The California Chamber of Commerce is urging its members to register to vote for the November 6 General Election before the October 22 deadline.
The last day to register to vote for the November 6 election is October 22. To register to vote, you must be a U.S. citizen, at least 18 years of age, a resident of California, not in prison or on parole for the conviction of a felony, and have not been judged by a court to be mentally incompetent to register and vote.
Persons who register between 29 and 15 days before an election may be sent a sample ballot if there is time to process these last-minute registrations. If not, such registrants will receive a postcard confirming voter registration, which will also include a notice of their polling place location.
For all elections, extra sample ballots will be available at polling locations.
When to Re-Register to Vote
Voters need to re-register to vote when they:
- move to a new permanent residence;
- change their name; or
- change political party choice.
Voters can obtain a form to register to vote from most post offices, city offices and libraries, by calling 1-800-345-VOTE, or online at www.sos.ca.gov.
The location of a voter’s designated polling place is listed on the back of the Sample Ballot. Voters can also find their polling place on the Secretary of State website, or from their local elections official.
Vote by Mail
Any California voter may vote by mail. The last day to request a vote-by-mail ballot is October 30.
A registered voter may request a ballot by using the application printed on the back of the sample ballot booklet.
County elections officials began mailing vote-by-mail ballots on October 9 (post offices were closed for a federal holiday). Ballots have already been mailed to military and overseas voters.
Vote-by-mail voters can cast their November 6 ballots through the mail, drop them off at any polling place within the voter’s county, or vote in person at county elections offices. Once county elections officials determine the signature on the vote-by-mail ballot return envelope matches the voter’s signature on his or her voter registration application, and the voter did not vote elsewhere in the same election, the ballot is counted. All valid vote-by-mail ballots are counted in every election, regardless of the outcome or closeness of any race.
In the June 5, 2018 Statewide Primary Election, 67.7% of votes were cast on vote-by-mail ballots.
Ballot Drop Boxes
Drop boxes opened on October 9 in Madera, Napa, Nevada, Sacramento, and San Mateo counties—the five counties that have adopted the Voter’s Choice Act for the November 6, 2018 General Election. In these five counties, every voter will automatically receive a vote-by-mail ballot. Voters will have the option of returning their ballots at a dropbox, by mail, or at any vote center in their county.
Dropboxes are secure locations where California voters can deliver their completed ballots from the time they receive them by mail up to 8:00 p.m. on Election Day. Counties implementing the Voter’s Choice Act must open a minimum of one dropbox location for every 15,000 registered voters. Voters can look-up ballot dropbox and vote center locations using the map lookup tool at VotersChoice.sos.ca.gov.
Tips for Voters Who Plan to Use Dropboxes:
- Voters can drop off their completed vote-by-mail ballots at any dropbox in their county starting now all the way up to 8:00 pm on Election Day.
- Dropboxes will be open during normal business hours for early voting, but will be open from 7:00 am to 8:00 pm on Election Day.
- Before returning your ballot, you must remember to sign the return envelope provided with your vote-by-mail ballot.
- Ballots that are returned via dropbox do not require postage.
If individuals are not sure of their registration status, visit the Secretary of State My Voter Status tool at: VoterStatus.sos.ca.gov.
Individuals can also use this tool to check the status of their ballot once it has been received by county elections officials.
If voters do not receive their vote-by-mail ballot, they need to contact their county elections office.
The Voter’s Choice Act (SB 450), a landmark election reform measure, was sponsored by Secretary of State Alex Padilla, signed into law by Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. in 2016, and was first implemented in the June 5, 2018 Primary Election.
Sharing Information with Employees
The CalChamber encourages employers to share information on the November ballot measures with their employees. Businesses are within their rights to do so — just remember, NO PAYCHECK STUFFERS, no coercion, no rewarding or punishing employees (or threatening to do so) for their political activities or beliefs.
For more guidelines on political communications to employees, see the brochure at www.calchamber.com/guidelines. Note the distinction between internal communications (to employees, stockholders and their families) and communications to external audiences (such as non-stockholder retirees, outside vendors, customers, passersby).
For voter registration information, see the website of the Secretary of State.