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The California Voter’s Choice Act is a new law passed in 2016 that will modernize elections in California by allowing counties to conduct elections under a new model which provides greater flexibility and convenience for voters.
This new election model allows voters to choose how, when, and where to cast their ballot by:
Traditional polling places will be replaced by Voting Assistance Centers. Voters will have the freedom to cast a ballot in-person at any Voting Assistance Centers in their county instead of being tied to a single polling location. Voting Assistance Centers look and feel like polling places, but provide additional modern features to make voting easy and convenient.
At any Voting Assistance Centers in a participating county, a voter may:
Any registered voter may apply for a "Vote by Mail" ballot by:
You must apply for a vote-by-mail ballot at least 7 days before an election.
Vote by Mail ballots must be received by the elections official no later than the close of polls at 8:00 p.m. on Election Day.
You may return it in person to any polling place in your county or to the county elections office on Election Day. If, because of illness or physical disability, you are unable to return the ballot yourself, you may designate a spouse, child, parent, grandparent, grandchild, sibling, or a person residing in the same household to return the ballot to the elections official or any Voting Assistance Center. The ballot must be received before the close of the polls at 8:00 p.m. on Election Day in order to be counted.
People and organizations may distribute Vote by Mail ballot applications, provided they use the uniform format specified in the California Elections Code and submit a Vote-By-Mail Voting Application form.
Elections Code section 3005 provides that people who live in precincts with fewer than 250 voters may be sent Vote by Mail ballots.Upon receiving a Vote by Mail ballot, all you need to do is vote for the contests on the ballot, provide the required information, and mail the voted ballot back to your county elections office. It must be received in your county elections office by the close of the polls at 8:00 p.m. on Election Day.If you cannot mail your voted Vote by Mail ballot to your county elections office, you can cast your voted ballot at any Voting Assistance Center in your county by the close of the polls at 8:00 p.m. on Election Day. To determine the location of a nearby Voting Assistance Centers, you can contact your county elections official.
Yes. The Secretary of State has established a toll-free hotline for requests for voter registration forms and other election materials and to report suspicions of voting or registration irregularities. The number is (800) 345-VOTE.
The Secretary of State's office has been working with a wide range of groups throughout the state to increase voter participation. They are always looking for better ways to reach out and engage citizens in the voting process. Their Voter Education and Outreach web page will provide you with information on some of the programs and events they are currently working on.