Voting season is upon us |

Voting season is upon us

2008 has brought us to the polls for the February Presidential Primary and the Statewide Primary in June. We are now ready to participate in the Nov. 4, Presidential Statewide General Election. The ballot will have 12 California initiatives plus the presidential race and many other candidates vying for Congressional, State and Local offices. You must register to vote by Oct. 20 to be eligible to vote on Nov. 4. Research the candidates; decide who to vote for and then vote. Read the initiatives –

they are important and could mean a lot to our future – and then vote. Go to the polls or use your mail ballot, but please, vote.

Early voting is very convenient and it is one of the best ways to reduce waiting time at the polls in November. In addition to the Rood Center in Nevada City, for this and subsequent elections, we will offer early voting in Truckee at the Town Center. The Nevada City and Truckee sites will be open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday starting on Oct. 6 through Nov. 3.

Our number one goal is to count every ballot. We need your help! Vote By Mail Ballots are now being used by 59% of all registered Nevada County voters. We urge all Vote By Mail voters to observe the following:

1. State law requires the Elections Office to match the signature on your registration card to the signature on the outside of your return envelope before we can count your ballot. Please sign your return envelope or your ballot cannot be counted.

2. We must receive your ballot at a Nevada County polling place or at the Elections Office in the Rood Center no later than 8 p.m. on Election Day for it to count. An Election Day postmark does not allow us to count your ballot if delivered after Election Day, so mail your ballot as early as possible.

3. Please return your ballot in the envelope we provide to you. As mentioned, please sign the envelope so we can count your ballot. If you lose your return envelope, call us at 265-1298 or toll-free 1-888-395-1298 and we will promptly send you another return envelope.

4. We cannot count your ballot if you make any identifying marks on it like a signature, printed name or initials. Sign your return envelope – not your official ballot.

Polling places can and do change periodically, so make sure you know where you’re supposed to go before you head out. In Nevada County, there are three ways to check your polling place location:

1. The front cover of the Sample Ballot & Official Voter Information Pamphlet which we mail to you (preferred method).

2. The “Find Your Polling Place” feature on the home page of Nevada County Elections at (preferred method).

3. Call us at 265-1298 or toll-free 1-888-395-1298.

Voter Registration: If you have moved within our county or moved into our county, changed your name, address, political party or your signature (yes, sometimes we tend to change our actual signature as time goes on) please fill out a new Voter Registration Form. They are available at Post Offices, city offices, county offices, libraries and at the Elections Office at the Rood Center. You may also register online at the Secretary of State’s website at

Let’s be cognizant and recognize the service of the 330 men and women in Nevada County who serve on the front lines of our democracy as poll workers and warehouse personnel. I wish to thank each and every one of our poll workers for making voting easier and protecting our ballots until they are delivered to the Rood Center.

I would like to encourage all registered voters and qualified students (at least 16 years old, GPA of at least 2.5) to take the opportunity to “learn and earn” as poll workers. Our young people with computer skills are particularly in demand as poll workers. Working at a polling place is a fun and easy way to get involved in the electoral process. Please contact our office to learn more about becoming a poll worker.

Nevada County Clerk-Recorder: Maintaining your records when you marry, have children, buy and sell property, open a business and vote.

Gregory J. Diaz is the Nevada County Clerk-Recorder/Registrar of Voters.

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