Colorado Rights Blog

HB17-1281 Approval Voting Optional Use Nonpartisan Elections

Voting Rights
Bill Number: HB17-1281
Year: 2017
ACLU Position: Support
Sponsors: J. Singer/J. Kefalas


Approval voting is a method of voting that allows an elector to
cast a vote for as many of the candidates per office as the elector chooses.
The winner of each office is the candidate who receives the most votes or,
for elections in which multiple candidates fill open seats, the winners are
those candidates, in a number equal to the number of seats being filled,
attaining the greatest number of votes.
The bill authorizes cities, towns, counties, cities and counties,
school districts, and special districts (collectively, local governments)
to conduct nonpartisan elections using approval voting on and after
November 1, 2017. A nonpartisan election is an election in which the
political party affiliations of candidates are not printed on the ballot.
The secretary of state is directed to adopt rules and provide advice
to local governments regarding approval voting and to submit a report by
February 15, 2020, regarding approval voting to the state, veterans, and
military affairs committees of the general assembly.
County clerk and recorders may decline to coordinate an election
if a local government elects to employ approval voting in the election.
The bill makes necessary modifications to current law occasioned
by the use of approval voting, such as excluding approval voting from the
definition of overvote and adjusting provisions prescribing the form of
ballots and automatic recount triggers.

Current Status:

House Committee on Appropriations Postpone Indefinitely (04/28/2017)
House Committee on State, Veterans, & Military Affairs Refer Amended to Appropriations (04/19/2017)
Introduced In House - Assigned to State, Veterans, & Military Affairs (03/21/2017)

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