House Bill 1253 is an 81-page bill with numerous changes for election administration. North Dakota County Auditors Association Executive Director Donnell Preskey Hushka said “95% of this bill is good, it’s doing the right things and a great deal of it we support,” such as updating outdated language and outlining a signature verification procedure.
The association opposed the three-hour time limit on delivering election results to auditors, citing great distances from some polling places to courthouses and the time it takes to run the ballot certification process.
Also in the bill is a 30-minute time limit for voters to cast their ballots. Roers said she thinks that time limit will accommodate timely election results.
“I don’t think that the three-hour limit changed anything except putting pressure on the election judges, and I didn’t feel it was necessary,” she told the Tribune.
Deputy Secretary of State Jim Silrum said the only time the 30-minute limit “would come into play is if a bunch of people decided to do a sit-in in a polling place and then try and take more time then to mark and cast their ballot.”
“It is true that it applies to all (voters), but I can say 999 times out of 1,000, somebody who takes more than 30 minutes to vote is not going to be hustled out of the polling place,” he said. The proposal has no penalty, and is meant to help workers close polls and produce results, he said.