2002 Regular Session
To: Apportionment and Elections
By: Representative Howell
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTIONS 23-15-297, 23-15-309 AND 23-15-977, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO REVISE QUALIFYING FEES FOR CERTAIN ELECTIVE OFFICES; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 23-15-297, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
23-15-297. All candidates upon entering the race for party nominations for office shall first pay to the proper officer as provided for in Section 23-15-299 for each primary election the following amounts:
(a) Candidates for Governor not to exceed Four Hundred Dollars ($400.00).
(b) Candidates for Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General, Secretary of State, State Treasurer, Auditor of Public Accounts, Commissioner of Insurance, Commissioner of Agriculture and Commerce, State Highway Commissioner and State Public Service Commissioner, not to exceed Three Hundred Dollars ($300.00).
(c) Candidates for district attorney, not to exceed One Hundred Fifty Dollars ($150.00).
(d) Candidates for State Senator, State Representative, sheriff, chancery clerk, circuit clerk, tax assessor, tax collector, county attorney, county superintendent of education and board of supervisors, not to exceed Twenty-five Dollars ($25.00).
(e) Candidates for county surveyor, county coroner, justice court judge and constable, not to exceed Fifteen Dollars ($15.00).
(f) Candidates for United States Senator, not to exceed Four Hundred Dollars ($400.00).
(g) Candidates for United States Representative, not to exceed Three Hundred Dollars ($300.00).
SECTION 2. Section 23-15-309, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
23-15-309. (1) Nominations for all municipal officers which are elective shall be made at a primary election, or elections, to be held in the manner prescribed by law. All persons desiring to be alderman or council candidates for the nomination in the primary elections shall first pay Ten Dollars ($10.00) and persons desiring to be mayoral candidates for nomination in the primary elections shall first pay Twenty-five Dollars ($25.00) to the clerk of the municipality, at least sixty (60) days prior to the first primary election, no later than 5:00 p.m. on such deadline day.
(2) The fee paid pursuant to subsection (1) of this section shall be accompanied by a written statement containing the name and address of the candidate, the party with which he is affiliated, and the office for which he is a candidate.
(3) The clerk shall promptly receipt the payment, stating the office for which the person making the payment is running and the political party with which such person is affiliated. The clerk shall keep an itemized account in detail showing the time and date of the receipt of such payment received by him, from whom such payment was received, the party with which such person is affiliated and for what office the person paying the fee is a candidate. The clerk shall promptly supply all necessary information and pay over all fees so received to the secretary of the proper municipal executive committee. Such funds may be used and disbursed in the same manner as is allowed in Section 23-15-299 in regard to other executive committees.
(4) Upon receipt of the above information, the proper municipal executive committee shall then determine whether each candidate is a qualified elector of the municipality, and of the ward if the office sought is a ward office, shall determine whether each candidate either meets all other qualifications to hold the office he is seeking or presents absolute proof that he will, subject to no contingencies, meet all qualifications on or before the date of the general or special election at which he could be elected to office. The committee also shall determine whether any candidate has been convicted of any felony in a court of this state, or has been convicted on or after December 8, 1992, of any offense in another state which is a felony under the laws of this state, or has been convicted of any felony in a federal court on or after December 8, 1992. Excepted from the above are convictions of manslaughter and violations of the United States Internal Revenue Code or any violations of the tax laws of this state unless such offense also involved misuse or abuse of his office or money coming into his hands by virtue of his office. If the proper municipal executive committee finds that a candidate either (a) does not meet all qualifications to hold the office he seeks and fails to provide absolute proof, subject to no contingencies, that he will meet the qualifications on or before the date of the general or special election at which he could be elected, or (b) has been convicted of a felony as described in this subsection and not pardoned, then the name of such candidate shall not be placed upon the ballot.
(5) Where there is but one (1) candidate, the proper municipal executive committee when the time has expired within which the names of candidates shall be furnished shall declare such candidate the nominee.
SECTION 3. Section 23-15-977, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
23-15-977. (1) All candidates for judicial office as defined in Section 23-15-975 of this subarticle shall file their intent to be a candidate with the proper officials not later than 5:00 p.m. on the first Friday after the first Monday in May prior to the general election for judicial office and shall pay to the proper officials the following amounts:
(a) Candidates for Supreme Court judge and Court of Appeals, the sum of Two Hundred Dollars ($200.00).
(b) Candidates for circuit judge and chancellor, the sum of One Hundred Dollars ($100.00).
(c) Candidates for county judge and family court judge, the sum of Fifteen Dollars ($15.00).
(2) Candidates for judicial offices listed in paragraphs (a) and (b) of subsection (1) of this section shall file their intent to be a candidate with, and pay the proper assessment made pursuant to subsection (1) of this section to, the State Board of Election Commissioners.
(3) Candidates for judicial offices listed in paragraph (c) of subsection (1) of this section shall file their intent to be a candidate with, and pay the proper assessment made pursuant to subsection (1) of this section to, the circuit clerk of the proper county. The circuit clerk shall notify the county commissioners of election of all persons who have filed their intent to be a candidate filed with, and paid the proper assessment to, such clerk. Such notification shall occur within two (2) business days and shall contain all necessary information.
SECTION 4. The Attorney General of the State of Mississippi is hereby directed to submit this act, immediately upon approval by the Governor, or upon approval by the Legislature subsequent to a veto, to the Attorney General of the United States or to the United States District Court for the District of Columbia in accordance with the provisions of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended.
SECTION 5. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after the date it is effectuated under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended.