|As Close of Voter Registration Looms, Project Vote Asks Summit County Board of Elections to Process Applications on Time|
October 3, 2012
AKRON, Ohio – Today, voting rights group Project Vote wrote to Joseph Masich, director of the Summit County Board of Elections, to express concern that voter registration applications were not being processed in a timely manner. With early voting already underway, dozens of citizens who applied to be added to the rolls earlier this year have still not yet received their voter registration cards, which means that those voters cannot take advantage of the early voting period.“Voting rights advocates worry that the county’s backlog could leave voters off entirely. It is the board’s duty to make sure that the voter registration process is efficient. Eligible citizens who apply to be added to the voter rolls should receive confirmation in a timely manner. Our concern is that our inquiries about these applications have gone unanswered by the board,” says Camille Wimbish, elections counsel and manager, Ohio Election Administration Program Project Vote.
Ohio law states that applications must be processed within 20 business days, which Summit has violated. The Ohio Organizing Collaborative and Project Vote have been monitoring the build up of unprocessed registrations in Summit County with growing concern. The Ohio Organizing Collaborative has been operating a voter registration drive in the area for the past several months, submitting several batches of applications to the board. Many of the voters whose applications the Collaborative submitted weeks ago are not on the voter roll. Repeated inquiries about the processing of these applications have not been answered.“As American citizens, it is our civic duty to vote. As election officials, it is the board’s duty to make sure every eligible citizen who applies is added to the rolls, so everyone’s voice counts this Election Day,” says Wimbish.
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