NM Settlement Agreement - TRD

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Case 1:09-cv-00668-JCH-DJS Document 84-1 Filed 07/01/10 Page 1 of 15 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE DISTRICT OF NEW MEXICO CELIA VALDEZ, et al., Plaintiffs, v. CIVIL ACTION NO. 1:09-cv-668 JCH/DJS MARY HERRERA, et al., Defendants. SETTLEMENT AGREEMENT REGARDING PLAINTIFFS’ CLAIMS ASSERTING VIOLATIONS OF SECTION 5 OF THE NATIONAL VOTER REGISTRATION ACT I. INTRODUCTION Plaintiffs and defendants listed below have reached the following Agreement in settlement of the claims of plaintiffs in
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   1 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURTFOR THE DISTRICT OF NEW MEXICO  CELIA VALDEZ, et al. ,Plaintiffs,v.MARY HERRERA, et al. ,Defendants.CIVIL ACTION NO. 1:09-cv-668 JCH/DJS SETTLEMENT AGREEMENT REGARDING PLAINTIFFS’ CLAIMS ASSERTINGVIOLATIONS OF SECTION 5 OF THE NATIONAL VOTER REGISTRATION ACTI. INTRODUCTION Plaintiffs and defendants listed below have reached the following Agreement insettlement of the claims of plaintiffs in this action asserting violations of Section 5 of the National Voter Registration Act (“NVRA”), 42 U.S.C. § 1973gg-3.The parties to this Agreement are plaintiffs Celia Valdez, Graciela Grajeda, and JesseRodriguez, and defendants Mary Herrera, in her capacity as the New MexicoSecretary of State, Rick Homans, in his capacity as the Secretary of the New MexicoTaxation and Revenue Department (“TRD”), and Michael Sandoval, in his capacityas the Director of the Motor Vehicle Division (“MVD”) of the New Mexico Taxationand Revenue Department. The terms of this Agreement apply to the Secretary of State, and to TRD and MVD, including the administration of MVD driver’s licensingservices by any private or governmental entity that is designated as an agent of TRDto provide driver’s licensing services in New Mexico under NMSA 1978, § 66-2-14or § 66-2-14.1. II. DEFINITIONS A. The term “MVD driver’s licensing services” refers to the receiving and processing of initial and renewal applications for state driver’s licenses and state identificationcards, and requests for change of address submitted for purposes of a state driver’slicense or state identification card.   B. The term “TRD Agent” refers to any private or governmental entity that is designatedas an agent of TRD to provide driver’s licensing services in New Mexico under  NMSA 1978, § 66-2-14 or § 66-2-14.1. Case 1:09-cv-00668-JCH-DJS Document 84-1 Filed 07/01/10 Page 1 of 15   2  III. RECITALS TRD and the Secretary of State shall implement and maintain the procedures and practices set forth in Sections IV through X, below. Unless otherwise indicated, these procedures and practices shall be implemented immediately upon execution of thisAgreement or have already been implemented. IV. STAFFING STRUCTUREA. Office of the Secretary of State 1. The Secretary of State shall designate a staff position whose duties include beingthe “State NVRA Coordinator” and shall notify plaintiffs’ counsel as to theidentity of that individual. The State NVRA Coordinator shall coordinate andoversee statewide compliance with the requirements of Section 5 of the NVRAand the provisions of this Agreement. During the term of this Agreement, theSecretary of State shall notify plaintiffs’ counsel of any change in the identity of the State NVRA Coordinator.2. The State NVRA Coordinator shall provide support and guidance to TRD, andTRD Agents, including the TRD NVRA Coordinator (defined below) and Voter Registration Contacts, to ensure compliance with Section 5 of the NVRA and the provisions of this Agreement. The State NVRA Coordinator shall consultregularly with the TRD NVRA Coordinator regarding office-level complianceand any corrective action plans, as specified in section VIII. The State NVRACoordinator shall serve as a liaison between the Secretary of State, TRD, andlocal election authorities regarding NVRA compliance at TRD.3. The State NVRA Coordinator shall monitor and evaluate office compliance withthe NVRA and this Agreement.4. Within 14 days of the entry of this Agreement, the State NVRA Coordinator shall provide the TRD NVRA Coordinator with a complete list of the last dates toregister to vote in elections in New Mexico for the year 2010. Thereafter, theState NVRA Coordinator shall provide the TRD NVRA Coordinator with acomplete list of such voter registration deadlines for the coming year byDecember 15 of each year.5. Failure of the State NVRA Coordinator to meet the responsibilities and dutiesimposed by this Agreement shall be grounds for disciplinary action. B. TRD 1. TRD shall designate a staff position whose duties include being the statewide“TRD NVRA Coordinator” and shall notify plaintiffs’ counsel as to the identity of  Case 1:09-cv-00668-JCH-DJS Document 84-1 Filed 07/01/10 Page 2 of 15   3 that individual. During the term of this Agreement, TRD shall notify plaintiffs’counsel of any change in the identity of the TRD NVRA Coordinator.2. The TRD NVRA Coordinator shall maintain a current list of Voter RegistrationContacts designated as specified below. If the TRD NVRA Coordinator learns atany time that a Voter Registration Contact position is unfilled at any office, theCoordinator shall ensure that an employee is appointed to fill that position withinfifteen business days of the date of discovery.3. The TRD NVRA Coordinator shall coordinate and oversee compliance with therequirements of Section 5 of the NVRA and the provisions of this Agreement.Such coordination shall involve regular communication with the State NVRACoordinator and the Voter Registration Contacts to ensure that TRD, includingeach MVD and TRD Agent office, fully complies with the requirements of Section 5 and the provisions of this Agreement. The TRD NVRA Coordinator shall serve as a liaison between the Voter Registration Contacts and the localelection authorities regarding NVRA compliance at MVD and TRD Agentoffices.4. The TRD NVRA Coordinator shall conduct reviews of compliance with Section 5of the NVRA and the provisions of this Agreement at each MVD and TRD Agentoffice in New Mexico.5. The TRD NVRA Coordinator shall be responsible for ensuring that TRDconducts an NVRA education and training program, as specified in section V of this Agreement.6. The TRD NVRA Coordinator shall ensure that each MVD and TRD Agent officeis equipped with appropriate technology hardware and software and other suppliesto comply with the provisions of this Agreement.7. Within 14 days after receiving the complete list of the last dates to register to votein elections in New Mexico for the year 2010 from the State NVRA Coordinator,the TRD NVRA Coordinator shall provide every Voter Registration Contact suchlist. The TRD NVRA Coordinator shall provide every Voter Registration Contactwith a complete list of such voter registration deadlines for the coming year byDecember 31, every year thereafter.8. Failure of the TRD NVRA Coordinator to meet the responsibilities and dutiesimposed by this Agreement shall be grounds for disciplinary actions. C. Local MVD and TRD Agent Offices  1. TRD shall designate a staff position in each MVD office and shall require eachTRD Agent office to designate a staff position whose duties include being the“Voter Registration Contact” for that office. During the term of this Agreement, Case 1:09-cv-00668-JCH-DJS Document 84-1 Filed 07/01/10 Page 3 of 15   4 TRD shall notify plaintiffs’ counsel of any change in designation for Voter Registration Contacts at regular intervals or as otherwise necessary.2. The Voter Registration Contact shall be responsible for reading and understandingthe voter registration manual prepared per section V of this Agreement.3. The Voter Registration Contacts shall coordinate and oversee compliance with therequirements of Section 5 of the NVRA and the provisions of this Agreement attheir respective MVD and TRD Agent offices. Voter Registration Contacts shall provide support and guidance to MVD and TRD Agent employees at their assigned offices regarding proper MVD NVRA procedures. Voter RegistrationContacts shall also be responsible for answering questions from the publicrelating to voter registration at MVD and TRD Agent offices.4. The Voter Registration Contacts shall ensure that each employee at their assignedoffices who provides MVD driver’s licensing services receives NVRA training as provided in Section V of this Agreement.5. The Voter Registration Contacts shall ensure that signs are posted in each MVDand TRD Agent office as provided in section VII of this Agreement.6. The Voter Registration Contacts shall be responsible for transmitting allcompleted voter registration portions of applications for driver’s license andidentification cards to the appropriate state election official not later than 10 daysafter the date of acceptance, or, if the registration application is accepted withinfive days before the last day for registration to vote in an election in New Mexico,not later than five days after the date of acceptance.7. Failure of Voter Registration Contacts to meet the responsibilities and dutiesimposed on them by this Agreement shall be grounds for disciplinary action. V. TRAINING A. Within 60 days of the date of the entry of this Agreement, the State NVRACoordinator and the TRD NVRA Coordinator together shall develop a comprehensivemanual on the requirements of Section 5 of the NVRA and all related New Mexicostate statutes, and the procedures used by MVD and TRD Agent offices to complywith Section 5. The proposed manual shall be provided to plaintiffs’ counsel for review and comment. The Coordinators shall update the manual when needed.B. The State NVRA Coordinator shall provide the TRD NVRA Coordinator withsupplemental guidance as needed (e.g., to communicate any changes in federal or state law that relate to voter registration at MVD and TRD Agent offices, or toaddress any problems with NVRA compliance, as determined by the proceduresoutlined in Section VIII). Case 1:09-cv-00668-JCH-DJS Document 84-1 Filed 07/01/10 Page 4 of 15
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