For Immediate ReleaseMay 02, 2016
AB 120 provides extra resources to help offset unforeseen costs by counties
San Rafael, CA – The Marin County Registrar of Voters joined a statewide association of elections officials in endorsing the passage of a new California law that provides resources to county-level elections staffs for the June 7 Primary Election. Marin County Board of Supervisors sent a letter of support for the bill on April 25 to Mark Leno (D-San Francisco), chair of the state Senate Committee on Budget and Fiscal Review.
Governor Jerry Brown signed AB 120 on April 29. Now that the bill received unanimous bipartisan support in the State Senate (36-0) and State Assembly (73-0), $16.3 million will be split among the 58 counties to help offset the cost of simultaneously completing signature verifications on statewide initiative petitions while preparing for the June election.
The specific allocation formula will be developed soon. Pursuant to AB 120, the formula will be based on the total number of signatures submitted for the November ballot initiatives to a county and the total number of registered voters in a county. Counties will have until August 1 to submit certified expense reports to the State Controller’s Office.
“It’s impossible to budget in advance for an unknown expense like this,” Marin County Registrar Lynda Roberts said of the initiative petitions. “We must ensure accuracy when checking signatures, and this funding comes as a great relief to help offset the additional staffing costs to do so.”
The Elections Department brings in about 20 extra-hire staff to help with election preparations. The additional work of verifying signatures on several initiative petitions will require more help.
AB 120 was authored by Assemblymember Phil Ting (D-San Francisco) and sponsored by Secretary of State Alex Padilla. Orange County Registrar Neal Kelley, President of the California Association of Clerks and Election Officials, said AB 120 will cover election costs and provide other critical resources to ensure adequate election planning.
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Lynda RobertsRegistrar of VotersElections Department
Marin Civic Center Administration Building3501 Civic Center DriveSuite 121San Rafael, CA 94903(415) 473-6401Email: Lynda RobertsElections website