Honorable Jodie Laubenberg, Chair, House Committee on Elections
Ursula Parks, Director, Legislative Budget Board
HB4131 by Fallon (Relating to assisting voters and other voting processes and procedures; creating criminal offenses; increasing criminal penalties.), Committee Report 1st House, Substituted
The provisions of the bill addressing felony sanctions are the subject of this analysis. The bill would amend the Election Code as it relates to assisting voters and other voting processes and procedures. Under the provisions of the bill, engaging in certain voting related activities in violation of the Election Code would be punishable as a criminal offense. The punishment would range from a misdemeanor to a felony with the punishment level based on the specific circumstances of the offense.
A third degree felony is punishable by confinement in prison for a term from 2 to 10 years and a state jail felony is punishable by confinement in a state jail for a term from 180 days to 2 years or Class A misdemeanor punishment. In addition to confinement, most felony offenses are subject to an optional fine not to exceed $10,000.
Expanding the list of behaviors for which a criminal penalty is applied and enhancing the punishment for existing offenses are expected to result in increased demands on the correctional resources of the counties or of the State due to longer terms of supervision in the community or longer terms of confinement within state correctional institutions. In fiscal year 2016, fewer than 10 individuals were arrested, fewer than 10 were placed under felony community supervision, and fewer than 10 were admitted into state correctional institutions for violations of the Election Code under existing statute. This analysis assumes the provisions of the bill addressing felony sanctions would not result in a significant impact on the demand for state correctional resources.