Secretary of State to Clean Voter File by 4%

Board of Elections, News

BLUE RIDGE, Ga. – The Georgia Secretary of State’s Office to clean voter file by 4% as required by law, plus the new voting machines are ready for the public to practice on according to the Fannin County Board of Elections.

The voter file cleanup will reduce the voter roll by 4%, a move that comes as a requirement by federal and state law to ensure that the state has the most up-to-date voter information.

“Election security is my top priority,” said Secretary Raffensperger. “Accurate and up-to-date voter rolls are vital to secure elections, but at the same time I want to ensure that anyone potentially affected by this routine process has notice and opportunity to update their information. That is why my office is releasing the full list to ensure that people who are still eligible voters can update their information.”

A personalized notice will be mailed to the last known address of people this change effects prior to being removed from the voter rolls due to change in address. However, the complete list may be viewed online here: https://sos.ga.gov/admin/uploads/2019_NGE_List.xlsx

This removal doesn’t just effect those who had a change of address, but also people who have been in “inactive” status for more than three years and had no contact with election officials during that time.

A registration is moved to “inactive” when the person fails to respond to a pre-addressed, postage paid confirmation card asking them to confirm or update their information. This confirmation card is required to be sent to people who have filed a National Change of Address Card with the U.S. Postal Service indicating that they have moved to a new address, had election mail returned as undeliverable, or did not have contact with election officials (including not voting) for three years prior.

If your name is on the above list, you may simply update your registration at https://registertovote.sos.ga.gov or by contacting your elections office.

You may also respond to the card mailed to you, but keep in mind that the card will only be sent to your last known address, so this information may not be accurate.

Any registered voter may check their registration information to confirm it is accurate at https://www.mvp.sos.ga.gov

New Voting Machine for Georgia

Additionally, the Fannin County Board of Elections now has their new voting machine up and running for anyone who may want to come by and get practice with it ahead of the upcoming election year!

The Board of Elections may be found on the third floor of the Fannin County Court House (400 W Main St #301, Blue Ridge, GA 30513), Monday – Friday between 8 AM and 5 PM!

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Board of Elections Unveils New Voting Machine

Board of Elections, News

BLUE RIDGE, Ga. – The Fannin County Board of Elections unveiled the new voting machines during their meeting held on Tuesday, October 15, 2019.

The new voting machines, pictured to the right, will be utilized by the next presidential preference election, thus doing away completely with the old machines according to the Fannin County Board of Elections.

These new machines will create an instant paper trail with each vote cast according to Vice Chairman Mary Ann Conner, whereas the current machines create paper receipts of all votes cast only at the end of each election day.

Unlike previously believed, however, these machines will still utilize the same plastic yellow card system currently in place. The card will now be inserted into the bottom of the screen, where the yellow card reader sits.

Instead of hitting “Cast Ballot”, voters will select “Print Ballot”, at which time each voter may clearly view the candidates and measures voted upon during the touch screen process on a physical piece of paper.

If the printed ballot displays discrepancies, the voter may be re-issued a ballot, whereas before once “Cast Ballot” was selected, there was no turning back.

If the printer ballot displays correctly, then the voter will take the ballot to a scanner to have the ballot recorded before having it placed into a locked box.

Voters will not be allowed to carry their paper ballot out of the precinct, and all printed ballots will be kept in the Clerk’s office for a minimum of two years under law.

The county currently only has one machine, but 10 are expected to be received within the next shipment, followed by 70 more, making a total of 80 machines for the county to utilize during elections.

Conner states that the public will soon be able to practice with these machines ahead of the elections, and Fetch Your News will be sure to notify you of when this process begins, so be sure to stay tuned!

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Six counties to use new voting machines before the rest of the state, plus county voter numbers update.

Board of Elections, News

BLUE RIDGE, Ga. – The Fannin County Board of Elections shared that six counties within the state will utilize the new voting machines before the rest of the state during their meeting held on Monday, September 1, 2019.

These counties will be Bartow, Carroll, Catoosa, Decatur, Paulding, and Lowndes.

Cobb county will be using a paper ballot system by volunteer decision.

Gilmer county will be using the old machines for their special election on Tuesday, November 5, 2019 due to the last-minute nature of the election.

It is still expected that all precincts will utilize the new machines by the president preference election, but no further information has been provided at this time.

As of Saturday, August 31, 2019, there are 19,957 total voters registered for Fannin county, both active and inactive. There were 181 new applications and 65 deletions (45 moved out of county, 4 moved out of state and 16 deceased).

As of Sunday, September 8, 2019, there are 19,992 total registered voters in Fannin County.

A list of 2020 state elections and the voter registration calendar may be found here!

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2020 State Elections and Voter Registration Calendar

Board of Elections, News

BLUE RIDGE, Ga. – The Fannin County Board of Elections released the 2020 State Elections and Voter Registration Calendar during their meeting held on Monday, July 1, 2019.

(All dates marked with “***” at the beginning are important dates for those not planning to run for a position in the 2020 elections).
 
 
Wednesday, January 1, 2020: Earliest day to file and publish a notice of intention to be a write-in candidate in the General Election. O.C.G.A. 21-2-133

Saturday, February 1, 2020: Last day to fix and publish qualifying fees for offices to be filled during the 2020 Election Cycle. O.C.G.A. 21-2-131

*** Tuesday, February 4, 2020: Earliest day for a registrar to mail an absentee ballot for the Presidential Preference Primary, Special Election. O.C.G.A. 21-2-384

*** Monday, February 24, 2020: Last day for a person to register and be eligible to vote in the Presidential Preference Primary, Special Election and Special Election Runoff. O.C.G.A. 21-2-224

Monday, March 2, 2020 at 9 am: Earliest day for a Political Party Candidate to file a Declaration of Candidacy to have his or her name places on the General Primary/Nonpartisan Ballot. O.C.G.A. 21-2-153
Earliest day for a Nonpartisan Candidate to file a Notice of Candidacy to have his or her name placed on the General Primary/Nonpartisan Ballot. O.C.G.A. 21-2-132; 21-2-172; 21-2-187
Earliest day for an Independent or a Political Body Candidate to file a Notice of Candidacy to have his/her name placed on the General Election Ballot. O.C.G.A. 21-2-132; 21-2-187

*** Monday, March 2, 2020: Advanced In Person (Early) Voting begins for the Presidential Preference Primary and Special Election. O.C.G.A. 21-2-385

Friday, March 6, 2020 at 12 pm: Last day for a Political Party Candidate to file a Declaration of Candidacy to have his/her name placed on the General Primary/Nonpartisan Ballot. O.C.G.A. 21-2-153
Last day for a Nonpartisan Candidate to file a Notice of Candidacy to have his/her name placed on the General Primary/Nonpartisan Ballot. O.C.G.A. 21-2-132; 21-2-172; 21-2-187
Last day for an Independent or a Political Body Candidate to file a Notice of Candidacy to have his/her name placed on the General Election Ballot. O.C.G.A 21-2-132; 21-2-187

Friday, March 13, 2020: Last day to file the notice of intention to be a Nonpartisan Write-In Candidate and have notice published in accordance with O.C.G.A. 21-2-133

*** Saturday, March 14, 2020: Mandatory Saturday Voting for the Presidential Preference Primary and Special Election. O.C.G.A. 21-2-385

Wednesday, March 18, 2020: Last day to file affidavit stating the notice of intention to be a Write-In Candidate has been published in accordance with O.C.G.A. 21-2-133

*** Tuesday, March 24, 2020: Presidential Preference Primary and Special Election.

*** Tuesday, March 31, 2020: Earliest day for a registrar to mail an absentee ballot for the General Primary, Nonpartisan, and Special Election. O.C.G.A 21-2-384

*** Monday, April 20, 2020: Last day for a person to register and to be eligible to vote in the General Primary, Nonpartisan, and Special Election and Runoff Election. O.C.G.A. 21-2-224

*** Tuesday, April 21, 2020: Special Election Runoff

*** Monday, April 27, 2020: Advanced In Person (Early) Voting begins for the General Primary, Nonpartisan, and Special Election. O.C.G.A. 21-2-385

*** Saturday, May 9, 2020: Mandatory Saturday Voting for the General Primary, Nonpartisan, and Special Election. O.C.G.A. 21-2-385

*** Tuesday, May 19, 2020: General Primary Election, Nonpartisan General Election, and Special Election.

*** Monday, June 22, 2020 at 9 am: Voter Registration Deadline for the General Primary Runoff Election for Federal Offices.
Earliest day for an Independent and a Political Body Candidate for President and Vice President to file a Notice of Candidacy and a Nomination petition to have his/her name placed on the General Election Ballot. O.C.G.A. 21-2-132; 21-2-187
Earliest day for an Independent and a Political Body Candidate to file their Nomination Petition to have his/her name placed on the General Election Ballot. O.C.G.A. 21-2-132

*** Monday, June 29, 2020: Advanced In Person (Early) Voting begin for the General Primary, Nonpartisan, and Special Election Runoffs. O.C.G.A. 21-2-385

Tuesday, July 14, 2020 at 12 pm: Last day for an Independent and a Political Body Candidate for President and Vice President to file a Notice of Candidacy and Nomination Petition to have his/her name placed on the General Election Ballot. O.C.G.A 21-2-132; 21-2-187
Last day for an Independent or a Political Body Candidate to file their Nomination Petition to have his/her name placed on the General Election Ballot. O.C.G.A. 21-2-132

*** Tuesday, July 21, 2020: General Primary Runoff, Nonpartisan General Runoff, and Special Runoff Election for Local and State Offices, plus General Primary Runoff Election for Federal Offices.

Tuesday, September 8, 2020: Last day to file the notice of Intention to be a write-in candidate and have notice published in accordance with O.C.G.A. 21-2-133.

Monday, September 14, 2020: Last day to file affidavit stating the notice of intention to be a Write-In Candidate has been published in accordance with O.C.G.A. 21-2-132

*** Tuesday, September 15, 2020: Earliest day for a registrar to mail an absentee ballot for the November General Election and Special Election O.C.G.A. 21-2-384

*** Monday, October 5, 2020: Last day a person may register and be eligible to vote in the November General Election and Special Election Runoff for Local and State Offices. O.C.G.A 21-2-224

*** Monday, October 12, 2020: Advanced In Person (Early) Voting begins for the November General Election and Special Election. O.C.G.A. 21-2-385

*** Saturday, October 24, 2020: Mandatory Saturday Voting for the November General Election and Special Election. O.C.G.A. 21-2-385

As soon as possible: Absentee ballots shall be mailed out as soon as possible prior to the General Election and Special Election Runoffs for Local and State Offices. O.C.G.A 21-2-384
Advanced In Person (Early) Voting begins for the General Election and Special Election Runoffs for Local and State Offices. O.C.G.A. 21-2-385

*** Tuesday, November 3, 2020: General Election and Special Election.

*** Wednesday, November 18, 2020: Earliest day for a registrar to mail an absentee ballot for the General Election Runoff for Federal Offices. O.C.G.A. 21-2-384

*** Tuesday, December 1, 2020: General Election and Special Election Runoffs for Local and State Offices.

*** Monday, December 7, 2020: Last day to register for General Election Runoff for Federal Offices.

*** Monday, December 14, 2020: Advanced In Person (Early) Voting begins for the General Election Runoff for Federal Offices. O.C.G.A 21-2-385

*** Tuesday, January 5, 2021: General Election Runoff for Federal Offices
 
 
O.C.G.A. 21-2-14. When the last day for the exercise of any privilege or discharge of any duty prescribed or required by this chapter shall fall on a Saturday, Sunday, or legal holiday, the next succeeding business day shall be the last day for the exercise of such privilege or the discharge of such duty.
 
 
The board also reported their latest numbers as follows:

160 new applications, making a total of 19,697 by the end of June 2019, and 19,709 by Monday, July 1, 2019.
There were 63 deletions (35 moved out of county, eight moved out of state and 20 deceased) since the meeting held on Monday, June 3, 2019.
 
There has been no new information on the new state voting machines, but this information is anticipated to come soon, so be sure to stay tuned for future updates!
 
 

 
 
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Board of Elections to inspect voting precincts

Election, News

BLUE RIDGE, Ga. – The Fannin County Board of Elections will be inspecting four precincts on Friday, June 21, 2019 starting at 1 p.m.

The purpose of this inspection will simply be to ensure that the precincts are ready to go for upcoming voting sessions, from general maintenance, to parking conditions and even to see whether or not certain precincts will be needed to be moved to other buildings due to space constraints.

The board will begin with the Noontootla precinct first, then move to Mineral Bluff precinct, followed by Calwell and Sugar Creek.

With the Noontootla precinct being a manned fire station, it’s anticipated that the precinct may need to be moved to another building for the sake of space.

For the month of May, there were 187 new voting applications with 82 deletions. 42 moved out of county, there was one non-citizen who attempted to register, and 33 were marked deceased.

At this time, there has been no new information released on the new voting machines.

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Poll Watching for Voter Fraud in Georgia

Election

November 8th, the day the dead rise from the grave to vote and someone in Siberia or Cincinnati will be hacking into the voting machines to change election outcomes – so say some of the ideas  surrounding this year’s presidential elections.  FetchYourNews checked with Mary Ann Conner and Chuck Cook of the Fannin County Board of Elections.  Since all of Georgia counties follow the regulations set forth by Georgia’s Secretary of State, the details Conner and Cook supplied are valid all Georgia voters.

It is eight days too late for poll watching in Georgia.  The 2016 Georgia Code regarding poll-watching for state or national elections is that a political party can submit names of up to 25 people to be poll watchers for the entire state.  The names must be submitted seven days prior to the beginning of voting.  Oct. 11th was the first day of early voting in Georgia.  Official poll watchers receive a letter from the state affirming that they are official poll watchers and what precinct they will watch.  The letter also goes to the superintendent of the precinct.   Official poll watchers receive a badge which gives them entrance to the check-in area, the voting area and where votes are tabulated.  While watching, they can’t speak to voters, take photos or campaign. If so, the poll manager can make the poll watcher leave the precinct.  Campaigning has to be at least 100 feet away from a poll location.

As for some in Siberia or Cincinnati hacking into the electronic voting machines, Cook said it is like trying to hack a pencil; there is no way to get into the voting system.  The machines do not connect with the internet at all.  All information is on the voting card for the electronic machines.  Numbers of the amount of people coming through the precinct are compared against the numbers of votes recorded on the machines.  All voting machines arrive at the county sealed and machines are randomly assigned to each precinct. After voting has ended at 7 pm, poll workers tabulate results, post them outside the poll.  When the machines arrive at the Board of Elections, they are re-tabulated and the numbers compared.

Conner says that for someone to commit voter fraud at the machine means they must be a clairvoyant.  The person must know where the voting machine will go and how many voters will actually vote at the precinct that day.

There is a possibility for voter fraud to happen in voter databases where a voter’s registration could be affected by a cyber-attack.  On Oct. 11th, CNN reported that 33 states and 11 local election agencies requested the Department of Homeland Security to review voter registration systems for vulnerabilities to a cyber-attack.  If you want to check that you are registered to vote in Georgia at your precinct you can find out on the Secretary of State’s My Voter Page (click here).  The site also has a sample ballot for your county and absentee ballot request form.

Voter fraud can happen in voter registration by setting up road blocks for people to register to vote.  Texas and North Carolina are under court orders about this.  Georgia is under allegations about this as well.  According to Oct. 12th article in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Georgia Secretary of State was ordered to release information about how the state decides which voter registration to reject or accept. Georgia has been cited for rejecting applications for minor mistakes like misspelled street names which don’t match other public identification about the voter.  This especially happens with voters registering on paper forms.

As for the dead voting, Conner spends much of her time at the Board of Elections making sure that doesn’t happen.  She reviews coroner records, death certificates and even obituaries appearing in newspapers to ensure the deceased are respectfully removed from the voter database.

Oct. 11th voter registration in Georgia closed, even for the dead.

 

Voters can vote at the Fannin County Board of Elections now through  Nov. 4th, Monday through Friday from 9-5 pm.  Saturday voting is on Oct. 29 from 9 – 4 pm at the Board of Elections in the Courthouse.  Other counties can check their early voting schedules Georgia Secretary of State website click here).

 

 

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Fannin County’s March 1 Presidential Primary Ballots and Poll Locations

Election

Below is how the Presidential Preference Primary’s Ballot will appear for Georgia’s March 1st Primary.   Fannin County Board of Elections provided these sample ballots.

 

March 01, 2016 Democratic Ballot           March 01, 2016 Republican Ballot

 

Fannin County’s voting precincts are as follows:

COLWELL – 4793 Hwy 2 Blue Ridge, GA. — Fire Station 6

FAIRPLAY – 6161 Murphy Hwy Mineral Bluff, GA. — Fire Station 10

FLINTHILL – 221 School House Rd. Epworth, GA. — Community Building

HEMPTOWN – 13320 Appalachian Hwy Morganton, GA. — Fire Station 8

HOTHOUSE – 860 Salem Rd. Mineral Bluff, GA. — Fire Station 14

MINERAL BLUFF – 8578 Lakewood Hwy Mineral Bluff, GA. — Fire Station 2

MOBILE – 4772 Mobile Rd. Blue Ridge, GA. — House

MORGANTON – 42 Lake Dr. Morganton, GA. — Community Room

NOONTOOTLA – 12520 Aska Rd. Blue Ridge, GA. — Fire Station 3

SKENIAH – 27298 Morganton Hwy (GA 60 South) Suches, GA. — Fire Station 9

SUGAR CREEK – 58 March Ln. Blue Ridge, GA. — Fire Station 12

TOCCOA – 440 West 1st St. Blue Ridge, GA. — Senior Center

 

You can register to vote several ways: at the library, at the Board of Elections office in the  courthouse or on-line registertovote.sos.ga.gov.  If you register at the library or courthouse, you need to bring your Driver’s License or state-issued ID.

The next election date in Fannin County is May 24th.  To vote in this election, you must register by April 26th.  The May 24th election is very importance in shaping the county government and its future direction since all county government elected positions are up for vote except  Post 2 Commissioner and two Board of Education seats.

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County Asked to Oversee City Election

Featured Stories, Politics

After the events leading up to the resignation of the City of Blue Ridge Election Supervisor, the city council made decisions that would lead them to ask a representative from the Fannin County Board of Elections to oversee the currently ongoing city election.
(more…)

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MG

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