If you’re not registered to vote, time is running out

By Samantha Lyles, Staff Writer, slyles@newsandpress.net

Becoming a registered voter in South Carolina is easier than ever, but by the time this article reaches print, the Oct. 17 deadline will be upon us. Fortunately, to get registered you only need a simple form of photo ID and proof of residence.

Prospective voters with a valid South Carolina driver’s license or an ID card issued by the S.C. Department of Motor Vehicles can now register online at www.SCVotes.org. You can also register by e-mail or fax by downloading a registration form and sending it to your local voter registration office. Or you could do things the old-fashioned way and register there in person.

Registration by mail applications must be postmarked at least 30 days prior to that particular election to be eligible, so that train has already left the station.

If you have recently moved, you must update your address with DMV before registering to vote.

To be eligible to register in South Carolina you must be a United States citizen, be at least 18 years old on or before the next election, be a resident of South Carolina and this county and precinct, not be under a court order declaring you mentally incompetent, not be confined in any public prison resulting from a conviction of a crime, have never been convicted of a felony or offense against the election laws – or if previously convicted, have served the entire sentence, including probation or parole, or have received a pardon for the conviction.

There is no length of residency requirement in South Carolina in order to register to vote. You can register at any time.

Once you’ve registered, make sure you know your polling location (detailed below) and bring a photo ID with you on Election Day.

Hoyt Campbell, director of Darlington County Elections and Registrations, says that while a driver’s license is the most commonly used form of ID, others will suffice. These include a concealed weapons permit, passport, military ID or DMV ID card.

If you don’t have any of these forms of photo identification, there is another option. Campbell says that any Darlington County resident can come to his office and obtain a free temporary voter ID card with their photo on it. Proof of residence and identity is required, such as a birth certificate and a utility bill bearing your current address. ­

Registration for the Nov. 6 elections closes at 5 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 17. Darlington County Elections and Registrations is at 131 Cashua St. in Darlington. Phone: 843-398-4900, Fax: 843-398-4907, and e-mail: sbenton@darcosc.net or hcampbell@darcosc.net

Author: Rachel Howell

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