§ 163-304. State Board to have jurisdiction over municipal elections, and to advise; emergency and ongoing administration by county board.
Overview of Statute
The State Board of Elections has authority over municipal elections. The County Board of Elections uses the same process as the State in counting ballots and certifying the returns votes.
Authority and Duty of State Board.–The State Board of Elections shall have the same authority over municipal elections as it has over county and State elections. The State Board of Elections shall advise and assist cities, towns, incorporated villages and special districts, their members and legal officers on the conduct and administration of their elections and registration procedure.
The county boards of elections shall be governed by the same rules for settling controversies with respect to counting ballots or certification of the returns of the vote in any municipal or special district election as are in effect for settling such controversies in county and State elections.
(1971, c. 835, s. 1; 1973, c. 793, s. 92; 1999-426, s. 6(a); 2001-319, s. 11; 2001-374, s. 3; 2011-31, s. 25; 2012-194, s. 22(b); 2017-6, s. 3; 2018-146, s. 3.1(a), (b).)
1. Definition for board
The term “board” means the State Board with respect to all candidates for State, legislative, and judicial offices and the county board of elections with respect to all candidates for county and municipal offices. The term means the State Board with respect to all statewide referenda and the county board of elections conducting all local referenda.
2. Definition for Board
Board. – Any State board, commission, council, committee, task force,
authority, or similar public body, however denominated, created by statute or
executive order, as determined and designated by the State Board, except for
those public bodies that have only advisory authority.
3. Definition for State
“State” means a state of the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the United States Virgin Islands, or any territory or insular possession subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.
4. Definition for Ballot
(Effective until January 1, 2018 or September 1, 2019 – see note) “Ballot” means an instrument on which a voter indicates that voter’s choice for a ballot item so that it may be recorded as a vote for or against a certain candidate or referendum proposal. The term “ballot” may include a paper ballot to be counted by hand, a paper ballot to be counted on an electronic
scanner, the face of a lever voting machine, the image on a direct record electronic unit, or a ballot used on any other voting system.
(Effective January 1, 2018 or September 1, 2019 – see note) “Ballot” means an instrument on which a voter indicates that voter’s choice for a ballot item so that it may be recorded as a vote for or against a certain candidate or referendum proposal, and is evidenced by an individual paper document that bears marks made by the voter by hand or through electronic
means, whether preprinted or printed in the voting enclosure.
5. Definition for Office
(4) Office. – The elected office for which the candidate has filed or petitioned.
(2006-155, s. 1; 2006-259, s. 48(a); 2017-6, s. 3.)
6. Definition for election
The term “election” means any general or special election, a first or second primary, a run-off election, or an election to fill a vacancy. The term “election” shall not include any local or statewide referendum.
7. Definition for Election
“Election” means the event in which voters cast votes in ballot items concerning proposals or candidates for office in this State or the United States. The term includes primaries, general elections, referenda, and special elections.
North Carolina Cases
Case Name: Sharpley v. State Bd. of Elections
Case Number: 209 S.E.2d 513, 23
Citation: 209 S.E.2d 513
Case PDF: Sharpley v. State Bd. of Elections
Case Summary: In appropriate circumstances, the North Carolina State Board of Elections has statutory authority to investigate election fraud or irregularities in elections, even in the absence of a protest filed by a taxpayer. The authority of the State Board of Elections to conduct an investigation and to order a new election of commissioners is not dependent upon timely filling of protest.