ELECTION CODE


TITLE 4. TIME AND PLACE OF ELECTIONS


CHAPTER 41. ELECTION DATES AND HOURS FOR VOTING


SUBCHAPTER A. ELECTION DATES


Sec. 41.001. UNIFORM ELECTION DATES. (a) Except as otherwise provided by this subchapter, each general or special election in this state shall be held on one of the following dates:

(1) the second Saturday in May in an odd-numbered year;

(2) the second Saturday in May in an even-numbered year, for an election held by a political subdivision other than a county; or

(3) the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November.

(b) Subsection (a) does not apply to:

(1) a runoff election;

(2) an election to resolve a tie vote;

(3) an election held under an order of a court or other tribunal;

(4) an emergency election ordered under Section 41.0011;

(5) an expedited election to fill a vacancy in the legislature held under Section 203.013;

(6) an election held under a statute that expressly provides that the requirement of Subsection (a) does not apply to the election; or

(7) the initial election of the members of the governing body of a newly incorporated city.

(c) Except for an election under Subsection (a) or Section 41.0011, an election may not be held within 30 days before or after the date of the general election for state and county officers, general primary election, or runoff primary election.

(d) Notwithstanding Section 31.093, a county elections administrator is not required to enter into a contract to furnish election services for an election held on the date described by Subsection (a)(2).

(e) Repealed by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 471, Sec. 9, eff. October 1, 2005.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986. Amended by Acts 1986, 69th Leg., 3rd C.S., ch. 14, Sec. 7, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1987, 70th Leg., 2nd C.S, ch. 60, Sec. 1, eff. Oct. 20, 1987; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 389, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 467, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1993; Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 1219, Sec. 3, eff. June 20, 1997; Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 1349, Sec. 20, eff. Sept. 1, 1997; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 62, Sec. 19.01(15), eff. Sept. 1, 1999; Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 340, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 2001; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1315, Sec. 14, eff. Jan. 1, 2004; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., 3rd C.S., ch. 1, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 2005.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 471 (H.B. 57), Sec. 1, eff. October 1, 2005.

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 471 (H.B. 57), Sec. 2, eff. October 1, 2005.

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 471 (H.B. 57), Sec. 9, eff. October 1, 2005.

Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 519 (H.B. 2144), Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2011.

Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1318 (S.B. 100), Sec. 4, eff. September 1, 2011.

Sec. 41.0011. EMERGENCY REQUIRING EARLY ELECTION. (a) If the governor determines that an emergency warrants holding a special election before the appropriate uniform election date, the election may be held on an earlier nonuniform date.

(b) An authority of a political subdivision desiring to order a special election as an emergency election under this section must ask the governor for permission to do so. If the governor determines that an emergency exists, the governor shall grant permission.

(c) The proclamation or order for an emergency election under this section must include a statement identifying the nature of the emergency.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 389, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.

Sec. 41.002. GENERAL ELECTION FOR STATE AND COUNTY OFFICERS. The general election for state and county officers shall be held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November in even-numbered years.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986.

Sec. 41.004. SPECIAL ELECTION WITHIN PARTICULAR PERIOD. (a) If a law outside this code other than the constitution requires a special election subject to Section 41.001(a) to be held within a particular period after the occurrence of a certain event, the election shall be held on an authorized uniform election date occurring within the period unless no uniform election date within the period affords enough time to hold the election in the manner required by law. In that case, the election shall be held on the first authorized uniform election date occurring after the expiration of the period.

(b) If the constitution requires a special election to be held within a particular period after the occurrence of a certain event, Section 41.001(a) does not apply.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986.

Sec. 41.0041. ELECTION ON MEASURE AFTER PARTICULAR PERIOD. (a) If a law outside this code other than the constitution prohibits another election from being held on the same or a similar measure for a specified number of years after an election on a measure, a subsequent election on the measure may be held on the corresponding uniform election date in the appropriate year, regardless of the fact that the date falls a number of days short of the requisite period.

(b) Repealed by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1235, Sec. 26(4), eff. September 1, 2009.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 389, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1235 (S.B. 1970), Sec. 26(4), eff. September 1, 2009.

Sec. 41.005. GENERAL ELECTION OF POLITICAL SUBDIVISION OTHER THAN COUNTY. (a) This section does not apply to a general election for county officers.

(b) If a law outside this code requires the general election for officers of a political subdivision to be held on a date other than a uniform election date, the governing body of the political subdivision shall set the election date to comply with this subchapter.

(c) A governing body changing an election date under this section shall adjust the terms of office to conform to the new election date.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 389, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.

Sec. 41.0052. CHANGING GENERAL ELECTION DATE. (a) The governing body of a political subdivision, other than a county, that holds its general election for officers on a date other than the November uniform election date may, not later than December 31, 2012, change the date on which it holds its general election for officers to the November uniform election date.

(b) A governing body changing an election date under this section shall adjust the terms of office to conform to the new election date.

(c) A home-rule city may implement the change authorized by Subsection (a) or provide for the election of all members of the governing body at the same election through the adoption of a resolution. The change contained in the resolution supersedes a city charter provision that requires a different general election date or that requires the terms of members of the governing body to be staggered.

(d) The holdover of a member of a governing body of a city in accordance with Section 17, Article XVI, Texas Constitution, so that a term of office may be conformed to a new election date chosen under this section does not constitute a vacancy for purposes of Section 11(b), Article XI, Texas Constitution.

(e) The governing body of a newly incorporated city may, not later than the second anniversary of the date of incorporation, change the date on which it holds its general election for officers to another authorized uniform election date.

Added by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 728, Sec. 11, eff. Sept. 1, 1993. Amended by Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 1219, Sec. 4, eff. June 20, 1997; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1068, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1999; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1074, Sec. 1, eff. June 20, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1315, Sec. 15, eff. Jan. 1, 2004.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 471 (H.B. 57), Sec. 3, eff. October 1, 2005.

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 27 (H.B. 401), Sec. 1, eff. May 13, 2009.

Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 505 (H.B. 1545), Sec. 1, eff. June 17, 2011.

Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 519 (H.B. 2144), Sec. 2, eff. September 1, 2011.

Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1318 (S.B. 100), Sec. 5, eff. September 1, 2011.

Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 161 (S.B. 1093), Sec. 22.001(15), eff. September 1, 2013.

Sec. 41.006. ADJUSTING ELECTION SCHEDULE. If under this subchapter an election is held on a date other than a date prescribed by other law, the date for a runoff election, the deadline for filing for candidacy, and the schedule for canvassing election returns, declaring results, or performing any other official act relating to the election shall be adjusted to allow the same interval of time in relation to the date of the election as would be provided by application of the other law.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986.

Sec. 41.007. PRIMARY ELECTIONS. (a) The general primary election date is the first Tuesday in March in each even-numbered year.

(b) The runoff primary election date is the fourth Tuesday in May following the general primary election.

(c) The presidential primary election date is the first Tuesday in March in each presidential election year.

(d) No other election may be held on the date of a primary election.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986. Amended by Acts 1986, 69th Leg., 3rd C.S., ch. 14, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 292, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1315, Sec. 16, eff. Jan. 1, 2004; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., 3rd C.S., ch. 1, Sec. 2, eff. Jan. 11, 2004.

Amended by:

Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1318 (S.B. 100), Sec. 6, eff. September 1, 2011.

Sec. 41.008. EFFECT OF HOLDING ELECTION ON IMPROPER DATE. An election held on a date not permitted by this subchapter is void.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986.

SUBCHAPTER B. HOURS FOR VOTING


Sec. 41.031. VOTING HOURS. (a) Except as provided by Section 41.033, the polls shall be opened at 7 a.m. for voting and shall be closed at 7 p.m.

(b) Voting may not be conducted after the time for closing the polls except as provided by Section 41.032.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986. Amended by Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 1070, Sec. 48, eff. Sept. 1, 1997.

Sec. 41.032. VOTING AFTER POLLS CLOSE. (a) A voter who has not voted before the time for closing the polls is entitled to vote after that time if the voter is inside or waiting to enter the polling place at 7 p.m.

(b) If voters are waiting to enter the polling place at closing time, the presiding judge shall direct them to enter the polling place and shall close it to others. However, if that procedure is impracticable, at closing time the presiding judge shall distribute numbered identification cards to the waiting voters and permit entry into the polling place for voting after closing time only by those possessing a card.

(c) The presiding judge shall take the precautions necessary to prevent voting after closing time by persons who are not entitled to do so.

Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 211, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1986.

Sec. 41.033. EARLY CLOSING OF CERTAIN POLLS. Notwithstanding Section 41.031(a), an entity created under Section 52, Article III, or Section 59, Article XVI, Texas Constitution, may close the polls before 7 p.m. in an election held by the entity if:

(1) the entity has fewer than 50 qualified voters; and

(2) the number of ballots cast in the election equals the number of qualified voters.

Added by Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 1070, Sec. 49, eff. Sept. 1, 1997.