The St. Petersburg Times reports that Dawn Quarles, one of the teachers now in trouble for not following new rules for voter registration, is getting ready to face a penalty for her violation.
Quarles, an Advanced Placement Government teacher in Santa Rosa County, was reported to state officials by a county elections supervisor for not turning in voter registration forms within 48 hours of registering her students to vote. The new 48-hour deadline is one of the many controversial provisions in the state’s new elections law. Quarles could face up to a $1,000 fine.
The new election law requires [Florida Secretary of State Kurt Browning] to report suspected violations to [Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi], which he did on Oct. 27 “for enforcement and collection of any applicable fines.”
Bondi has not yet taken action. But on Monday, while Quarles was in her classroom, she got a phone call from an assistant attorney general, Blaine Winship.
“He said, ‘We’d like to negotiate a settlement out of court,’ ” Quarles said. “I said, ‘I didn’t know we were going to court.’”
She has received nothing in writing from the state — no citation, nothing, she said. She has asked her state senator, Greg Evers, for help.
The new restrictions and costly fines have driven groups like the League of Women Voters to halt their voter registration drives. The Miami-based SAVE Dade has also stopped registering voters and is looking for other ways to get Floridians to the polls on election day.