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Virginia Administrative Code
Title 1. Administration
Agency 20. State Board of Elections
Chapter 80. Recounts and Contested Elections
8/23/2019

1VAC20-80-20. Recounts and Contested Elections.

A. Standards for any recounts or contests requested in the Commonwealth of Virginia shall be governed by Chapter 8 (§ 24.2-800 et seq.) of Title 24.2 of the Code of Virginia.

B. Upon notification by the court that a recount request has been filed pursuant to § 24.2-801 of the Code of Virginia, the Department of Elections shall promptly transmit to the appropriate court and electoral board or boards copies of the instructions corresponding to the types of ballots and equipment used in each county or city involved in the recount.

C. In preparation for the recount and pursuant to § 24.2-802 A of the Code of Virginia, the clerks of the circuit courts shall:

1. Secure all printed ballots and other election materials in sealed boxes;

2. Place all of the sealed boxes in a vault or room not open to the public or to anyone other than the clerk and his staff;

3. Cause such vault or room to be securely locked except when access is necessary for the clerk and his staff; and

4. Certify that these security measures have been taken in whatever form is deemed appropriate by the chief judge.

D. After a recount has been requested pursuant to § 24.2-801 of the Code of Virginia, and prior to the preliminary hearing specified in § 24.2-802 B of the Code of Virginia, the electoral board of each county or city in which the recount is to be held shall provide the court and all parties to the recount with:

1. The recommended location and number of recount teams needed to recount printed ballots and to redetermine the votes cast on direct recording electronic devices of the type that prints returns for the election district at large in which the recount is being held.

2. The recommended location and number of recount teams needed to insert the ballots read by a ballot scanner machine into one or more scanners that have been programmed to count only votes cast for parties to the recount or for or against the question in a referendum recount. Such machines shall also be programmed to reject all undervoted and overvoted ballots as required by § 24.2-802 D of the Code of Virginia. The examination of undervoted and overvoted ballots may take place at the same location before the votes are totaled for that precinct, if so directed by the court. If a different team of officers would be used to examine the undervoted and overvoted ballots, such teams shall be included in the total number recommended for this item.

3. A complete list of all officers of election who served at the election to be recounted, with the political party they represented at that election listed beside their names, the precinct where each officer served, each officer's address and phone number or numbers, and an indication of which officers served as chief or assistant chief officers. Such list shall note recommended recount officials who the court may appoint if the officials and alternates recommended by the parties to the recount are not of sufficient number to conduct the recount within a reasonable period. Such list shall be provided by the local electoral boards for both parties to the recount, or by the Commissioner of the Department of Elections in the case of a recount for federal or statewide office or a statewide ballot issue, prior to the preliminary hearing, or as soon thereafter as possible, to assist them in preparing their selections of officers to be recount officials or alternates.

4. A list of the members of the electoral board and the political parties they represent. Such list shall be provided by the local electoral boards to both parties to the recount or by the Commissioner of the Department of Elections in the case of a recount for federal or statewide office or a statewide ballot issue.

E. To facilitate the conduct of any pending or expected recount for a federal or statewide office or statewide ballot issue, the Commissioner of the Department of Elections may coordinate the gathering of the recommendations and information from the electoral boards and provide such recommendations and information to the court prior to the preliminary hearing specified in § 24.2-802 B of the Code of Virginia on behalf of the electoral boards. The electoral board of each county or city in which the recount is to be held shall provide the requested information to the Commissioner of the Department of Elections or directly to the court if so requested.

F. Pursuant to § 24.2-802 A of the Code of Virginia, the procedures issued by the State Board of Elections, and any other procedures directed by the court, shall be as uniform as possible throughout the entire district in which the recount is being conducted, given the differences in types of equipment and ballots used in the election.

G. For any printed ballot that is to be counted manually and can be counted manually, the guidelines adopted by the State Board of Elections for hand-counting shall be used in determining the voter's intent ("Ballot Examples for Handcounting Paper or Paper-Based Ballots for Virginia Elections or Recounts").

H. The State Board of Elections, Department of Elections, and the appropriate electoral boards shall provide any other assistance requested by the court.

Statutory Authority

§ 24.2-103 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Volume 28, Issue 06, eff. November 1, 2011; amended, Virginia Register Volume 33, Issue 04, eff. October 4, 2016.

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