2017 Wisconsin Statutes & Annotations
Chapter 5. Elections — general provisions; ballots and voting systems.
5.60 Spring election ballots.

Universal Citation: WI Stat § 5.60 (2017)

5.60 Spring election ballots. At spring elections all of the following ballots, when necessary, shall be provided for each ward, except as authorized in s. 5.655:

(1)State superintendent; judiciary; county executive; county comptroller; and county supervisors.

(ag) There shall be one separate ballot for state superintendent, judicial officers, county executive, county comptroller in counties having a population of 750,000 or more, and county supervisor, except as authorized in s. 5.655. For county supervisor, the ballot shall be prepared in accordance with ss. 5.58 (2) and 59.10 (3). Arrangement of the names of candidates for county executive, county comptroller, county supervisor, and municipal judge, if the judge is elected under s. 755.01 (4), shall be determined by the county clerk or the executive director of the county board of election commissioners determining ballot arrangement under s. 5.58 (1c), in the manner prescribed in par. (b).

(ar) The names of candidates for the same office shall be placed in the same column. No party designation may appear on the official ballot. Unless no candidate is certified to appear on the ballot for a state office, a space shall be provided on the ballot for electors to write in the name of a person for each office, regardless of whether there is a primary for that office.

(b) The elections commission shall certify the candidates' names and designate the official ballot arrangement for candidates for state superintendent, justice, court of appeals judge, and for circuit judge and for metropolitan sewerage commission commissioners elected under s. 200.09 (11) (am). The arrangement of names of all candidates on the ballot whose nomination papers are filed with the elections commission shall be determined by the elections commission by the drawing of lots not later than the 2nd Tuesday in January, or the next day if the first Tuesday is a holiday. Whenever a primary is held for an office, a 2nd drawing of all candidates for that office shall be held by or under the supervision of the elections commission not later than the 3rd day following the completion of the primary canvass to determine the arrangement of candidates on the election ballot.

(c) When 2 or more judges of the same court are to be elected, the official ballot shall contain the names of all candidates, shall state the number of judges to be elected and the number of candidates for whom each elector may vote. Each candidacy shall show the branch being filled.

(2)Municipal judge. If the election is under s. 755.01 (4), there shall be a separate ballot listing the names of all of the candidates, except as authorized in s. 5.655.

(3)City.

(ag) Except as authorized in s. 5.655, there shall be a separate ballot giving the names of all candidates for city offices, printed in the same form as prescribed by the commission under s. 7.08 (1) (a). City election ballots may vary in form to conform to the law under which an election is held.

(am) No party designation shall appear on the official ballot for city offices.

(b) The city clerk or executive director of the city election commission shall arrange the official city ballot under s. 5.62 (4).

(4)School district.

(a) There shall be a separate ballot for school district officers when so required, except as authorized in s. 5.655.

(b) In 1st class cities, the names of the candidates for the seat of the member elected at-large to the board of school directors shall be placed on the official city ballot and there shall be a separate ballot giving the names of the candidates for any seat to be filled on the board of school directors from any election district, except as authorized in s. 5.655. The names of candidates for the at-large seat shall be placed in the same column or row on the ballot.

(c) The arrangement of candidates for school board seats shall be determined by the school district clerk or the executive director of the city board of election commissioners by the drawing of lots not later than the 2nd Tuesday in January, or the next day if the first Tuesday is a holiday, if there is no primary, or not later than the 3rd day following the completion of the primary canvass if a primary is held. The method of determining arrangement shall be the same as provided in sub. (1) (b). Sufficient space shall be provided on the ballot for write-in candidates.

(4m)Metropolitan sewerage commission. A separate ballot shall list the names of all candidates for metropolitan sewerage commission seats, if commissioners are elected under s. 200.09 (11) (am), except as authorized in s. 5.655. The names for the different seats shall be placed in separate columns or rows if more than one seat is contested at any election.

(5)Village.

(ag) There shall be a separate ballot giving the names of all candidates for village offices, except as authorized in s. 5.655.

(ar) The offices to be filled shall be arranged on the official ballot in the order they are named in the statutes creating them. The names of the candidates shall be arranged by using the same method as that used by the commission under sub. (1) (b). Sufficient space shall be left under each office for write-in candidates.

(b) Only persons nominated under s. 8.05 shall be placed on the official ballots. If no nominations are made, the spaces for this office shall be left blank.

(6)Town.

(a) Except as authorized in s. 5.655, there shall be a separate ballot giving the names of all candidates for elective town offices in the form prescribed by the commission under s. 7.08 (1) (a). There shall be 2 ballot forms. One ballot form shall be used for the election of supervisors to numbered seats and one ballot form shall be used for the election of supervisors to unnumbered seats. On the ballot used for the election of supervisors to unnumbered seats, all supervisor candidates shall be listed together and the voting instructions shall state “Vote for not more than.... [insert number of supervisors to be elected] candidates". All towns shall elect their supervisors to unnumbered seats unless the annual town meeting adopts a plan to elect supervisors to numbered seats. The names of candidates for town office shall be arranged by using the same method as that used by the commission under sub. (1) (b). A space shall be provided under each office on the ballot for a write-in candidate.

(b) Only the names of individuals nominated under s. 8.05 may be placed on the official ballot. If no nominations for an office are made, the space for that office shall be left blank.

(6m)Town sanitary district commission. Except as authorized in s. 5.655, a separate ballot shall list the names of all candidates for town sanitary district commission seats, if commissioners are elected under s. 60.74 and the boundaries of the district are not coterminous with the boundaries of one or more towns. The names for different seats shall be placed in separate columns or rows if more than one seat is contested at any election.

(7)Referendum ballots. Except as authorized in s. 5.655, there shall be a separate ballot setting forth all propositions requiring a vote in the form and manner provided by s. 5.64.

(8)Ballots for presidential vote.

(am) Except as authorized in s. 5.655, there shall be a separate ballot for each recognized political party filing a certification under s. 8.12 (1), listing the names of all potential candidates of that party determined under s. 8.12 and affording, in addition, an opportunity to the voter to nominate another potential candidate by write-in vote or to vote for an uninstructed delegation to the party convention. The order of presidential candidates on the ballot shall be determined by lot by or under the supervision of the commission. Each voter shall be given the ballots of all the parties participating in the presidential preference vote, but may vote on one ballot only.

(bm) Except as authorized in s. 5.655, a separate ballot shall be provided for use in each voting district.

(c) The official ballots for the presidential preference vote shall be securely fastened together at the bottom. The party receiving the greatest number of votes for governor at the preceding election shall have its ticket placed on top and the remaining party ballots shall follow in the same manner. A facsimile ballot notice shall be published as provided in s. 10.02.

History: 1971 c. 304 ss. 9 to 11, 29 (2); 1971 c. 336; 1973 c. 134; 1973 c. 334 s. 57; 1975 c. 93; 1977 c. 187, 427, 445, 449; 1979 c. 221, 260, 355; 1981 c. 377; 1983 a. 484; 1983 a. 532 s. 36; 1985 a. 29 s. 3202 (56); 1985 a. 89, 225; 1985 a. 304 ss. 28, 155; 1987 a. 391; 1989 a. 192, 290; 1993 a. 266; 1995 a. 16 s. 2; 1995 a. 201; 1999 a. 150 s. 672; 1999 a. 182; 2003 a. 24; 2005 a. 149; 2011 a. 45, 62; 2015 a. 118 ss. 65, 266 (10).

The national democratic party has a protected right of political association and may not be compelled to seat delegates chosen in an open primary in violation of the party's rules. Democratic Party of U.S. v. Wisconsin, 450 U.S. 107 (1981).

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