District residents have until the close of business Tuesday to register to vote or to change their address to appear on registration rolls for the Nov. 6 election.
Under District law, residents are required to register at least 30 days before the election to give elections officials enough time to mail registration cards and update voter lists. With the D.C. Board of Elections closed Monday for Columbus Day, officials have set Tuesday, Oct. 9, as the deadline to register to vote in next month’s election.
But under a city law approved two years ago, the District also permits same-day registration, meaning residents can sign up at a polling location on Election Day and then cast a ballot. Those ballots, however, will be counted as provisional ballots and added into final vote counts only after elections officials have verified they were cast by a qualified voter.
Four years ago, the Board of Elections was swamped before the registration deadline for the November election pitting Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) against Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.).
This year, elections officials have reported relatively few problems, except for a technical glitch that temporarily prevented residents from downloading voter registration forms from the board’s Web site. The problem, which was repaired Friday afternoon, also briefly halted the board’s ability to accept and process online absentee ballot requests.
Residents can register in person Tuesday at BOEE headquarters at Judiciary Square, 441 4th Street, NW, Suite 250 North.
Online registration is also available at www.dcboee.org/voter_info/register_to_vote/ovr_step1.asp but the forms must be printed out, signed and postmarked by close of business Tuesday.
Residents who will be out of town on Election Day have until Oct. 30 to request an absentee ballot.
In-person early voting begins Oct. 22 at BOEE headquarters.
Residents can also vote early on Saturday, Oct. 27, and Oct. 29 through Nov. 3 at Columbia Heights Community Center in Ward 1, Takoma Community Center in Ward 4, Chevy Chase Community Center in Ward 3, Turkey Thicket Recreation Center in Ward 5, King Greenleaf Recreation Center in Ward 6, Dorothy Height/Benning Library in Ward 7 or the Southeast Tennis and Learning Center in Ward 8.
Registered District voters can cast a ballot at any early voting location.