DRAFT CSC, Title 13.  Elections
 
CHAPTER 1
General Provisions

1001.  Title.
1002.  Definitions and rules.
1003.  Election Commission; Composition; Removal of members; Chairman; Quorum.
1004.  Executive Director; Appointment.
1005.  Compensation and other expenses.
1006.  Duties and responsibilities.
1007.  Election manual.
1008.  Powers of commission.
1009.  Complaints.
1010.  Disqualification.
1011.  Rules and regulations.
1012.  Application of this Title.
1013.  Severability clause.

      1001.  Title.
     This Act Title shall be known and may be cited as the Election Law of 1996.

Source:  CSL 3-95-26, 1, modified.

Cross-reference: The constitutional provisions on suffrage and elections are found in Article XII of the Chuuk State Constitution which reads as follows:

Article XII
SUFFRAGE AND ELECTIONS

Section 1.  A general election shall be held every 2 years on the first Tuesday following the first Monday in March. If the general election date for the Congress of the Federated States of Micronesia is changed from March, or reasons such as natural disaster preclude the holding of an election on the date set, the election shall be held as prescribed by statute.
Section 2.  A citizen of the Federated States of Micronesia who is a resident of the State of Chuuk and has attained the age of 18 may vote in the State. Voting shall be secret.
Section 3.  The Legislature shall prescribe by statute a minimum period of voter residency; disqualifications for conviction of crime, mental incompetence, or insanity; and for the protection of voting in the State of Chuuk. Except as so provided, no resident entitled to vote may be denied the privilege to vote or be interfered with in voting.
Section 4.  There shall be an independent Election Commission vested with powers, duties, and responsibilities, as prescribed by statute, for the administration of elections in the State of Chuuk, including voter registration and the conduct and certification of elections.

      1002.  Definitions and rules.
     Unless the provisions or the context otherwise require, these general provisions, rules of construction, and words have the following definitions and shall govern the construction of this Act Title.

     (g) (1)  A  "Candidate" is one who either seeks a nomination or is proposed for a nomination by sponsors in accordance with the provisions of this Act Chapter.

     (a) (2)  "Commission" means the Election Commission of Chuuk State.

     (b) (3)  "Elector" means any person who is entitled to register under this Act Title.

     (d) (4)  "General Election"  is an election held throughout the State of Chuuk on the first Tuesday following the first Monday in March every two years, or as prescribed by law.

     (e) (5)  "Local Election"  is a municipal election.

     (k) (6)  "Marking of Ballot."  A "mark" or "marking" as used in this Act Chapter with respect to indicating the voter. s choice on a ballot shall include the punching or slotting or otherwise marking of a ballot.

     (h) (7)  "Nominee" is a candidate who has become entitled under the provisions of this Act Chapter to a place on the ballot.

     (i) (8)  "Precinct" is where votes are cast under the supervision of a precinct board.  All precincts and precinct boards are directly under the supervision of the Election Commission.  A precinct is also referred to as a polling place.

     (f) (9) "Special Election" is an election, the specific time for the holding of which is not prescribed by law.

     (c) (10)  "Voter" means any elector who is registered under the provisions of this Act Chapter.

     (j) (11)  "Vote tabulating device".  A vote tabulating device is means a mechanical, electronic or electro-mechanical machine approved by the Commission to count ballots in an election in Chuuk State.

Source:  CSL 3-95-26, 2, modified.

      1003.  Election Commission; Composition; Removal of members; Chairman; Quorum.

     (a) (1)  There is within the government of Chuuk State the independent Election Commission.  The Commission shall consist of five (5) members, all of whom shall be eligible voters on the date of their appointment.  The Governor shall appoint the five (5) members, one from each of the Senatorial Regions, with the advice and consent of the Senate.  The members shall serve for a term of 4 years.  If a vacancy should occur on the Commission, said vacancy shall be filled for the remainder of the term only, and by the method originally prescribed for its appointment.  Every member of the Commission who is not an employee or not in the full-time service of the State Government, shall be paid a sum each day as provided by law for attendance at a meeting or performing his duties as a member of the Commission.  In the absence of law, the Commission may establish a temporary compensation.

     (b) (2)  Any member may be removed for misconduct in office by a resolution duly adopted by a vote of two-thirds of the members of the House of Representatives of the Chuuk State Legislature.

     (c) (3)  The Commission shall every 2 years elect one of its members as chairman.  The chairmanship shall rotate among the five Senatorial Regions.  The chairman shall preside at all meetings of the Commission. Other officers may be elected, as the Commission deems necessary.

     (d) (4)  A majority of the members of the Commission shall constitute a quorum.  The vote of a majority of the Commission shall be required to make any action of the Commission effective, except as provided herein.

     (e) (5)  Upon confirmation by the Senate of the quorum member of the Commission, the first confirmed member shall call the first meeting of the Commission to organize by electing a chairman.  Thereafter the Commission shall organize every two years by rotating the chairmanship.

Source:  CSL 3-95-26, 3, modified.

      1004.  Executive Director; Appointment.

     (a) (1)  The Commission shall appoint an executive director subject to advice and consent of majority vote of all members of the Senate; provided, that upon the effective date of this Act the first confirmed member of the Commission shall immediately assume the duties of the executive director as acting executive director, without compensation, until a new executive director is appointed and confirmed.  Said executive director shall on behalf of the Commission, administer and enforce the Election Law of Chuuk and shall perform and discharge those powers, duties, purposes, functions and jurisdiction hereunder or which hereafter by law may be vested in the Commission, as may be delegated through regulations, orders, or directives by the Commission.  He or she shall be responsible for the daily operation and management of the office of the Commission.

     (b) (2)  The executive director shall serve as the ex-officio secretary for the Commission, but shall not be a voting member thereof.  As the Commission secretary, he shall keep minutes of the Commission proceedings, preserve all reports made to it, keep an accurate record of all examinations made pursuant to this Act Title and perform such other duties as the Commission shall prescribe.

     (c) (3)  The executive director shall be a member of the unclassified public service.  The executive director shall serve at the pleasure of the Commission; he may be removed by a majority vote of all members of the Commission.

Source:  CSL 3-95-26, 4, modified.

      1005.  Compensation and other expenses.
     In the absence of law, compensation of all regular, temporary and/or part-time employees and all other expenses shall be as prescribed by the Commission, provided that all such costs shall not exceed any operation funds appropriated by the Legislature.  Any government employee who works part-time or on a temporary basis with the Commission shall not be entitled to compensation, except overtime pay, provided that every effort shall be made to have the work performed during the normal 8-hour period.

Source:  CSL 3-95-26, 5.

      1006.  Duties and responsibilities.
     The Commission shall have direct and immediate supervision over the municipal and state officials designated in accordance with this Act Title and laws of the State of Chuuk to perform duties relative to the conduct of elections.  The Commission shall suspend from the performance of said duties any of said officials who shall fail to comply with its instructions, orders, decisions or rulings or regulations, and appoint temporary substitutes or may remove any and all such officials who shall be found guilty of nonfeasance, or misfeasance in connection with the performance of their duties relative to the conduct of elections.  The Commission shall designate such subordinate officers and employees as may be necessary for the efficient performance of its functions and duties.

Source:  CSL 3-95-26, 6.

      1007.  Election manual.
     It shall be the duty and responsibility of the Commission to prepare and promulgate a manual of administrative procedures to be used in the conduct of elections.  The manual shall set forth the regulations to be followed by all election officials as well as descriptions of the necessary equipment and forms to be used in election procedures.  The content of the manual shall become effective upon the approval by the majority of members of the Commission.  It shall be the responsibility of the Commission to provide all necessary  forms for the conduct of elections.

Source:  CSL 3-95-26, 7.

      1008.  Powers of Commission.
     The Commission shall have the power to conduct all elections in the State of Chuuk, including national and municipal elections, if so provided by law or municipal constitutions.  The Commission shall also have the power to issue summons to any elector or the parties to a controversy pending before it, issue subpoenas duces tecum, to take testimony in any investigation or hearing pending before it and delegate such power to any officer.  Any controversy submitted to the Commission shall be tried, heard and decided within 15 days counting from the time the corresponding petition giving rise to said controversy is filed.  The Commission shall have the power to certify to the Supreme Court of Chuuk for any contempt.

Source:  CSL 3-95-26, 8.

      1009.  Complaints.
     Any person who believes a violation of any provision of this Act Title has occurred may file a complaint with the Commission.  The Commission shall expeditiously investigate the matter in accordance with law.  Whenever in the judgment of the majority of the Commission members, any person has engaged in any acts or practices which constitute a violation of this Act Title, the Commission shall refer the record of said investigation to the Independent Prosecutor or the Attorney General of Chuuk State who shall institute a criminal prosecution against the said person, and, in the event the person is convicted of the violation prior to the election in question, the Commission shall strike his name from the ballot.  In the event the person is convicted of the violation subsequent to the election in question and was elected to the office for which he was a candidate, such candidate shall be disqualified from holding such office and the Independent Prosecutor and/ or Attorney General shall take whatever legal action is necessary to effect his disqualification from office.

Source:  CSL 3-95-26, 55.

      1010.  Disqualification.
     Any candidate convicted under the provisions of this Act Title is disqualified from holding the office for which he was a candidate or nominee at the time of the violation.

Source:  CSL 3-95-26, 54.

      1011.  Rules and regulations.
     The Chuuk State Election Commission has the power to promulgate in writing the necessary rules and regulations including administrative procedures, to effectuate the purpose of this Act Title.

Source:  CSL 3-95-26, 149.

      1012.  Application of thisAct Title.
     All the provisions of this Act Title apply to all elections in the State of Chuuk, including municipal or national elections whenever applicable unless otherwise specifically provided.

Source:  CSL 3-95-26, 148.

      1013.  Severability clause.
     If any provision of this Act Title, or the application thereof, is held invalid, such holding shall not affect other provisions or the application of this Act Title which can be given effect without the invalid provision or application, and to this end the provisions of this Act Title are severable.

Source:  CSL 3-95-26, 151.