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(a) A paper ballot may be marked with pen or pencil. A voter may mark his or her ballot only by the use of crossmarks, "X" marks, diagonal, horizontal or vertical marks, solid marks, stars, circles, asterisks, checks or plus signs that are clearly placed in the square or space opposite the choice or alternative the voter desires to designate with respect to the deregulation question. If a punchcard ballot is used and provision is made for punching out or otherwise removing the paper square or circle opposite the choice the voter desires to make, the paper square or circle must be removed in a manner that clearly indicates the voter's choice and so that the ballot may be tabulated either by hand or by mechanical means. If the punchcard ballot does not provide for removal of a paper square or circle, that ballot may be marked with pen or pencil as provided in this subsection. The mark specified in this subsection will be counted only if it is substantially inside the square or space provided, or touching the square or space, so that the mark indicates clearly that the voter intended the particular square or space to be designated. Improper marks on the ballot will not be counted. The rules set out in this section are mandatory and there will be no exceptions to them. A ballot may not be counted unless marked in compliance with these rules.
(b) If a voter improperly marks or otherwise damages his or her ballot, the voter may return the erroneously marked or damaged ballot to the utility or the cooperative and obtain another ballot. If the utility or the cooperative no longer has extra ballots, the voter may return the erroneously marked or damaged ballot to the commission and obtain another ballot. The utility, the cooperative, or the commission, as the case may be, shall record and certify the number of erroneously marked or damaged ballots, and these ballots must be destroyed without examination. The utility or the cooperative shall report that certification to the commission, and that certification whether by the utility, cooperative, or the commission, will become part of the commission's certification of the election results under 3 AAC 49.050(f) .
(c) The utility subscriber or cooperative member is entitled to cast a secret ballot in an election conducted under AS 42.05.712 . When the voter has completed marking the ballot, the marked ballot initially must be placed in a small envelope which the utility or cooperative is to provide. The only printing or text permitted on this small envelope may indicate that this is the envelope in which the marked ballot is to be placed before mailing it in the larger return-addressed envelope. The utility or cooperative also shall provide a larger envelope in which the small envelope containing the marked ballot must be enclosed. If two or more elections are being held at the same time, the commission will, in its discretion, require the utility or cooperative to use a larger envelope of a distinctive color other than white. The larger envelope must be addressed to the commission (at an address the commission designates) with pre-paid postage as prescribed in AS 42.05.712 (d). The front of the larger envelope also must identify the utility or cooperative to which it applies. That identification must be printed in substantially the following form: The utility's or cooperative's name followed by the phrase, "Election Ballot ( AS 45.02.712 )." A voter's certificate, including spaces for the voter's signature, the voter's name (either printed or typewritten), the voter's account or membership number, the voter's mailing address, and the date of signing, must be printed on the reverse side of the envelope. If the subscriber or member is eligible to cast more than one ballot under 3 AAC 49.020(c) , each ballot must be mailed in a separate small envelope and enclosed in a separate large envelope containing the voter's certificate as prescribed in this subsection.
History: Eff. 8/14/80, Register 75
Authority: AS 42.05.151 (a)
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Last modified 7/05/2006