Vermont Business Magazine Secretary of State Jim Condos announced today that eligible Vermont voters are now able to register to vote on any day up to and including Election Day. As of January 1, 2017 Act No. 44 (S 29) An act relating to election day registration officially went into effect, and will be implemented immediately for all local and state elections going forward, including any special elections and Town Meeting Day, which is Tuesday, March 7.
Vermont became the 14th state to enact Election Day Registration, eliminating Vermont’s voter registration deadline. This means a person can register at their polling place on the day of an election, and can then vote in that election. Registration will still be available at a person’s Town or City Clerk’s office on any day prior to the election during normal business hours.
Vermont Secretary of State Jim Condos has issued the following message in a Monday press release:
“The right to vote is the cornerstone of our democracy, and voter participation in local, statewide, and national elections is fundamental to the success of the democratic process.”
“I’m proud to live in a state that celebrates this democratic process while increasing access to the ballot in a time when many states are moving in the other direction. As Secretary of State, I am committed to protecting the right to vote, and with the support of legislative leaders in passing Election Day Registration, we have taken steps to make sure that every eligible Vermonter has the opportunity to cast their vote. Doing so ensures we are not only protecting the integrity of our elections, we are sending a clear message to all eligible Vermont voters that civic engagement is a fundamental part of our Vermont way of life.”
Director of Elections Will Senning added, “In years past we have received emails and phone calls from citizens who had missed the deadline to register, and were dismayed that they would not have a chance to participate in our democratic process. Implementing Election Day Registration will remove unnecessary barriers for busy, hard-working Vermonters, ensuring that their right to vote is protected.”
Condos said, “I still strongly encourage all eligible voters to register ahead of time, and we have worked diligently to make the registration process as accessible as possible.”
Eligible voters can register to vote online any time through the Secretary of State Online Voter Registration system by visiting https://www.olvr.sec.state.vt.us, by mailing a voter registration form to their local Town or City Clerk, or by registering there in person during normal business hours.
“Election Day Registration is a huge step forward to breaking down barriers to participation in the most fundamental aspect of our democracy- voting. I look forward to working diligently to ensure that we are not only instituting an effective Election Day Registration program at the polls, but are continually working to identify opportunities to improve and encourage civic engagement.”
Source: Condos. 1.9.2017. For further information on registering to vote in Vermont visit https://www.sec.state.vt.us/elections/voters/registration.aspx.