Electoral Commission advice on Postal Voting
Eastleigh’s electorate, many of whom were alienated by the saturation leafleting during Februarys Parliamentary by-election campaign, will shortly be asked to vote in elections for Hampshire County Council.
This election, where we get the chance to select our County Councillors for the next four years, are being held on 2nd May.
Besides another batch of campaign leaflets, electors with postal votes will also receiving ballot packs through their letterbox.
The Electoral Commission, the UK’s independent elections watchdog, has recently issued a press-release, advising anyone who is voting by post to keep their ballot pack safe until they are ready to return it. They say that voters should mark their postal ballot paper in private and remember to provide their signature and date of birth on the accompanying form.
Kay Jenkins, Head of English regions at the Electoral Commission explains;
“Voting by post is popular with many for its convenience. We want everyone to be able to have their say and cast their vote with confidence.”
“Failure to provide a signature and/or date of birth is the most common reason for a vote cast by post being rejected. They will be compared with the ones people provided when they applied to vote by post.”
“Postal votes should be returned as soon as possible, preferably being posted by the voter themselves, rather than given to anyone else to post. “
Poll cards have also been sent to all eligible voters, with information about where their polling station is and opening times, 7am – 10pm on polling day.
Referring people who prefer to vote in person, Kay Jenkins adds;
“You don’t need the poll card with you when you vote, but it helps in getting your ballot paper quickly in the polling station,”
“If you receive a poll card or postal ballot for someone who doesn’t live at your address, please contact your local authority electoral office at once.”
You will probably have received a poll cards even if you have registered for a postal vote, as they are sent to all registered electors, but that doesn’t mean you can also vote at a polling station.
If you don’t supply your postal vote in time, you can complete the ballot paper, place it in the return envelope and deliver it to any polling station within your electoral area, or to the Civic Offices before 10.00pm on the 2nd May, which is the close of poll.
There is more information about voting in elections on the Eastleigh Borough Council website.