DELAWARE –Secretary of State Jon Husted today encouraged all Ohioans to commit to being engaged electors and citizens while discussing preparations underway for the 2012 general election during an event at the Delaware County Board of Elections.
“Elections work best when those impacted by the outcome are actively participating in the process,” Secretary Husted said. “Ohio would benefit most by having more individuals who are engaged and committed to maintaining the integrity of the process, rather than criticizing from afar.”
A priority for Secretary Husted is the recruitment of quality precinct elections officials (PEOs) or poll workers for the November general election. The Secretary is travelling around the state during the next few weeks to help county boards of elections raise awareness about the need for more PEOs and to encourage Ohioans to get involved. As part of this outreach effort, the Secretary of State’s office is providing boards and civic organizations with recruitment materials and has launched www.PEOinOhio.com to allow potential PEOs to sign up online.
Additionally, Secretary Husted outlined several other areas on which his office is working to prepare for the 2012 Presidential election.
- Statewide Absentee Ballot Request Mailing: In late August, the Secretary of State’s office will send approximately 6 million absentee ballot request forms to registered voters so they can vote by mail – essentially creating a voting booth at every kitchen table in Ohio. The mailing will be paid for using available Help America Vote Act (HAVA) funds.
- Uniformity in the Casting & Counting Provisional Ballots: Secretary Husted has directed all 88 county boards of elections to use the same standard provisional ballot form and procedures. This will ensure a more uniform process statewide for the casting and counting of provisional ballots.
- Maintaining Ohio’s Voter Rolls: The Secretary of State’s office has worked with the Ohio Department of Health to obtain death records in order to remove deceased voters from the rolls on a quarterly basis. Additionally, Ohio’s elections officials are working to actively add new registrants, update changes of address and remove duplicate records in the statewide voter database on a regular basis. Moving forward, Secretary Husted is working to expand the state’s access to vital statistics records from other agencies and states to further enhance the accuracy of the information contained within Ohio’s voter database.
- Voters’ Responsibilities: Ohio voters also have a responsibility in ensuring a smooth election this fall. The Secretary of State’s office is encouraging voters to do their part by remembering three key things: make sure their personal information on file with the boards of elections is up-to-date and accurate; know where they are supposed vote on Election Day; and, remember to bring the proper identification with them to the polls.
“We’re doing our work now so the election can be about the candidates and their ideas, not the process by which they are elected,” Secretary Husted said. “I am confident that the 40,000 elections officials that administer our state’s elections share this commitment and will continue to do their jobs well.”
In addition to the preparations underway for the 2012 election, Secretary Husted is also addressing the political hyperbole that will continue to build leading up to the election.
“In the months ahead, there will be those whose political strategy is to create the perception of electoral chaos,” Secretary Husted said. “My administration will work to effectively balance the ease of voting with protecting the integrity of the ballot. I will not allow voter suppression nor tolerate voter fraud.”
Those in attendance at today’s event at the Delaware County Board of Elections included representatives from county boards of elections and local officials from Delaware, Franklin, Marion, Morrow and Union Counties. If you would like to contact the central Ohio county boards of elections directly about PEOs, contact information has been provided below.
Delaware County: (740) 833-2080
Fairfield County: (740) 652-7000
Franklin County: (614) 525-3100
Knox County: (740) 393-6716
Licking County: (740) 670-5080
Logan County: (937) 599-7255
Madison County: (740) 852-9424
Marion County: (740) 223-4090
Morrow County: (419) 946-4026
Union County: (937) 642-2836