Chapter 111-19 Electronic Transmission of New and Changed Registration Information

111-19-01 Scope of rules.

Section 3503.09 of the Revised Code requires the secretary of state to adopt rules for the electronic transmission by designated agencies, offices of deputy registrars of motor vehicles, public high schools and vocational schools, public libraries, and offices of county treasurers, where applicable, of name and residence changes for voter registration records in the statewide voter registration database. The law also requires the secretary of state to adopt rules for the purpose of improving the speed of processing new voter registrations that permit information from a voter registration application received by a designated agency or an office of deputy registrar of motor vehicles to be made available electronically, in addition to requiring the original voter registration application to be transmitted to the applicable board of elections under sections 3503.10 and 3503.11 of the Revised Code. Accordingly, these rules address requirements for transmitting electronically voter registration applications for new and updated voter registrations.

Effective: 01/07/2011
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 07/15/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 3503.09 , 3501.05
Rule Amplifies: 3503.09 , 3503.10 , 3503.11

111-19-02 Definitions.

(A) "Designated agency" means an office or agency in the state that provides public assistance or that provides state-funded programs primarily engaged in providing services to persons with disabilities and that is required by the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 to implement a program designed and administered by the secretary of state for registering voters, or any other public or government office or agency that implements a program designed and administered by the secretary of state for registering voters, including the department of job and family services, the program administered under section 3701.132 of the Revised Code by the department of health, the department of mental health, the department of developmental disabilities, the rehabilitation services commission, and any other agency the secretary of state designates. Designated agency does not include public high schools and vocational schools, public libraries, or the office of a county treasurer.

(B) "Other registration agency" means a public high school or vocational school, a public library or the office of a county treasurer or other office or agency that is permitted or required to conduct voter registration activities pursuant to applicable sections of the Ohio Revised Code.

(C) "Deputy registrar of motor vehicles" has the same meaning as office of deputy registrar of motor vehicles as either may be described in Chapter 4503. of the Revised Code.

(D) "National Voter Registration Act of 1993" also known as NVRA and the Motor Voter Act means Public Law 103-31, 107 Stat. 77, 42 U.S.C. 1973gg .

(E) "Extensible Markup Language" or "XML" is a set of rules for encoding documents in machine-readable form, defined in the XML 1.0 Specification produced by the world wide web consortium (W3C).

(F) "Facsimile" is a copy or reproduction of a document transmitted over a telephone line.

(G) "Portable Document Format" or "PDF" is an open standard for document exchange transmitted, for purposes of these rules, by electronic mail. PDF is an open file format specification developed by adobe systems.

(H) "Voter registration application" includes both new voter registration applications and applications to update an elector's name or residence address, whether by use of a form or data entry by a designated agency, other registration agency or deputy registrar of motor vehicles.

(I) "Voter registration application form" means a paper form used to register to vote or to update an elector's name or residence.

(J) "Elector" has the same meaning as division (N) of section 3501.01 of the Revised Code; that is, a person having the qualifications provided by law to be entitled to vote.

Effective: 01/07/2011
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 07/15/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 3503.09 , 3501.05
Rule Amplifies: 3503.09 , 3503.10 , 3503.11

111-19-03 Processing voter registration applications by designated agencies, other registration agencies and deputy registrars of motor vehicles.

(A) Every designated agency, other registration agency, and deputy registrar of motor vehicles shall accept completed voter registration application forms, regardless of whether a form was distributed by the designated agency, other registration agency, or deputy registrar of motor vehicles. Original voter registration application forms shall be transmitted to the board of elections for the county in which the agency or deputy registrar is located. Each designated agency and the appropriate board of elections shall establish a method by which voter registration application forms are transmitted to that board of elections within five business days after being accepted by the agency.

(B) The secretary of state shall supply to the designated agencies, other registration agencies, and deputy registrars of motor vehicles, instructions for the electronic transmission of voter registration applications to the secretary of state, who shall require each designated agency, other registration agency or deputy registrar of motor vehicles when transmitting voter registration applications electronically to the secretary of state to transmit an identifier for data relating to each new voter registration application form that shall be used by boards of elections to match the electronic data to the original voter registration application form and shall require for updated registrations a statement of verification by the agency or deputy registrar as required in paragraph (D) of this rule.

(C) The designated agency, other registration agency, or deputy registrar of motor vehicles may place the identifier to be used to match the electronic data with the original voter registration application forms in the upper left corner of the original voter registration application form, but in no instance shall the identifier indicate the identity of the agency transmitting the form, or mask in any way the information supplied by the elector on the original voter registration application form.

(D) Any designated agency, other registration agency, or deputy registrar of motor vehicles that receives a voter registration application shall, upon and in accordance with instructions from the secretary of state, electronically transmit the application to the secretary of state within two business days after being accepted. In the case of an application to update an elector's name or residence, "receipt of a voter registration application" may consist of the entry or creation of electronic data in a format approved by the secretary of state. In such case, the agency or deputy registrar shall include with the record a statement that the elector's identity was verified at the time of the entry or creation of the elector's updated electronic data. Voter registration applications shall be transmitted to the secretary of state by one of the following methods:

(1) Extensible markup language format (XML) according to XML specifications and according to instructions provided by the secretary of state;

(2) Portable document format (PDF) and electronic mail according to instructions that may be provided by the secretary of state; or

(3) Facsimile according to instructions that may be provided by the secretary of state.

(E) Voter registration applications shall be transmitted according to instructions from the secretary of state by the highest degree of electronic capacity possessed by the designated agency, other registration agency, or deputy registrar of motor vehicles, with XML format being the highest degree and facsimile being the lowest degree of electronic capacity.

(F) In the event that the designated agency, other registration agency or deputy registrar of motor vehicles is able to transmit voter registration applications only by facsimile, the lowest degree of electronic capacity, the secretary of state may instruct the agency or deputy registrar to make its electronic transmissions directly to the appropriate boards of elections, and the boards of elections shall accept the same in such electronic format and compare them with the voter registration application forms received from designated agencies, other registration agencies and deputy registrars of motor vehicles.

Effective: 01/07/2011
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 07/15/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 3503.09 , 3501.05
Rule Amplifies: 3503.09 , 3503.10 , 3503.11

111-19-04 Processing voter registration applications received electronically from designated agencies, other registration agencies and deputy registrars of motor vehicles by the secretary of state.

(A) The secretary of state shall, within three business days of receipt of a voter registration application from a designated agency, other registration agency, or deputy registrar of motor vehicles, verify the data for information required by rule 111-19-03 of the Administrative Code, and transmit the application by the highest degree of electronic capacity available or possible to the appropriate board of elections with instructions for verifying the data and for updating the board's records of registered voters in the county.

(B) When transmitting voter registration applications received from designated agencies, other registration agencies and deputy registrars of motor vehicles to boards of elections, the secretary of state shall include, in addition to the unique identifier that was supplied by the agency or deputy registrar for each voter registration application, "a source identifier" of the agency or deputy registrar that supplied the voter registration application, and also inform boards of elections that the boards must keep confidential the source identifier designating the identity of the agency through which the person registered to vote or updated his or her registration as required by section 3503.10 of the Revised Code.

(C) Except as required by the secretary of state for record-keeping purposes, the identity of an agency through which a person registered to vote or updated the person's voter registration records, and information relating to a declination to register to vote made in connection with a voter registration application issued by a designated agency, other registration agency, or deputy registrar of motor vehicles shall be confidential.

Effective: 01/07/2011
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 07/15/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 3503.09 , 3501.05
Rule Amplifies: 3503.09 , 3503.10 , 3503.11

111-19-05 Training for agencies conducting voter registration activities.

Each designated agency, other registration agency, and deputy registrar of motor vehicles shall require its employees to be trained to administer the voter registration program, including the electronic transmission program prescribed under this chapter, which training program shall be developed in consultation with the secretary of state, in order to provide to each applicant who wishes to register to vote and who accepts assistance, the same degree of assistance with regard to completion of the voter registration application as is provided by the agency with regard to the completion of its own form. Any employee receiving such training shall not be entitled to receive any additional compensation for performing such duties.

Effective: 01/07/2011
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 07/15/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 3503.09 , 3501.05
Rule Amplifies: 3503.09 , 3503.10 , 3503.11

111-19-06 Training for boards of elections.

Each board of elections shall require its employees to be trained to administer the electronic transmission program prescribed under this chapter. The secretary of state shall provide such training to boards of elections. Any employee receiving such training shall not be entitled to receive additional compensation for performing such duties.

Effective: 01/07/2011
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 07/15/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 3503.09 , 3501.05
Rule Amplifies: 3503.09 , 3503.10 , 3503.11

111-19-07 Processing voter registration applications received from the secretary of state electronically and from designated agencies, other registration agencies and deputy registrars of motor vehicles, by boards of elections.

(A) When a board of elections receives by electronic means from the secretary of state a new or updated voter registration that has been received by the secretary from a designated agency, other registration agency, or deputy registrar of motor vehicles, the board shall maintain the electronic transmission in a separate file or enter it in its database as a pending status until it compares the electronic record received from the secretary of state with the voter registration application form received from the designated agency, other registration agency, or deputy registrar of the bureau of motor vehicles and verifies, as required by federal and state law, the qualifications of a new registrant or an elector who has applied for a change of name or residence for which there is a voter registration application form, before the voter registration application is added to the statewide voter registration database.

(B) The board of elections shall review and maintain completed voter registration application forms that are transmitted to the board of elections, as required under section 3503.10 or 3503.11 of the Revised Code.

(C) If the board of elections does not receive an original completed new voter registration application within ten days after the board of elections received the electronic transmission of that new voter registration application from the secretary of state, the board of elections shall contact the designated agency, other registration agency, or deputy registrar of motor vehicles to determine whether the original completed new voter registration application has been transmitted. If no original completed new voter registration application form is received for a new voter registration application within twenty days after the board of elections received the electronic transmission of the new voter registration application from the secretary of state, the board of elections shall send to the elector a new voter registration application form to complete and return to the board of elections in order to obtain the elector's original signature. If the original signature is received after the deadline to register for a particular election but more than fourteen days before the election, the elector shall be entitled to vote at that election. Nothing in this rule causes a new voter registration application to permit an individual to be registered to vote without an original signature being supplied to the board of elections.

(D) In the case of voter registration applications where the elector has updated his or her name or residence address and where no original voter registration application form is required by law, the board shall include an identifier for such voter registration application that represents the status that no original voter registration application form was required or supplied by the designated agency, other registration agency, or deputy registrar of motor vehicles, and that the elector's information was verified by the agency or deputy registrar and by the secretary of state, as required by law.

(E) When a board of elections receives an electronic transmission of a voter registration application from the secretary of state that has been received by the secretary from a designated agency, other registration agency, or deputy registrar of motor vehicles, the board of elections shall retain the secretary's source identifier for the voter registration application and the unique identifier supplied by the designated agency, other registration agency, or deputy registrar of motor vehicles for the voter registration application. The unique identifier supplied by the designated agency, other registration agency, or deputy registrar of motor vehicles shall be used by the board of elections to match the electronic data to original voter registration application forms for purposes of comparison and verification and to qualify the voter registration data to be entered into the statewide voter registration database. The board of elections shall not cause the source identifier to appear on the original voter registration application form and shall redact the unique identifier to be redacted from public view of a voter registration application form.

Effective: 01/07/2011
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 07/15/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 3503.09 , 3501.05
Rule Amplifies: RC 3503.09 , 3503.10 , 3503.11

111-19-08 Prohibitions.

The secretary of state and the boards of elections, their employees and agents, and any other person acting in concert or participation with them or any one of them, shall not permit any direct electronic connection between a designated agency, other registration agency, or deputy registrar of motor vehicles and the statewide voter registration database.

Effective: 01/07/2011
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 07/15/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 3503.09 , 3501.05
Rule Amplifies: 3503.09 , 3503.10 , 3503.11