Re: Bill language sent to Leg Counsel

From: Arthur Keller <voting_at_kellers_dot_org>
Date: Fri Jan 26 2007 - 12:44:25 CST

1. COTS usually means COMMERCIAL off-the-shelf, not COMMON.

2. The need to recertifiy voting systems on or before January 1, 2012
is not in the body of the legislation.

Other than that, great bill.

Best regards,

At 10:32 AM -0800 1/26/07, Alan Dechert wrote:
>Here's what I put into Leg Counsel for our CA state bill (we expect Assembly
>Member Kerkorian to carry this). We should have a bill number in a couple
>of weeks.
>I took out the forced disclosure of existing system. In other words, we
>allow existing ones to be grandfathered for a period of time. I added some
>language about disclosure of other elections information (see g 1-5). This
>should be easier to pass; the case for holding in Appropriations is pretty
>much eliminated.
>We can amend before the first hearing, which probably won't be until April.
>Rework of Goldberg's AB 2097
>An act to add Section 19213.5 to the Elections Code, relating to
>voting systems.
> Existing law prohibits the Secretary of State from approving any
>voting system or part of a voting system, unless it fulfills
>specified state law requirements and regulations. Existing law also
>requires the Secretary of State to study and adopt regulations
>governing the use of voting machines, voting devices, vote tabulating
>devices, and any software used for each.
> This bill would prohibit the Secretary of State, as of June 30,
>2008, from approving a voting system for use in an election until its
>operation and specifications are publicly disclosed.
> The bill would also require a vendor applying for voting system
>certification, as of June 30, 2008, to comply with specified
>conditions and also require the Secretary of State to place specified
>information on his or her Web site by that date. It would require
>the secretary, no later than June 30, 2008, to establish a public
>review process that allows any member of the public to review voting
>system software based on the information required to be disclosed
>pursuant to these provisions.
> Voting systems already certified by the State of California would need
>to be recertified on or before January 1, 2012.
> Vote: majority. Appropriation: no. Fiscal committee: yes.
>State-mandated local program: no.
> SECTION 1. The Legislature finds and declares all of the
> (a) Current state law requires that the vote counting process be
>publicly observable. However, with the advent of computerized vote
>counting processes, the ability of the public to meaningfully observe
>tabulation is limited because details of these systems are secret.
>Public scrutiny is lacking. The people of California declare that
>every voter has the right to know how their votes are counted. All details
>of election administration must be made freely available to the public in a
>regular and systematic way.
> (b) Vendors shall be required to disclose all technical details
>when applying for state certification for a voting system. The
>Secretary of State shall manage a process whereby citizens can obtain
>technical information free of charge, including computer source
>code, relevant to voting systems under review for certification as
>well as systems that have obtained state certification.
> SEC. 2. Section 19213.5 is added to the Elections Code, to read:
> 19213.5. (a) By June 30, 2008, the Secretary of State shall not
>approve a voting system for use in any election until all details of
>its operating system and specifications are publicly disclosed.
>A voting system certified prior to June 30, 2008, shall comply with
>the disclosure requirements of this section.
> (b) By June 30, 2008, an application for voting system
>certification in this state shall be subject to both of the
> (1) The voter's right to inspect and test the voting system, to
>retain test materials, test results, and to freely publish the same
> (2) A promise to refrain from exerting any copyright, trade
>secret, or other rights that it may have to hinder any voter of the
>state from exercising the rights under paragraph (1) of this
> (c) The Secretary of State shall require reasonable notice of
>public testing and that the tests be performed in a manner that does
>not burden the vendor with significant costs beyond those of making
>the voting system available.
> (d) The materials to be made freely available to the voting public
>include all of the following:
> (1) All voting system specific source code.
> (2) Detailed instructions for building the software, including
>compiler used, compilation scripts, and checksums.
> (3) Voting specific hardware, complete specifications, drawings
>and schematics.
> (4) General purpose COTS components described in detail, including
>versions and dates of manufacture.
> (e) By June 30, 2008, the Secretary of State shall establish and
>maintain a Web page on the Internet to provide all of the following:
> (1) Free download of materials pertaining to each voting system
>certified or under consideration for certification.
> (2) A system for acquiring and processing input from the voting
> (3) A reporting system to inform the public on findings, problems
>reported, problem resolution, and comments from the Secretary of
>State, the public, and vendors.
> (4) Standards used by the Secretary of State for evaluating voting
>systems, including test plans and specific test cases employed.
> (f) The Secretary of State, no later than June 30, 2008, shall
>establish a public review process that allows any member of the
>public to review voting system software based on the information
>required to be disclosed pursuant to this section.
> (g) Citizens of California shall have access to other elections
> (1) All information necessary to validate elections must be produced
>by the voting system and its accompanying elections procedures;
> (2) When information to validate the election is requested, it must be
>provided before recount and contest periods have expired;
> (3) The information must be provided in a usable and cost-effective
> (4) There will be no restrictions imposed by proprietary claims, nor
>shall access to information be exclusively placed outside of governmental
> (5) Validating information must include proof that hardware and
>software certified for use is the same claimed to have been used.
>(h) For purposes of this section, the following terms
>have the following meanings:
> (1) "COTS" means a common off-the-shelf component that is
>manufactured in large quantities and is widely available.
> (2) "General purpose COTS devices" means a COTS component intended
>for use in a variety of nonvoting systems.
> (3) "Voting specific" means a hardware or software component
>manufactured specifically for use in a voting system.
> (4) "Vendor" means any person, partnership, corporation, or other
>entity that offers a voting system, whether for money or not, to the
>state, to any county, or city of the state, or to any governmental
> (5) "Voting system" means any computerized machinery used in a
>public election to present one or more contests to voters, to obtain
>voter choices, to verify voter choices, to store voter choices, to
>communicate voter choices, to tabulate voter choices, or to present
>partial or full results of one or more contests.
> (6) "Source code" means computer instructions written by
> (8) "Open source" means publicly disclosed source code licensed
>under a free software license.
>OVC-discuss mailing list

Arthur M. Keller, Ph.D., 3881 Corina Way, Palo Alto, CA  94303-4507
tel +1(650)424-0202, fax +1(650)424-0424
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Received on Tue Jan 1 14:12:48 2008

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