Don´t have a photo ID for voting? Election Identification Certificates are available from DPS offices and EIC mobile locations.
Election Outlook: Early voting for the November 4, 2014 General Election runs Monday, October 20 - Friday, October 31 | Voter information | What’s on the Ballot | Find my polling place
Elections and Voter Information

Voter Information

Election Advisory No. 2011-08

Important Dates for Elections Conducted on Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Campaign Information

Under Title 15 of the Election Code, candidates running for an office of a local political subdivision must file campaign contribution and expenditure reports with the secretary of the governing body.  For further information about such disclosure filings, campaign finance, and political advertising, please contact the Texas Ethics Commission at 201 E. 14th, 10th Floor, Austin, Texas 78701; call 512-463-5800; or access their website.

Note on Submissions to the U.S. Department of Justice

The Voting Rights Act of 1965 requires that any change in any "standard, practice, or procedure with respect to voting" be submitted to the U.S. Department of Justice for preclearance, including changes in election precincts, polling places, and various other actions.

The Attorney General of the U.S. Department of Justice has 60 days in which to interpose an objection to a submitted change affecting voting.  Therefore, if the governing authority of a political subdivision conducting an election has not already reviewed actions since the last election to see if any changes must be submitted for preclearance, this should be done as soon as possible.  If you need to make changes at the last minute, the Justice Department may be able to give your submission expedited consideration.  Rules for submissions under Section 5, Voting Rights Act, are contained in 28 C.F.R. §§ 51.20‑51.28.

Procedure:

Send your submissions to the following addresses:

For All U.S. Postal Service Mail: For All Overnight Express Services:
CHIEF, VOTING SECTION
CIVIL RIGHTS DIVISION
ROOM 7254-NWB  
DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE
950 PENNSYLVANIA AVE., N.W.
WASHINGTON, D.C. 20530
CHIEF, VOTING SECTION 
CIVIL RIGHTS DIVISION
ROOM 7254-NWB
DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE
1800 G STREET, N.W.
WASHINGTON, D.C. 20006

Note on Statutory References

Unless otherwise indicated, all references are to the Texas Election Code.

Note on Notice of Elections

Political subdivisions other than cities and schools may have specific statutory notice requirements.  In the absence of specific statutory requirements, such political subdivisions must post a notice on or before the 21st day before the election. (Sec. 4.003(b)).  For the Tuesday, November 8, 2011 election, this notice must be posted on or before Tuesday, October 18, 2011.  The general rule is that notice must be given in one of the following manners:

  1. By posting a notice in each election precinct in which the election is to be held on or before the 21st day before the election, Tuesday, October 18, 2011. (Sec. 4.003(a)(2)).
  2. By publishing the notice at least once between the 30th day and the 10th day before the election, Sunday, October 9, 2011 - Monday, October 31, 2011.* (Secs. 1.006, 4.003(a)(1)).
  3. By mailing a copy of the notice to each registered voter of the territory covered by the election, not later than the 10th day before election day, Monday, October 31, 2011.* (Secs. 1.006, 4.003(a)(3)).
    *Since the 10th day falls on a Saturday, the deadline is extended. (Sec. 1.006).

This notice must include:

  1. The type and date of the election;
  2. The location of each polling place;
  3. The hours the polls will be open;
  4. The location of the main and each branch early voting polling place;
  5. The regular dates and hours for early voting by personal appearance;
  6. The dates and hours of any Saturday or Sunday early voting, if any; and
  7. The early voting clerk’s mailing address.

Note for State Constitutional Amendment Election

Since the commissioners court does not order this election (the Governor orders it), your county must post notice of the election on the commissioners court bulletin board and must also provide notice under one of the methods authorized under A, B, or C above.  (Sec. 4.003(b)).

Note for Cities and School Districts

Cities and School Districts are required to publish their notice in a newspaper in accordance with Section 4.003(a)(1) (See B., above) and may also give any additional notice. (Sec. 4.003(c)).

Note for Home Rule Charter Cities

Home-rule cities MUST also give notice as provided in their charters.

Note for All Political Subdivisions, Except Counties & Cities

Early voting on ANY Saturday or Sunday must be included in the order and notice of election. (Secs. 85.006, 85.007).

Note for All Political Subdivisions, Except Counties

The governing body of a political subdivision must deliver notice of the election to the county clerk of each county in which the political subdivision is located not later than the 60th day before election day, Friday, September 9, 2011.  (Sec. 4.008).

Notice of Change of Polling Place Location

For elections ordered by the governor or county judge only, if the location of the polling place changes after notice has been given under Section 4.003, and the county clerk maintains a website to inform voters about elections, the notice of the change must be posted on the website.  The notice on the website must be posted not later than the earlier of 24 hours after the location was changed or 72 hours before the polls open on election day. (Sec. 43.061).  If the county elections officer is conducting a legislative vacancy election, the candidates listed on the ballot are entitled to receive notice directly from the county judge. 

Notice of Previous Polling Place

If a different polling place is being used than at the previous election held by the same authority, notice shall be posted at the entrance of the previous polling place informing voters of the current polling place location, if possible. (Sec. 43.062).

Joint Election Day Polling Places

Entities other than counties must use the county election day precincts and polling places in any November election (odd-numbered or even-numbered year).  (Secs. 42.002, 43.004)  Whether the entities have joint early voting polling places or otherwise conduct early voting together is at their discretion, pursuant to a joint election agreement (chapter 271) or contract with the county (chapter 31).  Whether the entities choose to do more on election day than share the polling place (like sharing equipment or workers) is likewise subject to a joint election agreement or contract.  (Exception:  a district that is created under Section 52, Article III, or Section 59, Article XVI, Texas Constitution, and is located in a county with a population of more than 3.3 million or a county adjacent to a county with a population of more than 3.3 million is exempt from the requirement.)

Note on Testing Tabulating Equipment

The automatic tabulating equipment used for counting ballots at a central counting station must be tested three times for each election before the early voting period begins and before election day.  We recommend you test the equipment as soon as possible; however, the first test must be conducted at least 48 hours before the automatic tabulating equipment is used to count ballots voted in the election.  The second test shall be conducted immediately before the counting of ballots with the equipment begins.  The third test shall be conducted immediately after the counting of ballots with the equipment is completed.  Please note that the custodian of the automatic tabulating equipment shall publish notice of the date, hour, and place of the first test in a newspaper at least 48 hours before the date of the test.  The automatic tabulating equipment may not be used to count ballots voted in the election until a test is successful.  For more information on testing tabulating equipment, please see Chapter 127, Subchapter D of the Texas Election Code.

Calendar of Events

Saturday, July 9, 2011 (30th day before Monday, August 8, 2011, “first day to file”)

Cities and School Districts (including junior colleges): Post notice of the filing period dates in a building in which the authority maintains an office. The notice must be posted not later than the 30th day before the first day to file. (Sec. 141.040). For political subdivisions that do not have a “first day” to file, the Elections Division recommends posting the notice on this date but no later than 30 days before the filing deadline (except you will not state a “first day to file” in the notice). See Tex. Sec’y of State Election Advisory No. 2009-11 for form. See also entry under September 7, 2011.  (Note:  we are revising forms to reflect new legislation; we are currently linking to the old form, which will be sufficient for this election.) 

August 2011

County commissioners court should decide whether to consolidate county election precincts for the November 8, 2011 state constitutional amendment election by this date, since consolidation requires preclearance by the U.S. Department of Justice.

Monday, August 8, 2011 (30th day before the regular filing deadline for a place on the ballot)

Cities and Schools only: First day to file an application for a place on the ballot. (Secs. 1.006, 143.007, Election Code; 11.055, Education Code).

All Other Districts: There is no “first” day to file.

Thursday, August 25, 2011 (75th day before election day)

Recommended last day to submit changes affecting voting to U.S. Department of Justice for preclearance for the November 8, 2011 election.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011 (70th day before election day)

Last day to order a special election to fill a vacancy (if authorized to fill vacancies by special election) and have the filing deadline coincide with the regular filing deadline (62nd day before election day, Wednesday, September 7, 2011).

Note:  Section 201.054 provides for three possible times to order a special election to be held on the November uniform date, each triggering a different filing deadline.  These are: (1) on or before the 70th day before election day (NEW LAW: 62nd day deadline); (2) the 36th day before election day (31st day deadline); and (3) the 30th day before election day (deadline depends on factors in Section 201.054). This is the "first" of the three possible ordering times.

Sunday, September 4, 2011 (65th day before election day; day before 2nd day before 62nd day)

If a candidate dies on or before this date, his or her name is not placed on the ballot if the filing deadline is the 62nd day before election day, Wednesday, September 7, 2011. (Sec. 145.094(a)(1)).

Wednesday, September 7, 2011 (62nd day before election day)

Deadline for political subdivisions to order an election to be held on Tuesday, November 8, 2011, except as otherwise provided by the Election Code. (Sec. 3.005).

The order must include:

  1. The date of the election;
  2. The offices or measures to be voted on;
  3. The location of the main and branch early voting polling place;
  4. The dates and hours for early voting (if county clerk or city secretary is not early voting clerk);
  5. The dates and hours of any Saturday and Sunday early voting (if county clerk or city secretary is not early voting clerk); and
  6. 6. The early voting clerk’s official mailing address.

5:00 p.m. —  Deadline to file an application for a place on the ballot for general election for officers for most political subdivisions, except as otherwise provided by the Election Code. (Secs. 143.007(a), 144.005(a)). 
Note: a home rule city’s charter may not provide an alternate candidate filing deadline.  (Secs. 143.005(a), 143.007).

5:00 p.m. — Last day to file for a place on the ballot in a special election to fill a vacancy, if the special election is ordered on or BEFORE the 70th day before election day, Tuesday, August 30, 2011. (Sec. 201.054(a)(1)).

Note on Candidate’s Application Filed by Mail:  An application by mail is considered to be filed at the time of its receipt by the appropriate filing authority.  (Secs. 143.007(b), 144.005(b)).

Friday, September 9, 2011 (60th day before election day)

First day to accept applications for early voting ballots by mail for the November 8, 2011 election. (Sec. 84.007).

First day of period during which the Secretary of State must publish first statewide notice of state constitutional amendment election. The Secretary of State will publish this notice a second time on the same day of the next week after the first notice was published. (Art. XVII, Sec. 1, Texas Constitution).

Last day for the governing body of a political subdivision to deliver notice of the election to the county clerk and voter registrar of each county in which the political subdivision is wholly or partly located. (Sec. 4.008).

Monday, September 12, 2011 (57th day before election day; 5th day after the regular filing deadline)

5:00 p.m. — If filing deadline for a general or special election to fill a vacancy is Wednesday, September 7, 2011, deadline for write-in candidates to file declarations of write-in candidacy for city, school, junior college, hospital district, library district, Chapter 36 and 49 Water Code district director, and other political subdivisions elections, unless otherwise provided by law. (Sec. 146.054, Election Code; Secs. 11.056, 130.0825, Education Code; Sec. 326.0431, Local Government Code; Sec. 285.131(d), Health and Safety Code; Secs. 36.059, 49.101, Water Code).

Friday, September 16, 2011 (53rd day before election day)

5:00 p.m. —   Last day for a candidate to withdraw in an election for which the filing deadline is not later than 5:00 p.m. of the 62nd day before election day, Wednesday, September 7, 2011.  If a candidate withdraws or is declared ineligible by this date, his or her name is omitted from the ballot.  (Secs. 145.092(b), 145.094(a)(3)).

Monday, September 19, 2011 - Sunday, December 18, 2011 (50th day before election day – 40th day after election day)

Mandatory office hours: Each county clerk, city secretary, or secretary of a governing body (or the person performing duties of a secretary) must keep the office open for election duties for at least 3 hours each day, during regular office hours, on regular business days. (Sec. 31.122). Note: the 40th day falls on a Sunday.

Note for Counties: This office hour rule applies to the entity’s general election or special election ordered by that authority; we recommend that the county maintain these office hours, because the county orders all procedures for the amendment election. The hours are clearly required if the county authority orders an additional county election.

Note for Independent School Districts: A regular business day means a day on which the school district’s main business office is regularly open for business. (Sec. 31.122(b)). If a school holiday falls on a day during the early voting by personal appearance period that is not a federal or state holiday (see Sec. 1.006), the independent school district is still required to be open to conduct early voting by personal appearance.

Monday, September 19, 2011 (50th day before election day)

Last day for the Secretary of State to certify the state constitutional amendment election. (Sec. 274.003).

Last day of period during which the Secretary of State must publish first statewide notice of state constitutional amendment election. The Secretary of State will publish this notice a second time on the same day of the next week after the first notice was published. (Art. XVII, Sec. 1, Texas Constitution).

Saturday, September 24, 2011 (45th day before election day)

Recommended date to mail overseas and military ballots.

Early voting clerk may begin mailing early voting ballots to applicants as soon as ballots are available, but we strongly recommend that ballots be mailed no later than the 45th day before the election, if possible. (Sec. 86.004). Reminder: the early voting clerk must mail a ballot not later than the 7th day after the later of the date the early voting clerk has accepted a voter’s application for a ballot by mail or the date the ballots become available for mailing. However, if the 7th day falls earlier than the 45th day before election day, the voter’s mail ballot must be mailed no later than the 38th day before election day. Please note this deadline is not extended under Section 1.006. (Sec. 86.004).

Monday, October 3, 2011 (36th day before election day)

Deadline for the Secretary of State to mail each county judge a copy of the Governor’s proclamation ordering the state constitutional amendment election. (Sec. 3.003(c)).

Sunday, October 9, 2011 (30th day before election day)

First day of period during which notice of the constitutional amendment election and other elections must be published in a newspaper of general circulation if method of giving notice is not specified by a law outside the Election Code, and this method of giving notice is selected.  Cities and School Districts are required to publish their notice. (Sec. 4.003(a)(1)).

Last day for the county clerk to post a full copy of all amendments to be voted on at the state constitutional amendment election. (Art. XVII, Sec. 1, Texas Constitution).

Tuesday, October 11, 2011 (28th day before election, Tuesday after Columbus Day)*

5:00 p.m. —  Last day to file for a place on the ballot in a special election to fill a vacancy, if the special election is ordered by the 36th day before election day, Monday, October 3, 2011.  (Sec. 201.054(a)).  If the election is ordered between the 35th and 30th day, please see Section 201.054(a)(2) for possible candidate filing deadlines.*

Last day to order a special election to fill a vacancy.  (Sec. 201.052).  If an election is ordered between the 35th day before election day and this date, see Sections 146.054 and 201.054(a)(2) and Section 11.056, Education Code, for special candidate filing deadlines.*

Recommended last day for early voting clerk to order supplemental and registration correction lists, if applicable, or order revised original list from the voter registrar for early voting by personal appearance.  (Secs. 18.001 & 18.003).

Last day to register to vote or make a change of address to be effective for election day. (Sec. 13.143).

*Since the 30th day falls on a Saturday, and Monday is Columbus Day, the deadlines that occur on these days are extended to the next business day, Tuesday.  (Sec. 1.006).

Monday, October 17, 2011 (22nd day before election day)

If an FPCA is received by this date without a postmark to prove mailing date, the early voting clerk will accept the FPCA and mail the applicant a full ballot even if the applicant is not already a permanent registered voter but meets the requirements under Title 2 of the Election Code. (Sec. 101.004(i)).

5:00 p.m. —  Last day to file a declaration of write-in candidacy for a special election to fill a vacancy, if the filing deadline for a candidate application is Tuesday, October 11, 2011 (unless otherwise provided by law).  (Secs. 146.054 and 201.054, Election Code; Sec. 11.056, Education Code).  Since the statutory deadline falls on a Sunday, the deadline is extended to the next regular business day. (Sec. 1.006).

Last day to post notice of election on bulletin board used for posting notices of meetings of governing body. (Sec. 4.003(b)).

Last day to post notice of election in each election precinct if method of giving notice is not specified by a law outside the Election Code and notice is given by this method in lieu of publication. (Sec. 4.003(a)(2)). Cities and School Districts must publish their notice in the newspaper, see entry under Sunday, October 9, 2011.

Recommended first day that a special election to fill a vacancy may be cancelled IF all the filing deadlines have passed and each candidate whose name is to appear on the ballot is unopposed and there is no proposition to appear on the ballot. (Sec. 2.052).  Please note that this recommended date assumes a filing deadline in the special election of Tuesday, October 11, 2011, and a write-in deadline of 5:00 p.m., Tuesday, October 18, 2011.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011 (20th day before election day)

Last day for a person to apply for a full ballot by mail using a federal postcard application (“FPCA”).  (Secs. 101.004(e) & 101.006(a)).

Monday, October 24, 2011(15th day before election day)

First day to vote early in person.*

* Note:  The early voting period for general elections held on the November uniform election date in odd-numbered years begins 17 days prior to election day, but because this day falls on a weekend (Saturday, October 22, 2011), it is extended to the following Monday under Section 85.001(c). (Sec. 85.001).

Hours:  Your minimum requirements for voting hours vary by political subdivision.  For details, see chapter 85, Election Code.  Many entities also coordinate their hours for a joint election agreement; however, a joint election agreement does not waive any duties for counties (certain populations) or cities (all populations) to hold early voting for two 12-hour days.

Last day to notify election judges of duty to hold election (Writ of Election).  Notice must be given by the 15th day before the election or the 7th day after the day the election is ordered, whichever is later.  The Writ of Election must be given to each presiding judge and include:

  1. The judge’s duty to hold the election;
  2. The type and date of election;
  3. The polling place location at which the judge will serve;
  4. The polling place hours; and
  5. The maximum number of clerks the judge may appoint. (Sec. 4.007).

Wednesday, October 26, 2011 (13th day before election day)

Counties and Cities Only: Last day to post notice on bulletin board for posting notice of meetings of city council if early voting will be conducted on Saturday, October 29, 2011.  (Sec. 85.007).  Notice must be posted at least 72 hours before early voting begins on a Saturday or Sunday.

Note for all Political Subdivisions, except Cities: Voting on ANY Saturday or Sunday must be included in the order and notice of election. (Secs. 85.006 & 85.007).

Thursday, October 27, 2011 (12th day before election day)

If a defective application to vote early by mail is received on or before this date, the early voting clerk must mail the applicant a new application with explanation of defects and instructions for submitting the new application.  For defective applications received after this date and before the end of early voting by personal appearance, the early voting clerk must mail only the notice of defect and a statement that the voter is not entitled to vote early by mail unless he or she submits a sufficient application by the deadline. (Sec. 86.008).

Counties and Cities Only: Last day to post notice on bulletin board for posting notice of meetings of commissioners court and city council, if early voting will be conducted on Sunday, October 30, 2011. (Sec. 85.007).  Notice must be posted at least 72 hours before early voting begins on a Saturday or Sunday.

Monday, October 31, 2011 (8th day before election day)

First day that counties with a population of 100,000 or more (or local subdivisions conducting a joint election with such a county) may convene their early voting ballot board and deliver by mail ballots to be qualified.  The early voting clerk shall continuously post notice for 24 hours preceding each delivery of voting materials that is to be made before the time for opening the polls on election day.  (Sec. 87.0222).

Last day of period during which notice of the constitutional amendment election and other elections must be published if method of giving notice is not specified by a law outside the Election Code and this method of giving notice is selected.  (Sec. 4.003(a)(1)).*

Last day to mail a copy of the notice of the constitutional amendment election and other elections to each registered voter in the county if method of giving notice is not specified by a law outside the Election Code and this method of giving notice is selected.  (Sec. 4.003(a)(3)).*

A voter who becomes sick or disabled on or after this date may vote a late ballot if the sickness or disability prevents the voter from appearing at the polling place without the likelihood of needing personal assistance or of injuring his or her health. (Sec. 102.001).

*Since the deadline falls on a Saturday, the deadline is extended. (Sec. 1.006).

Tuesday, November 1, 2011 (7th day before election day)

Last day for early voting clerk to receive an application for a ballot to be voted by mail.  (Sec. 84.007).

Last day to receive an FPCA from a voter who is already permanently registered to vote in the county and therefore is eligible to receive a ballot which does not contain federal offices. (Secs. 84.007(c), 101.004, & 114.004).

Wednesday, November 2, 2011 (4th business day before election day; 6th day before election day)

5:00 p.m.  —  Requests for election inspectors for November 8, 2011 elections must be received by the Secretary of State on or before this date.  (Sec. 34.001).

Thursday, November 3, 2011 (5th day before election day)

For the constitutional amendment election, early voting must be conducted for 12 hours on this day in counties with populations of 100,000 or more according to the 2010 Census.  Early voting must be conducted for 12 hours on this day in counties with populations under 100,000 if the early voting clerk receives a petition not later than Monday, October 31, 2011. (Sec. 85.005(c)).

If a person will be absent on election day due to a death in the immediate family that occurs on this date or later, he may vote after the last day of early voting.

Friday, November 4, 2011 (4th day before election day)

Last day to vote early by personal appearance. (Sec. 85.001(a)).

For the constitutional amendment election, early voting must be conducted for 12 hours on this day in counties with populations of 100,000 or more according to the 2010 Census.  Early voting must be conducted for 12 hours on this day in counties with populations under 100,000 if the early voting clerk receives a petition not later than Tuesday, November 1, 2011. (Sec. 85.005(c)).

Saturday, November 5, 2011 (3rd day before election day)

First day to submit an application for and vote a late ballot because of a death in the immediate family that occurred on or after Thursday, November 3, 2011, and will require absence from the county on election day. (Secs. 103.001 & 103.003(b)).

First day to submit an application for and vote a late ballot because of sickness or disability that arose on or after Monday, October 31, 2011. (Secs. 102.001 & 102.003).

Political subdivisions may convene the early voting ballot board for the purpose of qualifying the ballots voted by mail but may not begin counting the ballots until election day.  (See exception under Monday, October 31, 2011.)  The early voting clerk shall continuously post notice for 24 hours preceding each delivery of voting materials that is to be made before the time for opening the polls on election day. (Secs. 87.0221, 87.023, 87.024, & 87.0241).

Monday, November 7, 2011 (day before election day)

Last day to submit an application for and vote a late ballot by personal appearance due to death in immediate family.  (Sec. 103.003(b)).

Last day to deliver precinct early voting lists to election judges.  (Sec. 87.122).

Tuesday, November 8, 2011  -  Election Day

7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. —   Polls open.  (Sec. 41.031).

7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. —   Voter registrar's office is open.  (Sec. 12.004(c)).

7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. —   Early voting clerk's office is open for early voting activities. (Sec. 83.011)

7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. —   Sick and disabled persons may vote at the main early voting polling place if electronic voting systems are used at regular polling place(s) on election day.  (Sec. 104.003).

5:00 p.m.   —   Deadline for receiving applications for late ballots to be voted by persons who became sick or disabled on or after Monday, October 31, 2011.  (Sec. 102.003(b)).

7:00 p.m —  Deadline for receiving early voting ballots by mail and late ballots cast by voters who became sick or disabled on or after Monday, October 31, 2011. (Secs. 86.007(a) & 102.006(c)).

Note on Manual Examination of Ballots Before Processing on Automatic Counting Equipment:

The central counting station manager shall direct the manual examination of all electronic voting system ballots to ascertain whether the ballots can be processed in the usual manner or if the ballots need to be duplicated to clearly reflect the voter’s intent. (Sec. 127.125).

Note on Receipt of Mail Ballots: 

All marked early voting ballots sent by mail from inside the United States must arrive before the time the polls are required to close on election day.  If the early voting clerk cannot determine whether a ballot arrived before the deadline, the ballot is considered to have arrived at the time the place at which the carrier envelopes are deposited was last inspected for removal of returned ballots. (Sec. 86.007(a)).  The early voting clerk must check the mailbox for early voting mail ballots at least once after the time for regular mail delivery. (Sec. 86.007(b)).  A marked ballot that is not timely returned may not be counted unless the ballot may be counted late, pursuant to Section 86.007(d), which applies to ballots mailed from outside of the United States.

Note on Delivery of Early Voting by Personal Appearance and Mail Ballots:

The early voting clerk delivers the voted ballots, the key to the double-locked ballot box, etc., to the early voting ballot board at the time or times specified by the presiding judge of the early voting ballot board, during the hours the polls are open or as soon after the polls close as practicable.  (Sec. 87.022).  The custodian of the key to the second lock of the double-locked early voting ballot box delivers his or her key to the presiding judge of the early voting ballot board on request of the presiding judge. (Secs. 85.032(d) and 87.025).  The custodian is the sheriff for county elections; the chief of police or city marshal for city elections; and the constable of the justice precinct in which the political subdivision’s main office is located (or the sheriff, if there is no constable), for other political subdivision elections. (Sec. 66.060).

Note on Delivery of Early Voting Ballots to Early Voting Ballot Board Before Election Day:

Early voting ballots may be delivered to the early voting ballot board at any time after early voting by personal appearance ends.  Ballots may be qualified and prepared for counting before election day, but they may not be counted until election day; however, counties with a population of 100,000 or more or entities contracting or having joint elections with counties with a population of 100,000 or more may process the ballots as early as the 8th day before election day, October 31, 2011, but the results may not be released until the polls close on election day.  (Secs. 87.023, 87.024, 87.0221, 87.0222, 87.0241(b)).  If ballots are to be delivered before election day, the early voting clerk must post notice at least 24 hours before each delivery at the main early voting polling place.  (Secs. 87.023(b), 87.024(b), 87.0221(b)).

Precinct election returns are delivered to the appropriate authorities after completion. (Sec. 66.053(a)).

Wednesday, November 9, 2011 (1st day and 1st business day after election day)

The general custodian of election records must deliver the ballot box(es) or transfer case(es) containing the provisional ballots, along with the Summary of Provisional Ballots and the List of Provisional Voters to the county voter registrar by this day.  The general custodian of election records makes this delivery to the voter registrar during the voter registrar office’s regular business hours.

Note for Political Subdivisions Located in More than One County:  Your political subdivision will have to make delivery of the provisional ballots and forms to the voter registrar in each county in which you are located.  (1 Tex. Admin. Code Secs. 81.172 - 81.174).

Note: if the voter registrar wants to take possession of the provisional ballots and forms on election night (Tuesday, November 8, 2011), the voter registrar must inform the custodian of the election records and post a notice on election night of the transfer no later than 24 hours before election day.  However, under this type of delivery, the county voter registrar must go to the custodian of election records office and pick up the provisional ballots and forms.  Also, note that the voter registrar may take possession of provisional ballots prior to election night if ballots are kept separate and may be provided without unlawful entry into ballot box.  (1 Tex. Admin. Code Secs. 81.172 – 81.174).

If a political subdivision was able to CANCEL its election, this is the first day its elected officials can take the oath of office and be issued certificates of election, unless the political subdivision is a Type A city.  (Secs. 2.051, 67.016; Sec. 22.006, Local Government Code).

Thursday, November 10, 2011 (2nd day after election day)

Recommended deadline for the county voter registrar to complete the review of provisional ballots. (1 Tex. Admin. Code Secs. 81.172 - 81.174).

Recommended deadline for county clerk/elections administrator or other custodian of election records to retrieve provisional ballots from county voter registrar.  (1 Tex. Admin. Code Secs. 81.172 - 81.174).

Note:    The statutory deadlines fall on the (3rd day and 3rd business day after election day) November 11, 2011, Veterans Day, a federal holiday; Section 1.006 extends the actual deadline to Monday, November 14, 2011.  In order to accomplish the remaining tasks in a timely manner (e.g., ballot board meeting on time), SOS recommends performing these actions by Thursday, November 10, 2011 if at all possible. 

Sunday, November 13, 2011 (5th day after election day)

Last day to post notice of commissioners court meeting to canvass returns of election if canvass is to take place on Wednesday, November 16, 2011 (8th day after election).  This notice must be posted at least 72 hours before the scheduled time of the meeting. (Secs. 551.002, 551.041, & 551.043, Gov’t Code). 

Monday, November 14, 2011 (6th day after election day)

See entry at Thursday, November 10, 2011 for certain recommended deadlines related to provisional voting.

Last day to receive ballots from voters casting ballots from outside of the United States who placed their ballots in delivery before 7:00 p.m. on election day.  (Sec. 86.007 (d)(3)).  Ballots from voters outside of the United States should arrive not later than the 5th day after the election; however, because the 5th day falls on a Sunday, the deadline is extended to the next regular business day.

Last day for early voting ballot board to convene to qualify and count any late ballots that were submitted from outside the United States and received by November 14, 2011. (Sec. 87.125).

Recommended last day for early voting ballot board to convene to qualify and count any provisional ballots that have been reviewed by the voter registrar.  (Actual deadline to meet to review and count provisional ballots is the 7th day after election day, Tuesday, November 15, 2011.  (Secs. 65.051(a), 1.006)).

First day that newly elected officers of a type A general-law city may qualify and assume the duties of their offices. (Sec. 22.006, Local Government Code).  Note: If a recount petition has been filed and a winning candidate’s race is involved in the recount, the certificate of election cannot be issued for that race until the recount has been completed. (Secs. 67.016 and 212.0331).

Tuesday, November 15, 2011 (7th day after election day)

Last day for early voting ballot board to convene to qualify and count any provisional ballots that have been reviewed by the voter registrar, if board did not review by recommended deadline of November 14, 2011.  (Sec. 65.051(a)).

Wednesday, November 16, 2011 – Monday, November 21, 2011 (8th - 13th day after election day)*

Period in which the governing body must conduct official local canvass. (Sec. 67.003). 
Officially-canvassed returns for the state constitutional amendment election must be delivered to the Secretary of State within 24 hours of the canvass.  (Sec. 67.007(d)). 

*Deadline extended pursuant to Section 1.006 since the 11th day after election day falls on a Saturday.

Friday, November 18, 2011 (10th day after election day)

Last day for the presiding judge of the early voting ballot board to mail notices of rejected mail ballots to voters. (Sec. 87.0431).Friday, November 18, 2011 (10th day after election day)

Last day for the presiding judge of the early voting ballot board to mail notices of rejected mail ballots to voters. (Sec. 87.0431).

Monday, November 21, 2011 (13th day after election day)*

Last day of the period (November 16 - 21, 2011) to conduct official local canvass of returns by commissioners court. (Sec. 67.003).

*Deadline extended pursuant to Section 1.006 since the 11th day after election day falls on a Saturday.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011 (14th day after election day)

Deadline to deliver the state constitutional amendment election returns, if they were officially canvassed on Monday, November 21, 2011. (Sec. 67.007(d)).  Returns must be delivered within 24 hours of the canvass.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011 – Thursday, December 8, 2011 (15th – 30th day after election day)

Time period in which the governor may conduct the state canvass of the state constitutional amendment election. (Sec. 67.012).

Thursday, December 8, 2011 (30th day after election day)

Last day to file electronic precinct-by-precinct returns with Secretary of State. (Sec. 67.017).

Sunday, December 18, 2011 (40th day after election day)

Last day of the period for mandatory office hours. See entry for Monday, September 19, 2011. (Sec. 31.122).

Sunday, January 8, 2012 (61st day after election day)

First day that ballot box(es) may be unlocked and its voted ballots be transferred to another secure container for the remainder of the 22-month preservation period. 

Monday, September 8, 2013 (22 months after election day)

Contents of ballot box(es) may be destroyed if no contest or criminal investigation has arisen (Secs. 1.013 & 66.058), and if no open records request has been filed (Tex. Att'y Gen. ORD-505 (1988)).  Election results must be permanently maintained in the election register. (Sec. 67.006).  Since the deadline falls on a Saturday, the deadline is extended. (Sec. 1.006).