Wednesday, Oct. 12, 2016 Patrick Gannon, PIO
(919) 715-1790; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
State Board Responds to Hurricane Matthew
RALEIGH, N.C. — The State Board of Elections office has been in regular contact with county election officials to assess flooding and other issues resulting from Hurricane Matthew. All county boards are actively working on preparations for early voting next week. Despite any challenges related to the storm, they are ready to accept and process voter registrations in advance of the deadline.
Counties are still evaluating the full impact the storm may have on early voting sites and Election Day precincts. In a few counties, alternative polling locations are being identified to replace sites that were damaged or inaccessible.
The State Board of Elections office issued guidance Wednesday indicating it will not extend the regular voter registration deadline. In North Carolina, voters can register and vote on the same day throughout the early voting period, which runs from Oct. 20 through Nov. 5. Voters cannot register on Election Day, Nov. 8.
Election offices will accept voter registration forms delivered in person through 5 p.m. Friday (October 14). Voter registration forms also are accepted at public libraries, DMV offices, and at public assistance agencies throughout the state.
Because of potential, weather-related delays in mail pickup and delivery, the State Board is directing county boards of elections to accept and process registration forms delivered by mail or commercial carrier and received on or before 5 p.m. Wednesday, October 19, provided that the forms are dated by the voter on or before Oct. 14. Voter registration applications may also be faxed or scanned, but a paper copy with an original signature must delivered in person by Oct. 14 or received by mail by Oct. 19.
This year’s early voting period runs for 17 days and includes more sites (444 statewide) and more hours (42,000-plus) than in 2012.
Voters may participate at any early voting location within their county of residence. Those who miss the regular voter registration deadline on October 14 can register and vote at one-stop early voting locations. Dates and times vary by county and location. Voters can look up the one-stop locations in their counties on the State Board of Elections website, ncsbe.gov/OSsite or by contacting their local board of elections office.
Registered voters can still request mail-in absentee ballots through 5 p.m. November 1.
“Despite the devastating effects of the hurricane, we want all eligible North Carolinians to know the many options available to register and vote in this election,” said Kim Westbrook Strach, executive director of the N.C. State Board of Elections.