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Voter registration deadline Oct. 9

It’s that time of year again – time to register to vote before it’s too late.

Thursday, September 20, 2001

It’s that time of year again – time to register to vote before it’s too late.

The deadline for voter registration is Oct. 9 at 4 p.m., Lawrence County Board of Elections officials said.

Those who should register are those who have moved or changed their name or haven’t registered before, said Ella Lawless, deputy director of the board.

Notices and confirmation cards are routinely sent out by the board, but employees will be glad to check anyone’s registration if there’s a question, she said.

Also, for those who are new to registering, they can sign up at the courthouse or a variety of public places.

"We don’t care how you register just as long as you do," Lawless said. "The important thing is to get out and vote."

Also, the Ohio Revised Code requires that all boards of elections be open seven additional hours each week for three weeks prior to the close of voter registration.

Local extended hours are:

– Sept. 17-20, Sept. 24-27 and Oct. 1-4: hours will be 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

– Fridays, Sept. 21, Sept. 28 and Oct. 5: hours will be 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Some frequently asked questions about voter registration (taken from Secretary of State Kenneth Blackwell’s Web site):

– Why should I register to vote?

"No right we possess as American citizens is as dear as that of the secret ballot. Voting allows each citizen to have his or her voice heard. Voting preserves the freedom we Americans cherish."

– Must I be a U.S. citizen and a resident to register to vote in Ohio?

"You must be a U.S. citizen and a resident of Ohio for at least thirty (30) days before the election and you must have registered to vote in Ohio at least thirty (30) days before the election."

– How do I register to vote?

"You may register to vote simply by filling out a brief form, giving your intent to register, your name, birth date, citizenship status, age, current address and signature."

– Do I have to register before every election?

"No. Once you register to vote and vote in at least one general election in four years and – if you so choose – in a primary or special election, you never have to register again. Remember: You must keep your registration accurately updated for changes that may occur in your life such as a move or a name change."

– How old must I be to be able to register to vote?

"You must be 18 years old on or before the day of the general election and 18 years old on or before November 6 to vote in a primary for candidates only."

– Must I declare a political party affiliation when I register?

"No. However, when you vote in a primary election, your vote will determine your party affiliation."

– Where may I register to vote?

"You may register to vote at the following locations: The office of the Secretary of State, the board of elections office in your county, any Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles office or BMV registrar, any public or vocational school, public libraries, county treasurer’s office or other special locations."

The Secretary of State’s Web site is located at http://www.state.oh.us/sos/