State senator files bill to expand early voting

Oct 12, 2011

The following article was published in the Florida Independent on October 12, 2011:

State Senator files bill to expand early voting

By Ashley Lopez

State Sen. Nan Rich, D-Sunrise, has introduced a bill for the upcoming legislative session that would expand early voting sites around the state.

Senate Bill 516 would remove some restrictions on early voting sites in the state.

According to the bill’s summary, it would:

Expand the list of available sites at which early voting may be held to include specified facilities or any other location designated by a supervisor of elections as meeting the requirements of state law; delete a requirement that an early voting site be designated and used as such for at least 1 year before an election; require that each county operate a certain total number of voting sites; revise the beginning and ending dates of early voting; revise the hours of early voting to 12 hours per weekday and 12 hours in the aggregate each weekend at each site during the applicable periods; delete provisions that authorize the supervisor of elections to provide early voting for certain elections and to determine the hours of operation of early voting sites in those elections, etc.

This past session, the Florida Legislature passed a controversial elections overhaul bill that limits early voting in the state, among other actions. Groups such as the American Civil Liberties Union of Florida are challenging the new law.

Most recently, Florida Secretary of State Kurt Browning filed a complaint challenging sections of the Voting Rights Act in an effort to push forward the new election rules.

Find this article here: