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			       Sept 28, 1984

				   An Act

To improve access for handicapped and elderly individuals HR1250 to

registration facilities and polling places for Federal elections. Be it

enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of

America in Congress assembled. Voting Accessibility for the Elderly and

Handicapped, Act. 42 USC 1973ee

Section 1. 

   This act may be cited as the "Voting Accessibility for the Elderly and

   Handicapped Act".


			       42 USC 1973ee.

Section 2.  

   It is the intention of Congress in enacting this Act to promote

   the fundamental right to vote by improving access for handicapped and

   elderly individuals to registration facilities and polling places for

   Federal elections.


				   42 USC

Section 3.  

   (a) Within each State, except as provided in subsection (b),

       each political subdivision responsible for conducting elections shall 

       assure that all polling places for Federal elections are accessible to 

       handicapped and elderly voters.

   (b) Subsection (a) shall not apply to a polling place-

          (1) in the case of an emergency, as determined by the chief

              election officer of the State; or

          (2) if the chief election officer of the State-

             (A) determines that all potential polling places have

                 been surveyed and no such accessible place is available, 

		 nor is the political subdivision able to make one 

		 temporarily accessible, in the area involved; and

             (B) assures that any handicapped or elderly voter assigned to 

                 an inaccessible polling place, upon advance request of 

                 such voter (pursuant to procedures established by the chief 

                 election officer of the State)-

               (i) will be assigned to an accessible polling place, or

               (ii) will be provided with an alternate means for casting a

                    ballot on the day of the election.



      (1) Not later than December 31 of each even- numbered year, the chief 

          election officer of each State shall report to the Federal Election 

          Commission, in a manner to be determined by the Commission, the 

          number of accessible and inaccessible polling places in such State 

          on the date of the preceding general Federal election, and the 

          reasons for any instance of inaccessibility.

      (2) Not later than April 30 of each odd-numbered year, the Federal 

          Election commission shall compile the information reported under 

          paragraph (1) and shall transmit that information to the Congress.

Effective date

      (3) The provisions of this subsection shall only be effective for a 

          period of 10 years beginning on the date of enactment of this Act.


			      42 USC 1973ee-2

Section 4  

   (a) Each State or political subdivision responsible for

       registration for Federal elections shall provide a reasonable number of

       accessible permanent registration facilities.

   (b) Subsection (a) does not apply to any State that has in effect

       a system that provides an opportunity for each potential voter to

       register by mail or at the residence of the voter.


			      42 USC 1973ee-3

Section 5

   (a) Each State shall make available registration and voting aids for

       Federal elections for handicapped and elderly individuals, including-

      (1) instructions, printed in large type, conspicuously displayed at 

          each permanent registration facility and each polling place and

      (2) information by telecommunications devices for the deaf.

Absentee ballot

   (b) No notarization or medical certification shall be required of a 

       handicapped voter with respect to an absentee ballot or an application 

       for such ballot, except that medical certification may be required 

       when the certification establishes eligibility, under State law-

     (1) to automatically receive an application or a ballot on a continuing 

         basis; or

     (2) to apply for an absentee ballot after the deadline has passed.

Public information  

   (c) The chief election officer of each State shall provide public notice, 

       calculated to reach elderly and handicapped voters, of the 

       availability of aids under this section, assistance under section 208 

       of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (42USC 1973aa-6), and the procedures 

       for voting by absentee ballot, not later than general public notice of 

       registration and voting is provided.


			      42 USC 1973ee-4

Section 6  

   (a) If a State or political subdivision does not comply with this

       Act, the United States Attorney General or person who is personally

       aggrieved by the noncompliance may bring an action for declaratory or

       injunctive relief in the appropriate district court.

   (b) An action may be brought under this section only if the

       plaintiff notifies the chief election officer of the State of the

       noncompliance and a period of 45 days has elapsed since the date

       of notification.

   (c) Notwithstanding any other provisions of law, no award of

       attorney fees may be made with respect to an action under this

       section, except, in any action brought to enforce the original

       judgement of the court.


			      42 USC 1973ee-5

Section 7. This Act shall not be construed to impair any right guaranteed by 

the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (42 USC 1973 et seq.).


			      42 USC 1973ee-6

Section 8. As used in this Act, the term-98 STAT 1680

   (1) "accessible" means accessible to handicapped and elderly individuals

       for the purpose of voting or registration, as determined under 

       guidelines established by the chief election officer of the State 


   (2) "elderly" means 64 years of age or older,

   (3) "Federal election" means a general, special, primary, or runoff

       election for the office of President or Vice President, or of Senator

       or Representative in, or Delegate or Resident Commissioner to,

       the Congress;

   (4) "handicapped" means having a temporary or permanent physical

       disability, and

   (5) "State" means a State of the United States, the District of

       Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, and any territory or

       possession of the United States.


			       42 USC 1973ee

Section 9. This Act shall apply with respect to elections taking place after  

December 31, 1985.

note         Approved September 28, 1984.



HOUSE REPORT. No. 98-852 (Comm. on House Administration).

SENATE REPORT No. 98-590 (Comm. on Rules and Administration).


   June 25, considered and passed House

   August 10, considered and passed Senate, amended.

   September 12, House concurred in Senate amendments.

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