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File #: 2018-0366    Version: 1
Type: Ordinance Status: Passed
File created: 7/30/2018 In control: Government Accountability and Oversight Committee
On agenda: Final action: 9/24/2018
Enactment date: 10/3/2018 Enactment #: 18795
Title: AN ORDINANCE relating to the citizens' elections oversight committee; and amending Ordinance 15453, Section 3, as amended, and K.C.C. 2.53.021, Ordinance 15453, Section 4, as amended, and K.C.C. 2.53.031, Ordinance 15453, Section 5, and K.C.C. 2.53.041 and Ordinance 15453, Section 6, as amended, and K.C.C. 2.53.051.
Sponsors: Larry Gossett
Indexes: Elections
Code sections: 2.53.021 - ., 2.53.031 - , 2.53.041 - ., 2.53.051 -
Attachments: 1. Ordinance 18795.pdf, 2. 2018-0366 SR_dated_09112018_CEOC_Membership_Composition_Final.docx, 3. ATT2. 2018-B0126 Transmittal_Letter.pdf, 4. ATT3. 2018-B0126 CEOC_Membership_Composition_Proposal.pdf, 5. ATT4. 2018-B0126 CEOC Letter_of_Support_African_American_Representative.pdf, 6. ATT5_Matrix_Membership_Comparison.docx, 7. 0018 REPORT - King County Citizens' Elections Oversight Committee Annual Report 2018
Related files: 2019-RPT0018
Staff: Popochock, Hiedi

Title

AN ORDINANCE relating to the citizens' elections oversight committee; and amending Ordinance 15453, Section 3, as amended, and K.C.C. 2.53.021, Ordinance 15453, Section 4, as amended, and K.C.C. 2.53.031, Ordinance 15453, Section 5, and K.C.C. 2.53.041 and Ordinance 15453, Section 6, as amended, and K.C.C. 2.53.051.

Body

PREAMBLE:

The current citizens' elections oversight committee was established in 2006 by the King County council in Ordinance 15453.  The citizens' elections oversight committee serves as a significant resource and asset to King County voters, the King County council and the department of elections in its role of providing oversight and advice on conducting elections in King County.  The work of the committee increases transparency, credibility and community engagement of elections.

                     BE IT ORDAINED BY THE COUNCIL OF KING COUNTY:

                     SECTION 1.  Ordinance 15453, Section 3, as amended, and K.C.C. 2.53.021 are each hereby amended to read as follows:

                     A.  Committee membership shall include:

                       1.  One representative from a nonpartisan organization active in King County that evaluates candidates and ballot measures, such as the Municipal League;

                       2.  One representative from a nonpartisan organization active in King County that provides elections information to the public, such as the League of Women Voters;

                       3. One representative ((of an independent research and policy institute)) from the disability community;

                       4.  One jurisdictional representative from a junior taxing district or a city with a population of under twenty thousand;

                       5.  One representative of the Chinese-speaking community;

                       6.  One representative of the Vietnamese-speaking community;

                       7.  One representative of the Spanish-speaking community;

                       8.  One representative of the Korean-speaking community;

                       9.  One representative from each of any other language minority community for which the Director of the Bureau of the Census determines by publication in the Federal Register that King County is required to provide minority language assistance under Section 203 of the Voting Rights Act;

                       ((8.)) 10.  Two King County registered voters who are not representatives of any of the groups listed in subsection A.1. through ((7.)) 9. and ((9.)) 11. through ((11.)) 16 of this section;

                        ((9.)) 11.  One representative from the King County Democratic Party;

                       ((10.)) 12.  One representative from the King County Republican Party;

                        ((11.  One representative from the Washington state Democratic Party;

                       12.  One representative from the Washington state Republican Party;))

                       13.  One ex officio, nonvoting representative from the Office of the Secretary of State; ((and

                       14.  One ex officio, nonvoting representative from the Washington State Association of County Auditors.))

                       14.  One representative from an academic institution who has knowledge of elections;

                       15.  One representative who has experience in technology; and

                       16.  One representative from a nonpartisan organization in King County that promotes equality and the advancement of blacks or African Americans, such as the Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle.

                     B.  The process for filling vacancies on the committee is:

                       1.  The chair of the council shall notify councilmembers of vacancies on the committee and shall direct council staff to develop a job description and list of qualifications for committee members, as well as an application form;

                       2.  The open positions shall be advertised at a minimum in the county's newspaper of record;

                       3.  The chair of the council shall direct council staff to develop administrative procedures for accepting applications.  All applications shall be forwarded to all county councilmembers.  Applications shall also be forwarded to the citizens' elections oversight committee for review and the committee may provide feedback to the employment and administration committee;

                       4.  The employment and administration committee shall review applications, and may interview applicants.  By majority vote, the employment and administration committee shall appoint members to the citizens' elections oversight committee; and

                       5.  Appointments shall be confirmed or rejected by the full council by motion.

                     C.  When the Director of the Bureau of the Census determines by publication in the Federal Register that King County is no longer required to provide minority language assistance under Section 203 of the Voting Rights Act to a language minority community, the term of the committee member representing that community expires and committee membership representing that community is no longer required.

                     D.  ((All m))Members should have, but not be limited to:

                       1.  A working knowledge of local or state government elections operations and management, demography, technology and organizational management;

                       2.  A strong commitment to an accountable, transparent, well-managed and efficient elections operation in King County; and

                       3.  A willingness to commit the time necessary to attend committee meetings and activities.

                     E.  ((Except for the member representing the Washington State Association of Auditors, a nominee or appointee to the c))Committee members shall not hold elective public office or be a candidate for election to public office, other than as a precinct committee officer.

                     F.  Except for the ex officio member((s)), members shall serve three-year terms.  ((However, the representatives representing the groups under subsection A.6, 10. and 11. of this section appointed in 2006 initially shall serve one-year terms and the representative representing the group under subsection A.1, 2, 8. and 9. of this section appointed in 2006 initially shall serve a two-year term.))  The ((E))ex officio member((s)) serves at the pleasure of ((their)) the member's office((or association)).  ((The member representing the Vietnamese-speaking community shall serve a three-year term that begins on the date of appointment to the committee and expires December 31, three years after the appointment.))  Any other members that may be added as required by Ordinance 17273 and under Section 203 of the Voting Rights Act shall serve three-year terms that begin on the date of appointment to the committee and expire December 31, three years after the appointment.

                     SECTION 2.  Ordinance 15453, Section 4, as amended, and K.C.C. 2.53.031 are each hereby amended to read as follows:

                     The mission of the committee is to help King County ((restore and)) maintain public confidence in elections.  The committee shall make recommendations to the council to:

                     A.  Improve performance of the department of elections ((division)); and

                     B.  Help ensure that accountability and performance of the department of elections is provided in a transparent manner that is meaningful to the residents of King County.

                     SECTION 3.  Ordinance 15453, Section 5, and K.C.C. 2.53.041 are each hereby amended to read as follows:

                     A.  Before undertaking its other responsibilities identified in this chapter, the committee shall elect officers and adopt administrative procedures consistent with this chapter.

                     B.  To accomplish its responsibilities as outlined in this chapter, the committee shall complete the following tasks:

                       1.  Review recent reports on elections and recent legislation that affects elections standards, procedures, equipment and technologies;

                       2.  Conduct oversight of the implementation of new standards or procedures for elections as mandated by federal, state or county legislation;

                       3.  Monitor the special, primary and general elections and canvassing board meetings to observe if proper procedures are followed, to report on any problems that are observed or come to light, to recommend corrective actions on problems that may arise and to ensure that any problems that arise are discussed in an open and public manner.  The committee shall report to the council in a timely way on any significant problems that might occur or on any serious concerns the committee may have;

                       4.  Meet at least quarterly; and

                       5.  Submit a report to the council on its observations, findings and recommendations regarding the special, primary and general elections by February 1 of each year by filing eleven copies of the report with the clerk of the council for distribution to all councilmembers.

                     SECTION 4.  Ordinance 15453, Section 6, as amended, and K.C.C. 2.53.051 are each hereby amended to read as follows:

                     A.  The council shall provide for appropriate staffing of the committee.

                     B.  County staff in ((the department of executive services and)) the department of elections shall provide information requested by the committee in a timely manner.

                      ((C.  By March 31, 2009, the citizens' elections oversight committee shall evaluate the extent to which county elections operations have changed or improved over the previous four years and whether there is a need for an ongoing elections oversight committee.  This evaluation shall be submitted to the clerk of the council.  The council shall then make its own determination on the need for an ongoing elections oversight committee.))