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Deadline looms for voter registration

By: Erin Smith
Bladen-County-Board-of-ElectionsThe registration deadline for voters is February 19 and this includes voters who are registering for the first time and voters who would like to change their voter registration.

Bladen County Board of Elections Director Cynthia Shaw said that currently, there are 4,000 voters in Bladen County who are inactive. She explained that inactive voters are those who are registered to vote but have not voted in two or more federal elections.

“I would love to see those numbers go down,” said Shaw.

She said she and her staff are ready to help inactive voters make any necessary changes needed to their voter registration or answer questions to help them to become active voters once more.

Shaw said the Board of Elections is required to send two mailings to folks on the inactive list. She said if the voter does not respond to the notice, they remain on the inactive list until the voter notifies the Board of Elections of any changes to their registration.

“That’s a lot of numbers when you are thinking about winning or losing (an election),” said Shaw.

For questions about your voter registration you can either call the Bladen County Board of Elections at 910-862-6951 or you can go to the State Board of Elections website and click on the Voter Registration link and follow the instructions.

Shaw said there will also be Same Day Voter Registration during the One Stop voting which begins March 3 and ends at 1 p.m. on March 12.

Shaw said the State Board of Elections Office in Raleigh has not yet approved the One Stop proposed hours of operation. She added that once the state approves the proposed schedule all four One Stop sites in Bladen County will be open.

The One Stop locations will be at East Arcadia Town Hall, Bladen County Public Library in Elizabethtown, the Dublin Lions Club, and the Bladenboro Historical Building in Bladenboro.

In addition, a new Voter ID law is also in effect. Shaw said voters must remember to bring an acceptable form of photo identification with them when they come to the polls. For more on what is considered an acceptable form of identification click here.

There are also three referendums that will be included on the March ballot. One referendum is the Connect NC bonds that will provide funding for the community colleges, state parks, and public safety.

Another referendum will deal with whether or not to to allow on the premises sale of beer and unfortified wine at White Lake.

A third referendum on the ballot will be the quarter-cent sales tax which will be used for the purpose of lowering property taxes in the county.

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