2020 Georgia Code
Title 21 - Elections
Chapter 1 - Congressional Districts
§ 21-1-3. Continuation in Office, Dismissal, or Appointment of Members of Constitutional or Statutory Boards or Bodies for Which Membership Based on Residency Within Congressional District

Universal Citation: GA Code § 21-1-3 (2020)
  1. Any member of any constitutional or statutory board or body who:
    1. Is in office on January 1 of the year following the year in which members of Congress are first elected from Georgia under any congressional redistricting Act; and
    2. Was appointed or otherwise selected (other than by election by the people) on the basis of residency within a congressional district

      shall have his or her eligibility or ineligibility to continue to serve determined as provided in this subsection. Such member shall serve out the term for which the member was appointed and shall represent the congressional district in which the member resides unless more members of the board or body than authorized by the applicable constitutional provision or statute reside within the same congressional district. In the event any congressional district in which there are residing therein more members of any such board or body than the number of members specified by the applicable constitutional provision or statute, the appointing authority shall designate which member or members representing the congressional district shall continue to serve as a member or members of the board or body. Any member not designated for continued membership shall cease to hold office as of the date of such designation by the appointing authority. If a congressional district is not represented on a board or body as specified by the applicable constitutional provision or statute, a vacancy shall exist. Such vacancy shall be filled by the appointing authority appointing to the board or body a member or members from the congressional district which does not have sufficient representation. In the case of an appointment to fill a vacancy created by the displacement of a member from a congressional district on the basis of residency, the initial appointment shall be for a term ending on the date on which the term of the member removed by the appointing authority in accordance with the foregoing requirement would have ended. The initial term of all other appointments to fill a vacancy as provided for in this Code section shall be set by the appointing authority in accordance with the schedule of expiration dates established by law for the terms of members of the board or body.

  2. The same rules provided for in subsection (a) of this Code section shall be applied insofar as may be practicable in the event a court of competent jurisdiction enters an order changing the composition of Georgia's congressional districts. In such event, such rules shall be applied as of January 1 of the year following the year in which members of Congress are first elected from Georgia under such court order. If such a court order is stayed, the application of this subsection shall likewise be stayed. If such a court order is subject to appeal but is not stayed and congressional elections are held under such court order, the application of this subsection likewise shall not be stayed.

(Code 1981, §21-1-3, enacted by Ga. L. 2011, Ex. Sess., p. 208, § 5/HB 20EX.)

Editor's notes.

- Ga. L. 2011, Ex. Sess., p. 208, § 1/HB 20EX, not codified by the General Assembly, provides that: "This Act shall be known and may be cited as the 'Georgia Congressional Reapportionment Act of 2011.'"

CHAPTER 2 ELECTIONS AND PRIMARIES GENERALLY Article 1 General Provisions.
  • 21-2-1. Short title; references to Chapter 3 of Title 21 or the municipal election code.
  • 21-2-2. (See Editor's notes.) Definitions.
  • 21-2-3. Reserved.
  • 21-2-4. Preparation, printing, publicizing, and distributing of summary of general amendments to Constitution of Georgia; recording summary on audio tape or other media.
  • 21-2-4.1. Continuation in office, dismissal, or appointment of members of constitutional or statutory boards or bodies for which membership based on residency within congressional district [Repealed].
  • 21-2-5. Qualifications of candidates for federal and state office; determination of qualifications.
  • 21-2-6. Qualifications of candidates for county and municipal office; determination of qualifications.
  • 21-2-7. Eligibility of subversive persons for nomination or election to public office.
  • 21-2-8. Eligibility for party nomination, public office, or performance of certain official acts of persons convicted and sentenced for certain crimes; illegally holding any public funds; effect of disqualification of superintendent.
  • 21-2-9. Date of election for offices.
  • 21-2-10. Election of presidential electors.
  • 21-2-11. Performance of duties by presidential electors.
  • 21-2-12. Procedure for filling presidential elector vacancies.
  • 21-2-13. Compensation of presidential electors; payment of expenses of electoral college.
  • 21-2-14. Computation of time as to exercise of privilege or discharge of duty under chapter.
  • 21-2-15. Applicability of chapter.
  • 21-2-16. Construction of chapter.
  • 21-2-17. Designation of candidate's chief deputy clerk in elections for clerk of state court of certain counties.
Article 2 Supervisory Boards and Officers. Part 1 State Election Board, County Board of Elections, and County Board of Elections and Registration. Subpart 1 State Election Board.
  • 21-2-30. Creation; composition; terms of service; vacancies; quorum; seal and bylaws; meetings.
  • 21-2-31. Duties.
  • 21-2-32. Institution of and intervention in court actions; procedure; compensation of presiding judge; granting of relief; notice; appellate review.
  • 21-2-33. Hearings before board.
  • 21-2-33.1. Enforcement of chapter.
  • 21-2-34. Compensation and expenses of members.
Subpart 2 County Board of Elections and County Board of Elections and Registration.
  • 21-2-40. General Assembly authorized to create board of elections and board of elections and registration in any county.
Subpart 3 Municipal Elections Conducted by Counties.
  • 21-2-45. Authorization to create joint county-municipal boards of elections and boards of elections and registration; authorization for county to conduct elections.
  • 21-2-45.1. Special elections on bonded debt; publication; date; discount.
Part 2 SECRETARY OF STATE.
  • 21-2-50. Powers and duties; prohibition against serving in fiduciary capacity.
  • 21-2-50.1. Postponement and extension of qualifying periods for elections for public office during state of emergency; limitation.
  • 21-2-50.2. Obligations of the state under the federal Help America Vote Act of 2002.
  • 21-2-51. Opening of election records to members of public.
  • 21-2-52. Preservation of primary and election records.
Part 3 SUPERINTENDENTS.
  • 21-2-70. Powers and duties.
  • 21-2-70.1. Municipal superintendents; eligibility.
  • 21-2-71. Payment by county or municipality of superintendent's expenses.
  • 21-2-72. Primary and election records to be open to public.
  • 21-2-73. Preservation of primary and election records.
  • 21-2-74. Creation of board to assume duties of superintendent in counties without a board of elections and in which judge of probate court is candidate for public office.
  • 21-2-75. Eligibility of persons holding elective public office, or office in political party, to serve on county board of elections.
  • 21-2-76. Eligibility of person to serve as county election superintendent.
  • 21-2-77. Electronic election returns.
Part 4 POLL OFFICERS.
  • 21-2-90. Appointment of chief manager and assistant managers.
  • 21-2-91. Appointment of clerks.
  • 21-2-92. Qualifications of poll officers; service during municipal election or primary; Student Teen Election Participant (STEP) program.
  • 21-2-93. Oath of office for managers and clerks.
  • 21-2-94. Form of manager's oath.
  • 21-2-95. Form of clerk's oath.
  • 21-2-96. Administration of oaths by managers.
  • 21-2-97. Identification badges for poll officers.
  • 21-2-98. Compensation of poll officers.
  • 21-2-99. Instruction of poll officers and workers in election procedures; certifications; notification of completion of training to Secretary of State.
  • 21-2-100. Training of local election officials.
  • 21-2-101. Certification program for county and municipal election superintendents or election board designee; waiver of certification; failure to comply; remedial training; regulatory authority.
Article 3 Registration of and Committee Organization of Political Parties and Bodies.
  • 21-2-110. Filing of registration statements by political parties or bodies with the Secretary of State; contents of registration statements; amendments; filing fees; failure to file statement.
  • 21-2-111. Establishment of state and county executive committees; membership and officers; duties; applicability of chapter to persons seeking party office in a primary.
  • 21-2-112. Hearings before state committee; suspension of powers and duties of county committee; delegation of powers by state committee.
  • 21-2-113. Chief executive and county executive committees.
Article 4 Selection and Qualification of Candidates and Presidential Electors. Part 1 GENERAL PROVISIONS.
  • 21-2-130. Procedures for qualification of candidates generally.
  • 21-2-131. Fixing and publishing of qualification fees; manner of payment; distribution of fees paid.
  • 21-2-132. Filing notice of candidacy, nomination petition, and affidavit; payment of qualifying fee; pauper's affidavit and qualifying petition for exemption from qualifying fee; military service.
  • 21-2-132.1. Certification of presidential electors for independent candidate for President or Vice President of the United States; qualification.
  • 21-2-133. Giving notice of intent of write-in candidacy; filing of affidavit; limitations on candidacy; certification of candidates.
  • 21-2-134. Withdrawal, death, or disqualification of candidate for office; return of qualifying fee; nomination certificate.
  • 21-2-135. Designation of specific office sought where office has multiple officeholders with same title.
  • 21-2-136. Restriction on number of offices for which an individual may be nominated or be a candidate at any one election.
  • 21-2-137. Qualifying with two political parties; qualifying as independent or political body candidate and as political party candidate.
  • 21-2-138. Nonpartisan elections for judicial offices.
  • 21-2-139. Nonpartisan elections authorized; conduct.
  • 21-2-140. Mandatory drug testing for candidates [Repealed].
Part 2 POLITICAL PARTY AND NONPARTISAN PRIMARIES.
  • 21-2-150. Date of general primary.
  • 21-2-151. Conduct of political party primaries.
  • 21-2-152. Conduct of primaries generally; run-off primary.
  • 21-2-153. Qualification of candidates for party nomination in a state or county primary; posting of list of all qualified candidates; filing of affidavit with political party by each qualifying candidate; performance of military service does not create vacancy.
  • 21-2-153.1. Qualification of candidates for party nomination in a municipal primary; unopposed candidates; filing of affidavit with political party; posting of list of all qualified candidates.
  • 21-2-154. Certification of political party candidates.
  • 21-2-155. Reopening of qualification for office in event of candidate's death or withdrawal of incumbent who qualified as candidate prior to political party primary.
  • 21-2-156. Payment of primary expenses.
  • 21-2-157. Municipal nonpartisan primary; qualifying as a candidate; payment of expenses.
  • 21-2-158. Unopposed candidate failing to receive a single vote.
Part 3 Nomination and Qualification of Independent Candidates, Candi- dates of Political Bodies, and Presidential Electors.
  • 21-2-170. Nomination of candidates by petition; form of petition; signatures; limitations as to circulation and amendment of petitions; listing of such candidates on ballots; charter or ordinance authorization.
  • 21-2-171. Examination of petitions; basis for grant or denial of filing; review and appeal of denial.
  • 21-2-172. Nomination of presidential electors and candidates of political bodies by convention.
Part 4 Nomination of Candidates of Political Bodies for State- Wide Public Office by Convention. Article 5
  • 21-2-180. Manner of qualification.
  • 21-2-181. Filing of petitions generally.
  • 21-2-182. Contents of petitions; signatures.
  • 21-2-183. Form of petitions; affidavits of circulators.
  • 21-2-184. Restriction on amendment or supplementation.
  • 21-2-185. Filing deadline.
  • 21-2-186. Examination of petitions; judicial review.
  • 21-2-187. Holding of conventions; filing notice of candidacy.
Presidential Preference Primary. Article 6
  • 21-2-190. Short title.
  • 21-2-191. Parties entitled to hold primaries; dates; decision to elect delegates to presidential nominating convention in primary; qualifying periods for candidates for delegate.
  • 21-2-192. Proclamation by Governor; copies of proclamation transmitted to superintendents.
  • 21-2-193. List of names of candidates to appear on ballot; publication of list.
  • 21-2-194. Procedure for withdrawal of candidates [Repealed].
  • 21-2-195. Procedures by which delegates and alternates to national nominating conventions selected.
  • 21-2-196. Qualification oath of delegates and alternates to national convention.
  • 21-2-197. Effect of withdrawal of presidential candidate.
  • 21-2-198. Assessment of qualifying fee for candidates listed on presidential preference primary ballot.
  • 21-2-199. Election of political party committee members or officers at primary.
  • 21-2-200. Applicability of general primary provisions; form of ballot.
Registration of Voters. Article 7
  • 21-2-210. Secretary of State deemed the chief state election official.
  • 21-2-211. List of registered electors; provision of equipment to access and utilize list.
  • 21-2-212. County registrars; appointment; certification; term of service; vacancies; compensation and expenses of chief registrar, registrars, and other officers and employees; budget estimates.
  • 21-2-213. (Effective until January 1, 2021. See note.) County deputy registrars; clerical help; appointment of county officer or employee as chief deputy registrar.
  • 21-2-213. (Effective January 1, 2021. See note.) County deputy registrars; clerical help; appointment of county officer or employee as chief deputy registrar.
  • 21-2-213.1. Monthly contingent expense allowance for the operation of the office of the board of registrars.
  • 21-2-214. Qualifications of registrars and deputy registrars; prohibited political activities; oath of office; privilege from arrest; duties conducted in public.
  • 21-2-215. Main office of board of registrars; location; business hours; additional registration places; educators to serve as deputy registrars; training; registration cards and papers.
  • 21-2-216. Qualifications of electors generally; reregistration of electors purged from list; eligibility of nonresidents who vote in presidential elections; retention of qualification for standing as elector; evidence of citizenship; check of convicted felons and deceased persons databases.
  • 21-2-217. Rules for determining residence.
  • 21-2-218. Cancellation of registration in former state or county; address changes and corrections.
  • 21-2-219. Registration cards; form; registration by members of armed forces or merchant marine and permanent overseas citizen; Secretary of State to provide information regarding registration and absentee ballot procedures; reports regarding absentee ballots.
  • 21-2-220. Application for registration; identification requirement; rejection for failure to provide required information or for submission of false information; aid to disabled or illiterate.
  • 21-2-220.1. Required documentation for voter registration.
  • 21-2-221. Driver's license or identification card application as application for voter registration; forms and procedure; electronic transmission of applications and signatures.
  • 21-2-221.1. Voter registration incorporated into resident hunting, fishing, or trapping license; design of forms; record keeping; opting out by businesses selling alcohol for on-premises consumption.
  • 21-2-221.2. Voter registration application for electronic voter registration.
  • 21-2-222. Designated voter registration agencies and offices; definitions; duties of agencies and offices.
  • 21-2-223. Mail voter registration application forms.
  • 21-2-224. Registration deadlines; restrictions on voting in primaries; official list of electors; voting procedure when portion of county changed from one county to another.
  • 21-2-225. Confidentiality of original registration applications; limitations on registration data available for public inspection; data made available by Secretary of State; membership in nongovernmental entity for purpose of sharing and exchanging information to improve accuracy and efficiency of voter registration systems.
  • 21-2-225.1. Confidentiality of address of registered electors; term of request; procedure.
  • 21-2-226. Duties of county board in determining eligibility of voters; maps of municipal boundaries; notice of ineligibility; issuance of registration cards; reimbursement for postage cost.
  • 21-2-227. Duty of registrars to furnish list of electors for elections held in governmental subdivisions.
  • 21-2-228. Examination of electors' qualifications; subpoenas; notice and hearing; right of appeal.
  • 21-2-229. Challenge of applicant for registration by other electors; notice and hearing; right of appeal.
  • 21-2-230. Challenge of persons on list of electors by other electors; procedure; hearing; right of appeal.
  • 21-2-231. Lists of persons convicted of felonies, noncitizens, mentally incompetent, and deceased persons provided to Secretary of State and Council of Superior Court Clerks; removal of names from list of electors; obtain information about deceased; timing; list of inactive voters provided to Council of Superior Court Clerks.
  • 21-2-232. Removal of elector's name from list of electors.
  • 21-2-233. Comparison of change of address information supplied by United States Postal Service with electors list; removal from list of electors; notice to electors.
  • 21-2-234. Electors who have failed to vote and with whom there has been no contact in three years; confirmation notice requirements and procedure; time for completion of list maintenance activities.
  • 21-2-235. Inactive list of electors.
  • 21-2-236. Periods of retention of registration cards, applications, and records of list maintenance activities; rules and regulations regarding safekeeping and maintenance of electronic records.
Precincts and Polling Places. Article 8
  • 21-2-260. Designation of precincts.
  • 21-2-261. Change in boundaries of precinct; creation of new precincts.
  • 21-2-261.1. Boundary requirements for precincts.
  • 21-2-262. Investigation as to division, redivision, alteration, formation, or consolidation of precincts; petition of electors or board of registrars.
  • 21-2-263. Reduction in size of, or provision of additional voting equipment or poll workers to, precincts containing more than 2,000 electors when voting in such precincts at previous general election not completed one hour after closing of polls.
  • 21-2-264. Reimbursement of counties and municipalities for costs incurred pursuant to alteration of precinct boundaries.
  • 21-2-265. Duty of superintendent to select polling places; change; petition objecting to proposed change; space for political parties holding primaries; facilities for disabled voters; selection of polling place outside precinct to better serve voters; restriction on changing polling place on or near date of election.
  • 21-2-266. Polling places - Use of public buildings; use of portable or movable facilities; unrestricted access to residential communities.
  • 21-2-267. Polling places - Equipment; arrangement; storage.
  • 21-2-268. Compensation for rent, heat, light, and janitorial services.
  • 21-2-269. Construction of rooms for use as temporary polling places.
  • 21-2-270. Run-off primaries.
Voting by Ballot. Article 8A
  • 21-2-280. Requirement as to conduct of primaries and elections by ballot; requirement as to use of official ballots only.
  • 21-2-281. Voting by paper ballot when use of voting equipment impossible or impracticable.
  • 21-2-282. Voting by paper ballot when use of vote recorders impossible or impracticable.
  • 21-2-283. Printing and safekeeping of ballots and labels by superintendent.
  • 21-2-284. Form of official primary ballot; attestation regarding receiving value in exchange for vote.
  • 21-2-284.1. Nonpartisan municipal primaries - Form of ballot.
  • 21-2-285. Form of official election ballot; attestation on receipt of benefit in exchange for vote; when an election is not required.
  • 21-2-285.1. Nonpartisan elections - Form of ballot; run-off election; declaration of prevailing candidate as duly elected.
  • 21-2-286. Printing specifications, numbering, and binding of ballots.
  • 21-2-287. Form of absentee ballot.
  • 21-2-288. Procedure as to printing of ballots when candidates for same nomination or office have same or similar names.
  • 21-2-289. Printing on ballots of names of substitute candidates.
  • 21-2-290. Superintendent to provide number of ballots equal to number of registered electors in precinct.
  • 21-2-291. Procedure as to unopposed candidates.
  • 21-2-292. Duty of superintendent to have forms of ballots on file for public inspection prior to election.
  • 21-2-293. Correction of mistakes and omissions on ballot.
  • 21-2-294. Responsibility of superintendent for recording number of ballots furnished and number of stubs, unused ballots, and canceled ballots returned.
State-wide Voting Equipment. Article 9
  • 21-2-300. Provision of new voting equipment by state; uniform system for all elections to be conducted with use of scanning ballots marked by electronic ballot markers; pilot programs authorized; county responsibilities; education; county and municipal contracts for equipment.
  • 21-2-301. Pilot program; testing and evaluation of electronic voting systems; creation of Twenty-first Century Voting Commission [Repealed].
Voting Machines and Vote Recorders Generally. Part 1

G

ENERAL PROVISIONS

  • 21-2-310. Definitions.
Part 2 VOTING MACHINES.
  • 21-2-320. Power of municipal governing authority to authorize use of and to procure voting machines.
  • 21-2-321. Referendum on question of use of voting machines.
  • 21-2-322. General requirements as to voting machines.
  • 21-2-323. Installation of voting machines; discontinuance of use of paper ballots; minimum number; different types; requirements as to working order and capacity.
  • 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.
  • 21-2-325. Form of ballot labels generally.
  • 21-2-325.1. Candidates with same or similar names.
  • 21-2-326. Unofficial ballot labels.
  • 21-2-327. Preparation of voting machines; custodians and their deputies; inspection; furnishing of supplies.
  • 21-2-328. Delivery, set up, and sealing of properly furnished voting machines prior to primary or election; protection of voting machines against molestation or injury.
  • 21-2-329. Delivery of voting machine keys to chief manager.
  • 21-2-330. Public exhibition of and instruction on sample voting machine.
  • 21-2-331. Designation and compensation of custodians of voting machines and keys; storage of voting machines when not in use.
  • 21-2-332. Use of portable polling facilities.
  • 21-2-333. Responsibility of municipal governing authority to provide for payment for voting machines; issuance of bonds or other indebtedness to meet costs.
  • 21-2-334. Voting by paper ballot when use of voting machine impossible or impracticable.
Part 3 VOTE RECORDERS AND TABULATING MACHINES [Repealed].
  • 21-2-350 through 21-2-364 [Repealed].
Part 4 OPTICAL SCANNING VOTING SYSTEMS.
  • 21-2-365. Requirements for use of optical scanning voting systems.
  • 21-2-366. Authorization for utilization of optical scanning systems.
  • 21-2-367. Installation of systems; number of systems; good working order.
  • 21-2-368. Review of manufacturer's systems 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.
  • 21-2-369. Printing of ballots; arrangement.
  • 21-2-369.1. Candidates with similar names.
  • 21-2-370. Separate optical scanners for primary elections [Repealed].
  • 21-2-371. Unofficial ballots; out-of-order systems.
  • 21-2-372. Ballot description.
  • 21-2-373. Write-in votes; secrecy.
  • 21-2-374. Proper programming; proper order; testing; supplies.
  • 21-2-375. Delivery of equipment to polling places; protection for equipment; required accessories.
  • 21-2-376. Demonstration of equipment.
  • 21-2-377. Custody and storage when not in use.
  • 21-2-378. Payment for systems.
  • 21-2-379. Arrangements for appropriate ballots when use of optical scanning voting systems impracticable.
Part 5 ELECTRONIC RECORDING VOTING SYSTEMS.
  • 21-2-379.1. Requirements for use of direct recording electronic voting systems.
  • 21-2-379.2. Review of manufacturer's recording electronic voting system by Secretary of State; appointment and compensation of examiners; revocation of approval; penalties; conflicts of interest.
  • 21-2-379.3. State furnishing direct recording voting systems; purchase by municipalities or counties.
  • 21-2-379.4. Ballot appearance; write in votes on DRE systems.
  • 21-2-379.5. Ballot information.
  • 21-2-379.6. Maintenance of voting systems and supplies.
  • 21-2-379.7. Preparation of polling places.
  • 21-2-379.8. Public exhibition of voting system and sample ballot.
  • 21-2-379.9. Storage of voting equipment.
  • 21-2-379.10. Procedure for electors.
  • 21-2-379.11. Procedure for tabulation of votes.
  • 21-2-379.12. Direct recording electronic (DRE) voting equipment pilot program [Repealed].
Part 6 ELECTRONIC BALLOTING.
  • 21-2-379.21. Access to optical scanning voting systems for disabled.
  • 21-2-379.22. Requirements for electronic ballot marking.
  • 21-2-379.23. Requirements for ballot display; role of Secretary of State; printed paper ballot controls during recount.
  • 21-2-379.24. Examination of electronic ballot markers; revocation of approval; penalty to vendors for inappropriate sale; improvements or changes to devices; prohibition on pecuniary interest; limitation on public inspection.
  • 21-2-379.25. Programming for ballot design and style; verification; appointment of custodians; role of custodians.
  • 21-2-379.26. Storage of equipment.
Article 10 Absentee Voting.
  • 21-2-380. "Absentee elector" defined; when reason for absentee ballot not required.
  • 21-2-380.1. Appointment of absentee ballot clerk.
  • 21-2-381. Making of application for absentee ballot; determination of eligibility by ballot clerk; furnishing of applications to colleges and universities; persons entitled to make application.
  • 21-2-381.1. Procedures for voting with special write-in absentee ballots by qualified absentee electors.
  • 21-2-381.2. State write-in absentee ballot for certain electors.
  • 21-2-382. Additional sites as additional registrar's office or place of registration for absentee ballots.
  • 21-2-383. Preparation and delivery of ballots; form of ballots; casting ballot in person using DRE unit; casting ballot in person or as absentee using electronic ballot markers.
  • 21-2-384. Preparation and delivery of supplies; mailing of ballots; oath of absentee electors and persons assisting absentee electors; master list of ballots sent; challenges; electronic transmission of ballots.
  • 21-2-385. Procedure for voting by absentee ballot; advance voting.
  • 21-2-385.1. Preferential treatment for older and disabled voters.
  • 21-2-386. Safekeeping, certification, and validation of absentee ballots; rejection of ballot; delivery of ballots to manager; duties of managers; precinct returns; notification of challenged elector.
  • 21-2-387. Pilot program for electronic handling of absentee ballots; requirements for pilot program; reporting; termination of pilot program.
  • 21-2-388. Cancellation of absentee ballots of electors who are present in election precinct during primaries and elections.
  • 21-2-389. Payment of postage for mailing absentee ballots.
  • 21-2-390. Delivery of election materials to clerk of superior court or city clerk after primary or election; accounting for ballots by registrars or municipal absentee ballot clerks.
Article 11 Preparation for and Conduct of Primaries and Elections. Part 1 GENERAL PROVISIONS.
  • 21-2-400. Duty of superintendent to obtain cards of instruction, blank forms of oaths, and other forms and supplies; preparation and distribution of sample or facsimile ballot labels.
  • 21-2-401. Delivery of forms and supplies to precincts; distribution of copy of certified electors list; contents of list; authentication; return receipts; master list of county or municipal electors; items to be provided at polling place.
  • 21-2-402. Preparation of voter's certificates by Secretary of State; form of certificates; binders for certificates; other voter's certificates.
  • 21-2-403. Time for opening and closing of polls.
  • 21-2-404. Affording employees time off to vote.
  • 21-2-405. Meeting of poll officers at place of primary or election; oaths; failure of poll officer to appear; custodians of voting materials; temporary absence or disability; poll workers working less than entire day.
  • 21-2-406. Public performance of duties by officials.
  • 21-2-407. Duty of registrars to review qualifications of electors who may have been erroneously omitted from list of electors; authority to place such electors on the list.
  • 21-2-408. Poll watchers; designation; duties; removal for interference with election; reports by poll watchers of infractions or irregularities; ineligibility of candidates to serve as poll watchers.
  • 21-2-409. Assisting electors who cannot read English or who have disabilities.
  • 21-2-409.1. Voting by electors who are 75 years of age or older or disabled electors without having to wait in line.
  • 21-2-410. Poll officers authorized to give instructions to electors upon request.
  • 21-2-411. Return of checked list of electors and voter's certificates to superintendent; disposition of list and certificates by registrars.
  • 21-2-412. Duties of superior courts on days of primaries and elections.
  • 21-2-413. Conduct of voters, campaigners, and others at polling places generally.
  • 21-2-414. Restrictions on campaign activities and public opinion polling within the vicinity of a polling place; cellular phone use prohibited; prohibition of candidates from entering certain polling places; penalty.
  • 21-2-415. Requirements as to identification of campaign literature; unauthorized use of another's name in connection with campaign material; penalty [Repealed].
  • 21-2-416. Methods of casting ballots in elections utilizing paper ballots or vote recorders [Repealed].
  • 21-2-417. Presentation of identification to poll workers; form of proper identification; swearing of statement when unable to produce proper identification; provisional ballots for those; penalty for false statement under oath.
  • 21-2-417.1. Voter identification card.
  • 21-2-418. Provisional ballots.
  • 21-2-419. Validation of provisional ballots; reporting to Secretary of State.
Part 2 PRECINCTS USING PAPER BALLOTS.
  • 21-2-430. Opening of ballot boxes; destruction of irrelevant materials; locking of ballot box; public breaking of seals; instruction cards and notices of penalties.
  • 21-2-431. Execution of voter's certificate; procedure upon qualification of elector; elector unable to sign name; voting outside precinct of residence; registration as prerequisite to voting.
  • 21-2-432. Voter's certificate binder as constituting official list of electors; separate preservation and disposition of refused applications.
  • 21-2-433. Admission of electors to enclosed space; detachment of ballots from stubs and distribution of ballots to electors; return of canceled ballots to superintendent.
  • 21-2-434. Restrictions as to removal of ballots from book or polling place; deposit of official ballots in box; disposition of unofficial ballots.
  • 21-2-435. Procedure as to marking and depositing of ballots.
  • 21-2-436. Duties of poll officers after the close of the polls.
  • 21-2-437. Procedure as to count and return of votes generally; void ballots.
  • 21-2-438. Ballots identifying voter, not marked, or improperly marked declared void.
  • 21-2-439. Decisions concerning questionable marks or defaced or mutilated ballots.
  • 21-2-440. Duty of poll officers to sign general returns; posting of copy of returns; delivery of copy of materials to superintendent.
Part 3 PRECINCTS USING VOTING MACHINES.
  • 21-2-450. Opening of polls; procedure when ballot labels misplaced; certification by managers; machines to be locked until polls open; officers to be near machines; inspection of machines; broken machines.
  • 21-2-451. Execution of voter's certificate; procedure upon qualification of elector; elector unable to sign name; voting outside of precinct of residence; registration prerequisite to voting.
  • 21-2-452. Admission of electors to enclosed space; voting procedure generally; procedure as to write-in votes; voting by electors whose right to vote is challenged; disabled voters.
  • 21-2-453. Voter's certificate binder as constituting official list; separate preservation and return of refused applications.
  • 21-2-454. Duties of poll officers after the close of the polls.
  • 21-2-455. Canvass and return of votes.
  • 21-2-456. Form of general return sheet, duplicate return sheets, and statement; posting of vote results; delivery of documents to superintendent; seal and return of electors list upon completion of vote count and tabulation.
  • 21-2-457. Removal, storage, and examination of voting machines after completion of vote count.
Part 4 PRECINCTS USING VOTE RECORDERS [Repealed].
  • 21-2-470 through 21-2-473. [Repealed].
Part 5 PRECINCTS USING OPTICAL SCANNING VOTING EQUIPMENT.
  • 21-2-480. Caption for ballots; party designations; form and arrangement.
  • 21-2-481. Design, size, and stock of ballots.
  • 21-2-482. Absentee ballots for precincts using optical scanning voting equipment.
  • 21-2-483. Counting of ballots; public accessibility to tabulating center and precincts; execution of ballot recap forms; preparation of duplicate ballots.
  • 21-2-484. Requirements for ballot recap form; delivery.
  • 21-2-485. Responsibilities of poll officers.
  • 21-2-486. Votes for write-in candidates.
Article 12 Returns.
  • 21-2-490. Hours of operation of office of superintendent and chairperson of county board of registrars on primary and election days; applicability to counties having population of 550,000 or more.
  • 21-2-491. Public inspection of unsealed returns at office of superintendent; opening of sealed envelopes upon order of superintendent or court.
  • 21-2-492. Computation and canvassing of returns; notice of when and where returns will be computed and canvassed; blank forms for making statements of returns; swearing of assistants.
  • 21-2-493. Computation, canvassing, and tabulation of returns; investigation of discrepancies in vote counts; recount procedure; certification of returns; change in returns.
  • 21-2-494. Computation and certification of write-in votes.
  • 21-2-495. Procedure for recount or recanvass of votes; losing candidate's right to a recount; rules and regulations.
  • 21-2-496. Preparation and filing by superintendent of four copies of consolidated return of primary; electronic filing; superintendent to furnish final copy of each ballot used for primary.
  • 21-2-497. Preparation and filing by superintendent of four copies of consolidated return of elections; superintendent to furnish final copy of each ballot used for election.
  • 21-2-498. Precertification tabulation audits.
  • 21-2-499. Duty of Secretary of State as to tabulation, computation, and canvassing of votes for state and federal officers; certification of presidential electors by Governor.
  • 21-2-500. Delivery of voting materials; presentation to grand jury in certain cases; preservation and destruction; destruction of unused ballots.
  • 21-2-501. Number of votes required for election.
  • 21-2-501.1. Timing whenever a municipal general primary is held in conjunction with the general primary in even-numbered years [Repealed].
  • 21-2-502. Issuance of certificates of election and commission; Governor's proclamation as to constitutional amendments.
  • 21-2-503. Issuance of commission to person whose election is contested; procedure upon finding that person to whom commission was issued was not legally elected; swearing into office of person whose election is contested.
  • 21-2-504. Special primary or election upon failure to nominate or elect or upon death, withdrawal, or failure of officer-elect to qualify.
Article 13 Contested Elections and Primaries.
  • 21-2-520. Definitions.
  • 21-2-521. Primaries and elections which are subject to contest; persons who may bring contest.
  • 21-2-522. Grounds for contest.
  • 21-2-522.1. Rebuttable presumption of legal vote in contested election.
  • 21-2-523. Jurisdiction and general pretrial proceedings; notification of proceedings; selecting administrative judge; compensation of presiding judge.
  • 21-2-524. Filing and allegations of petition to contest primary or election; service of petition; verification; notice of proceedings to answer petition; service of special process; amendment.
  • 21-2-525. Hearing; powers of court generally.
  • 21-2-526. Trial by jury.
  • 21-2-527. Pronouncement of judgment; effect of finding of misconduct by poll officers; calling of second primary, election, or runoff by court upon finding of defects.
  • 21-2-527.1. Right of parties to object to settlement; court approval.
  • 21-2-528. Appeals from court's determination on contest petition.
  • 21-2-529. Liability for costs; methods of collecting.
Article 14 Special Elections and Primaries Generally; Municipal Terms of Office.
  • 21-2-540. Conduct of special elections generally.
  • 21-2-541. Holding of special primary or election at time of general primary or election; inclusion of candidates and questions in special primary or election on ballot.
  • 21-2-541.1. Terms for all municipal offices elected at general municipal elections.
  • 21-2-541.2. Providing by local law for terms of office.
  • 21-2-542. Special election for United States senator vacancy; temporary appointment by Governor.
  • 21-2-543. Special election for United States congressional representative vacancy.
  • 21-2-543.1. Procedures for filling vacancies in federal House of Representatives.
  • 21-2-544. Special election for General Assembly vacancy.
  • 21-2-545. Procedure as to unopposed candidates.
Article 15 Miscellaneous Offenses.
  • 21-2-560. Making of false statements generally.
  • 21-2-561. False registration.
  • 21-2-562. Fraudulent entries; unlawful alteration or destruction of entries; unlawful removal of documents; neglect or refusal to deliver documents.
  • 21-2-563. Improper signing or alteration of nomination petitions or affidavits.
  • 21-2-564. Willful destruction, fraudulent filing, or suppression of nomination materials.
  • 21-2-565. Making of false statements in connection with filing notice of candidacy or qualifying as candidate for party nomination; duties of district attorney as to violations.
  • 21-2-566. Interference with primaries and elections generally.
  • 21-2-567. Intimidation of electors.
  • 21-2-568. Entry into voting compartment or booth while another voting; interfering with elector; inducing elector to reveal or revealing elector's vote; influencing voter while assisting.
  • 21-2-569. Interfering with poll officers.
  • 21-2-570. Giving or receiving, offering to give or receive, or participating in the giving or receiving of money or gifts for registering as a voter, voting, or voting for a particular candidate.
  • 21-2-571. Voting by unqualified elector or giving false information.
  • 21-2-572. Repeat voting in same primary or election.
  • 21-2-573. Absentee voting by unqualified elector.
  • 21-2-574. Unlawful possession of ballots.
  • 21-2-575. Counterfeit ballots or ballot labels; sample or facsimile ballots.
  • 21-2-576. Destroying, defacing, or delaying delivery of ballots.
  • 21-2-577. Improper removal of ballots from book of official ballots.
  • 21-2-578. Unfolding, opening, or prying into ballots.
  • 21-2-579. Fraudulently allowing ballot or voting machine to be seen; casting unofficial ballot; receiving unauthorized assistance in voting.
  • 21-2-580. Tampering with, damaging, improper preparation of, or prevention of proper operation of voting machines or electronic ballot markers or tabulating machines.
  • 21-2-581. Unauthorized making or possession of voting machine key.
  • 21-2-582. Tampering with, damaging, or preventing of proper operation of direct recording electronic equipment or electronic ballot marker or tabulating machine or device.
  • 21-2-582.1. Penalty for voting equipment modification.
  • 21-2-583. Removal or destruction of election supplies or conveniences.
  • 21-2-584. Refusal or failure of manager to administer oath to poll officer; poll officer acting without being sworn; giving of false certification as to swearing of poll officer.
  • 21-2-585. Refusal by superintendent or his or her employee to permit public inspection of documents; removal, destruction, or alteration of documents.
  • 21-2-586. Refusal by Secretary of State or his or her employee to permit public inspection of documents; removal, destruction, or alteration of documents.
  • 21-2-587. Frauds by poll officers.
  • 21-2-588. Premature counting of votes by poll officer.
  • 21-2-589. Willful omissions by poll officers.
  • 21-2-590. Poll officer permitting unregistered or unqualified persons to vote; refusing to permit registered and qualified persons to vote; unlawful rendering of assistance.
  • 21-2-591. Poll officers permitting unlawful assistance to voters.
  • 21-2-592. Failure of poll officers to keep record of assisted voters.
  • 21-2-593. Failure of law enforcement officers to remove obstacles or to maintain order at polling places; hindrance or delay of poll officers by law enforcement officers.
  • 21-2-594. Offenses by printers of ballots.
  • 21-2-595. Disposition of alcoholic beverages on primary or election days [Repealed].
  • 21-2-596. Failure of public or political officer to perform duty.
  • 21-2-597. Intentional interference with performance of election duties.
  • 21-2-598. Violations of chapter.
  • 21-2-599. Punishment for misdemeanors under chapter.
  • 21-2-600. Punishment for felonies under chapter.
  • 21-2-601. Use of list of electors for commercial purposes prohibited.
  • 21-2-602. Compensation for soliciting persons to register to vote prohibited.
  • 21-2-603. Conspiracy to commit election fraud.
  • 21-2-604. Criminal solicitation to commit election fraud; penalties.
Cross references.

- Referendum for ratification or rejection of annexation resolution, § 36-36-58.

Elections relating to incurring of bonded debt by counties, municipalities, or other political subdivisions, § 36-82-1 et seq.

Special election for filing of vacancies in office of district attorney, § 45-5-3.2.

Administrative Rules and Regulations.

- Registration of electors, Official Compilation of the Rules and Regulations of the State of Georgia, State Election Board, Chapter 183-1-6.

Election districts and polling places, Official Compilation of the Rules and Regulations of the State of Georgia, State Election Board, Chapter 183-1-7.

Certification of voting systems, Official Compilation of the Rules and Regulations of the State of Georgia, Office of Secretary of State Elections Division, Chapter 590-8-1.

Help America Vote Act of 2002 Provisions, Official Compilation of the Rules and Regulations of the State of Georgia, Office of Secretary of State Elections Division, Chapter 590-8-2.

Law reviews.

- For article discussing the evolution of municipal annexation law in Georgia in light of Plantation Pipe Line Co. v. City of Bremen, 227 Ga. 1, 178 S.E.2d 868 (1970), see 5 Ga. L. Rev. 499 (1971). For article, "Election Emergencies: Voting in the Wake of Natural Disasters and Terrorist Attacks," see 67 Emory L. J. 545 (2018).

JUDICIAL DECISIONS

Editor's notes.

- In light of the similarity of the statutory provisions, decisions under former Code 1933, § 34-101 et seq., former Code 1933, § 34-1514 and former Title 21, Chapter 3 are included in the annotations for this chapter.

Federal Constitution protects right of all qualified citizens to vote, in state as well as in federal elections. Duncan v. Poythress, 657 F.2d 691 (5th Cir. 1981), cert. dismissed, 459 U.S. 1012, 103 S. Ct. 368, 74 L. Ed. 2d 504 (1982) (decided under former Code 1933, § 34-1514).

Federal Constitution protects right of all qualified citizens to vote, in state as well as in federal elections. Duncan v. Poythress, 657 F.2d 691 (5th Cir. 1981), cert. dismissed, 459 U.S. 1012, 103 S. Ct. 368, 74 L. Ed. 2d 504 (1982) (decided under former Code 1933, § 34-1514).

Election administration is federally protected, although generally a state concern.

- The administration of elections is generally a matter of state concern, but United States Supreme Court decisions leave no room for doubt that voting rights are, at bottom, federally protected. Duncan v. Poythress, 657 F.2d 691 (5th Cir. 1981), cert. dismissed, 459 U.S. 1012, 103 S. Ct. 368, 74 L. Ed. 2d 504 (1982) (decided under former Code 1933, § 34-1514).

Fundamental liberties must not be obstructed by election practices.

- The "liberty" protected from state impairment by the due process clause of U.S. Const., amend. 14 includes the freedoms of speech and association guaranteed by U.S. Const., amend. 1. These freedoms under U.S. Const., amend. 1 extend to political activities such as running for elective office. State election practices must therefore serve legitimate state interest narrowly and fairly to avoid obstructing and diluting these fundamental liberties. Duncan v. Poythress, 657 F.2d 691 (5th Cir. 1981), cert. dismissed, 459 U.S. 1012, 103 S. Ct. 368, 74 L. Ed. 2d 504 (1982) (decided under former Code 1933, § 34-1514).

Voting restrictions strike at heart of representative government.

- The right to vote freely for the candidate of one's choice is the essence of a democratic society, and any restrictions on that right strike at the heart of representative government. Duncan v. Poythress, 657 F.2d 691 (5th Cir. 1981), cert. dismissed, 459 U.S. 1012, 103 S. Ct. 368, 74 L. Ed. 2d 504 (1982) (decided under former Code 1933, § 34-1514).

Infringement of right to suffrage carefully scrutinized.

- Undoubtedly, the right of suffrage is a fundamental matter in a free and democratic society. Especially since the right to exercise the franchise in a free and unimpaired manner is preservative of other basic civil rights, any alleged infringement of the right of citizens to vote must be carefully and meticulously scrutinized. Duncan v. Poythress, 657 F.2d 691 (5th Cir. 1981), cert. dismissed, 459 U.S. 1012, 103 S. Ct. 368, 74 L. Ed. 2d 504 (1982) (decided under former Code 1933, § 34-1514).

Right to have votes counted.

- Qualified citizens not only have a constitutionally protected right to vote, but also the right to have their votes counted, a right which can neither be denied outright, nor destroyed by alteration of ballots, nor diluted by ballot box stuffing. Duncan v. Poythress, 657 F.2d 691 (5th Cir. 1981), cert. dismissed, 459 U.S. 1012, 103 S. Ct. 368, 74 L. Ed. 2d 504 (1982) (decided under former Code 1933, § 34-1514).

Other rights illusory if right to vote undermined.

- No right is more precious in a free country than that of having a voice in the election of those who make the laws under which we, as good citizens, must live. Other rights, even the most basic, are illusory if the right to vote is undermined. Duncan v. Poythress, 657 F.2d 691 (5th Cir. 1981), cert. dismissed, 459 U.S. 1012, 103 S. Ct. 368, 74 L. Ed. 2d 504 (1982) (decided under former Code 1933, § 34-1514).

Illegal votes ground for contesting municipal election.

- Although the Georgia Election Code is not applicable by its terms to municipal elections under former Code 1933, § 34-102 (see now O.C.G.A. § 21-2-15), in the absence of any statutory grounds for contest in former chapter 3, the ground for contest in former Code 1933, § 34-1703 (see now O.C.G.A. § 21-2-522(3)) is a good ground of contest in a municipal election. Davidson v. Bryan, 242 Ga. 282, 248 S.E.2d 657 (1978) (decided under former Code 1933).

Ga. L. 1964, Ex. Sess., p. 26 is a comprehensive law designed to regulate all elections in the state except municipal elections, and repeals any provision inconsistent with it. League of Women Voters v. Board of Elections, 237 Ga. 40, 227 S.E.2d 225 (1976) (decided under former Code 1933, § 34-101 et seq.)

Ga. L. 1964, Ex. Sess., p. 26, being a general comprehensive reorganization of election law, must control in elections legalizing alcoholic beverages. Buttrill v. Thomas, 126 Ga. App. 498, 191 S.E.2d 119 (1972) (decided under former Code 1933, § 34-101 et seq.)

Cited in Grogan v. Paulding County Democratic Executive Comm., 246 Ga. 206, 269 S.E.2d 467 (1980); McCreary v. Martin, 281 Ga. 668, 642 S.E.2d 80 (2007).

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

Ordinary (now judge of the probate court) should conduct election for justice of the peace (now magistrate) and should certify the returns to the Secretary of State. 1967 Op. Att'y Gen. No. 67-125 (decided under former Code 1933, § 34-1508).

ARTICLE 1 GENERAL PROVISIONS

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

Editor's notes.

- In light of the similarity of the statutory provisions, opinions under former Code 1933, § 34-101 are included in the annotations for this article.

Referendum required by special Act must be called and held at time specified in Act. See 1969 Op. Att'y Gen. No. 69-301 (decided under former Code 1933, § 34-101 et seq.).

Presentation of more than one question in special election.

- More than one question may be presented to municipal voters in a special election properly called for that purpose, absent specific limitations derived from the authority under which the question is to be submitted. 1976 Op. Att'y Gen. No. U76-16 (decided under former Ga. Law 1968, p. 885 et seq.).

RESEARCH REFERENCES

ALR.

- Power to enjoin holding of election, 70 A.L.R. 733.

Constitutionality and construction of statutes providing for proportional representation, or other system of preferential voting, in public elections, 110 A.L.R. 1521; 123 A.L.R. 252.

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