!Creation Date: 09/16/22> <!Author: Arizona Legislative Council> <!Typist: dbupdate>
16-551. Early election board; violation; classification
A. The board of supervisors or the governing body of the political subdivision shall appoint one or more early election boards to serve at places to be designated by the board of supervisors or the governing body to canvass and tally early election ballots. Members of early election boards shall be selected in accordance with the provisions for selecting members of regular election boards as provided in section 16-531.
B. If an electronic voting system is in use for early voting, the early election board shall consist of at least one inspector and two judges who shall perform the processing requirements in accordance with the rules issued by the secretary of state. The inspector and judges shall be appointed in the same manner by party as provided in section 16-531.
C. All early ballots received by the county recorder or other officer in charge of elections before 7:00 p.m. on election day and the original affidavit of the voter shall be delivered to the early election boards for processing as provided in the rules of the secretary of state. The office of the county recorder or other officer in charge of elections shall remain open until 7:00 p.m. on election day for the purpose of receiving early ballots. Partial or complete tallies of the early election board shall not be released or divulged before all precincts have reported or one hour after the closing of the polls on election day, whichever occurs first. Any person who unlawfully releases information regarding vote tallies or who possesses a tally sheet or summary without authorization from the recorder or officer in charge of elections is guilty of a class 6 felony.
D. If practicable, the county recorder or other officer in charge of elections shall count the number of early ballots that are returned at voting locations on election day and shall post on its website those totals with the last unofficial results that are released on election night pursuant to section 16-622. Beginning with the day following the election, the county recorder or other officer in charge of elections shall enter into the county's ballot tracking system, if established, early ballots that were returned at the voting location on election day.
E. The necessary printed blanks for poll lists, tally lists, lists of voters, ballots, oaths and returns, together with envelopes in which to enclose the returns, shall be furnished by the board of supervisors or the governing body of the political subdivision to the early election board for each election precinct at the expense of the county or the political subdivision.