This has been a big week for election reform in Ohio.
Two election bills passed the Ohio House and are expected to be signed into law by Governor Kasich next week.
“Golden Week,” the week where voters could register and vote on the same day, will be eliminated under the new law. Early voting is now mandated to begin the day after voter registration ends so that no overlap of the two activities can occur.
New law will also make the mailing of absentee ballots requests to voters more consistent from county to county by permitting the Secretary of State to only mail unsolicited absentee ballot requests on even number years and only if Ohio’s General Assembly appropriates funds for the mailing. Previously it was up to the County Boards of Elections (BOE) to decide if they would mail absentee ballot requests to all voters in their county, which historically benefited voters from larger counties because they could afford the mailings.
Also yesterday, Secretary of State Jon Husted voted in favor of moving the Hamilton County BOE from downtown Cincinnati to a location that is more centrally located in the county. The Board was split two to two down party lines on the issue; the Republicans voting for and the Democrats against the move. This left the decision to the Secretary of State. Most of the disagreement between the parties was over the location for early voting, which is still undecided. The BOE will move in 2017. Click here to read more.
Ohio VIP has been outspoken in favor of all of these issues and is pleased with the results of the week.