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The Health Board Elections (Scotland) Regulations 2009

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Rejected ballot papers

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37.—(1) A ballot paper is void and not to be counted if—

(a)it does not bear a unique number in a form capable of being read by electronic means;

(b)the figure “1” is not placed on it in a manner which indicates a first preference for a candidate;

(c)the figure “1” is placed on it in that manner in respect of more than one candidate;

(d)anything is written or marked on it by which the voter can be identified (except for the unique number printed on the back); or

(e)it is unmarked or void for uncertainty.

(2) But a ballot paper on which the vote is marked—

(a)elsewhere than in the proper place;

(b)otherwise than by means of a figure indicating a first or subsequent preference; or

(c)by more than one mark,

is not void and must be counted if, in the opinion of the returning officer, the word or mark clearly indicates a preference or preferences and the way the paper is marked does not itself identify the voter or allow the voter to be identified.

(3) The returning officer must mark the word “rejected” on any ballot paper which is not to be counted and place the paper in the rejected votes box.

(4) A counting agent may object to the returning officer’s decision not to count a ballot paper.

(5) If such an objection is made, the returning officer must mark the words “rejection objected to” on the ballot paper to which the objection relates.

(6) The returning officer must prepare a statement showing—

(a)the number of ballot papers which are not to be counted by virtue of each of sub-paragraphs (a) to (e) of paragraph (1); and

(b)the number of covering envelopes placed in the rejected votes box by virtue of rule 35(3).

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