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Canvassing Board

The Canvassing Board provides the oversight to ensure the integrity of the electoral process.

The Alachua County canvassing board is composed of:

  • The Supervisor of Elections
  • A County Court Judge, who acts as chair
  • The Chair of the Board of County Commissioners, or designated County Commissioner

 

In the event any member of the county canvassing board is unable to serve, is a candidate who has opposition in the election being canvassed, or is an active participant in the campaign or candidacy of any candidate who has opposition in the election being canvassed, such member shall be replaced in accordance with Florida statute.

Florida Statutes 102.141
County canvassing board; duties

The county canvassing board meets in a building accessible to the public in the county where the election occurred at a time and place to be designated by the Supervisor of Elections to publicly canvass the absentee electors' ballots as provided for in s. 101.68. Public notice of the time and place at which the county canvassing board shall meet to canvass the absentee electors' ballots shall be given at least 48 hours prior thereto by publication once in one or more newspapers of general circulation in the county or, if there is no newspaper of general circulation in the county, by posting such notice in at least four conspicuous places in the county. As soon as the absentee electors' ballots are canvassed, the board shall proceed to publicly canvass the vote given each candidate, nominee, constitutional amendment, or other measure submitted to the electorate of the county, as shown by the returns then on file in the office of the supervisor of elections and the office of the county court judge.

The canvass, except the canvass of absentee electors' returns, shall be made from the returns and certificates of the inspectors as signed and filed by them with the county court judge and supervisor, respectively, and the county canvassing board shall not change the number of votes cast for a candidate, nominee, constitutional amendment, or other measure submitted to the electorate of the county, respectively, in any polling place, as shown by the returns. All returns shall be made to the board on or before noon of the day following any primary, general, special, or other election. If the returns from any precinct are missing, if there are any omissions on the returns from any precinct, or if there is an obvious error on any such returns, the canvassing board shall order a recount of the returns from such precinct. Before canvassing such returns, the canvassing board shall examine the counters on the machines or the tabulation of the ballots cast in such precinct and determine whether the returns correctly reflect the votes cast. If there is a discrepancy between the returns and the counters of the machines or the tabulation of the ballots cast, the counters of such machines or the tabulation of the ballots cast shall be presumed correct and such votes shall be canvassed accordingly.

If the returns for any office reflect that a candidate was defeated or eliminated by one-half of a percent or less of the votes cast for such office, that a candidate for retention to a judicial office was retained or not retained by one-half of a percent or less of the votes cast on the question of retention, or that a measure appearing on the ballot was approved or rejected by one-half of a percent or less of the votes cast on such measure, the board responsible for certifying the results of the vote on such race or measure shall order a recount of the votes cast with respect to such office or measure. A recount need not be ordered with respect to the returns for any office, however, if the candidate or candidates defeated or eliminated from contention for such office by one-half of a percent or less of the votes cast for such office request in writing that a recount not be made. Each canvassing board responsible for conducting a recount shall examine the counters on the machines or the tabulation of the ballots cast in each precinct in which the office or issue appeared on the ballot and determine whether the returns correctly reflect the votes cast. If there is a discrepancy between the returns and the counters of the machines or the tabulation of the ballots cast, the counters of such machines or the tabulation of the ballots cast shall be presumed correct and such votes shall be canvassed accordingly.

The canvassing board may employ such clerical help to assist with the work of the board as it deems necessary, with at least one member of the board present at all times, until the canvass of the returns is completed. The clerical help shall be paid from the same fund as inspectors and other necessary election officials.

At the same time that the results of an election are certified to the Department of State, the county canvassing board shall file a report with the Division of Elections on the conduct of the election. The report shall contain information relating to any problems incurred as a result of equipment malfunctions either at the precinct level or at a counting location, any difficulties or unusual circumstances encountered by an election board or the canvassing board, and any other additional information which the canvassing board feels should be made a part of the official election record. Such reports shall be maintained on file in the Division of Elections and shall be available for public inspection. The division shall utilize the reports submitted by the canvassing boards to determine what problems may be likely to occur in other elections and disseminate such information, along with possible solutions, to the Supervisors of Elections.

Florida Statutes 102.141 - County canvassing board; duties

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Kim A. Barton
Alachua County Supervisor of Elections

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History.—s. 1, ch. 2006-232.