Code Section Group

Elections Code - ELEC


  ( Heading of Division 15 amended by Stats. 1998, Ch. 1073, Sec. 21. )

CHAPTER 3. Semifinal Official Canvass [15150 - 15290]

  ( Chapter 3 repealed and added by Stats. 1998, Ch. 1073, Sec. 27. )

ARTICLE 1. General Provisions [15150 - 15154]
  ( Article 1 added by Stats. 1998, Ch. 1073, Sec. 27. )


For every election, the elections official shall conduct a semifinal official canvass by tabulating vote by mail and precinct ballots and compiling the results. The semifinal official canvass shall commence immediately upon the close of the polls and shall continue without adjournment until all precincts are accounted for.

(Amended by Stats. 2007, Ch. 508, Sec. 97. Effective January 1, 2008.)


(a) The elections official shall transmit the semifinal official results to the Secretary of State in the manner and according to the schedule prescribed by the Secretary of State prior to each election, for the following:

(1) All candidates voted for statewide office.

(2) All candidates voted for the following offices:

(A) State Assembly.

(B) State Senate.

(C) Member of the United States House of Representatives.

(D) Member of the State Board of Equalization.

(E) Justice of the Court of Appeals.

(3) All persons voted for at the presidential primary or for electors of President and Vice President of the United States.

(4) Statewide ballot measures.

(b) The elections official shall transmit the results to the Secretary of State at intervals no greater than two hours, following commencement of the semifinal official canvass.

(Amended by Stats. 2005, Ch. 72, Sec. 4. Effective July 19, 2005.)


Neither the elections official, any member of a precinct board, nor any other person shall count any votes, either for a ballot proposition or candidate, until the close of the polls in that county. After that time, the ballots for all candidates and ballot propositions voted upon solely within the county shall be counted and the results of the balloting made public. However, the results for any candidate or ballot proposition also voted upon in another county or counties shall not be made public until after all the polls in that county and the other county or counties have closed. This paragraph applies regardless of whether the counting is done by manual tabulation or by a vote tabulating device.

(Repealed and added by Stats. 1998, Ch. 1073, Sec. 27. Effective January 1, 1999.)


During the semifinal official canvass, write-in votes shall be counted in accordance with Article 3 (commencing with Section 15340) of Chapter 4.

(Repealed and added by Stats. 1998, Ch. 1073, Sec. 27. Effective January 1, 1999.)


(a) Any ballot that is not marked as provided by law shall be rejected. The rejected ballots shall be placed in the package marked for voted ballots or in a separate container as directed by the elections official. All rejected ballots shall have written on the ballot the cause for rejection and be signed by a majority of processing board members who are assigned by the elections official to process ballots.

(b) The following ballot conditions shall not render a ballot invalid:

(1) Soiled or defaced.

(2) Two or more impressions of the voting stamp or mark in one voting square.

(3) Contains personal information, as defined in Section 14287.

(c) If a voter indicates, either by a combination of both marking and writing in, a choice of more names than there are candidates to be elected or nominated for any office, or if for any reason the choice of the voter is impossible to determine, the vote for that office shall not be counted, but the remainder of the ballot, if properly marked, shall be counted.

(d) This section applies to all ballots counted pursuant to this chapter and Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 15300).

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 739, Sec. 3. (SB 183) Effective January 1, 2012.)

ELECElections Code - ELEC1