2019 Georgia Code
Title 21 - Elections
Chapter 2 - Elections and Primaries Generally
Article 9 - Voting Machines and Vote Recorders Generally
Part 2 - Voting Machines
§ 21-2-324. Examination and approval of voting machines by Secretary of State; appointment and compensation of examiners; revocation of approval; written verification and certification prior to election or primary; penalties; conflicts of interest
(a) Any person or organization owning, manufacturing, or selling, or being interested in the manufacture or sale of, any voting machine may request the Secretary of State to examine the machine. Any ten or more electors of this state may, at any time, request the Secretary of State to reexamine any voting machine previously examined and approved by him or her. Before any such examination or reexamination, the person, persons, or organization requesting such examination or reexamination shall pay to the Secretary of State the reasonable expenses of such examination; provided, however, that in the case of a request by ten or more electors the examination fee shall be $250.00. The Secretary of State may, at any time, in his or her discretion, reexamine any voting machine.
(b) The Secretary of State shall thereupon require such machine to be examined or reexamined by three examiners whom he or she shall appoint for the purpose, of whom one shall be an expert in patent law and the other two shall be experts in mechanics, and shall require of them a written report on such machine, attested by their signatures; and the Secretary of State shall examine the machine and shall make and file, together with the reports of the appointed examiners, his or her own report, attested by his or her signature and the seal of his or her office, stating whether, in his or her opinion and in consideration of the reports of the examiners aforesaid, the kind of machine so examined can be safely and accurately used by electors at primaries and elections as provided in this chapter. If his or her report states that the machine can be so used, the machine shall be deemed approved; and machines of its kind may be adopted for use at primaries and elections as provided in this chapter.
(c) No kind of voting machine not so approved shall be used at any primary or election and if, upon the reexamination of any voting machine previously approved, it shall appear that the machine so reexamined can no longer be safely or accurately used by electors at primaries or elections as provided in this chapter because of any problem concerning its ability to accurately record or tabulate votes, the approval of the same shall immediately be revoked by the Secretary of State; and no such voting machine shall thereafter be purchased for use or be used in this state.
(d) At least ten days prior to any primary or election, including special primaries, special elections, and referendum elections, the election superintendent shall verify and certify in writing to the Secretary of State that all voting will occur on equipment certified by the Secretary of State.
(e) Any vendor who completes a sale of voting machines that have not been certified by the Secretary of State to a governmental body in this state shall be subject to a penalty of $100,000.00, payable to the State of Georgia, plus reimbursement of all costs and expenses incurred by the governmental body in connection with the sale. The State Election Board shall have authority to impose such penalty upon a finding that such a sale has occurred.
(f) When a machine has been so approved, no improvement or change that does not impair its accuracy, efficiency, or capacity shall render necessary a reexamination or reapproval of the machine or of its kind.
(g) Neither the Secretary of State, nor any examiner appointed by him or her for the purpose prescribed by this Code section, nor any superintendent, nor the governing authority of any municipality or a member of such authority, nor any other person involved in the examination process shall have any pecuniary interest in any voting machine or in the manufacture or sale thereof.
(h) The compensation of each examiner appointed under this Code section shall be fixed and paid by the Secretary of State.
Code 1933, § 34-1205, enacted by Ga. L. 1964, Ex. Sess., p. 26, § 1; Ga. L. 1984, p. 1087, § 2; Ga. L. 1998, p. 295, § 1; Ga. L. 2001, p. 240, § 22; Ga. L. 2005, p. 253, § 41/HB 244.