Honorable Geanie Morrison, Chair, House Committee on Elections
Ursula Parks, Director, Legislative Budget Board
HB313 by Strama (Relating to electronic voter registration.), As Introduced
No significant fiscal implication to the State is anticipated.
The bill would amend the Election Code to require the Secretary of State (SOS) to implement and provide provisions for a program that would allow a person to complete a voter registration application over the Internet from the official websites of the SOS, the Department of Public Safety (DPS), and counties participating in the program, which would include obtaining a digital copy of an applicant's signature from the DPS.
The SOS and DPS estimate there would be a minimal cost associated with implementing the provisions of the bill.
The bill would take effect on September 1, 2013.
Local Government Impact
According to the Texas Association of Counties, assuming there is no loss of Chapter 19 funds, allowing voters to complete a voter registration form online would produce considerable savings for Texas counties.
Travis County anticipates a positive fiscal impact on an annual basis. The bill could reduce general election costs and produce annual savings of $102,000 (50 percent cost reduction), after full implementation.
Tarrant County reported that they hire several temporary workers and pay overtime to county employees who assist with voter registration during the 6 to 8 weeks before Election Day to handle voter registration mail and perform data entry. In past general elections, staff has received 9,200 voter registration applications by mail in one day. Allowing applicants to enter their own data would result in a more accurate voter registration database.
307 Secretary of State, 405 Department of Public Safety