Governor Gavin Newsom signed Senate Bill 72 on Tuesday, October 8, requiring conditional voter registration and provisional ballots to be offered at satellite offices and polling stations around the state. Previously, the law only required conditional voter registration and provisional voting to be offered at permanent election offices 14 days immediately preceding an election and on election day.
The bill also requires officials to provide a ballot for the voter’s precinct if it is available. If officials are unable to determine the voter’s precinct or a ballot is unavailable, they are required to provide the voter with a ballot and inform the voter that only the votes for the candidates and measures the voter is entitled to vote for will be counted.
The change will not affect Amador County’s election offices or workload, according to Chief Deputy Registrar of Voters Mark Hammergren. The Amador County Elections Office is already transitioning from polling places to three vote centers, tentatively located at Mace Meadows Golf Course in Pioneer, Oaks Mobile Home Park in Ione and the county elections office in Jackson.
The voting centers will allow conditional voter registration and provisional ballots to be offered on site, with almost immediate voter registration verification. Computers at each site will be available for people to register and, since the computers have a real-time connection with the elections office’s server, there’s approximately a 10-minute turnaround on verification.
Hammergren stated the new system and voting centers will eliminate a lot of the headaches associated with the older method. The Mace Meadows Golf Course voting center, located at 26570 Fairway Drive in Pioneer, will open February 22, 2020 and be open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily until election day and 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. on election day.
The Oaks Mobile Home Park, located at 5607 Jackson Valley Road in Ione, will be open February 29, 2020 until March 3, 2020, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Additionally, there will be two drop boxes for Ione voters available beginning February 4, 2020 until 8 p.m. on March 3, 2020. The main elections office, located at 810 Court Street in Jackson, will be open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays beginning February 22, 2020 and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekends, through March 3.