Article 1. General Provisions of California Elections Code >> Division 14. >> Chapter 4. >> Article 1.

At any election, all members of the precinct board shall be present at the closing of the polls.
When the polls are closed, the precinct board shall proclaim that fact aloud at the place of election. After the proclamation no ballot shall be received. However, if at the hour of closing there are any other voters in the polling place, or in line at the door, who are qualified to vote and have not been able to do so since appearing, the polls shall be kept open a sufficient time to enable them to vote.
Any one who arrives at the polling place after the time provided for closing the polls shall not be entitled to vote, even though the polls are open when the voter arrives.
If the time for closing the polls is extended pursuant to a court order, all votes cast during the time that the closing of the polls is extended shall be by provisional ballot. Any provisional ballots cast pursuant to this section shall be separated and held apart from other provisional ballots cast by voters prior to the time the closing of the polls was extended.
Immediately upon the closing of the polls and before any voted ballot is taken from any of the ballot containers, the precinct board member shall, in the presence of all persons in the room who may desire to observe them, proceed to render the unused ballots unusable in one of the following ways:
  (a) By drawing across its face, in ink or indelible pencil, two lines that cross each other, the cross to be more than three inches square. The precinct board member shall thereupon, immediately and before any ballots are taken from any ballot container, place all defaced ballots within an envelope or other receptacle provided for that purpose.
  (b) By tearing or cutting in a manner so that it is apparent that the ballot has been intentionally destroyed to prevent its use. If this method of destruction is used, it shall be done in a manner so that the serial number of the ballots is retained for the purposes of reconciliation.
  (c) By placing all of the unused ballots into a special container provided for that purpose. A tamperproof seal containing spaces for entering the total number of unused ballots enclosed, the beginning and ending serial numbers thereof, and signature lines for all members of the precinct board following a statement certifying that all of the ballots were placed in the container in their presence and the information on the seal is true and correct, shall be provided. After signing the seal, it shall be placed on the container in a manner so that the container cannot be opened without tearing the seal.
Immediately upon the arrival of the hour when the polls are required by law to be closed on election day, the elections official conducting the election shall openly, in the elections official's main office, in the presence of any persons who are present to observe, according to the procedure set forth in Section 14403, proceed to render every unused ballot remaining in the control of the elections official unusable. The elections official shall forthwith make and file an affidavit, in writing, as to the number of ballots destroyed. If the procedure in subdivision (c) of Section 14403 is used, the tamperproof seal shall be signed by the elections official and at least one deputy or assistant elections official or registrar. The sealed container shall then be placed, with the sealed containers containing unused ballots from the precincts, in a security area by the elections official until disposition is made pursuant to Section 17301 or 17302. Alternatively, the elections official may, immediately upon the arrival of the hour when the polls are closed, recycle for any other lawful purpose any unused ballots remaining in the control of the elections official that clearly identify the election for which they were prepared. No later than 30 days following the last day to certify the official results of the election, the elections official shall make and file an affidavit, in writing, as to the number of ballots recycled. At the elections official's discretion, the unused ballots may be recycled up to six months following an election or at the conclusion of an election contest proceeding, whichever is later.
(a) The members of the precinct board shall account for the ballots delivered to them by returning a sufficient number of unused ballots to make up, when added to the number of official ballots cast and the number of spoiled and canceled ballots returned, the number of ballots given to them. The accounting of ballots may either:
  (1) Take place at the polling place.
  (2) Be performed by the elections official at the central counting place.
  (b) The precinct board shall complete the roster as required in Section 14107, and shall also complete and sign the certificate of performance prescribed in Section 15280, if that section applies.