2019 Alaska Statutes
Title 15. Elections
Chapter 20. Special Procedures for Elections
Article 1. Absentee Voting.
Sec. 15.20.081. Absentee voting in general; applying for absentee ballot by mail or electronic transmission.
(a) A qualified voter may apply in person, by mail, or by facsimile, scanning, or other electronic transmission to the director for an absentee ballot under this section. Another individual may apply for an absentee ballot on behalf of a qualified voter if that individual is designated to act on behalf of the voter in a written general power of attorney or a written special power of attorney that authorizes the other individual to apply for an absentee ballot on behalf of the voter. The application must include the address or, if the application requests delivery of an absentee ballot by electronic transmission, the telephone electronic transmission number, to which the absentee ballot is to be returned, the applicant's full Alaska residence address, and the applicant's signature. However, a person residing outside the United States and applying to vote absentee in federal elections in accordance with AS 15.05.011 need not include an Alaska residence address in the application. A person may supply to a voter an absentee ballot application form with a political party or group affiliation indicated only if the voter is already registered as affiliated with the political party or group indicated. Only the voter or the individual designated by the voter in a written power of attorney under this subsection may mark the voter's choice of primary ballot on an application. A person supplying an absentee ballot application form may not design or mark the application in a manner that suggests choice of one ballot over another, except that ballot choices may be listed on an application as authorized by the division. The application must be made on a form prescribed or approved by the director. The voter or registration official shall submit the application directly to the division of elections. For purposes of this subsection, “directly to the division of elections” means that an application may not be submitted to any intermediary that could control or delay the submission of the application to the division or gather data on the applicant from the application form. However, nothing in this subsection is intended to prohibit a voter from giving a completed absentee ballot application to a friend, relative, or associate for transfer to the United States Postal Service or a private commercial delivery service for delivery to the division.
(b) An application requesting delivery of an absentee ballot to the applicant by mail must be received by the division of elections not less than 10 days before the election for which the absentee ballot is sought. An application for an absentee ballot for a state election from a qualified voter requesting delivery of an absentee ballot to the applicant by electronic transmission must be received by the division of elections not later than 5:00 p.m. Alaska time on the day before the election for which the absentee ballot is sought. An absentee ballot application submitted by mail under this section must permit the person to register to vote under AS 15.07.070 and to request an absentee ballot for each state election held within that calendar year for which the voter is eligible to vote. An absentee ballot application submitted by electronic transmission under this section may not include a provision that permits a person to register to vote under AS 15.07.070.
(c) After receipt of an application, the director shall send the absentee ballot and other absentee voting material to the applicant by the most expeditious mail service. However, if the application requests that an absentee ballot for a state election be sent by electronic transmission, the director shall send the absentee ballot and other absentee voting material to the applicant by electronic transmission. Except as provided in (k) of this section, the absentee ballot and other absentee voting material shall be sent as soon as they are ready for distribution. If the absentee ballot and other absentee voting material are mailed to the applicant, the return envelope sent with the ballot and other materials shall be addressed to the election supervisor in the district in which the voter is a resident.
(d) Upon receipt of an absentee ballot by mail, the voter, in the presence of a notary public, commissioned officer of the armed forces including the National Guard, district judge or magistrate, United States postal official, registration official, or other person qualified to administer oaths, may proceed to mark the ballot in secret, to place the ballot in the secrecy sleeve, to place the secrecy sleeve in the envelope provided, and to sign the voter's certificate on the envelope in the presence of an official listed in this subsection who shall sign as attesting official and shall date the signature. If none of the officials listed in this subsection is reasonably accessible, an absentee voter shall sign the voter's certificate in the presence of an individual who is 18 years of age or older, who shall sign as a witness and attest to the date on which the voter signed the certificate in the individual's presence, and, in addition, the voter shall certify, as prescribed in AS 09.63.020, under penalty of perjury, that the statements in the voter's certification are true.
(e) An absentee ballot must be marked on or before the date of the election. Except as provided in (h) of this section, a voter who returns the absentee ballot by mail, whether provided to the voter by mail or by electronic transmission, shall use a mail service at least equal to first class and mail the ballot not later than the day of the election to the election supervisor for the house district in which the voter seeks to vote. Except as provided in AS 15.20.480, the ballot may not be counted unless it is received by the close of business on the 10th day after the election. If the ballot is postmarked, it must be postmarked on or before election day. After the day of the election, ballots may not be accepted unless received by mail.
(f) The director shall require a voter casting an absentee ballot by mail to provide proof of identification or other information to aid in the establishment of the voter's identity as prescribed by regulations adopted under AS 44.62 (Administrative Procedure Act). If the voter is a first-time voter who initially registered by mail or by facsimile or other electronic transmission approved by the director under AS 15.07.050 and has not met the identification requirements set out in AS 15.07.060, the voter must provide one of the following forms of proof of identification:
(1) a copy of a driver's license, state identification card, current and valid photo identification, birth certificate, passport, or hunting or fishing license; or
(2) a copy of a current utility bill, bank statement, paycheck, government check, or other government document; an item provided under this paragraph must show the name and current address of the voter.
(g) The director shall maintain a record of the name of each voter to whom an absentee ballot is sent under this section. The record must list the date on which the ballot is mailed or provided by electronic transmission and the date on which the ballot is received by the election supervisor and the dates on which the ballot was executed and postmarked.
(h) Except as provided in AS 15.20.480, an absentee ballot returned by mail from outside the United States or from an overseas voter qualifying under AS 15.05.011 that has been marked and mailed not later than election day may not be counted unless the ballot is received by the election supervisor not later than the close of business on the
(1) 10th day following a primary election or special election under AS 15.40.140; or
(2) 15th day following a general election, special runoff election, or special election, other than a special election described in (1) of this subsection.
(i) [Repealed, § 44 ch 73 SLA 2013.]
(j) The director shall adopt regulations under AS 44.62 (Administrative Procedure Act) specifying the information required to be included on an absentee ballot application form. The regulations must require that an absentee ballot application form
(1) contain only that information required under regulations adopted by the director;
(2) conceal the personal information of the individual requesting delivery of an absentee ballot while the application is in the custody of the United States Postal Service or other person delivering the application to the division;
(3) specify that the form is to be returned by the voter directly to the division, and not to another person providing the form; and
(4) if not prepared by the division, be approved by the director before distribution to the public.
(k) In accordance with 42 U.S.C. 1973ff-1(a)(8)(A), if an application is received at least 45 days before an election and is from an absent uniformed services voter or an overseas voter, the director shall send an absentee ballot and other voting material to the applicant not later than 45 days before the election.
(l) If an application is received at least 45 days before an election and is from a voter who notifies the director in writing that the voter expects to be living, working, or traveling outside the United States at the time of the election or expects to be living, working, or traveling in a remote area of the state where distance, terrain, or other natural conditions deny the voter reasonable access to a polling place at the time of the election, the director shall send an absentee ballot and other voting material to the applicant not later than 45 days before the election.