AR Senate Bill 860

Law

State: Arkansas
Signed: April 08, 2015

Effective: July 22, 2015
Chapter: Act No. 1219

Summary

Senate Bill 860 creates a misdemeanor penalty for failure of a Notary to witness the signing of a canvasser's affidavit and to identify the signer.

Affects

Amends Arkansas Code Section 7-9-103.

Changes
  1. Makes it a Class A misdemeanor for a Notary to fail to witness the signing of a canvasser's affidavit in person and to fail to either personally know the signer or be presented with proof of identity of the signer.
Analysis

To place an initiative to propose an act or amendment to the statutes on the ballot in Arkansas, the sponsoring group must follow certain procedures. A petition is created and must be signed by qualified electors. A person who collects signatures or circulates the petition or initiative is called a canvasser. A canvasser must be a U.S. citizen, be 18 years of age or older, and be approved to collect signatures by the campaign he or she represents. Senate Bill 860 adds a criminal penalty to the statute related to canvasser affidavits. The initiative will require the canvasser to sign and swear to certain facts. This signature must be notarized. A Notary who fails to witness the signing of a canvasser's affidavit in person and fails to either personally know the signer or be presented with proof of identity of the signer will now be guilty of a Class A misdemeanor. It should be noted that in enacting SB 860, the General Assembly removed the word "knowingly" from the statute, making any failure -- intentional or unintentional -- subject to the Class A misdemeanor.

Read the bill text.

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