MISSISSIPPI LEGISLATURE

2012 Regular Session

To: Elections; Rules

By: Senator(s) McDaniel

Senate Bill 2772

(As Sent to Governor)

     AN ACT TO CREATE AND EMPOWER A SPECIAL TASK FORCE TO STUDY THE STATUS OF MISSISSIPPI'S ELECTION PROCESS TO CONSIDER ALL MATTERS RELATING TO ELECTIONS IN MISSISSIPPI AND MAKE RECOMMENDATIONS THEREON; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.

     BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:

     SECTION 1.  (1)  There is hereby created a task force to study Mississippi's election laws, to consider all matters relating to elections in Mississippi and to make recommendations to revise Mississippi's election laws.  The task force may conduct public hearings and receive information from any source deemed appropriate.  The task force shall be composed of the following members:

          (a)  The Chairman of the Senate Elections Committee;

          (b)  The Chairman of the House Apportionment and Elections Committee;

          (c)  Three (3) members appointed by the Lieutenant Governor;

          (d)  Three (3) members appointed by the Speaker of the House of Representatives;

          (e)  The Assistant Secretary of State for the Elections Division;

          (f)  One (1) Assistant Attorney General appointed by the Attorney General;

          (g)  One (1) member appointed by the Mississippi Circuit Clerk's Association; and

          (h)  One (1) member appointed by the Election Commissioners Association of Mississippi.

     Appointments shall be made within thirty (30) days after the effective date of this act.

     (2)  The Lieutenant Governor and Speaker of the House shall appoint co-chairmen of the task force and call the first meeting.  The task force may elect from its membership such other officers as it may consider necessary.  A majority of the members of the task force shall constitute a quorum.  All members shall be notified in writing of all meetings at least five (5) days prior to the date on which a meeting is to be held.

     (3)  Members of the task force who are not legislators, state officials or state employees shall be reimbursed in accordance with Section 25-3-41, Mississippi Code of 1972, for mileage and actual expenses incurred in the performance of their duties.  Legislative members of the task force shall receive the compensation authorized for committee meetings when the Legislature is not in session; however, no per diem or expense for attending meetings of the task force will be paid to legislators while the Legislature is in session.  Members of the task force who are state officials or state employees shall be reimbursed by their department or agency for mileage and actual expenses incurred in the performance of their duties in accordance with Section 25-3-41, Mississippi Code of 1972.  No task force member may incur per diem, travel or other expenses unless previously authorized by vote, at a meeting of the task force, which action shall be recorded in the official minutes of the meeting.

     (4)  The task force shall utilize clerical and legal staff of the Legislature, the Secretary of State and the Attorney General.  To effectuate the purposes of the task force, any department, board or agency of the state or local government shall, at the request of the co-chairmen of the task force, provide to the task force such facilities, assistance and data as will enable the task force to properly carry out its powers and duties.

     (5)  The task force shall present its findings to the Legislature on or before June 30, 2013, by filing its report thereon with the Secretary of the Senate.  Its report may propose legislation related to the matters within the jurisdiction of the task force.  The task force shall be dissolved on January 1, 2014.

     SECTION 2.  This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 2012.