The Sacramento County Board of Supervisors has approved the County’s participation in the Voter’s Choice Act to replace the current voting system. Voters will see many changes for the upcoming elections in 2018 as polling places are replaced by Regional Voting Centers and vote-by-mail ballots.
The Voter’s Choice Act is a result of SB 450, state legislation passed in 2016 with the support of Secretary of State Alex Padilla. The bill established pilot programs in 14 counties, including Sacramento, with full statewide implementation to take place in 2020.
While there are still rules and regulations to be determined, the County of Sacramento will implement this new voting model as follows:
77 Regional Voting Centers to replace neighborhood polling places
- 16 sites open 10 days prior to Election Day
- 61 additional sites open 3 days prior to Election Day for a minimum of 8 hours
- Centers open from 7am – 8pm on Election Day
- Voters have total of 11 days to vote at any Center
- Voters may update their registration or register to vote same day at any Center
- Voters may access replacement or provisional ballots at any Center
- Voting machines will be available for voters with disabilities
- Center locations will be near public transportation routes where possible
- Election officials on-site will have access to voter registration data (name, address, date of birth, language preference, party preference, precinct, ballot status)
- Election materials available in all languages required in that jurisdiction
54 Ballot Drop Off Sites
- available 29 days before the election
- these sites are in addition to Voting Centers
- voters automatically receive VBM ballots 29 days before the election
- ballots returned in envelope provided by mail or dropping off at any County drop-box or Vote Center
The county elections official is required to establish a language accessibility advisory committee that is comprised of representatives of language minority communities, and a voting accessibility advisory committee that is comprised of voters with disabilities.
The county elections official is also required to publicly notice the draft plan for administration of elections, and to accept public comments on the draft for at least 14 days before a public meeting is held. Once the county election official adopts a final plan for administration of elections, it shall be submitted to the Secretary of State, along with a voter education and outreach plan, for approval.
Let’s Make This An Opportunity To Support Republican Candidates
The County Elections office will be responsible for an outreach campaign to encourage greater voter turnout. This presents an opportunity for increased awareness and interest in the mid-term election.
The Sacramento County Republican Party has established a Voter Engagement Committee to provide outreach to all communities, and to implement a get-out-the-vote strategy under the new voting model. This will require substantial human and financial resources to succeed.