Texas legislators in the special session repealed a new law meant to prevent mail-in ballot fraud at nursing homes while expanding residents’ voting opportunities, acting to kill the measure ahead of its Sept. 1 effective date to avoid unintended consequences. But as it turns out, the law will live through the November general election, despite concerns from elections administrators over its cost and the logistics of implementing the requirements. That’s because the law takes effect on Sept. 1, but the repeal isn’t effective until Dec. 1. “We’re scrambling,” said Bexar County Elections Administrator Jacquelyn Callanen.
The secretary of state’s office sent an email to election officials on Tuesday letting them know that the nursing-home law will be in effect for the Nov. 7 election — which features state constitutional amendments and some local offices — “and any other election which takes place between Sept. 1, 2017 and Nov. 30, 2017.”
In Bexar County, there might be a tax rollback election for a school district during that time period, Callanen said.
The original law signed by Gov. Greg Abbott requires county election officials to send poll workers to nursing homes if they receive more than five applications from the facilities. The poll workers must accommodate not only the people who sent in the applications, but other residents who want to vote.