|To:||County Officials and Vendors|
|From:||Ann McGeehan, Director of Elections|
|Date:||June 21, 2010|
|RE:||Changes to Voter Import and Voting History File Layouts|
In compliance with the MOVE Act, changes have been made to the Voter Import and Voting History Import files in order to make secure the FPCA (SC90) and corresponding ballot status. Further, in following the MOVE Act requirement to create a method by which military and overseas voters can track the status of their ballots, it is our intent to build a ‘central website’ for this purpose.
The following fields have been added to the Voter Import for submission of the FPCA record:
Voter Import Additions
- Source code 90 (SC90) has been added as an acceptable source code for a record submission on the Voter Import in field 32. The source code 90 represents the FPCA (absentee) record that is submitted to the early voting clerk that serves as a request for a ballot by mail.
- Political Party Affiliation, field 4593, has been added. The party affiliation is a field on the FPCA application form and represents the party affiliation for the ballot sent for a Primary or Primary Runoff election.
- FPCA Receipt Method, field 4594, has been added. This field indicates how the FPCA application was submitted to the county. The values are: E=electronic, F=fax or M= mailed. This field will be required when submitting an SC90 record.
- FPCA Affirmation Reason, field 4595, has been added. The affirmation reason is a field on the FPCA application form and indicates the qualification reason the person indicated on the FPCA form. The field will be required when submitting an SC90 record.
- FPCA State write-in Ballot Type, field 4596, has been added. The FPCA State write-in ballot type will have an indicator value of Y or N.
- Telephone Number, field 4597, has been added.The recommended format for the telephone number data is XXX XXX XXXX. However, we understand that this format may not reconcile with a foreign country telephone number. Therefore, the telephone number field is a free form CHAR field. The telephone information will not be transmitted to the voter record; since the FPCA (SC90) record is not the part of the application that acts as a registration form, it is permissible to transcribe the telephone number.
- Fax Number, field 4617, has been added. The recommended format for the fax number data is XXX XXX XXXX. However, we understand that this format may not reconcile with a foreign country fax number. Therefore, the fax number field is a free form CHAR field. The fax number will not be transmitted to the voter record; since the FPCA (SC90) record is not the part of the application that acts as a registration form, it is permissible to transcribe the fax number.
- Entry of e-mail address information obtained from the FPCA application for the SC90 record can be entered in existing field 1054.
- Special Instructions Type, field 4637, has been added. There is currently only one instruction type defined, which is G=general. We have reserved the field for future expansion. If you wish to append a comment on the FPCA application form, this field is required if you submit any data in the instructions field outlined below.
- Special Instructions, field 4638, has been added. If a value of “G” is entered in field 4637 indicating you are appending special instructions, then this field becomes required.
Independent of the new fields added to support the FPCA logic, we have added a new field, Bypass Check, located in field 4688. The Bypass Check field value is either a 1=True or a 0= false. The purpose of this field is in the instance where a voter record has previously failed the live check verification process, the county followed protocol by sending the notice of incomplete, and the applicant responded with ‘no change.’ A value of 1 would allow for the submission of the record with the identification number intact, skipping the live check process, but noting the voter with an ID indicator on the official voting list. A value of 0 indicates the voter should not skip the live check process.
Field 1440 on the Voter Import was previously reserved for only the transmission of the trace number assigned through a Texas Online change. The field description has now been changed to be “ID Tracking” and serves multiple purposes. Any new source code 64 record or a voter initiated change code of 12 on a source code 64 submitted to the state should have the corresponding DPS tracking ID sent to the county on the Voter Export. The counties may also use this field on any source code other than a source code 64 to track their record submissions. The same tracking ID number submitted on the voter import will be sent back on the voter export.
A new event type 8 for field 30 has been added to the Appendix and describes those records that have been rejected due to incompleteness or eligibility reasons. All rejected voter registration applications, regardless of the source code, should be submitted. However, if a DPS, source code 64, record is submitted, the DPS XML ID number will be required. The DPS records rejected due to out of county continues to have the same process as implemented in 2009.
Voting History Import Additions/Changes
- Precinct number has been added to the import starting in field 1064. The addition of the precinct number will allow those counties submitting voting history through the import process to obtain reports generated through TEAM with an indication of the precinct in which the voter voted.
- FPCA Absentee Ballot Mail Method has been added starting in field 1070. This field represents the method by which the county sent the ballot. The values are: E=electronic, F=fax or M= mailed. This field will be required when submitting an SC90 record.
- The Voting History Type code in field 684 was modified to accept the following voting methods:
- AM= Absentee ballot mailed
- AB = Absentee ballot received
- RB = Absentee ballot returned by Post Office
- AV= Absentee ballot counted
- AX= Absentee ballot rejected
- AC= Absentee cancelled
- The Date Voted, field 699, will be required for all voting statuses.
- The Envelope ID, field 1071, will be required for all submissions of the absentee ballot status. The only exception is when a status of AV is submitted with the voting history ballot type of “2’ to indicate a federal only ballot. If the absentee process has been recorded in TEAM, the envelope ID number is generated by TEAM and should be used for the absentee status submitted through the voting history import. If the absentee process has not been recorded through TEAM and the county elects to only send the ballot statuses through the import process, the envelope ID should be a unique number for that election assigned by the county.
- The Voting History Ballot Type attribute was added in field 686 to define the type of ballot cast. Only required with Voting History Type code equals AV.
- The Ballot Reject Reason Code in field 1029 will be required when the Voting Method Type Code equals AX.
The Secretary of State’s Office has prioritized this functionality to be implemented in the next TEAM version release scheduled later this summer. We understand the work required at the local level to comply with these changes, and in order to best facilitate the requirements, we are scheduling a conference call to include all offline counties, vendors and any online county that may use the voting history or voter import for any purpose. A separate announcement will come within the next week regarding the specifics of the conference call. Our current deployment schedule indicates that all changes to the Voter Import and Voting History files will have to be implemented no later than September 7, 2010. If after this date a Voter Import or Voting History file is submitted without the changes, it will be rejected due to improper format.
As we all look forward to these changes and the development of the central tracking system, we encourage you to contact us with any questions you may have. Karen Richards will be available to take your calls at (800) 252-2216.
Voting History Import