Displaced voters needn’t worry

People who have had to leave their homes temporarily because of Hurricane Ivan need not worry about one thing, at least; their current address will not affect their status on the official voters list.

Election officials have reassured people who had to move while their permanent residence is being repaired.

Deputy Supervisor of Elections Mr. Orrett Connor confirmed that a voter’s qualifying address is his or her permanent place of abode.

Deputy Supervisor of Elections Mr. Colford Scott used the example of people who had been staying at the East End Hurricane Shelter for several months; they would not be considered residents of East End.

Both men also advised that temporary displacement is not a ground for objection to someone’s inclusion on the list of electors for a particular district.

Mr. Scott said electors may put in claims for details to be corrected, if necessary, such as a change in name or occupation.

There will be one more occasion for the settling of claims and objections before the Register of Electors comes into force 1 April for the second quarter of 2005.

That is the voters list that will be in force for the general elections 11 May.

Mr. Connor confirmed that, before the cut-off date of 1 January, 157 people had registered as electors. Because of the holidays, registrants were given until midnight, 4 January to submit documentation.

The number 157, however, does not translate into an automatic increase by that amount in the total number of voters registered. The revised list of electors for the second quarter is to be published 21 January, with 12 February the last day for claims and objections.

District Registering Officers will also advise of any voter’s death.

Mr. Scott noted that, when the general elections were set for last November, the cut-off date for getting registered for the fourth quarter was 1 July. With elections postponed because of Hurricane Ivan, the register in effect will be the register for the second quarter of 2005.

‘There is no longer a new list made up specifically for a general election,’ Mr. Connor said. ‘We used to do registration once every four years. It was a re-registration process, as opposed to what we have now, which is a continuous process.’

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