GEORGIA: SECURE VOTE BY MAIL ELECTIONS IN 2020
ABOUT THIS RESOURCE
Sightline’s state-by-state guides are designed to give local election officials and legislators the information they need to identify and take the most important steps to get ready for November. Each set of state-specific resources includes best practices and established models from around the country, including practical nuts and bolts advice for clerks, materials from election administrators with experience conducting all mail elections, and information about vendors and costs.
How GEORGIA is prepared for Vote By Mail
- Has an official notice and cure process (up until Election Day).
- Allows any voter to request an absentee ballot.
- Is a member of the Electronic Registration Information Center (ERIC).
- Uses voters’ signatures to verify ballots.
- Allows county clerks to start processing ballots upon receipt.
- Allows voters to register online.
- Allows early in-person voting starting four weeks before Election Day.
- Automatically registers voters and updates their address.
RECOMMENDED STEPS FOR SECURE ELECTIONS
Within each section, recommendations are arranged roughly in order of importance and ease of implementation.
For Local Election Officials
- Coordinate with USPS.
- Design ballots and envelopes that are easy to use.
- Implement robust signature verification.
- Provide secure drop boxes.
- Provide election day voting centers for in-person voting.
- Consider using a professional printer and sorter.
- Count ballots at a centralized, secure facility.
- Include a postage prepaid return envelope.
- Invest in high-speed centralized equipment.
FOR SECRETARIES OF STATE
- Use a comprehensive system to track ballots.
- Mail absentee application forms to every registered voter..
- Account for voters with non-traditional addresses.
- Give voters a “single sign-up” option to permanently receive mailed-out ballots.
- Allow counties to accept ballots postmarked on election day.
- Allow voters to request an absentee ballot online.
- Allow voters to request a replacement ballot online.
- Allow community organizations to help collect and deliver voted, sealed ballots.
- Automatically register voters and update their addresses.
Editorial photo credit: Henry C Jorgenson / Shutterstock.com. Best practices for Vote By Mail in Georgia.