Don't forget to vote in Feb. 25 elections

FEBRUARY 18, 2014 Election News

School districts seek voter input; elections in 50 counties

LANSING, Mich. – Secretary of State Ruth Johnson is urging residents to vote in local elections Tuesday Feb. 25, many of which are being held by school districts.

"Your input at the ballot box is vital for your community and for your schools," said Johnson, Michigan's chief elections officer. "Voting is the cornerstone of democracy in our country and it is also your opportunity to speak out. If there is an election in your area, I encourage you to take a few minutes to vote so that your voice is heard."
Elections will be held in 50 of Michigan's 83 counties. Polls are open 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.

To find out if there is an election in their community, voters can visit the Secretary of State website at www.Michigan.gov/sos or check with their county clerk's office. In addition, the online Michigan Voter Information Center at www.Michigan.gov/vote is an invaluable resource for voters. On the website, voters can make sure they are registered to vote, find their polling location and view a sample ballot. The website is also smartphone-friendly.

There is still time for voters to obtain an absentee ballot. As a registered voter, you may obtain an absentee ballot if you are:

  • age 60 or older
  • physically unable to attend the polls without the assistance of another
  • expecting to be out of town for the entire time the polls are open on Election Day
  • in jail awaiting arraignment or trial
  • unable to attend the polls due to religious reasons
  • appointed to work as an election inspector in a precinct outside of your precinct of residence.

Those who wish to receive their absentee ballot by mail must submit their application by 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 22. Absentee ballots can be obtained in person anytime through 4 p.m. Monday, Feb. 24. Voters who request an absentee ballot in person on Monday, Feb. 24 must vote the ballot in the clerk's office. Emergency absentee ballots are available under certain conditions through 4 p.m. on Election Day.

Residents who registered to vote by mail or via a voter registration drive and have never voted in Michigan are not eligible to vote by absentee ballot in their first election. They must vote in person at their precinct. This restriction does not apply to voters who are overseas, disabled or 60 or older.

Voters are reminded of a change to the ballot application, both at the polls and if they are absentee voters. Under Michigan law, by signing the application, the voter certifies that he or she is a U.S. citizen. The revised application forms also remind voters that they must be citizens in order to vote.

As a reminder, voters will be asked to provide identification when at the polls on Election Day or if obtaining an absentee ballot in person from the clerk's office. They will be asked to present valid photo ID, such as a Michigan driver's license or identification card. Anyone who does not have an acceptable form of photo ID or failed to bring it with them can still vote. They will be required to sign a brief affidavit stating that they're not in possession of photo ID. Their ballot will be included with all others and counted on Election Day.

A specially equipped voting station called the AutoMARK Voter Assist Terminal is also available at each polling location for use by voters with disabilities.

For more information about branch office locations, hours and services, visit www.Michigan.gov/sos. Sign up for the official Secretary of State Twitter feed at www.twitter.com/MichSoS and Facebook updates at www.facebook.com/MichiganSoS.

Customers also may call the Department of State Information Center to speak to a customer service representative at 888-SOS-MICH (767-6424).

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For media questions, please call Gisgie Dávila Gendreau at 517-373-2520.