Virginia's new law to improve delivery of military and absentee ballots takes effect

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July 1, 2010

By Kyle Maichle

RICHMOND, Virginia: On July 1, 2010, members of the armed forces and their families who call Virginia their home will see new changes aimed at improving the delivery of absentee ballots. The bill was signed into law earlier this year by Governor Bob McDonnell as part of a effort to improve the overall delivery of government services to members of the armed forces[1].

The new law on military and absentee ballots requires all election authorities to have the ballots fully prepared and available 45 days before any election. The old law required overseas and military ballots to be available 45 days before the general election and 30 days for all other elections including the statewide primary. Also, the 45 day deadline goes into effect for any special election for federal offices including the U.S. Congress and Senate. The new law was in response to concerns veterans and those living abroad had with their votes being uncounted[1].

Also, a new law goes into effect on July 1, 2010, which makes it a crime for any elections registrar to not mail out absentee ballots three days before any deadline for receiving absentee ballots[2].

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