5.05(6a)(c)1.1. Any individual may request in writing, electronically, or by telephone a formal advisory opinion from the commission or the review or modification of a formal advisory opinion issued by the commission under this paragraph. The individual making the request shall include all pertinent facts relevant to the matter. The commission shall review a request for a formal advisory opinion and may issue a formal advisory opinion to the individual making the request. Except as authorized or required for opinions specified in sub. (5s) (f), the commission's deliberations and actions upon such requests shall be in meetings not open to the public.
5.05(6a)(c)2. 2. Any person requesting a formal advisory opinion under this paragraph may request a public or private hearing before the commission to discuss the opinion. The commission shall grant a request for a public or private hearing under this paragraph.
5.05(6a)(c)3. 3. Promptly upon issuance of each formal advisory opinion, the commission shall publish the opinion together with the information specified under sub. (5s) (f) on the commission's Internet site.
5.05(6a)(c)4. 4. If the commission declines to issue a formal advisory opinion, it may refer the matter to the attorney general or to the standing legislative oversight committees.
Effective date note NOTE: Sub. (6a) is shown as affected eff. 6-30-16 by 2015 Wis. Act 118. Prior to 6-30-16 it reads:
Effective date text (6a)Advisory opinions. Any individual, either personally or on behalf of an organization or governmental body, may make a written or electronic request of the board for an advisory opinion regarding the propriety under chs. 5 to 12, subch. III of ch. 13, or subch. III of ch. 19 of any matter to which the person is or may become a party; and any appointing officer, with the consent of a prospective appointee, may request of the board an advisory opinion regarding the propriety under chs. 5 to 12, subch. III of ch. 13, or subch. III of ch. 19 of any matter to which the prospective appointee is or may become a party. The board shall review a request for an advisory opinion and may issue a formal written or electronic advisory opinion to the person making the request. Except as authorized or required for opinions specified in sub. (5s) (f) 2., the board's deliberations and actions upon such requests shall be in meetings not open to the public. No person acting in good faith upon an advisory opinion issued by the board is subject to criminal or civil prosecution for so acting, if the material facts are as stated in the opinion request. To have legal force and effect, each advisory opinion issued by the board must be supported by specific legal authority under a statute or other law, or by specific case or common law authority. Each advisory opinion shall include a citation to each statute or other law and each case or common law authority upon which the opinion is based, and shall specifically articulate or explain which parts of the cited authority are relevant to the board's conclusion and why they are relevant. The board may authorize its legal counsel to issue an informal written advisory opinion or to transmit an informal advisory opinion electronically on behalf of the board, subject to such limitations as the board deems appropriate. Every informal advisory opinion shall be consistent with applicable formal advisory opinions issued by the board. If the board disagrees with an informal advisory opinion that has been issued on behalf of the board, the board may withdraw the opinion or issue a revised advisory opinion and no person acting after the date of the withdrawal or issuance of the revised advisory opinion is exempted from prosecution under this subsection if the opinion upon which the person's action is based has been withdrawn or revised in relevant degree. Except as authorized or required under sub. (5s) (f) 2., no member or employee of the board may make public the identity of the individual requesting a formal or informal advisory opinion or of individuals or organizations mentioned in the opinion. Any person receiving a formal or informal advisory opinion under this subsection who disagrees with the opinion may request a public or private hearing before the board to discuss the opinion. The board shall grant a request for a public or private hearing under this subsection. After hearing the matter, the board may reconsider its opinion and may issue a revised opinion to the person. Promptly upon issuance of each formal advisory opinion that is not open to public access, the board shall publish a summary of the opinion that is consistent with applicable requirements under sub. (5s) (f).
5.05(7) (7)Administrative meetings and conferences. The commission shall conduct regular information and training meetings at various locations in the state for county and municipal clerks and other election officials. Administrative meetings shall be designed to explain the election laws and the forms and rules of the commission, to promote uniform procedures and to assure that clerks and other officials are made aware of the integrity and importance of the vote of each citizen. The commission may conduct conferences relating to election laws, practice and procedure. The commission may charge persons attending the administrative meetings and conferences for its costs incurred in conducting the meetings and conferences at a rate not exceeding the per capita cost incurred by the commission.
Effective date note NOTE: Sub. (7) is shown as affected eff. 6-30-16 by 2015 Wis. Act 118, section 266 (10). Prior to 6-30-16 it reads:
Effective date text (7)Administrative meetings and conferences. The board shall conduct regular information and training meetings at various locations in the state for county and municipal clerks and other election officials. Administrative meetings shall be designed to explain the election laws and the forms and rules of the board, to promote uniform procedures and to assure that clerks and other officials are made aware of the integrity and importance of the vote of each citizen. The board may conduct conferences relating to election laws, practice and procedure. The board may charge persons attending the administrative meetings and conferences for its costs incurred in conducting the meetings and conferences at a rate not exceeding the per capita cost incurred by the board.
5.05(9) (9)Standing. The commission has standing to commence or intervene in any civil action or proceeding for the purpose of enforcing the laws regulating the conduct of elections or election campaigns, other than laws regulating campaign financing, or ensuring their proper administration.
Effective date note NOTE: Sub. (9) is shown as amended eff. 6-30-16 by 2015 Wis. Act 118. Prior to 6-30-16 it reads:
Effective date text (9)Standing. The board has standing to commence or intervene in any civil action or proceeding for the purpose of enforcing the laws regulating the conduct of elections or election campaigns or ensuring their proper administration. If the board delegates authority to its legal counsel under sub. (1) (e) to act in its stead, the legal counsel has standing to commence or intervene in such an action or proceeding.
5.05(10) (10)State election administration plan. With the approval of the joint committee on finance as provided in this subsection, the commission shall adopt and modify as necessary a state plan that meets the requirements of P.L. 107-252 to enable participation by this state in federal financial assistance programs authorized under that law. The commission shall adopt the plan and any modifications only after publishing a class 1 notice under ch. 985 or posting on the Internet a statement describing the proposed plan or modification and receiving public comment thereon. After approval of the proposed plan or any modification of the plan by the commission, the commission shall submit the proposed plan or modification to the joint committee on finance for the approval of the committee. The commission may adopt the proposed plan or modification only if the committee approves the proposed plan or modification.
Effective date note NOTE: Sub. (10) is shown as amended eff. 6-30-16 by 2015 Wis. Act 118. Prior to 6-30-16 it reads:
Effective date text (10)State election administration plan. With the assistance of the election administration council and approval of the joint committee on finance as provided in this subsection, the board shall adopt and modify as necessary a state plan that meets the requirements of P.L. 107-252 to enable participation by this state in federal financial assistance programs authorized under that law. The board shall adopt the plan and any modifications only after publishing a class 1 notice under ch. 985 or posting on the Internet a statement describing the proposed plan or modification and receiving public comment thereon. After approval of the proposed plan or any modification of the plan by the board, the board shall submit the proposed plan or modification to the joint committee on finance for the approval of the committee. The board may adopt the proposed plan or modification only if the committee approves the proposed plan or modification.
5.05(11) (11)Aids to counties and municipalities. From the appropriations under s. 20.510 (1) (t) and (x), the commission may provide financial assistance to eligible counties and municipalities for election administration costs in accordance with the plan adopted under sub. (10). As a condition precedent to receipt of assistance under this subsection, the commission shall enter into an agreement with the county or municipality receiving the assistance specifying the intended use of the assistance and shall ensure compliance with the terms of the agreement. Each agreement shall provide that if the federal government objects to the use of any assistance moneys provided to the county or municipality under the agreement, the county or municipality shall repay the amount of the assistance provided to the commission.
Effective date note NOTE: Sub. (11) is shown as amended eff. 6-30-16 by 2015 Wis. Act 118. Prior to 6-30-16 it reads:
Effective date text (11)Aids to counties and municipalities. From the appropriations under s. 20.511 (1) (t) and (x), the board may provide financial assistance to eligible counties and municipalities for election administration costs in accordance with the plan adopted under sub. (10). As a condition precedent to receipt of assistance under this subsection, the board shall enter into an agreement with the county or municipality receiving the assistance specifying the intended use of the assistance and shall ensure compliance with the terms of the agreement. Each agreement shall provide that if the federal government objects to the use of any assistance moneys provided to the county or municipality under the agreement, the county or municipality shall repay the amount of the assistance provided to the board.
5.05(12) (12)Voter education. The commission may conduct or prescribe requirements for educational programs to inform electors about voting procedures, voting rights, and voting technology. The commission shall conduct an educational program for the purpose of educating electors who cast paper ballots, ballots that are counted at a central counting location, and absentee ballots of the effect of casting excess votes for a single office.
Effective date note NOTE: Sub. (12) is shown as affected eff. 6-30-16 by 2015 Wis. Act 118, section 266 (10). Prior to 6-30-16 it reads:
Effective date text (12)Voter education. The board may conduct or prescribe requirements for educational programs to inform electors about voting procedures, voting rights, and voting technology. The board shall conduct an educational program for the purpose of educating electors who cast paper ballots, ballots that are counted at a central counting location, and absentee ballots of the effect of casting excess votes for a single office.
5.05(13) (13)Toll-free election information and requests.
5.05(13)(a)(a) The commission shall maintain one or more toll-free telephone lines for electors to report possible voting fraud and voting rights violations, to obtain general election information, and to access information concerning their registration status, current polling place locations, and other information relevant to voting in elections.
5.05(13)(b) (b) The commission may maintain a free access system under which an elector who votes under s. 6.96 or 6.97 may ascertain current information concerning whether the elector's vote has been counted, and, if the vote will not be counted, the reason that it will not be counted.
5.05(13)(c) (c) The commission shall maintain a freely accessible system under which a military elector, as defined in s. 6.34 (1) (a), or an overseas elector, as defined in s. 6.34 (1) (b), who casts an absentee ballot may ascertain whether the ballot has been received by the appropriate municipal clerk.
5.05(13)(d) (d) The commission shall designate and maintain at least one freely accessible means of electronic communication which shall be used for the following purposes:
5.05(13)(d)1. 1. To permit a military elector, as defined in s. 6.34 (1) (a), or an overseas elector, as defined in s. 6.34 (1) (b), to request a voter registration application or an application for an absentee ballot at any election at which the elector is qualified to vote in this state.
5.05(13)(d)2. 2. To permit a military elector or an overseas elector under subd. 1. to designate whether the elector wishes to receive the applications under subd. 1. electronically or by mail.
5.05(13)(d)3. 3. To permit a municipal clerk to transmit to a military elector or an overseas elector under subd. 1. a registration application or absentee ballot application electronically or by mail, as directed by the elector under subd. 2., together with related voting, balloting, and election information.
Effective date note NOTE: Sub. (13) is shown as affected eff. 6-30-16 by 2015 Wis. Act 118, section 266 (10). Prior to 6-30-16 it reads:
Effective date text (13)Toll-free election information and requests. (a) The board shall maintain one or more toll-free telephone lines for electors to report possible voting fraud and voting rights violations, to obtain general election information, and to access information concerning their registration status, current polling place locations, and other information relevant to voting in elections.
Effective date text (b) The board may maintain a free access system under which an elector who votes under s. 6.96 or 6.97 may ascertain current information concerning whether the elector's vote has been counted, and, if the vote will not be counted, the reason that it will not be counted.
Effective date text (c) The board shall maintain a freely accessible system under which a military elector, as defined in s. 6.34 (1) (a), or an overseas elector, as defined in s. 6.34 (1) (b), who casts an absentee ballot may ascertain whether the ballot has been received by the appropriate municipal clerk.
Effective date text (d) The board shall designate and maintain at least one freely accessible means of electronic communication which shall be used for the following purposes:
Effective date text 1. To permit a military elector, as defined in s. 6.34 (1) (a), or an overseas elector, as defined in s. 6.34 (1) (b), to request a voter registration application or an application for an absentee ballot at any election at which the elector is qualified to vote in this state.
Effective date text 2. To permit a military elector or an overseas elector under subd. 1. to designate whether the elector wishes to receive the applications under subd. 1. electronically or by mail.
Effective date text 3. To permit a municipal clerk to transmit to a military elector or an overseas elector under subd. 1. a registration application or absentee ballot application electronically or by mail, as directed by the elector under subd. 2., together with related voting, balloting, and election information.
5.05(14) (14)Information from county and municipal clerks.
5.05(14)(a)(a) The commission may request information from county and municipal clerks relating to election administration, performance of electronic voting systems and voting machines, and use of paper ballots in elections.
Effective date note NOTE: Par. (a) is shown as affected eff. 6-30-16 by 2015 Wis. Act 118, section 266 (10). Prior to 6-30-16 it reads:
Effective date text (a) The board may request information from county and municipal clerks relating to election administration, performance of electronic voting systems and voting machines, and use of paper ballots in elections.
5.05(14)(b) (b) The commission shall establish a subscription service whereby a person may electronically access the absentee ballot information provided under s. 6.33 (5) (a), including semiweekly updates of such information.
Effective date note NOTE: Par. (b) is shown as repealed and recreated eff. 6-30-16 by 2015 Wis. Act 261. Prior to 6-30-16 it reads:
Effective date text (b) The board shall establish a subscription service whereby a person may electronically access the absentee ballot information provided under s. 6.33 (5) (a), including semiweekly updates of such information.
5.05(14)(c) (c) On election night the commission shall provide a link on its Internet site to the posting of each county's election returns on each county's Internet site.
Effective date note NOTE: Par. (c) is shown as repealed and recreated eff. 6-30-16 by 2015 Wis. Act 261. Prior to 6-30-16 it reads:
Effective date text (c) On election night the board shall provide a link on its Internet site to the posting of each county's election returns on each county's Internet site.
5.05(15) (15)Registration list. The commission is responsible for the design and maintenance of the official registration list under s. 6.36. The commission shall require all municipalities to use the list in every election and may require any municipality to adhere to procedures established by the commission for proper maintenance of the list.
Effective date note NOTE: Sub. (15) is shown as affected eff. 6-30-16 by 2015 Wis. Act 118, section 266 (10). Prior to 6-30-16 it reads:
Effective date text (15)Registration list. The board is responsible for the design and maintenance of the official registration list under s. 6.36. The board shall require all municipalities to use the list in every election and may require any municipality to adhere to procedures established by the board for proper maintenance of the list.
5.05(16) (16)Policies and procedures.
5.05(16)(a)(a) Annually, the commission shall adopt written policies and procedures in order to govern its internal operations and management and shall annually report such policies and procedures to the appropriate standing committees of the legislature under s. 13.172 (3).
5.05(16)(b) (b) Notwithstanding par. (a), the commission may reconsider at any time any policy or procedure adopted as provided under par. (a). If, upon reconsideration, the commission revises a previously reported policy or procedure, the commission shall report the revision to the appropriate standing committees of the legislature under s. 13.172 (3).
5.05(16)(c) (c) The commission may reconsider at any time any written directives or written guidance provided to the general public or to any person subject to the provisions of chs. 5 to 10 and 12 with regard to the enforcement and administration of those provisions.
Effective date note NOTE: Sub. (16) is created eff. 6-30-16 by 2015 Wis. Act 118.
5.05(17) (17)Payments. The commission may accept payment by credit card, debit card, or other electronic payment mechanism for any amounts owed pursuant to the administration of chs. 5 to 10 or 12, and may charge a surcharge to the payer to recover charges associated with the acceptance of that electronic payment.
Effective date note NOTE: Sub. (17) is created eff. 6-30-16 by 2015 Wis. Act 118.
5.05(18) (18)Electronic poll lists. The commission may facilitate the creation and maintenance of electronic poll lists for purposes of s. 6.79 including entering into contracts with vendors and establishing programs for development and testing.
Effective date note NOTE: Sub. (18) is shown as repealed and recreated eff. 6-30-16 by 2015 Wis. Act 261. Prior to 6-30-16 it reads:
Effective date text (18) Electronic poll lists. The board may facilitate the creation and maintenance of electronic poll lists for purposes of s. 6.79 including entering into contracts with vendors and establishing programs for development and testing.
5.05 Cross-reference Cross-reference: See also GAB, Wis. adm. code.
5.05 Annotation Notice to the district attorney, attorney general, or governor is not a prerequisite to a civil forfeiture under sub. (1) (c). State Elections Board v. Hales, 149 Wis. 2d 306, 440 N.W.2d 579 (Ct. App. 1989).
5.05 Annotation A party being investigated by the board is not entitled under sub. (1) (b) to attend and participate in all depositions conducted by the board. Notice to the party being investigated under sub. (1) (b) is limited to the board's exercise of its subpoena power and does not relate in any way to the conduct of depositions the board may wish to take. State ex rel. Block v. Circuit Court for Dane County, 2000 WI App 72, 234 Wis. 2d 183, 610 N.W.2d 213, 00-0507.
5.05 Annotation Unless otherwise stated in a specific statute, criminal and civil forfeiture provisions of the election, lobby, and ethics laws can be enforced by a district attorney independently of the board. A referral following an investigation by the board is not required. A district attorney may request prosecutorial or investigative assistance from the attorney general in connection with any duty of the district attorney under those laws. If there has been a referral to the district attorney by the board under sub. (2m) (c) 11., 14., or 15., the district attorney must retain ultimate supervisory authority over the matter referred unless a special prosecutor has been appointed in lieu of the district attorney. OAG 10-08.
5.05 Annotation The board and district attorneys possess joint and co-equal authority to investigate possible violations of the election, lobby, or ethics laws and to prosecute civil forfeiture actions under those laws. Unless otherwise stated in a specific statutory provision, the district attorney possesses the authority to prosecute criminal proceedings under those laws. The board has no statutory authority to prosecute criminal proceedings under those laws except as stated in sub. (2m) (i). OAG 10-08.
5.05 Annotation For the attorney general to prosecute violations of the election, lobby, and ethics laws there must be a specific statute authorizing the attorney general to independently initiate the prosecution of civil and criminal actions involving violations of those laws unless there is a referral to the attorney general by the board under sub. (2m) (c) 16. or unless the attorney general or an assistant attorney general has been appointed as special prosecutor to serve in lieu of the district attorney. OAG 10-08.
5.052 5.052 Government accountability candidate committee.
5.052(1)(1) The government accountability candidate committee shall meet whenever a vacancy occurs in the membership of the board that requires a nomination to be submitted to the governor under s. 15.60 (2).
5.052(2) (2) No person may be nominated by the committee unless the person receives the unanimous approval of the committee.
5.052(3) (3) Except as provided in sub. (4), the committee shall submit at least the following number of nominations:
5.052(3)(a) (a) To fill one vacancy, 2 nominations.
5.052(3)(b) (b) To fill 2 vacancies, 3 nominations.
5.052(3)(c) (c) To fill 3 vacancies, 5 nominations.
5.052(3)(d) (d) To fill 4 vacancies, 6 nominations.
5.052(3)(e) (e) To fill 5 vacancies, 7 nominations.
5.052(4) (4) If a nominee dies or withdraws, or if a nomination of the governor is withdrawn by the governor or rejected by the senate, the committee shall submit an additional nominee to the governor.
Effective date note NOTE: This section is repealed eff. 6-30-16 by 2015 Wis. Act 118.
5.052 History History: 2007 a. 1; 2015 a. 118.
5.054 5.054 Duties of the legal counsel. The board's legal counsel shall:
5.054(1) (1) Whenever a vacancy occurs on the board, call a meeting of the government accountability candidate committee.
5.054(2) (2) Assist the government accountability candidate committee in the performance of its functions.
Effective date note NOTE: This section is repealed eff. 6-30-16 by 2015 Wis. Act 118.
5.054 History History: 2007 a. 1; 2015 a. 118.
5.055 5.055 Election assistance commission standards board. The commission administrator shall, in consultation with the commission, appoint an individual to represent this state as a member of the federal election assistance commission standards board. The administrator shall also conduct and supervise a process for the selection of an election official by county and municipal clerks and boards of election commissioners to represent local election officials of this state as a member of the federal election assistance commission standards board. The administrator shall ensure that the members of the federal election assistance commission standards board representing this state shall at no time be members of the same political party. Upon appointment or election of any new member of the federal election assistance commission standards board representing this state, the administrator shall transmit a notice of that member's appointment or election to the officer or agency designated by federal law.
Effective date note NOTE: This section is shown as amended eff. 6-30-16 by 2015 Wis. Act 118. Prior to 6-30-16 it reads:
Effective date text 5.055Election assistance commission standards board. The administrator of the elections division of the board shall, in consultation with the board, appoint an individual to represent this state as a member of the federal election assistance commission standards board. The administrator shall also conduct and supervise a process for the selection of an election official by county and municipal clerks and boards of election commissioners to represent local election officials of this state as a member of the federal election assistance commission standards board. The administrator shall ensure that the members of the federal election assistance commission standards board representing this state shall at no time be members of the same political party. Upon appointment or election of any new member of the federal election assistance commission standards board representing this state, the administrator shall transmit a notice of that member's appointment or election to the officer or agency designated by federal law.
5.055 History History: 2003 a. 265; 2007 a. 1; 2015 a. 118.
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2013-14 Wisconsin Statutes updated through 2015 Wis. Act 392 and all Supreme Court Orders entered before June 1, 2016. Published and certified under s. 35.18. Changes effective after June 1, 2016 are designated by NOTES. (Published 6-1-16)