29A.04.560  <<  29A.04.570 >>   29A.04.575

Review of county election procedures.

(1)(a) The election review staff of the office of the secretary of state shall conduct a review of election-related policies, procedures, and practices in an affected county or counties:
(i) If the unofficial returns of a primary or general election for a position in the state legislature indicate that a mandatory recount is likely for that position; or
(ii) If unofficial returns indicate a mandatory recount is likely in a statewide election or an election for federal office.
Reviews conducted under (a)(ii) of this subsection shall be performed in as many selected counties as time and staffing permit. Reviews conducted as a result of mandatory recounts shall be performed between the time the unofficial returns are complete and the time the recount is to take place, if possible.
(b) In addition to conducting reviews under (a) of this subsection, the election review staff shall also conduct such a review in a county at least once every five years, in conjunction with a county primary or special or general election, at the direction of the secretary of state or at the request of the county auditor. If staffing or budget levels do not permit a five-year election cycle for reviews, then reviews must be done as often as possible. If any resident of this state believes that an aspect of a primary or election has been conducted inappropriately in a county, the resident may file a complaint with the secretary of state. The secretary shall consider such complaints in scheduling periodic reviews under this section.
(c) Before an election review is conducted in a county, the secretary of state shall provide the county auditor of the affected county and the chair of the state central committee of each major political party with notice that the review is to be conducted. When a periodic review is to be conducted in a county at the direction of the secretary of state under (b) of this subsection, the secretary shall provide the affected county auditor not less than thirty days' notice.
(2) Reviews shall be conducted in conformance with rules adopted under RCW 29A.04.630. In performing a review in a county under this chapter, the election review staff shall evaluate the policies and procedures established for conducting the primary or election in the county and the practices of those conducting it. As part of the review, the election review staff shall issue to the county auditor and the members of the county canvassing board a report of its findings and recommendations regarding such policies, procedures, and practices. A review conducted under this chapter shall not include any evaluation, finding, or recommendation regarding the validity of the outcome of a primary or election or the validity of any canvass of returns nor does the election review staff have any jurisdiction to make such an evaluation, finding, or recommendation under this title.
(3) The county auditor or the county canvassing board shall respond to the review report in writing, listing the steps that will be taken to correct any problems listed in the report. Within one year of issuance of the response provided by the county auditor or county canvassing board, the secretary of state shall verify that the county has taken the steps to correct the problems noted in the report.
(4) The county auditor of the county in which a review is conducted under this section or a member of the canvassing board of the county may appeal the findings or recommendations of the election review staff regarding the review by filing an appeal with the board created under RCW 29A.04.510.


Effective date1992 c 163 §§ 5-13: See note following RCW 29A.04.530.
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