VOTER’S BILL OF RIGHTS
Each registered voter in Florida has the right to:
1. Vote and have his or her vote accurately counted.
2. Cast a vote if he or she is in line at the official closing of the polls in that county.
3. Ask for and receive assistance in voting.
4. Receive up to two replacement ballots if he or she makes a mistake prior to the ballot being cast.
5. Demand an explanation if his or her registration or identity is in question.
6. Cast a provisional ballot if his or her registration or identity is in question.
What to expect at the polls
Polls will be open on Election Day, Nov. 6, from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. local time. Contact your Supervisor of Elections, listed on Page A4, for early voting hours, which may vary between early voting sites.
To determine your polling place, check your voter information card or contact your Supervisor of Elections. You may also find your polling place on http://elections.myflorida.com, through the online voter lookup, or on your Supervisor of Elections’ website.
BRING PHOTO IDENTIFICATION!
In order to vote at the polls during early voting or on Election Day, you must show a photo and signature identification. Acceptable forms of photo identification include a Florida driver license; a Florida identification card issued by the Department of Highway, Safety and Motor Vehicles; a United States passport; a debit or credit card; a military identification; a student identification; a retirement center identification; a neighborhood association identification; or a public assistance identification.
If your photo identification does not contain your signature, you will be required to show an additional form of identification that provides your signature.
Once your identity has been established, you will be asked to sign the precinct register or electronic device (or during early voting, the early voting ballot certificate) and then you will be allowed to vote. If you need assistance in marking your ballot, inform the poll worker.
If you make a mistake when voting on a paper ballot, ask for a replacement. You may receive up to two replacements, or a total of three ballots.
DO YOU WANT TO CAST AN ABSENTEE BALLOT?
Absentee voting refers to voting on a ballot received by mail or picked up by or for a person who is unable or cannot go to the polls to vote during early voting or Election Day. Contact your Supervisor of Elections to request an absentee ballot.
How to request an absentee ballot
You must request your absentee ballot directly from the Supervisor of Elections online, by written request, in person, by telephone, or by mail. The request can be made by you or if directly instructed to do so, an immediate family member or legal guardian on your behalf.
When a request is made, it must include the name of the voter for whom the ballot is being requested; the voter’s address; the voter’s date of birth; and the voter’s signature (if the request is written). If a member of your immediate family or legal guardian is requesting an absentee ballot for you, required information includes the requestor’s address and driver’s license number (if available); the requestor’s relationship to the voter; and the requestor’s signature (if the request is written).
A request to receive an absentee ballot by mail must be received by the Supervisor of Elections no later than 5 p.m. on Oct. 31, 2012. Otherwise, you can obtain an absentee ballot up until and including Election Day. However, it must still be returned by no later than 7 p.m. on Election Day if the voted ballot is to count.
Who can pick up an absentee ballot?
The voter may pick up an absentee ballot before Nov. 1, 2012 or on Election Day, Nov. 6. The voter may also designate someone else to pick up the ballot for him or her. A designee may only pick up 2 absentee ballots per election (other than his or her own ballot and ballots for members of his or her immediate family). The designee must submit a completed Affidavit to Pick Up an Absentee Ballot that includes the written authorization from the voter. If the voter did not already request a ballot, the Affidavit must be accompanied by a request.
How to vote using an absentee ballot
After you mark your ballot, the Supervisor of Elections must receive it no later than 7 p.m. on Election Day, Nov. 6. Other options are available for military members and their families who are absent from their county of residence due to active duty, and for overseas civilians.
Do not return the marked ballot to a polling place except if you decide you want or are able to vote in your precinct on Election Day. In that case, you must take the absentee ballot with you to the polls (whether it has been marked or not).
Even if you come to the polls without your absentee ballot, you will still be able to vote a regular ballot if the Supervisor of Elections’ office is able to confirm that it has not received your absentee ballot. However, if it is confirmed that you have already voted an absentee ballot, you cannot vote again at the polls.
If you think the Supervisor of Elections’ office is wrong about receiving your absentee ballot or if the Supervisor of Elections’ office cannot confirm that you have already voted an absentee ballot, you will be allowed to vote a provisional ballot.
How to track your absentee ballot request and your returned ballot
Any voter who has requested an absentee ballot can track online the status of his or her absentee ballot. You can either link through the Division of Elections’ Voter Information Lookup at www.elections.myflorida.com or through your Supervisor of Elections’ website listed below.
WHAT IF YOU VOTE A PROVISIONAL BALLOT?
If you end up voting a provisional ballot, regardless of the reason, you must be given a written notice of rights that includes:
1. A statement that you have the right to bring further evidence (if you choose) of your eligibility to the Supervisor of Elections. You have until 5 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 8, to do so.
2. A statement that if you voted a provisional ballot solely because you did not bring in identification, you do not have to bring in further evidence of eligibility.
The local canvassing board will count your ballot if you voted in the right precinct and the signature on the provisional ballot certificate matches the signature on the voter registration record.
3. A statement that if you voted a provisional ballot because your personal identifying number could not be verified. You can provide in person or by copy through fax, e-mail, or mail a copy of the card with the identifying number to the Supervisor of Elections before 5 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 8.
4. Instructions on how you can find out after the election if your provisional ballot was counted, and if not, the reason(s) why.
HOW TO REPORT ELECTION LAW VIOLATIONS
Report violations in writing to the Division of Elections, Room 316, R.A. Gray Building, 500 S. Bronough Street, Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1050, 850-245-6200. Complaint forms are available on the Division of Elections’ website at: http://election.dos.state.fl.us/voting/index.shtml. You can also call the Voter Fraud Hotline at 1-877-VOTERFRAUD.
Report violations relating to campaign financing, candidates, committees, or other political activities by sworn written complaint to the Florida Elections Commission, Suite 224 Collins Building, 107 West Gaines Street, Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1050, phone 850-922-4539.
CONTACT INFO, SUPERVISOR OF ELECTIONS
(Florida Courier readership area only)
Dr. Brenda C. Snipes, 115 S. Andrews Ave., Room 102, Fort Lauderdale, 33301-1896. Phone: 954-357-7050. Fax: 954-357-7070. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Website: http://www.browardsoe.org
Jerry Holland, 105 East Monroe Street, Jacksonville, 32202-3215. Phone: 904-630-1414, Fax: 904-630-2920, E-mail: email@example.com. Website: http://www.duvalelections.com/
Dr. Earl Lennard, 601 E. Kennedy Blvd, 16th Floor, Tampa, 33602-4932. Phone: 813-272-5850. Fax: 813-272-7043. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Website: http://www.votehillsborough.org/
Lester Sola, PO Box 521550, Miami, 33152-1550. Phone: 305-499-8683. Fax: 305-468-2507. E-mail: email@example.com. Website: http://elections.co.miami-dade.fl.us/
Bill Cowles, PO Box 562001, Orlando, 32856-2001. Phone: 407-836-2070. Fax: 407-254-6596. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Website: http://www.ocfelections.com/
Susan Bucher, PO Box 22309, West Palm Beach, 33416-2309. Phone: 561-656-6200; Fax: 561-656-6287. E-mail: email@example.com. Website: http://www.pbcelections.org/
Deborah Clark, 13001 Starkey Road, Largo, 33773. Phone: 727-464-6108. Fax: 727-464-6239. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. http://www.votepinellas.com/
Ann McFall, 125 W. New York Ave., DeLand, 32720-5415. Phone: 386-736-5930. Fax: 386-822-5715. E-mail: email@example.com. http://www.volusia.org/elections