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92_HB1981 LRB9206304MWpr 1 AN ACT concerning voters' pamphlets. 2 Be it enacted by the People of the State of Illinois, 3 represented in the General Assembly: 4 Section 5. The Election Code is amended by adding 5 Article 12A as follows: 6 (10 ILCS 5/Art. 12A heading new) 7 ARTICLE 12A. COUNTY VOTERS' PAMPHLET 8 (10 ILCS 5/12A-1 new) 9 Sec. 12A-1. Definitions. As used in this Article, 10 unless the context otherwise requires: 11 "Board" means the State Board of Elections. 12 "Election authority" means a county clerk or a Board of 13 Election Commissioners. 14 "Electoral district" means a county, municipality, or 15 district as defined in Section 1-3 of this Code. 16 "Public question" means any question, proposition, or 17 measure submitted to the voters under Article 28 of this 18 Code, except that "public question" does not include 19 questions relating to the Constitution. 20 (10 ILCS 5/12A-5 new) 21 Sec. 12A-5. County voters' pamphlet. When directed by 22 resolution of the county board, the election authority of any 23 county must prepare, print, and distribute a county voters' 24 pamphlet for the consolidated election. 25 (10 ILCS 5/12A-10 new) 26 Sec. 12A-10. Information required to be included in 27 voters' pamphlet; deadline for distribution. 28 (a) If a county produces a county voters' pamphlet, the -2- LRB9206304MWpr 1 county voters' pamphlet must include, when applicable, at 2 least the following information: 3 (1) A sample ballot containing the names of 4 candidates for all offices and all public questions as 5 they will appear on the ballot in the county. 6 (2) Requirements for a citizen to qualify as an 7 elector. 8 (3) Requirements for registration, transfer of 9 registration, and re-registration. 10 (4) Instructions as to how an elector may obtain and 11 use an absentee ballot. 12 (5) A statement that the voters' pamphlet may be 13 used to assist electors at the polls. 14 (6) Elector instructions, including the right of an 15 elector to request a second ballot if the first ballot is 16 spoiled, the right of an elector to take into the voting 17 booth a sample ballot marked in advance, and the right of 18 an elector to seek assistance of the judges of election 19 or someone of the elector's own choosing, other than the 20 elector's employer or agent of that employer or officer 21 or agent of the elector's union, in marking the ballot. 22 (7) The hours that the polling places are open. 23 (8) Any portraits and statements relating to 24 candidates submitted under the provisions of this 25 Article. 26 (9) Any public questions as they will appear on the 27 ballot, explanatory statements, and arguments submitted 28 under the provisions of this Article. 29 (10) A listing of the polling places. 30 (11) Any other information that the election 31 authority considers to be appropriate or necessary to 32 inform the voters. 33 (b) The election authority must mail or otherwise 34 distribute the county voters' pamphlet not later than the 7th -3- LRB9206304MWpr 1 day before the election. 2 (10 ILCS 5/12A-15 new) 3 Sec. 12A-15. Schedule and procedures for producing and 4 distributing pamphlet; fees. 5 (a) The State Board of Elections must, by rule, adopt a 6 schedule and procedures for preparing, printing, and 7 distributing county voters' pamphlets. The schedule and 8 procedures must include, but not be limited to, deadlines for 9 filing material for the voters' pamphlet and except as 10 otherwise provided by law, the format of material to be 11 submitted and the size and other requirements applicable to 12 candidate portraits. 13 (b) The Board must by rule adopt a schedule of fees to be 14 charged by the election authority for including portraits of 15 candidates, statements, and arguments in the voters' 16 pamphlet. The fees need not reflect the actual cost of 17 producing the voters' pamphlet. The election authority must 18 refund the filing fee to any person who applies for the 19 refund not later than the last day for filing material for 20 inclusion in the voters' pamphlet. When a refund is made, the 21 material for which the fee was paid may not be included in 22 the pamphlet. 23 (10 ILCS 5/12A-20 new) 24 Sec. 12A-20. Filing portrait and statement by or for 25 candidate. Not later than the date specified by the Board, 26 any candidate for election at the consolidated election 27 within the county, or an agent of the candidate, may file 28 with the election authority of a county that prepares a 29 county voters' pamphlet a portrait of the candidate and a 30 typewritten statement of the reasons the candidate should be 31 elected. The portrait and statement must comply with the 32 applicable rules of the Board. The election authority may not -4- LRB9206304MWpr 1 accept the filing of a statement or portrait of any candidate 2 unless the filing is accompanied by the appropriate fee as 3 prescribed by the Board. 4 (10 ILCS 5/12A-25 new) 5 Sec. 12A-25. Explanatory statement. Not later than the 6 date specified by the Board, in a county that prepares a 7 county voters' pamphlet, the proponents of a public question 8 that will appear on the ballot must submit an impartial, 9 simple, and understandable statement explaining the public 10 question and its effect. 11 (10 ILCS 5/12A-30 new) 12 Sec. 5/12A-30. Filing arguments for or against measure. 13 (a) Not later than the date specified by the Board by 14 rule, in a county that prepares a county voters' pamphlet, 15 any person may file with the election authority a typewritten 16 argument supporting or opposing any public questions to be 17 submitted to the voters on the ballot. The election authority 18 may not accept any arguments that are not accompanied by the 19 fee established by the Board or a petition in a form 20 prescribed by the Board. A petition must contain the 21 signatures of at least 4% of the electors in the county 22 eligible to vote on the question to which the argument refers 23 or the signatures of 1,000 electors in the county eligible to 24 vote on the question to which the argument refers, whichever 25 is less. The number of registered electors in an electoral 26 district, for the purposes of this Section, must be 27 calculated on January 1 of each year. Each person signing the 28 petition must subscribe to a statement that the person has 29 read and agrees with the argument. The petition must be 30 filed with the election authority. 31 (b) The election authority must include in the county 32 voters' pamphlet, on the page of the printed argument, the -5- LRB9206304MWpr 1 name of the person who submitted the argument, the name of 2 the organization the person represents, if any, whether the 3 argument supports or opposes the measure, and a disclaimer 4 that the argument does not constitute an indorsement by the 5 county and that the county does not warrant the accuracy or 6 truth of any statement made in the argument. 7 (10 ILCS 5/12A-35 new) 8 Sec. 5/12A-35. Cost of pamphlet preparation. All fees 9 collected by an election authority under this Act must be 10 transmitted to the State Board of Elections, as provided by 11 rule of the Board, and deposited by the Board into the 12 General Revenue Fund. The State Board of Elections must 13 reimburse the election authority for the actual costs of 14 preparing, printing, and distributing the county voters' 15 pamphlet from an appropriation made by the General Assembly. 16 (10 ILCS 5/12A-40 new) 17 Sec. 12A-40. Content of statements and arguments; notice 18 of material that may be excluded. 19 (a) Statements and arguments submitted for inclusion in 20 a county voters' pamphlet by a candidate, political party, 21 political committee, or other person supporting or opposing a 22 measure must consist only of words or numbers. 23 (b) The election authority must specify on any 24 instructions for filing a statement, argument, or other 25 material in the voters' pamphlet that the statement, 26 argument, or material may be excluded under Section 12A-50. 27 (10 ILCS 5/12A-45 new) 28 Sec. 12A-45. Names of persons or organizations excluded 29 from arguments and statements; exceptions. 30 (a) Except as provided in subsection (b) of this 31 Section, the election authority may not print the name of any -6- LRB9206304MWpr 1 person or organization in any argument supporting or opposing 2 any public question or any statement of any candidate, filed 3 for inclusion in a county voters' pamphlet, if the name of 4 the person or organization is cited as supporting or 5 endorsing the argument or statement. 6 (b) The election authority may print the name of a 7 person or organization in an argument or statement submitted 8 for inclusion in a county voters' pamphlet as supporting or 9 endorsing the argument or statement if: 10 (1) not later than the deadline for filing an 11 argument or statement with the election authority, the 12 election authority receives a statement signed by the 13 person, or by an authorized person on behalf of an 14 organization, stating that the person consents to the use 15 of the name of the person or organization; or 16 (2) the name of a person or organization is used 17 with a quotation made by the person on behalf of the 18 person or by an authorized person on behalf of an 19 organization, the quotation was disseminated to the 20 public prior to its inclusion in the argument or 21 statement, and the quotation is identified by its source 22 and date. 23 (c) A person may not submit a false signature under 24 subsection (b) of this Section. 25 (10 ILCS 5/12A-50 new) 26 Sec. 12A-50. Type of material to be excluded from 27 pamphlet; liability for libel; procedure if material 28 excluded. 29 (a) The election authority must reject any statement, 30 argument, or other matter offered for filing and printing in 31 a county voters' pamphlet that: 32 (1) contains any obscene, profane, or defamatory 33 language; -7- LRB9206304MWpr 1 (2) incites or advocates hatred, abuse, or violence 2 toward any person or group; or 3 (3) contains any language that may not legally be 4 circulated through the mails. 5 (b) Nothing in this Article makes the author of any 6 statement or argument exempt from any civil or criminal 7 action because of any defamatory statements offered for 8 printing or contained in the voters' pamphlet. The persons 9 writing, signing, or offering a statement or argument for 10 filing are deemed its authors and publishers. 11 (c) The Board must by rule, establish a procedure to 12 notify a person who offered a statement, argument, or other 13 matter that was rejected under this Section. Subject to 14 voters' pamphlet deadlines, the procedure must require the 15 election authority to: 16 (1) make reasonable attempts to notify the person of 17 the rejection; and 18 (2) allow the person, if notified under paragraph 19 (1) of this subsection, to revise the statement so that 20 it does not violate the provisions of this Section. 21 (10 ILCS 5/12A-55 new) 22 Sec. 12A-55. Format of candidate's statement. The 23 candidate's statement in a county voters' pamphlet must begin 24 with a summary of the following: occupation, educational and 25 occupational background, and prior governmental experience. 26 (10 ILCS 5/12A-60 new) 27 Sec. 12A-60. Exemption from public records law. 28 Notwithstanding any other provisions of law relating to 29 public records, materials filed by a candidate for inclusion 30 in a county voters' pamphlet and arguments supporting or 31 opposing a public question filed by any person for inclusion 32 in a county voters' pamphlet are exempt from public -8- LRB9206304MWpr 1 inspection until the 4th business day after the final date 2 for filing the materials. 3 (10 ILCS 5/12A-65 new) 4 Sec. 12A-65. Statements and arguments inadmissible in 5 action to enjoin publication of pamphlet. Material submitted 6 for inclusion in any county voters' pamphlet may not be 7 admitted as evidence in any suit or action against the 8 election authority to restrain or enjoin the publication of 9 the voters' pamphlet.
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