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Election Advisory No. 2021-17

To:

All Cities, School Districts, and Other Political Subdivisions

From: Keith Ingram, Director of Elections
Keith Ingram's signature
Date: November 2, 2021

RE:

Canvass and Recount Deadlines for the November 2, 2021 Elections of Cities, School Districts and Other Political Subdivisions

This advisory is designed to be read together with the recount outline on our website. The recount forms can be downloaded from our website; alternatively, you may contact our office and request that the outline and forms be sent directly to you.

All statutory references in this advisory are to the Texas Election Code (“the Code”), unless otherwise indicated.

Canvass Dates

The final canvass is the local canvass for cities, schools, and other local political subdivisions. (Tex. Elec. Code § 67.005). The local canvass for the November 2, 2021 Uniform Election must be held not earlier than the third day after election day (Friday, November 5, 2021) and not later than the eleventh day after election day (Monday, November 15, 2021). Since the last day falls on Saturday, November 13, 2021, the deadline is extended to Monday, November 15, 2021. (Tex. Elec. Code §§ 1.006, 67.003).

The canvass cannot occur until the early voting ballot board has verified and counted all provisional ballots, if a provisional ballot has been cast in the election; or the date on which all timely received late-arriving ballots, including next business day, military and overseas ballots, are counted. See summary of late-arriving ballots below. (Tex. Elec. Code § 67.003).

Recount Deadlines

Below are the deadlines for filing a recount for local elections of cities, school districts and other political subdivisions for elections occurring on November 2, 2021. Please note that there are two sets of recount filing deadlines. Which set of deadlines applies to you is based on the method of election (i.e., majority or plurality).

The deadline for filing a recount depends on the date the election is canvassed. You cannot canvass your election until the early voting ballot board has convened and counted all provisional and various late-arriving ballots. (Tex. Elec. Code §§ 67.003, 86.007, 101.057).

All ballots received by 7:00 p.m. on election day must be counted on election day. However, you may count a late domestic ballot from a non-military voter or a military voter using an ABBM (not an FPCA) that arrives no later than 5:00 p.m. on the day after election day (November 3, 2021) if it bears a cancellation mark of the postal service or a receipt mark of a common or contract carrier or a courier not later than 7:00 p.m. on November 2, 2021. The last day to receive a ballot from an overseas non-military voter using an FPCA is five days after the election, which is Monday, November 8, 2021 (as the fifth day falls on a Sunday). The last day to receive a ballot from a military voter using an FPCA is the sixth day after the election, which is Monday, November 8, 2021. The last day for the early voting ballot board to convene and count provisional and overseas ballots is the ninth day after the election, which is extended to Friday, November 12, 2021 since Thursday, November 11, 2021 is Veterans Day. (Tex. Elec. Code §§ 1.006, 65.051, 86.007(a)(2), 86.007(d)(3), 87.125, 101.057).

Deadlines for Regular Recount Requests

If your entity elects:

THEN the deadline to file for a recount is 5:00 p.m. of the 2nd day after the canvass of the election. (Tex. Elec. Code §§ 212.028, 212.081).

NOTE: Section 212.028 was amended by House Bill 3107 (2021) to provide one date for the regular recount filing deadline.

Please note that candidates are elected by plurality vote unless the law specifically provides otherwise (e.g., statute, home-rule charter, court order). (Tex. Elec. Code § 2.001).

If these criteria apply to your entity, then for the November 2, 2021 election, the following dates apply:

Local Canvass Date

Recount Request Deadline (Regular):

Friday, November 5, 2021

5:00 p.m., Monday, November 8, 2021 (Sec. 1.006)

Saturday, November 6, 2021

5:00 p.m., Monday, November 8, 2021

Sunday, November 7, 2021

5:00 p.m., Tuesday, November 9, 2021

Monday, November 8, 2021

5:00 p.m., Wednesday, November 10, 2021

Tuesday, November 9, 2021

5:00 p.m., Friday, November 12, 2021 (Sec. 1.006)

Wednesday, November 10, 2021

5:00 p.m., Friday, November 12, 2021

Thursday, November 11, 2021

5:00 p.m., Monday, November 15, 2021 (Sec. 1.006)

Friday, November 12, 2021

5:00 p.m., Monday, November 15, 2021 (Sec. 1.006)

Saturday, November 13, 2021

5:00 p.m., Monday, November 15, 2021

Sunday, November 14, 2021

5:00 p.m., Tuesday, November 16, 2021

Monday, November 15, 2021

5:00 p.m., Wednesday, November 17, 2021

Deadlines for Expedited Recount Requests

If your entity elects:

THEN the deadline to file for a recount is 2:00 p.m. of the first day after the date of the canvass of the election, unless this deadline falls on a Saturday, Sunday, or legal state holiday, in which case the deadline is extended to 10:00 a.m. of the next business day. (Tex. Elec. Code §§ 212.081, 212.083, 212.088).

NOTE: Section 212.083 was amended by House Bill 3107 (2021) to provide one date for the expedited recount filing deadline.

If these criteria apply to your entity, then for the November 2, 2021 election, the following dates apply:

Local Canvass Date

Recount Request Deadline (Expedited):

Friday, November 5, 2021

10:00 a.m., Monday, November 8, 2021 (Sec. 212.088)

Saturday, November 6, 2021

10:00 a.m., Monday, November 8, 2021 (Sec. 212.088)

Sunday, November 7, 2021

2:00 p.m., Monday, November 8, 2021

Monday, November 8, 2021

2:00 p.m., Tuesday, November 9, 2021

Tuesday, November 9, 2021

2:00 p.m., Wednesday, November 10, 2021

Wednesday, November 10, 2021

10:00 a.m., Friday, November 12, 2021 (Sec. 212.088)

Thursday, November 11, 2021

2:00 p.m., Friday, November 12, 2021

Friday, November 12, 2021

10:00 a.m., Monday, November 15, 2021 (Sec. 212.088)

Saturday, November 13, 2021

10:00 a.m., Monday, November 15, 2021 (Sec. 212.088)

Sunday, November 14, 2021

2:00 p.m., Monday, November 15, 2021

Monday, November 15, 2021

2:00 p.m., Tuesday, November 16, 2021

Note About Joint Canvassing Authorities

Section 271.011 of the Code authorizes a joint canvassing authority. If your joint election agreement designated a joint canvassing authority, please be advised that Section 212.026(b) of the Code requires the recount petition to be filed with the presiding officer of your regular canvassing authority.

Reminder on Tie Votes and Automatic Recounts

Please note that even though recounts can be requested by candidates based on unofficial returns, the automatic recount based on a tie pursuant to Section 2.002 (plurality vote) should be based on the official canvassed returns.

In a race requiring a majority vote, the candidates in a runoff are the “top two” candidates (based on the official canvassed returns); either the two with the highest and second-highest number of votes, or the two who tie for the highest number of votes. The Code provides that an automatic recount will be conducted in other (rare) circumstances (for example, a three-way tie for highest vote, or a tie for the second-highest vote). (Tex. Elec. Code § 2.023).

NOTE: Certain procedures for responding to a tie vote under Sections 2.002 and 2.028 were amended by House Bill 3107.  For more details, please see House Bill 3107, our Recount Outline, and Advisory 2021-16 Post-Election Procedures.

If you need additional assistance, you may contact the Elections Division toll-free at 1-800-252-VOTE(8683).

CC: County Clerks/Elections Administrators

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