Following through on an earlier declaration, State Sen. Bryan King (R-Green Forest) filed four new voter reform measures this week.
King, who has been leading the legislative charge on a controversial voter ID bill, said in a February Talk Business Arkansas interview that he had more election-related legislation to introduce.
In the House State Agencies committee on Wednesday (March 6), King’s voter ID bill, SB 2, was approved and now heads to the full House for consideration. The bill had been in limbo in the committee pending an economic impact analysis. The fiscal impact was estimated at $300,000.
The four new bills that King has filed include:
SB 719 – The bill creates a voter integrity unit within the Secretary of State’s office. It would also allow for investigations of alleged election misconduct. Currently, the bill does not have details flushed out.
SB 720 – This bill would create a procedure for removing a member of a county board of election commissioners. It calls for a public complaint process to give due process to an effort to remove an election commissioner.
SB 721 – The measure would revise the make-up of the State Board of Election Commissioners, which is currently an independent group with bipartisan representatives. SB 721 would expand the board from 7 to 9 and would add a Lt. Governor appointee by taking one from the Governor’s purview. It would also specify that the Republican and Democratic political parties would appoint a county clerk and a county election commissioner.
SB 722 – The bill would transfer the State Board of Election Commissioners to the Secretary of State’s office.
King has said previously that he’s also working on measures to address absentee ballot fraud and a new system for the prosecution of election fraud by independent judges and prosecutors.
You can watch or listen to a previous interview with King on the subject at this link.