DRAFT CSC, Title 13.  Elections
 
CHAPTER 4
Elections and Candidacy

1301.  General elections.
1302.  Postponement of election or change of election day.
1303.  Ineligibility.
1304.  Qualifications of members.
1305.  Candidacy; Disqualification of election officials.
1306.  Declaration of candidacy.
1307.  Declaration by sponsors.
1308.  Candidacy declined.
1309.  Filing and distribution of petition.
1310.  Use of Government facilities by candidates.
1311.  Election expenses.
1312.  Expenses for recall elections.

      1301.  General elections.
     A general election for Governor, Lieutenant Governor, members of the Chuuk State Legislature, and any other officers as may be prescribed by law, shall be held on the first Tuesday following the first Monday in March every two years, or in accordance with this Act Title.

Source:  CSL 3-95-26, 31.

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.

      1302.  Postponement of election or change of election day.

     (a) (1)  If for serious cause resulting from any natural disaster or similar emergency it becomes reasonably impossible to hold any election duly scheduled in the State of Chuuk as a whole or in any part, the Election Commission may postpone any such election therein for such time as it may deem necessary, but in no event shall such postponement exceed 60 days from the date when such election should have been held, provided, however, that the incumbent Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Senators and Representatives shall serve in their respective official capacities and in the duration of the postponement until those to be elected shall qualify.

     (b) (2)  If the FSM has a new general election day to be held earlier than presently held, Chuuk State shall hold its general elections on the new FSM general election day, provided, that the full terms of the incumbent Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Senators, and Representatives shall continue unaffected and any resultant transition period shall be served out fully by the same incumbents in the following manner;

     (1) (a)  On the day of the new general election for the FSM, the incumbent Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Senators and Representatives shall not stand for election; they shall continue in office to complete their terms.

     (2) (b)  Upon completion of the 2-year term of the incumbent Representatives, they shall continue to hold their offices in a transition period until the first anniversary date of the new general election of the FSM, at which time only members of the House shall stand for election.  In the meantime, the incumbent Governor and Lieutenant Governor and Senators shall continue in office to complete their 4-year term.

     (3) (c)  Upon completion of the 4-year term of the incumbent Governor, Lieutenant Governor and Senators, they shall continue to hold their offices in a transition period until the second anniversary date of the new general election of the FSM, at which time the Governor, Lt. Governor, Senators and Representatives shall all stand for election.

     (c) (3)  If the FSM has a new general election day to be held 61 days or more later than presently held, Chuuk State shall hold its general election on the new FSM general election day, provided, that the full terms of the incumbent Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Senators and Representatives shall continue unaffected and any resultant transition period shall be served out fully by the same incumbents in the  following manner:

     (1) (a)  Two years after taking office, the incumbent Representatives shall have completed their terms but they shall continue to hold their offices in a transition period until the new FSM general election day, at which time only members of the House shall stand for election.  In the meantime, the incumbent Governor, Lieutenant Governor, and Senators shall continue in office to complete their 4-year terms.

     (2) (b)  Four years after taking office, the incumbent Governor, Lieutenant Governor, and Senators shall have completed their terms but they shall continue to hold their offices in a transition period until the first anniversary date of the new general election of the FSM, at which time the Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Senators and Representatives shall all stand for election.

     (d) (4)  As used in this Section the word "anniversary" means "election every two years" as required by the two-year term of the House of Representative members as provided in the Constitution.

Source:  CSL 3-95-26, 32, modified.

      1303.  Ineligibility.
     No person shall sit in the Senate or House of Representatives who holds an office, position or appointment anywhere whether or not it is an independent office within the Chuuk State Government, National Government, or any other government.  A person holding any such office must first resign therefrom before filing for his candidacy for the Senate or House of Representatives.  This ineligibility to be a candidate for election shall not extend to the Governor, Lt. Governor or incumbents of the Senate and the House of Representatives.

Source:  CSL 3-95-26, 33, as amended by CSL 4-98-41, 1.

      1304.  Qualifications of members.

     (a) (1)  No person is eligible to serve as a Representative unless at least 25 years of age, or as a Senator unless at least 35 years of age, on the day of election; was a born Chuukese, has been a resident and registered voter of the Representative District or Senatorial Region from which elected for at least 5 years prior to the day of election, and is a citizen of the Federated State of Micronesia.  For the purpose of this Act Title, a person "was a born Chuukese" if:

     (1) (a)  born of parents one or both of whom are residents of Chuuk by birth and citizens of the FSM; or

     (2) (b)  born in Chuuk of parents both of whom were born outside of Chuuk but have resided in Chuuk for at least 25 years to the day, and are citizens of the FSM.

     (b) (2)  Upon the effective date of the Chuuk State Constitution, no person convicted of a felony following such effective date is eligible to stand for election or to serve as a member of the Legislature, even if pardoned.  A member of the Legislature who has been convicted of a felony shall automatically be expelled from the Legislature, but is eligible to run again if the conviction is reversed on appeal.

     (c) (3)  Each house is the sole and final judge of the election and qualifications of its members.

Source:  CSL 3-95-26, 34, modified.

      1305.  Candidacy; Disqualification of election officials.
     In the event the Commission or any members of a precinct board of election or person involved in the conduct of election files at any time as a candidate for office in any election, he shall be automatically disqualified to hold such office, which shall thereupon become vacant.  Should such disqualification adversely affect the quorum of the Election Commission during a pending election and the Senate is not in session, the remaining member(s) of the Commission, on their own notwithstanding provisions of this Act Title or any other law to the contrary, shall enable itself to be fully functional by appointing qualified persons to fill such vacancies who shall serve with full authority until after the pending election when such vacancies shall be filled in accordance with Section 1003 of this Act Title.

Source:  CSL 3-95-26, 35.

      1306.  Declaration of candidacy.
     A person desiring to announce his candidacy shall file with the Commission a declaration in writing setting forth his candidacy for a specific office, stating that he is eligible for such office; and his post office and address for all election purposes.

Source:  CSL 3-95-26, 36.

      1307.  Declaration by sponsors.
     A declaration of candidacy on behalf of a candidate may be filed by not less than 50 persons without the signature of said candidate.  Any such group taking such action shall file with the Commission a declaration of candidacy subscribed under oath by the leader or corresponding officer of such group of persons.  If a candidate who files his own declaration of candidacy for an elective office is also nominated by a group of persons for other elective offices, the one filed by the candidate himself shall govern unless the candidate concerned shall decide otherwise.  Only voters of the jurisdiction concerned may so filed a declaration of candidacy.

Source:  CSL 3-95-26, 37.

      1308.  Candidacy declined.
     Any candidate for whom a declaration of candidacy has been filed by sponsors may writing write to the Commission not less than 60 days before an election to decline such candidacy.

Source:  CSL 3-95-26, 38, modified.
 
      1309.  Filing and distribution of petition.
     Not less than 90 days before a general election, candidates or their sponsors shall file their declarations of candidacy with the Commission which shall disseminate to the public and may publish in a newspaper of general circulation the names of all candidates and the offices for which they have declared their candidacies.  There shall be deposited with the Commission for each candidacy upon filing for Governor and Lieutenant Governor a fee of $300 each and for the Legislature and any other state elective office a fee of $150 which shall be paid to the general fund of the State for the State for the sole purpose of funding the conduct of State elections.

Source:  CSL 3-95-26, 39.

      1310.  Use of Government facilities by candidates.
     No State government facility, office, building, ground, vessel, aircraft, boat, instrument, apparatus, or property of every any sort, whether non-consumable or otherwise, shall be used by any candidates, inclusive of an incumbent Governor, Lieutenant Governor, members of the Legislature, Mayor, advisor, and any other person regardless of government or private organization, unless payment for such use has been made in full directly to the State Treasurer by such candidate with proper documentation such as a receipt and the like prior to utilization and unless equal opportunity and entitlement is accorded all candidates.  Duration and number of use shall be based on the amount of prior payment actually made and availability of such State Government facility, property, and so forth and in compliance with law and regulation.  The State Government shall establish in writing and disseminate to the public a standard rate of rental, fee, or payment for such facility, property, and so forth.  All amounts collected shall be deposited in the State General Fund.

Source:  CSL 3-95-26, 40.
 
      1311.  Election expenses.
     All expenses authorized and necessarily incurred in the preparation or the conducting of elections as provided in this Act Title, shall be paid from appropriations by the Legislature, except for as provided for in Section 42 1312 below, and except for national or municipal elections who shall pay for their own elections carried out by the Chuuk State Election Commission.  All payments shall be made in the same manner as other public expenditures.

Source:  CSL 3-95-26, 41, modified.

      1312.  Expenses for recall elections.
     As directed by a majority vote of the Commission, the signature of the Executive Director or Chairman of the Election Commission validating a recall petition, shall trigger the automatic appropriation of the funds necessary to cover a recall election expenses which amount shall not exceed that actually spent for the most recent general election for Governor or Lieutenant Governor, or for the Legislature in the applicable Representative District or Senatorial Region, in the case of recall of a member of the Legislature.  These funds shall be allotted to the Election Commission for the conducting of such recall election.  All payments shall be made in the same manner as other public expenditures.

Source:  CSL 3-95-26, 42.