(a) If any
paper ballot is damaged or defective so that the ballot cannot be counted
properly by optical scanning equipment or automatic tabulating equipment, the
county election officer shall establish a special counting board of two or more
persons for the purpose of manually counting the damaged or defective paper
(1) The special counting board shall consist
of election board workers at a polling place or other persons at a central
location. To the extent practicable, the special counting board members shall
not all be affiliated with the same political party.
(2) No person serving on the special counting
board shall be a candidate for an office on the ballot or a member of a group
supporting or opposing passage of a question submitted on the ballot.
(3) One person on the special
counting board shall be designated the supervising judge.
The special counting board shall manually
count any ballot that is damaged or defective and that cannot be counted
properly by optical scanning equipment or automatic tabulating equipment, using
the following procedures:
(1) Each ballot
shall be separated from any advance voting envelope or provisional ballot
envelope that identifies the voter who cast the ballot.
(2) If more than one damaged or defective
ballot is to be counted, the supervising judge shall collect and enumerate the
ballots and shall announce the total number of ballots to the board.
(3) A member of the special counting board
shall read and announce the contents of each ballot and shall hand each ballot
to another member of the board to verify the contents of the ballot. A member
of the board other than the member reading the ballots shall tally the votes
cast on the ballot on a tally sheet provided by the county election officer.
(4) The county election officer
may require the special counting board to maintain two separate sets of tally
sheets. If the board is required to maintain these tally sheets, the board
shall compare the tally sheets and reconcile any differences to the
satisfaction of a majority of the board. The tally sheets shall be compared at
the end of the counting process.
(d) If the special counting board is unable
to determine the voter's intent for any ballot or portion of a ballot, the
ballot shall be challenged and referred to the county board of canvassers for
resolution pursuant to
25-3002(b)(1) and amendments
(e) At the conclusion of
the special counting board's duties, the special counting board shall provide
all ballots and records to the county election officer. The county election
officer shall preserve the ballots and records in accordance with state law and
shall include the results tabulated from the ballots in the official results of