CARSON CITY – With less than four weeks to go before early voting begins for the Nov. 2 general election, military and civilian voters located overseas are already taking advantage of a new online system that verifies their marked ballots have been received by local election officials.
Secretary of State Ross Miller partnered with the Nevada Office of Veteran’s Services to get state legislation passed in 2009 that allows certain residents of the state to register to vote and request absentee ballots by fax or by email.
Once downloaded, completed, and scanned, the ballots can also be returned electronically. The legislation was pursued after a national study found that a high percentage of absentee ballots sent by mail from military and civilian voters overseas were not received in time to be counted.
Congress subsequently adopted similar legislation that also includes a requirement that states provide a mechanism to allow voters to verify their marked absentee ballots have been received. The provisions apply to all uniformed voters and civilian voters who are overseas at election time.
Uniformed and overseas voters can now go to the Election Center and use My Voter File to verify that their ballot has been received by their local election official.
“This is another in a series of efforts by my office to make sure all Nevadans who are serving their country outside of their home state can access the electoral process regardless of where they are at election time,” Miller said. “It’s inexcusable in this technological age to let anyone’s vote go uncounted because of distance and I’m very pleased to hear that many Nevadans away from home are already taking advantage of this new tool.”
Local elections officials began mailing, faxing, and emailing absentee ballots to uniformed and overseas civilians voters last week. The deadline for all Nevadans to register to vote electronically or by mail is Oct. 2. The deadline to register in person at a county clerk or registrar’s office is Oct. 12.
Early voting begins Oct. 16.