Section 99.096, Florida Statutes 2003
99.096 Minor party candidates; names on ballot.--
(1) The executive committee of a minor political party shall, no later than noon of the third day prior to the first day of the qualifying period prescribed for federal candidates and no later than noon of the third day prior to the first day of the qualifying period for state candidates, submit to the Department of State the official list of the respective candidates nominated by that party to be on the ballot in the general election. The Department of State shall notify the appropriate supervisors of elections of the name of each minor party candidate eligible to qualify before such supervisor. The official list of nominated candidates may not be changed by the party after having been filed with the Department of State, except that candidates who have qualified may withdraw from the ballot pursuant to the provisions of this code, and vacancies in nominations may be filled pursuant to s. 100.111.
(2) Each person seeking to qualify for election as a candidate of a minor party shall file his or her qualification papers with, and pay the qualifying fee and, if one has been levied, the party assessment, or qualify by the alternative method prescribed in subsection (3), with the officer and at the times and under the circumstances provided in s. 99.061.
(3)(a) A minor party candidate may, in lieu of paying the qualifying fee and party assessment, qualify for office by the alternative method prescribed in this subsection. A candidate using this petitioning process shall file an oath with the officer before whom the candidate would qualify for the office stating that he or she intends to qualify by this alternative method. If the person is running for an office that requires a group or district designation, the candidate must indicate the designation in his or her oath. The oath must be filed at any time after the first Tuesday after the first Monday in January of the year in which the election is held, but before the 21st day preceding the first day of the qualifying period for the office sought. The Department of State shall prescribe the form to be used in administering and filing the oath. Signatures may not be obtained by a candidate on any petition until the candidate has filed the oath required in this section. Upon receipt of the written oath from a candidate, the qualifying officer shall provide the candidate with petition forms in sufficient numbers to facilitate the gathering of signatures. If the candidate is running for an office that requires a group or district designation, the petition must indicate that designation or the signatures on such petition will not be counted.
(b) A candidate shall obtain the signatures of a number of qualified electors in the geographical entity represented by the office sought equal to 1 percent of the registered electors in the geographical entity represented by the office sought, as shown by the compilation by the Department of State for the last preceding general election.
(c) Each petition shall be submitted prior to noon of the 21st day preceding the first day of the qualifying period for the office sought to the supervisor of elections of the county for which the petition was circulated. Each supervisor to whom a petition is submitted shall check the signatures on the petition to verify their status as electors in the county, district, or other geographical entity represented by the office sought. Before the first day for qualifying, the supervisor shall certify the number shown as registered electors.
(d)1. Certifications for candidates for federal, state, or multicounty district office shall be submitted to the Department of State. The Department of State shall determine whether the required number of signatures has been obtained for the name of the candidate to be placed on the ballot and shall notify the candidate.
2. For candidates for county or district office not covered by subparagraph 1., the supervisor of elections shall determine whether the required number of signatures has been obtained for the name of the candidate to be placed on the ballot and shall notify the candidate.
(e) If the required number of signatures has been obtained, the candidate shall, during the prescribed time for qualifying for office, submit a copy of the notice received under paragraph (d) and file his or her qualifying papers and the oath prescribed by s. 99.021 with the qualifying officer.
(4) A minor party candidate whose name has been submitted pursuant to subsection (1) and who has qualified for office is entitled to have his or her name placed on the general election ballot.
History.--s. 5, ch. 70-269; s. 1, ch. 70-439; s. 4, ch. 74-119; s. 8, ch. 77-175; s. 3, ch. 78-188; s. 12, ch. 89-338; s. 1, ch. 90-229; s. 11, ch. 90-315; s. 541, ch. 95-147; s. 3, ch. 99-318.
Note.--Former s. 101.261.