LOS ANGELES (AP) — California’s Republican Party has acknowledged owning unofficial ballot drop boxes that state election officials say aren’t allowed.
California election officials received reports about the boxes in Fresno, Los Angeles and Orange counties.
On Sunday, the secretary of state issued a memo telling county registrars the boxes are illegal and ballots must be mailed or brought to official voting locations.
State GOP spokesman Hector Barajas said Monday the party owns the boxes. He declined to say how many exist and where they are located.
Barajas said the state’s law governing so-called ballot harvesting allows an organization to collect and return groups of ballots.
He said the GOP’s boxes are no different than methods use by Democrats to ensure ballots get returned.
Neal Kelley, the Orange County's registrar of voters, said official drop boxes are clearly recognizable and carry the official county elections logo. He said it wasn’t clear how many voters had used unofficial boxes but after receiving reports about them he notified the state and district attorney’s office.