MS 1957 Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1206.16 MS 1982 Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.17MS 1957 Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1206.17 MS 1982 Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.18MS 1957 Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1206.18 MS 1982 Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.185Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.19MS 1957 Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1
206.195Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.20MS 1957 Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1206.20 MS 1982 Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.21MS 1957 Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1
206.211Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.212Repealed, 1967 c 437 s 10
206.22Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1
206.23MS 1957 Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1206.23 MS 1982 Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32
206.54206.24-206.54 Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1
206.55MINNESOTA ELECTION LAW APPLIES.
206.56DEFINITIONS.
206.57EXAMINATION OF NEW VOTING SYSTEMS.
206.58AUTHORIZATION FOR USE.
206.59PAYMENT FOR VOTING SYSTEMS.
206.60Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79
206.61BALLOTS.
206.62SAMPLE BALLOTS.
206.63Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79
206.64ACCESSIBILITY; INSTRUCTIONS; ASSISTANCE TO VOTERS.
206.66VIOLATIONS; PENALTIES.
206.68Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79
206.685Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79
206.69Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79
206.70Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79
206.71Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79
206.72Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79
206.73Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79
206.74Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79
206.75Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79
206.76Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79
206.77Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79
206.80ELECTRONIC VOTING SYSTEMS.
206.805STATE VOTING SYSTEMS CONTRACTS.
206.81ELECTRONIC VOTING SYSTEMS; EXPERIMENTAL USE.
206.82PREPARATION OF ELECTRONIC VOTING SYSTEM PROGRAMS AND PLANS.
206.83TESTING OF VOTING SYSTEMS.
206.84METHODS OF USING ELECTRONIC VOTING SYSTEMS.
206.845BALLOT RECORDING AND COUNTING SECURITY.
206.85OFFICIALS IN CHARGE OF COUNTING.
206.86COUNTING ELECTRONIC VOTING SYSTEM RESULTS.
206.87CANVASSING BOARD DUTIES.
206.88PARTIAL RECOUNTS ON ELECTRONIC VOTING SYSTEMS.
206.89206.89 POSTELECTION REVIEW OF VOTING SYSTEMS.
206.895206.895 SECRETARY OF STATE MONITOR.
206.90OPTICAL SCAN VOTING SYSTEMS.
206.91206.91 VOTING MACHINES OPTIONS WORKING GROUP.
206.01 MS 1957 [Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1]
206.01 MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.02 MS 1957 [Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1]
206.02 MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.025 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.026 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.03 MS 1957 [Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1]
206.03 MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.04 MS 1957 [Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1]
206.04 MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.05 MS 1957 [Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1]
206.05 MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.06 MS 1957 [Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1]
206.06 MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.065 [Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
206.07 MS 1957 [Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1]
206.07 MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.075 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.08 MS 1957 [Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1]
    Subdivision 1.MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
    Subd. 2.MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
    Subd. 3.MS 1983 Supp [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
    Subd. 4.MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.09 MS 1957 [Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1]
206.09 MS 1983 Supp [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.095 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.10 MS 1957 [Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1]
206.10 MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.11 MS 1957 [Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1]
206.11 MS 1983 Supp [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.12 MS 1957 [Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1]
206.12 MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.13 MS 1957 [Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1]
206.13 MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.14 MS 1957 [Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1]
206.14 MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.15 MS 1957 [Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1]
206.15 MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.16 MS 1957 [Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1]
206.16 MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.17 MS 1957 [Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1]
206.17 MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.18 MS 1957 [Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1]
206.18 MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.185 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.19 MS 1957 [Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1]
    Subdivision 1.MS 1983 Supp [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
    Subd. 2.MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
    Subd. 3.MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.195 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.20 MS 1957 [Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1]
206.20 MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.21 MS 1957 [Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1]
    Subdivision 1.MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
    Subd. 2.MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
    Subd. 3.MS 1983 Supp [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
    Subd. 4.MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
    Subd. 5.MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.211 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.212 [Repealed, 1967 c 437 s 10]
206.22 [Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1]
206.23 MS 1957 [Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1]
206.23 MS 1982 [Repealed, 1984 c 447 s 32]
206.24-206.54 [Repealed, 1959 c 675 art 13 s 1]
206.55 MINNESOTA ELECTION LAW APPLIES.
The use of electronic voting systems is governed by sections 206.55 to 206.90 and by all
other provisions of the Minnesota Election Law which are not inconsistent with sections 206.55
to 206.90.
History: 1984 c 447 s 1; 1997 c 147 s 47
206.56 DEFINITIONS.
    Subdivision 1. Scope. The definitions in chapter 200 and in this section apply to sections
206.55 to 206.90.
    Subd. 1a. Assistive voting technology. "Assistive voting technology" means touch-activated
screen, buttons, keypad, sip-and-puff input device, keyboard, earphones, or any other device used
with an electronic ballot marker that assists voters to use an audio or electronic ballot display
in order to cast votes.
    Subd. 1b. Audio ballot reader. "Audio ballot reader" means an audio representation of a
ballot that can be used with other assistive voting technology to permit a voter to mark votes
on a nonelectronic ballot.
    Subd. 2. Automatic tabulating equipment. "Automatic tabulating equipment" includes
machines, resident firmware, and programmable memory units necessary to automatically
examine and count votes designated on a ballot.
    Subd. 3. Ballot. "Ballot" includes paper ballots, ballot cards, and the paper ballot marked by
an electronic marking device.
    Subd. 4.[Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
    Subd. 5. Ballot card. "Ballot card" means a ballot which is marked so that votes may be
counted by automatic tabulating equipment.
    Subd. 6.[Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
    Subd. 7. Counting center. "Counting center" means a place selected by the governing
body of a municipality where a central count electronic voting system is used for the automatic
processing and counting of ballots.
    Subd. 7a. Electronic ballot display. "Electronic ballot display" means a graphic
representation of a ballot on a computer monitor or screen on which a voter may make vote
choices for candidates and questions for the purpose of marking a nonelectronic ballot.
    Subd. 7b. Electronic ballot marker. "Electronic ballot marker" means equipment that is
part of an electronic voting system that uses an electronic ballot display or audio ballot reader
to mark a nonelectronic ballot with votes selected by a voter.
    Subd. 8. Electronic voting system. "Electronic voting system" means a system in which
the voter records votes by means of marking a ballot, so that votes may be counted by automatic
tabulating equipment in the polling place where the ballot is cast or at a counting center.
An electronic voting system includes automatic tabulating equipment; nonelectronic ballot
markers; electronic ballot markers, including electronic ballot display, audio ballot reader, and
devices by which the voter will register the voter's voting intent; software used to program
automatic tabulators and layout ballots; computer programs used to accumulate precinct results;
ballots; secrecy folders; system documentation; and system testing results.
    Subd. 9. Manual marking device. "Manual marking device" means any approved device for
directly marking a ballot by hand with ink, pencil, or other substance which will enable the ballot
to be tabulated by means of automatic tabulating equipment.
    Subd. 10.[Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
    Subd. 11.[Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
    Subd. 12.[Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
    Subd. 13.[Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
    Subd. 14. Question. "Question" means a statement of any constitutional amendment, local
ordinance, charter amendment, or other proposition being submitted to the voters at an election.
    Subd. 15.[Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
    Subd. 16. User list. "User list" means a list of the chief election officials of each county
and municipality responsible for preparation of a program to be used with an electronic voting
system or for administration of a counting center.
    Subd. 17. Municipality. "Municipality" means city, town, or school district.
History: 1984 c 447 s 2; 1986 c 362 s 6; 1986 c 444; 1987 c 266 art 1 s 61; 1997 c 147 s
48-52; 2005 c 162 s 3-11; 2006 c 242 s 24-28
206.57 EXAMINATION OF NEW VOTING SYSTEMS.
    Subdivision 1. Examination and report by secretary of state; approval. A vendor of an
electronic voting system may apply to the secretary of state to examine the system and to report
as to its compliance with the requirements of law and as to its accuracy, durability, efficiency,
and capacity to register the will of voters. The secretary of state or a designee shall examine the
system submitted and file a report on it in the Office of the Secretary of State. Examination is not
required of every individual machine or counting device, but only of each type of electronic voting
system before its adoption, use, or purchase and before its continued use after significant changes
have been made in an approved system. The examination must include the ballot programming;
electronic ballot marking, including all assistive technologies intended to be used with the system;
vote counting; and vote accumulation functions of each voting system.
If the report of the secretary of state or the secretary's designee concludes that the kind of
system examined complies with the requirements of sections 206.55 to 206.90 and can be used
safely, the system shall be deemed approved by the secretary of state, and may be adopted and
purchased for use at elections in this state. A voting system not approved by the secretary of
state may not be used at an election in this state. The secretary of state may adopt permanent
rules consistent with sections 206.55 to 206.90 relating to the examination and use of electronic
voting systems.
    Subd. 2. Examination fee. The secretary of state may assess a fee to accompany the
application to cover the actual and necessary costs for the examinations and licenses provided for
in this section. The fee must be deposited in the state treasury. The expenses of administering this
section must be paid from appropriations to the secretary of state.
    Subd. 3.[Repealed, 1993 c 337 s 20]
    Subd. 4. Vendor bonds. Vendors of electronic voting systems shall certify to the secretary
of state that they will not offer for sale a system which is not certified for use in Minnesota
elections. The vendor shall furnish a bond in the amount of $5,000 along with the certification
to the secretary of state conditioned on offering the equipment for sale in accordance with
Minnesota election laws and any conditions of the approval of the equipment granted as provided
in this section.
    Subd. 5. Voting system for disabled voters. In federal and state elections held after
December 31, 2005, and in county, municipal, and school district elections held after December
31, 2007, the voting method used in each polling place must include a voting system that is
accessible for individuals with disabilities, including nonvisual accessibility for the blind and
visually impaired in a manner that provides the same opportunity for access and participation,
including privacy and independence, as for other voters.
    Subd. 6. Required certification. In addition to the requirements in subdivision 1, a voting
system must be certified by an independent testing authority approved by the secretary of state and
conform to current standards for voting equipment issued by the Federal Election Commission or
its successor, the Election Assistance Commission.
    Subd. 7. Election assistance commission standards. If the federal Election Assistance
Commission has not established by January 1, 2006, standards for an electronic ballot marker or
other voting system component that is required to enable a voting system to meet the requirements
of subdivision 5, the secretary of state may certify the voting system on an experimental basis
pending the completion of federal standards, notwithstanding subdivision 6. Within two years
after the Election Assistance Commission issues standards for a voting system component used in
a voting system authorized under this subdivision, the secretary of state must review or reexamine
the voting system to determine whether the system conforms to federal standards.
History: 1984 c 447 s 3; 1984 c 640 s 32; 1986 c 362 s 7; 1986 c 444; 1989 c 291 art 1
s 25; 1995 c 233 art 2 s 56; 1997 c 147 s 53; 2004 c 293 art 1 s 32,33; 2005 c 156 art 6 s 56;
2005 c 162 s 12-14
206.58 AUTHORIZATION FOR USE.
    Subdivision 1. Municipalities. The governing body of a municipality, at a regular meeting
or at a special meeting called for the purpose, may provide for the use of an electronic voting
system in one or more precincts and at all elections in the precincts, subject to approval by the
county auditor. The governing body shall disseminate information to the public about the use
of a new voting system at least 60 days prior to the election and shall provide for instruction of
voters with a demonstration voting system in a public place for the six weeks immediately prior to
the first election at which the new voting system will be used.
No system may be adopted or used unless it has been approved by the secretary of state
pursuant to section 206.57.
    Subd. 2. May use experimental systems. The governing body of a municipality may
provide for the experimental use of an electronic voting system in one or more precincts without
formal adoption of the system. Use of the system at an election is as valid for all purposes as
if the system had been permanently adopted.
If the governing body of a municipality decides to use an electronic voting system, it shall, at
a regular or special meeting held not less than 30 days before the election, prescribe suitable rules
and instructions consistent with sections 206.55 to 206.90 for using the system and shall submit
the rules and instructions to the secretary of state for approval. When approved, a printed copy of
the rules and instructions must be posted prominently in the polling place and must remain open
to inspection by the voters throughout election day.
    Subd. 3. Counties. The governing body of a county may provide for the use of an electronic
voting system in one or more precincts of the county at all elections. The governing body of the
municipality shall give approval before an electronic voting system may be adopted or used in the
municipality under the authority of this section. No system may be adopted or used unless it has
been approved by the secretary of state pursuant to section 206.57.
    Subd. 4. Certification of use of voting systems. If a municipality adopts the use of an
electronic voting system, the municipal clerk shall certify to the secretary of state within 30 days
from the date of adoption that an electronic voting system will be used in the municipality and
the date when use will commence.
History: 1984 c 447 s 4; 1986 c 362 s 8; 1987 c 266 art 1 s 62; 1997 c 147 s 54
206.59 PAYMENT FOR VOTING SYSTEMS.
Payment for an electronic voting system may be provided for in the manner deemed in
the best interests of the political division adopting and purchasing it. A municipality or county
may make payment by appropriating money from the general fund, by levying a tax in the
same manner as other taxes are levied, or by issuing and selling bonds or other certificates of
indebtedness, which must be a charge upon the municipality or county adopting and purchasing
the electronic voting system. Bonds or other certificates of indebtedness may be issued by a
majority vote of the governing body of the municipality or county adopting and purchasing an
electronic voting system, notwithstanding any contrary provision contained in any home rule
charter or law of this state.
The bonds or certificates of indebtedness issued may bear interest at a rate not exceeding
the rate provided in section 475.55 and may be made payable at a time not exceeding 20 years
from the date of issue, as determined by the resolution or ordinance authorizing the issue. The
bonds or certificates of indebtedness may be issued exclusive of and in addition to any limit
of indebtedness fixed by the charter of a municipality, or by laws governing a municipality or
county, but the bonds or certificates of indebtedness may not be issued or sold at less than par and
accrued interest on them.
History: 1984 c 447 s 5; 1997 c 147 s 55
206.60 [Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
206.61 BALLOTS.
    Subdivision 1. Official responsible for providing ballots. The official charged with
providing paper ballots when they are used shall provide all ballot cards, sample ballots, precinct
summary statements, and other necessary supplies needed for electronic voting systems, except as
otherwise provided by this section.
At general elections and primaries the county auditor of each county in which an electronic
voting system is used shall provide all ballot cards and other necessary printed forms and supplies
needed for the electronic voting system, including all forms needed for voting on candidates
and questions, the ballots for which are required by the election laws to be provided by the
state when paper ballots are used.
    Subd. 2.[Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
    Subd. 3. Candidates' names. Candidates' names may be set in as large type as the length
of the majority of names on the ballot permits. The remaining candidates' names may be set in
smaller sizes of type as the length of each name requires, in order to fit the available space on
the ballot card.
    Subd. 4. Order of candidates. On the "State Partisan Primary Ballot" prepared for primary
elections, and on the white ballot prepared for the general election, the order of the names of
nominees or names of candidates for election shall be the same as required for paper ballots.
More than one column or row may be used for the same office or party. Electronic ballot display
and audio ballot readers must conform to the candidate order on the optical scan ballot used
in the precinct.
    Subd. 5. Alternation. The provisions of the election laws requiring the alternation of names
of candidates must be observed as far as practicable by changing the order of the names on an
electronic voting system in the various precincts so that each name appears on the machines
or marking devices used in a municipality substantially an equal number of times in the first,
last, and in each intermediate place in the list or group in which they belong. However, the
arrangement of candidates' names must be the same on all voting systems used in the same
precinct. If the number of names to be alternated exceeds the number of precincts, the election
official responsible for providing the ballots, in accordance with subdivision 1, shall determine by
lot the alternation of names.
If an electronic ballot marker is used with a paper ballot that is not an optical scan ballot
card, the manner of alternation of candidate names on the paper ballot must be as prescribed for
optical scan ballots in this subdivision.
    Subd. 6.[Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
    Subd. 7.[Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
    Subd. 8.[Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
History: 1984 c 447 s 7; 1987 c 175 s 13; 1997 c 147 s 56-58; 2005 c 162 s 15,16; 2006
c 242 s 29
206.62 SAMPLE BALLOTS.
The officials who prepare ballot cards shall provide each polling place with at least two
sample ballots which are facsimiles of the card to be voted on in that precinct. The sample ballots
may be either in full or reduced size. The sample ballots must be posted prominently in the polling
place and must remain open to inspection by the voters throughout election day.
History: 1984 c 447 s 8; 1997 c 147 s 59
206.63 [Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
206.64 ACCESSIBILITY; INSTRUCTIONS; ASSISTANCE TO VOTERS.
    Subdivision 1. General provisions for electronic system voting. Each electronic voting
system booth must be placed and protected so that it is accessible to only one voter at a time
and is in full view of all the election judges and challengers at the polling place. The election
judges shall admit one individual at a time to each booth after determining that the individual is
eligible to vote. Voting by electronic voting system must be secret, except for voters who request
assistance. A voter may remain inside the voting booth for the time reasonably required for the
voter to complete the ballot. A voter who refuses to leave the voting booth after a reasonable
amount of time, but not less than three minutes, must be removed by the election judges.
    Subd. 2.[Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
History: 1984 c 447 s 10; 1997 c 147 s 60; 2005 c 162 s 17
206.66 VIOLATIONS; PENALTIES.
    Subdivision 1. Injuring voting machines. An individual who intentionally injures or
attempts to injure or render ineffectual any component of an electronic voting system, or who
violates any of the provisions of sections 206.55 to 206.90, is guilty of a felony.
    Subd. 2. Violation of law, rules. An individual who violates any rules adopted by the
secretary of state or by the governing body of a municipality where an electronic voting system
is used, or who violates any of the provisions of sections 206.55 to 206.90, is guilty of a gross
misdemeanor.
    Subd. 3. Performance bond. A vendor of electronic voting systems or related election
services shall furnish the secretary of state with a sufficient bond conditioned on the performance
of those machines, systems, or services in accordance with the Minnesota Election Law and any
contract or agreement made with an election jurisdiction in Minnesota. The vendor bond required
under section 206.57, subdivision 4, may serve as the performance bond required under this
subdivision. The secretary of state shall send notice of the receipt or forfeiture of a bond under
this subdivision to each official on the user list.
History: 1984 c 447 s 11; 1989 c 291 art 1 s 26; 1997 c 147 s 61
206.68 [Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
206.685 [Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
206.69 [Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
206.70 [Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
206.71 [Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
206.72 [Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
206.73 [Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
206.74 [Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
206.75 [Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
206.76 [Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
206.77 [Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
206.80 ELECTRONIC VOTING SYSTEMS.
(a) An electronic voting system may not be employed unless it:
(1) permits every voter to vote in secret;
(2) permits every voter to vote for all candidates and questions for whom or upon which
the voter is legally entitled to vote;
(3) provides for write-in voting when authorized;
(4) automatically rejects, except as provided in section 206.84 with respect to write-in
votes, all votes for an office or question when the number of votes cast on it exceeds the number
which the voter is entitled to cast;
(5) permits a voter at a primary election to select secretly the party for which the voter
wishes to vote;
(6) automatically rejects all votes cast in a primary election by a voter when the voter votes
for candidates of more than one party; and
(7) provides every voter an opportunity to verify votes recorded on the permanent paper
ballot, either visually or using assistive voting technology, and to change votes or correct any
error before the voter's ballot is cast and counted, produces an individual, discrete, permanent,
paper ballot cast by the voter, and preserves the paper ballot as an official record available for use
in any recount.
(b) An electronic voting system purchased on or after June 4, 2005, may not be employed
unless it:
(1) accepts and tabulates, in the polling place or at a counting center, a marked optical
scan ballot; or
(2) creates a marked optical scan ballot that can be tabulated in the polling place or at a
counting center by automatic tabulating equipment certified for use in this state.
History: 1984 c 447 s 22; 1987 c 222 s 4; 1988 c 646 s 9; 1997 c 147 s 62; 2005 c 162 s
18; 2006 c 242 s 30
206.805 STATE VOTING SYSTEMS CONTRACTS.
    Subdivision 1. Contracts required. (a) The secretary of state, with the assistance of the
commissioner of administration, shall establish one or more state voting systems contracts. The
contracts should, if practical, include provisions for maintenance of the equipment purchased. The
voting systems contracts must address precinct-based optical scan voting equipment, and ballot
marking equipment for persons with disabilities and other voters. The contracts must give the
state a perpetual license to use and modify the software. The contracts must include provisions to
escrow the software source code, as provided in subdivision 2. Bids for voting systems and related
election services must be solicited from each vendor selling or leasing voting systems that have
been certified for use by the secretary of state. The contracts must be renewed from time to time.
(b) The secretary of state shall appoint an advisory committee, including representatives of
the state chief information officer, county auditors, municipal clerks who have had operational
experience with the use of electronic voting systems, and members of the disabilities community
to advise the secretary of state in reviewing and evaluating the merits of proposals submitted from
voting equipment vendors for the state contracts.
(c) Counties and municipalities may purchase or lease voting systems and obtain related
election services from the state contracts. All counties and municipalities are members of the
cooperative purchasing venture of the Department of Administration for the purpose of this
section. For the purpose of township elections, counties must aggregate orders under contracts
negotiated under this section for products and services and may apportion the costs of those
products and services proportionally among the townships receiving the products and services.
The county is not liable for the timely or accurate delivery of those products or services.
    Subd. 2. Escrow of source code. The contracts must require the voting system vendor to
provide a copy of the source code for the voting system to an independent third-party evaluator
selected by the vendor, the secretary of state, and the chairs of the major political parties. The
evaluator must examine the source code and certify to the secretary of state that the voting
system will record and count votes as represented by the vendor. Source code that is trade secret
information must be treated as nonpublic information, in accordance with section 13.37. Each
major political party may designate an agent to examine the source code to verify that the voting
system will record and count votes as represented by the vendor; the agent must not disclose the
source code to anyone else.
History: 2005 c 162 s 19; 2006 c 242 s 31
206.81 ELECTRONIC VOTING SYSTEMS; EXPERIMENTAL USE.
(a) The secretary of state may certify an electronic voting system for experimental use at an
election prior to its approval for general use.
(b) Experimental use must be observed by the secretary of state or the secretary's designee
and the results observed must be considered at any subsequent proceedings for certification
for general use.
(c) The secretary of state may adopt rules consistent with sections 206.55 to 206.90 relating
to experimental use. The extent of experimental use must be determined by the secretary of state.
History: 1984 c 447 s 23; 1986 c 444; 1997 c 147 s 63; 1Sp2001 c 10 art 18 s 38; 2004
c 293 art 1 s 34; 2005 c 162 s 20
206.82 PREPARATION OF ELECTRONIC VOTING SYSTEM PROGRAMS AND
PLANS.
    Subdivision 1. Program. A program or programs for use in an election conducted by
means of an electronic voting system or using an electronic ballot marker shall be prepared at
the direction of the county auditor or municipal clerk who is responsible for the conduct of the
election and shall be independently verified by a competent person designated by that official. The
term "competent person" as used in this section means a person who can demonstrate knowledge
as a computer programmer and who is other than and wholly independent of any person operating
or employed by the counting center or the corporation or other preparer of the program. A test
deck prepared by a competent person shall be used for independent verification of the program; it
shall test the maximum digits used in totaling the returns and shall be usable by insertion during
the tabulation process as well as prior to tabulation. A test deck must also be prepared using the
electronic ballot marker program and must also be used to verify that all valid votes counted by
the vote tabulator may be selected using the electronic ballot marker. The secretary of state shall
adopt rules further specifying test procedures.
    Subd. 2. Plan. (a) Subject to paragraph (b), the municipal clerk in a municipality where an
electronic voting system is used and the county auditor of a county in which an electronic voting
system is used in more than one municipality and the county auditor of a county in which a
counting center serving more than one municipality is located shall prepare a plan which indicates
acquisition of sufficient facilities, computer time, and professional services and which describes
the proposed manner of complying with section 206.80. The plan must be signed, notarized,
and submitted to the secretary of state more than 60 days before the first election at which the
municipality uses an electronic voting system. Prior to July 1 of each subsequent general election
year, the clerk or auditor shall submit to the secretary of state notification of any changes to
the plan on file with the secretary of state. The secretary of state shall review each plan for its
sufficiency and may request technical assistance from the Department of Administration or other
agency which may be operating as the central computer authority. The secretary of state shall
notify each reporting authority of the sufficiency or insufficiency of its plan within 20 days
of receipt of the plan. The attorney general, upon request of the secretary of state, may seek a
district court order requiring an election official to fulfill duties imposed by this subdivision or
by rules promulgated pursuant to this section.
(b) Systems implemented by counties and municipalities in calendar year 2006 are exempt
from paragraph (a) and section 206.58, subdivision 4, if:
(1) the municipality has fewer than 10,000 residents; and
(2) a valid county plan was filed by the county auditor of the county in which the
municipality is located.
    Subd. 3. Bond. Before a contract is awarded to any vendor for preparation of a program for
use with an electronic voting system, the vendor shall furnish the secretary of state with a sufficient
bond conditioned on preparing the program in conformity with Minnesota Election Law and the
instructions delivered to the vendor by the county auditor or municipal clerk who is responsible
for the conduct of the election. The secretary of state shall send notice of the receipt or forfeiture
of any such bond to each official on the user list. On or before March 15 of every even-numbered
year the county auditor shall send to the secretary of state the current user list for the county.
History: 1984 c 447 s 24; 1986 c 362 s 9; 1986 c 444; 1987 c 175 s 14; 2005 c 162 s
21,22; 2006 c 242 s 32
206.83 TESTING OF VOTING SYSTEMS.
Within 14 days before election day, the official in charge of elections shall have the voting
system tested to ascertain that the system will correctly mark ballots using all methods supported
by the system, including through assistive technology, and count the votes cast for all candidates
and on all questions. Public notice of the time and place of the test must be given at least two days
in advance by publication once in official newspapers. The test must be observed by at least two
election judges, who are not of the same major political party, and must be open to representatives
of the political parties, candidates, the press, and the public. The test must be conducted by (1)
processing a preaudited group of ballots punched or marked to record a predetermined number
of valid votes for each candidate and on each question, and must include for each office one or
more ballot cards which have votes in excess of the number allowed by law in order to test the
ability of the voting system tabulator and electronic ballot marker to reject those votes; and (2)
processing an additional test deck of ballots marked using the electronic ballot marker for the
precinct, including ballots marked using the electronic ballot display, audio ballot reader, and any
assistive voting technology used with the electronic ballot marker. If any error is detected, the
cause must be ascertained and corrected and an errorless count must be made before the voting
system may be used in the election. After the completion of the test, the programs used and ballot
cards must be sealed, retained, and disposed of as provided for paper ballots.
History: 1984 c 447 s 25; 1988 c 424 s 1; 1993 c 223 s 21; 1997 c 147 s 64; 2005 c 162 s
23; 2006 c 242 s 33
206.84 METHODS OF USING ELECTRONIC VOTING SYSTEMS.
    Subdivision 1. Instruction of judges, voters. The officials in charge of elections shall
determine procedures to instruct election judges and voters in the use of electronic voting system
manual marking devices and the electronic ballot marker, including assistive voting technology.
    Subd. 2.[Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
    Subd. 3. Ballots. The ballot information must be in the same order provided for paper
ballots, except that the information may be in vertical or horizontal rows, or on a number of
separate pages. The secretary of state shall provide by rule for standard ballot formats for
electronic voting systems. Electronic ballot displays and audio ballot readers shall be in the
order provided for on the optical scan ballot. Electronic ballot displays may employ zooms or
other devices as assistive voting technology. Audio ballot readers may employ rewinds or audio
cues as assistive voting technology.
Ballot cards may contain special printed marks as required for proper positioning and reading
of the ballots by electronic vote counting equipment. Ballot cards must contain an identification
of the precinct for which they have been prepared which can be read visually and which can be
tabulated by the automatic tabulating equipment.
    Subd. 4.[Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
    Subd. 5.[Repealed, 1997 c 147 s 79]
    Subd. 6. Duties of official in charge. The official in charge of elections in each municipality
where an electronic voting system is used shall have the voting systems put in order, set, adjusted,
and made ready for voting when delivered to the election precincts. The official shall also provide
each precinct with a container for transporting ballot cards to the counting location after the
polls close. The container shall be of sturdy material to protect the ballots from all reasonably
foreseeable hazards including auto collisions. The election judges shall meet at the polling place at
least one hour before the time for opening the polls. Before the polls open the election judges shall
compare the ballot cards used with the sample ballots, electronic ballot displays, and audio ballot
reader furnished to see that the names, numbers, and letters on both agree and shall certify to that
fact on forms provided for the purpose. The certification must be filed with the election returns.
    Subd. 7. Spoiled ballot cards. A voter who spoils a ballot card or makes an error may return
it to the election judges and obtain another. Except as otherwise provided in sections 206.55 to
206.90, the election judges shall conduct the election in the manner prescribed for precincts
using paper ballots in chapters 204C and 204D.
History: 1984 c 447 s 26; 1986 c 362 s 10; 1986 c 444; 1987 c 222 s 5; 1997 c 147 s
65-67; 2005 c 162 s 24-26
206.845 BALLOT RECORDING AND COUNTING SECURITY.
    Subdivision 1. Prohibited connections. The county auditor and municipal clerk must secure
ballot recording and tabulating systems physically and electronically against unauthorized access.
Except for wired connections within the polling place, ballot recording and tabulating systems
must not be connected to or operated on, directly or indirectly, any electronic network, including
a local area network, a wide-area network, the Internet, or the World Wide Web. Wireless
communications may not be used in any way in a vote recording or vote tabulating system.
Wireless, device-to-device capability is not permitted. No connection by modem is permitted.
Transfer of information from the ballot recording or tabulating system to another system
for network distribution or broadcast must be made by disk, tape, or other physical means
of communication, other than direct or indirect electronic connection of the vote recording or
vote tabulating system.
    Subd. 2. Transmission to central reporting location. After the close of the polls, the head
election judge must create a printed record of the results of the election for that precinct. After the
record has been printed, the head election judge in a precinct that employs automatic tabulating
equipment may transmit the accumulated tally for each device to a central reporting location using
a telephone, modem, Internet, or other electronic connection. During the canvassing period, the
results transmitted electronically must be considered unofficial until the canvassing board has
performed a complete reconciliation of the results.
History: 2005 c 162 s 27
206.85 OFFICIALS IN CHARGE OF COUNTING.
    Subdivision 1. Duties of responsible official. The official in charge of elections in a
municipality where an electronic voting system is used at a counting center must:
(a) be present or personally represented throughout the counting center proceedings;
(b) be responsible for acquiring sufficient facilities and personnel to ensure timely and
lawful processing of votes;
(c) be responsible for the proper training of all personnel participating in counting center
proceedings and deputize all personnel who are not otherwise election judges;
(d) maintain actual control over all proceedings and be responsible for the lawful execution
of all proceedings in the counting center whether or not by experts;
(e) be responsible for assuring the lawful retention and storage of ballots and read-outs; and
(f) arrange for observation by the public and by candidates' representatives of counting
center procedures by publishing the exact location of the counting center in a legal newspaper
at least once during the week preceding the week of election and in the newspaper of widest
circulation once on the day preceding the election, or once the week preceding the election if
the newspaper is a weekly.
The official may make arrangements with news reporters which permit prompt reporting
of election results but which do not interfere with the timely and lawful completion of counting
procedures.
    Subd. 2. Counting center in more than one municipality. If a counting center serves
more than one municipality, the county auditor of the county where the center is located is in
sole charge of overall administration of the center and must:
(a) establish procedures to implement the timely and lawful completion of the counting
center proceedings;
(b) coordinate training of all counting center personnel and require additional training as
needed;
(c) ask the county attorney, at least 30 days prior to an election, whether circumstances
require that the municipalities sharing the use of a counting center resolve their respective duties
and financial responsibilities by execution of a joint powers agreement pursuant to section 471.59;
(d) coordinate, and if necessary, exercise the duties imposed by this section on the official in
charge of elections in a municipality where an electronic voting system is used; and
(e) limit the number of ballots to be counted at a single counting center to no more than
100,000.
History: 1984 c 447 s 27; 1986 c 362 s 11; 1986 c 444; 2005 c 162 s 28
206.86 COUNTING ELECTRONIC VOTING SYSTEM RESULTS.
    Subdivision 1. At the voting location. In precincts where an electronic voting system is
used, as soon as the polls are closed the election judges shall secure the voting systems against
further voting. They shall then open the ballot box and count the number of ballot cards or
envelopes containing ballot cards that have been cast to determine that the number of ballot cards
does not exceed the number of voters shown on the election register or registration file. If there
is an excess, the judges shall seal the ballots in a ballot container and transport the container to
the county auditor or municipal clerk who shall process the ballots in the same manner as paper
ballots are processed in section 204C.20, subdivision 2, then enter the ballots into the ballot
counter. The total number of voters must be entered on the forms provided. The judges shall next
count the write-in votes and enter the number of those votes on forms provided for the purpose.
    Subd. 2. Transportation of ballot cards. The judges shall place all voted ballot cards,
defective ballots, and damaged ballots in the container provided for transporting them to the
counting center. The container must be sealed and delivered immediately to the counting center
by two judges who are not of the same major political party. The judges shall also deliver to the
counting center in a suitable container the unused ballot cards, the spoiled ballot envelope, and the
ballot envelopes issued to the voters and deposited during the day in the ballot box.
    Subd. 3. Counting centers open; security. Proceedings at the counting center are open to
the public. They are under the direction of the official in charge of elections in each municipality
where an electronic voting system is used and must be under the observation of at least two
election judges who are not of the same major political party. Only persons employed and
authorized for the purpose may touch any ballot card, ballot container, or statement of absentee
ballot results.
    Subd. 4. Preliminary tabulation. When the ballot cards arrive at a counting center where
votes are counted by a multiple use computer, they must be given to the counting center election
judges. For purposes of this subdivision a multiple use computer is automatic tabulating
equipment which can perform functions other than counting votes. If the election judges at the
precinct have determined that any ballot cards are not defective by reason of improper write-in
votes, those ballot cards may be counted by the automatic tabulating equipment before inspection
by the counting center election judges. The results of this preliminary tabulation may be made
available to the public if the tabulation is clearly identified as unofficial.
After any preliminary tabulation has been made, the ballot cards must be returned to the
counting center election judges who shall examine them for physical defects and prepare
replacements, if necessary, as provided in subdivision 5.
    Subd. 5. Damaged, defective ballot cards. If a ballot card is damaged or defective so that it
cannot be counted properly by the automatic tabulating equipment, a true duplicate copy must be
made of the damaged ballot card in the presence of two judges not of the same major political
party and must be substituted for the damaged ballot card. Likewise, a duplicate ballot card must
be made of a defective ballot card which may not include the votes for the offices for which it
is defective. Duplicate ballot cards must be clearly labeled "duplicate," indicate the precinct in
which the corresponding damaged or defective ballot was cast, bear a serial number which must
be recorded on the damaged or defective ballot card, and be counted in lieu of the damaged or
defective ballot card. If a ballot card is damaged or defective so that it cannot be counted properly
by the automatic tabulating equipment, the ballot card must be tallied at the counting center by
two judges not of the same major political party and the totals for all these ballot cards must be
added to the totals for the respective precincts.
    Subd. 6. Final tabulation. A final tabulation of ballots must be obtained from the automatic
tabulating equipment after all damaged or defective cards have been replaced. The final tabulation,
together with the returns of write-in and absentee votes and the precinct summary statements
prepared in accordance with section 204C.24, constitute the official return of each precinct.
Upon completion of the count the returns are open to the public. The automatic tabulating
equipment must be programmed to provide a complete recapitulation of all ballots processed.
It may be programmed to provide information in addition to that required in the official return
of each precinct, if the officials in charge of elections deem that advisable in order to provide
election statistics to evaluate the performance of the electronic voting system or other aspects
of the election.
History: 1984 c 447 s 28; 1997 c 147 s 68,69; 1999 c 132 s 38
206.87 CANVASSING BOARD DUTIES.
In a municipality where an electronic voting system is used the canvassing board shall be
constituted and shall perform the same duties as provided in sections 204C.32, 204C.33, and
204C.39 on the canvassing of paper ballots.
History: 1984 c 447 s 29
206.88 PARTIAL RECOUNTS ON ELECTRONIC VOTING SYSTEMS.
The secretary of state may conduct a recount to verify the accuracy of vote counting and
recording in one or more precincts in which an electronic voting system was used in the election.
The results of the recount must be reported to the appropriate canvassing board. Time for notice
of nomination, election, or contest for an office recounted pursuant to this section must begin
upon certification of the results of the recount by the canvassing board.
History: 1989 c 291 art 1 s 27
206.89 POSTELECTION REVIEW OF VOTING SYSTEMS.
    Subdivision 1. Definition. For purposes of this section "postelection review official" means
the election administration official who is responsible for the conduct of elections in a precinct
selected for review under this section.
    Subd. 2. Selection for review; notice. At the canvass of the state primary, the county
canvassing board in each county must set the date, time, and place for the postelection review of
the state general election to be held under this section.
At the canvass of the state general election, the county canvassing boards must select the
precincts to be reviewed. The county canvassing board of a county with fewer than 50,000
registered voters must select at least two precincts for postelection review. The county canvassing
board of a county with between 50,000 and 100,000 registered voters must select at least three
precincts for review. The county canvassing board of a county with over 100,000 registered
voters must select at least four precincts. The precincts must be selected by lot at a public
meeting. At least one precinct selected in each county must have had more than 150 votes cast at
the general election.
The county auditor must notify the secretary of state of the precincts that have been chosen
for review and the time and place the postelection review for that county will be conducted, as
soon as the decisions are made. The secretary of state must post this information on the office
Web site.
    Subd. 3. Scope and conduct of review. The county canvassing board shall appoint the
postelection review official as defined in subdivision 1. The postelection review must be
conducted of the votes cast for president or governor; United States senator; and United States
representative. The postelection review official may conduct postelection review of the votes
cast for additional offices.
The postelection review must be conducted in public at the location where the voted
ballots have been securely stored after the state general election or at another location chosen
by the county canvassing board. The postelection review official for each precinct selected
must conduct the postelection review and may be assisted by election judges designated by the
postelection review official for this purpose. The party balance requirement of section 204B.19
applies to election judges designated for the review. The postelection review must consist of a
manual count of the ballots used in the precincts selected and must be performed in the manner
provided by section 204C.21. The postelection review must be conducted in the manner provided
for recounts under section 204C.361 to the extent practicable. The review must be completed
no later than two days before the meeting of the state canvassing board to certify the results of
the state general election.
    Subd. 4. Standard of acceptable performance by voting system. A comparison of the
results compiled by the voting system with the postelection review described in this section must
show that the results of the electronic voting system differed by no more than one-half of one
percent from the manual count of the offices reviewed. Valid votes that have been marked by the
voter outside the vote targets or using a manual marking device that cannot be read by the voting
system must not be included in making the determination whether the voting system has met the
standard of acceptable performance for any precinct.
    Subd. 5. Additional review. (a) If the postelection review reveals a difference greater than
one-half of one percent, the postelection review official must, within two days, conduct an
additional review of at least three precincts in the same jurisdiction where the discrepancy was
discovered. If all precincts in that jurisdiction have been reviewed, the county auditor must
immediately publicly select by lot at least three additional precincts for review. The postelection
review official must complete the additional review within two days after the precincts are
selected and report the results immediately to the county auditor. If the second review also
indicates a difference in the vote totals compiled by the voting system that is greater than one-half
of one percent from the result indicated by the postelection review, the county auditor must
conduct a review of the ballots from all the remaining precincts in the county. This review must
be completed no later than six weeks after the state general election.
(b) If the results from the countywide reviews from one or more counties comprising in the
aggregate more than ten percent of the total number of persons voting in the election clearly
indicate that an error in vote counting has occurred, the postelection review official must conduct
a manual recount of all the ballots in the district for the affected office. The recount must be
completed and the results reported to the appropriate canvassing board no later than ten weeks
after the state general election.
    Subd. 6. Report of results. Upon completion of the postelection review, the postelection
review official must immediately report the results to the county auditor. The county auditor must
then immediately submit the results of the postelection review electronically or in writing to the
secretary of state not later than two days before the State Canvassing Board meets to canvass the
state general election. The secretary of state shall report the results of the postelection review at
the meeting of the State Canvassing Board to canvass the state general election.
    Subd. 7. Update of vote totals. If the postelection review under this section results in
a change in the number of votes counted for any candidate, the revised vote totals must be
incorporated in the official result from those precincts.
    Subd. 8. Effect on voting systems. If a voting system is found to have failed to record votes
accurately and in the manner provided by the Minnesota Election Law, the voting system must
not be used at another election until it has been examined and recertified by the secretary of
state. If the voting system failure is attributable to either its design or to actions of the vendor,
the vendor must forfeit the vendor bond required by section 206.57 and the performance bond
required by section 206.66.
    Subd. 9. Costs of review. The costs of the postelection review required by this section
must be allocated as follows:
(1) the governing body responsible for each precinct selected for review must pay the costs
incurred for the review conducted under subdivision 2 or 5, paragraph (a);
(2) the vendor of the voting system must pay any costs incurred by the secretary of state to
examine and recertify the voting system; and
(3) the secretary of state must reimburse local units of government for the costs of any
recount required under subdivision 5, paragraph (b).
    Subd. 10. Time for filing election contest. The appropriate canvass is not completed and
the time for notice of a contest of election does not begin to run until all reviews under this
section have been completed.
History: 2006 c 242 s 34
206.895 SECRETARY OF STATE MONITOR.
The secretary of state must monitor and evaluate election procedures in precincts subject to
the audit provided for in section 206.89 in at least four precincts in each congressional district.
The precincts must be chosen by lot by the State Canvassing Board at its meeting to canvass
the state general election.
History: 2006 c 242 s 35
206.90 OPTICAL SCAN VOTING SYSTEMS.
    Subdivision 1. Definition. For the purposes of this section, "optical scan voting system"
means an electronic voting system approved for use under sections 206.80 to 206.81 in which the
voter records votes by marking with a pencil or other device, including an electronic ballot marker,
a ballot on which the names of candidates, office titles, party designation in a partisan primary or
election, and a statement of any question accompanied by the words "Yes" and "No" are printed.
    Subd. 2. Procedures. To the extent possible, procedures for using an optical scan voting
system must be the same as those used for other electronic voting systems, unless this section
provides otherwise.
    Subd. 3. Availability of paper ballots. At a state or county election where an optical scan
voting system will be in use, the county auditor may provide ballot cards meeting the requirements
of this section in lieu of paper ballots otherwise required to be prepared by the county auditor. In
an election jurisdiction where an optical scan voting system has been adopted, the election official
may provide paper ballots prepared in the same format used for the voting system.
    Subd. 4. Absentee voting. An optical scan voting system may be used for absentee voting.
The county auditor may supply an appropriate marking instrument to the voter along with the
ballot.
    Subd. 5. Instruction of judges, voters. In instructing judges and voters under section 206.84,
subdivision 1
, officials in charge of election precincts using optical scan voting systems shall
include instruction on the proper mark for recording votes on ballot cards marked with a pencil or
other writing instrument and the insertion by the voter of the ballot card into automatic tabulating
equipment that examines and counts votes as the ballot card is deposited into the ballot box.
Officials shall include instruction on the insertion by the voter of the ballot card into an
electronic ballot marker that can examine votes before the ballot card is deposited into the
ballot box.
    Subd. 6. Ballots. In precincts using optical scan voting systems, a single ballot card on which
all ballot information is included must be printed in black ink on white colored material except that
marks not to be read by the automatic tabulating equipment may be printed in another color ink.
On the front of the ballot must be printed the words "Official Ballot" and the date of the
election and lines for the initials of at least two election judges.
When optical scan ballots are used, the offices to be elected must appear in the following
order: federal offices; state legislative offices; constitutional offices; proposed constitutional
amendments; county offices and questions; municipal offices and questions; school district offices
and questions; special district offices and questions; and judicial offices.
On optical scan ballots, the names of candidates and the words "yes" and "no" for ballot
questions must be printed as close to their corresponding vote targets as possible.
The line on an optical scan ballot for write-in votes must contain the words "write-in, if any."
If a primary ballot contains both a partisan ballot and a nonpartisan ballot, the instructions
to voters must include a statement that reads substantially as follows: "THIS BALLOT CARD
CONTAINS A PARTISAN BALLOT AND A NONPARTISAN BALLOT. ON THE PARTISAN
BALLOT YOU ARE PERMITTED TO VOTE FOR CANDIDATES OF ONE POLITICAL
PARTY ONLY." If a primary ballot contains political party columns on both sides of the
ballot, the instructions to voters must include a statement that reads substantially as follows:
"ADDITIONAL POLITICAL PARTIES ARE PRINTED ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THIS
BALLOT. VOTE FOR ONE POLITICAL PARTY ONLY." At the bottom of each political party
column on the primary ballot, the ballot must contain a statement that reads substantially as
follows: "CONTINUE VOTING ON THE NONPARTISAN BALLOT." The instructions in
section 204D.08, subdivision 4, do not apply to optical scan partisan primary ballots. Electronic
ballot displays and audio ballot readers must follow the order of offices and questions on the
optical scan or paper ballot used in the same precinct, or the sample ballot posted for that precinct.
    Subd. 7. Voting booths. In precincts where an optical scan voting system is used, the number
of voting booths must be sufficient to provide for the number of voters expected. Information
needed to enable voters to mark ballot cards quickly and correctly must be posted in each voting
booth.
    Subd. 8. Duties of election officials. The official in charge of elections in each municipality
where an optical scan voting system is used shall have the electronic ballot marker that examines
and marks votes on ballot cards and the automatic tabulating equipment that examines and counts
votes as ballot cards are deposited into ballot boxes put in order, set, adjusted, and made ready for
voting when delivered to the election precincts. Whenever a ballot card created by an electronic
ballot marker certified by the secretary of state is rejected by an optical scan voting system, two
election judges who are members of different major political parties shall transcribe the votes
on the ballot rejected by the optical scan voting system pursuant to the procedures set forth in
section 206.86, subdivision 5.
    Subd. 9. Spoiled ballot cards. Automatic tabulating equipment and electronic ballot markers
must be capable of examining a ballot card for defects and returning it to the voter before it is
counted and deposited into the ballot box and must be programmed to return as a spoiled ballot a
ballot card with votes for an office or question which exceed the number which the voter is
entitled to cast and at a primary a ballot card with votes for candidates of more than one party.
    Subd. 10. Counting write-in votes. In precincts using optical scan voting systems, the
judges shall count the write-in votes and enter the number of those votes on forms provided for
the purpose. When the write-in votes are recorded on a medium that cannot be examined for
write-in votes by the automatic tabulating equipment or the automatic tabulating equipment does
not reject, with respect to write-in votes, all votes for an office or question when the number of
votes cast on it exceeds the number which the voter is entitled to count, all ballot envelopes or
other medium on which write-in votes have been recorded must be serially numbered, starting
with the number one and the same number must be placed on the ballot card of the voter. The
judges shall compare the write-in votes with the votes cast on the ballot card. If the total number
of votes for any office exceeds the number allowed by law, a notation to that effect must be
entered on the back of the ballot card and the card must be returned to the counting center in an
envelope marked "defective ballots"; however, valid votes on ballot cards containing invalid votes
must be counted as provided in section 206.86, subdivision 5.
When the write-in votes are recorded on ballot cards that can be examined for write-in
votes by the automatic tabulating equipment and the automatic tabulating equipment rejects all
votes for an office or question when the number of votes cast on it exceeds the number which
the voter is entitled to cast, the judges shall examine the ballot cards with write-in votes and
count the valid write-in votes.
History: 1986 c 381 s 1; 1987 c 175 s 15; 1989 c 291 art 1 s 28; 1993 c 223 s 22; 1994 c
646 s 22; 1997 c 147 s 70,71; 1998 c 254 art 1 s 64; 2000 c 467 s 31; 2004 c 293 art 2 s 42;
2005 c 162 s 29-33; 2006 c 242 s 36
206.91 VOTING MACHINES OPTIONS WORKING GROUP.
(a) A working group is hereby established to investigate and recommend to the legislature
requirements for additional options for voting equipment that complies with the requirements
of section 301 of the Help America Vote Act, Public Law 107-252, to provide private and
independent voting for individuals with disabilities.
The working group must be cochaired by representatives of the Minnesota Disability Law
Center and Citizens for Election Integrity - Minnesota.
(b) The working group must convene its first meeting by June 30, 2006, and must report to
the legislature by February 15, 2007.
(c) The working group must include, but is not limited to:
(1) the disability community;
(2) the secretary of state;
(3) county and local election officials;
(4) major and minor political parties;
(5)(i) one member of the senate majority caucus and one member of the senate minority
caucus appointed by the Subcommittee on Committees of the Committee on Rules and
Administration; and
(ii) one member of the house majority caucus and one member of the house minority caucus
appointed by the speaker;
(6) nonpartisan organizations;
(7) at least one individual with computer security expertise and knowledge of elections; and
(8) members of the public, other than vendors of election equipment, selected by consensus
of the other members, including representatives of language and other minorities.
(d) Members of the working group will be selected by:
(1) a representative of the Office of the Secretary of State;
(2) a representative of the county election officials;
(3) the cochairs; and
(4) two legislators representing each party.
History: 2006 c 242 s 37