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Elections and Voter Information

Voter Information

Election Advisory No. 2016-21

To: All Cities, School Districts, and Other Political Subdivisions
From: Keith Ingram, Director of Elections
Keith Ingram's signature
Date: October 24, 2016

RE:

Recount Deadlines for the November 8, 2016 Elections of Cities, School Districts and Other Political Subdivisions

This deadline memo is designed to be read together with the recount outline on our website.

Below are the deadlines for filing a recount for local elections of cities, school districts and other political subdivisions for elections occurring on the November 8, 2016 uniform election date.  Please note that there are two sets of recount filing deadlines.  Which set of deadlines applies to you is based on the method of election (i.e., majority or plurality).

The deadline for filing a recount depends on the date the election is canvassed.  You cannot canvass your election until the early voting ballot board has convened and counted all provisional and overseas ballots.  The last day to receive a ballot from an overseas voter is Monday, November 14, 2016.  The last day for the early voting ballot board to convene and count provisional and overseas ballots is Monday, November 21, 2016.  [Sections 65.051, 67.003 & 86.007(d)(3) of the Texas Election Code (“the Code”)]

After the early voting ballot board has convened and counted ballots, you may canvass the elections.  The November 8, 2016 election must be canvassed no earlier than the eighth day after the election (Wednesday, November 16, 2016) and no later than the fourteenth day after the election (Tuesday, November 22, 2016).  [Sec. 67.003]

Deadlines for Regular Recount Requests

If your entity elects:

THEN the deadline to file for a recount is THE LATER of these two dates:

OR

[Sections 212.028, 212.081, 212.083]

Please note that candidates are elected by plurality vote unless the law specifically provides otherwise (e.g., statute, home-rule charter, court order).  [Sec. 2.001] 

If these criteria apply to your entity, then for the November 8, 2016 election, the following dates apply.  Please note that if the last day for performance of an act is a Saturday, Sunday, or legal state or national holiday, such as the Thanksgiving Day holiday on November 24, 2016, the act is timely if performed on the next regular business day, except as otherwise provided by the Code.  [Sec. 1.006]

Canvass Date Recount Request Deadline (Regular)
Wednesday, November 16, 2016 (8th day) 5:00 p.m., Friday, November 18, 2016
Thursday, November 17, 2016 (9th day) 5:00 p.m., Monday, November 21, 2016 (Sec. 1.006)
Friday, November 18, 2016 (10th day) 5:00 p.m., Monday, November 21, 2016 (Sec. 1.006)
Saturday, November 19, 2016 (11th day) 5:00 p.m., Monday, November 21, 2016
Sunday, November 20, 2016 (12th day) 5:00 p.m., Tuesday, November 22, 2016
Monday, November 21, 2016 (13th day) 5:00 p.m., Wednesday, November 23, 2016
Tuesday, November 22, 2016 (14th day)

5:00 p.m., Monday, November 28, 2016

Deadlines for Expedited Recount Requests

IF your entity elects:

THEN the deadline to file for a recount is THE LATER of these two dates:

If these criteria apply to your entity, then for the November 8, 2016 election, the following dates apply:

Canvass Date Recount Request Deadline (Regular)>
Wednesday, November 16, 2016 2:00 p.m., Thursday, November 17, 2016
Thursday, November 17, 2016 2:00 p.m., Friday, November 18, 2016
Friday, November 18, 2016 10:00 a.m., Monday, November 21, 2016 (Sec. 212.088)
Saturday, November 19, 2016 10:00 a.m., Monday, November 21, 2016 (Sec. 212.088)
Sunday, November 20, 2016 2:00 p.m., Monday, November 21, 2016
Monday, November 21, 2016 2:00 p.m., Tuesday, November 22, 2016
Tuesday, November 22, 2016 2:00 p.m., Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Note About Joint Canvassing Authorities

Section 271.011 of the Code authorizes a joint canvassing authority. If your joint election agreement designated a joint canvassing authority, please be advised that Section 212.026(b) of the Code requires the recount petition to be filed with the presiding officer of your regular canvassing authority.

Reminder on Tie Votes and Automatic Recounts

Please note that even though recounts can be requested by candidates based on unofficial returns, the automatic recount based on a tie pursuant to Section 2.002 (plurality vote) should be based on the official canvassed returns.

In a race requiring a majority vote, the candidates in a runoff are the “top two” candidates (based on the official canvassed returns); either the two with the highest and second-highest number of votes, or the two who tie for the highest number of votes.  The Code provides that an automatic recount will be conducted in other (rare) circumstances (for example, a three-way tie for highest vote, or a tie for the second-highest vote).  [Sec. 2.023] 

See recount outline and post-election memo for more details.

Please further be advised that an outline of the recount procedures and recount forms may be found in Chapter P of the handbook for the 27th Annual Election Law Seminar for Cities, Schools, and other Political Subdivisions (2015).  As noted above, you can also find a copy of the recount outline on our website. The recount forms can be downloaded from our website. If you do not have the 2015 seminar book and do not have access to the web, you may contact our office and request that the outline and forms be mailed directly to you.

Recount deadlines for elections conducted by counties on November 8, 2016 may be found at this memo (Advisory 2014-24)

If you need additional assistance, you may contact the Elections Division toll-free at 1-800-252-VOTE (8683).

CC:  County Clerks/Elections Administrators

KI:AF