Posts Tagged ‘Chief Elections Officer’

Senator Leland Yee Throws Down: Beseeches Jerry Brown to Sign SB 397 Online Voter Registration Bill

Wednesday, September 28th, 2011

Here was the scene down at the State Building this morning.

See, it’s Senator Leland Yee, PhD, telling one and all the virtues of online voter reg.

Click to expand

Like, 11 other states allow voters to register online, so why can’t California?

All the deets:

“Governor Urged to Sign Online Voter Registration Bill - Senator Yee, San Mateo Elections Chief, Common Cause, Students push bill to bring California voter registration system into the 21st Century

SAN FRANCISCO – Today, Senator Leland Yee (D-San Francisco) was joined by San Mateo County Chief Elections Officer Mark Church as well several organizations to urge Governor Jerry Brown to sign legislation that would allow citizens to register to vote via the internet.

Several other states already offer online registration, yet California has lagged behind awaiting implementation of the statewide online database system known as VoteCal, which has been delayed until at least 2015 and probably later.

“In the 21st century, especially here in California, it is long overdue to have online voter registration,” said Yee. “SB 397 will not only help protect the integrity of the vote, but will allow many more individuals the opportunity to register and participate in our democracy.”

Yee was joined at a press conference in San Francisco by Common Cause, SEIU, League of Women Voters, Californians for Electoral Reform, and the University of California Students Association, to highlight the major provisions of the bill including provisions that place greater safeguards to fraud than the current paper registration process.

Under SB 397, citizens would input their voter information online and the county elections office would use the voter’s signature from the Department of Motor Vehicles to verify authenticity. That signature could be matched against the voter’s signature at the polling place. Currently, signatures at the polling place are only compared to the paper registration signature, which potentially allows for greater occurrences of fraud.

SB 397 would also minimize the practice of individuals being paid to collect voter registration cards and instead sending in fake names in order to fulfill a quota or to make more money.

County elections officers are also hailing the bill as a potential cost-savings and a way of eliminating administrative errors from incorrect data entry of the paper registration. By using online registration, the voter would enter their own information helping to eliminate spelling errors or an election office being unable to read the paper registration. The new system will also save time and money on data entry by election clerks.

“This law will increase voter registration, increase the accuracy of the registration information, and reduce election costs,” said Church. “Everyone wins.”

In Arizona, implementation of online voter registration saw a decrease of up to 83 cents per a registration for some counties. Mariposa County – the largest election jurisdiction in Arizona – has saved over $1 million since implementing online registration 5 years ago.

“With the passage of Senator Yee’s online voter registration bill, we can finally move California’s voter registration system into the 21st century,” said Kathay Feng, Executive Director for California Common Cause.

The Governor has until October 9 to sign or veto the measure.”