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Cleveland.com voter look-up tool credited for new feature on Ohio elections website

July 9, 2018

Cleveland.com voter look-up tool credited for new feature on Ohio elections website

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- A new tool that allows voters to check whether they are at risk of being removed from the rolls came from a cleveland.com project published in June.

The U.S. Supreme Court in June upheld Ohio’s “supplemental process” for removing ineligible voters from the rolls after not voting for six years and failing to respond to a registration “confirmation notice” sent after two years of inactivity. Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted announced three changes that he says will help more eligible voters stay on the rolls.

One of them is the ability for voters to check whether they’ve been sent a confirmation notice when checking their registration record on MyOhioVote.com. Cleveland.com data analysis editor Rich Exner made that information available with a database he built and published on June 27. The database includes the names of more than 1 million voters who were mailed notices and didn’t respond and more than 800,000 voters who could be sent notices once the process resumes.

“In elections administration, we should -- and in Ohio, we do -- strive for continuous improvement; not only in our internal processes, but also as it relates to voter information and experience,” Husted wrote in a directive to county elections officials. “A good idea is a good idea, no matter where it comes from.”

Husted wrote that providing this information will likely result in fewer registered voters in an “inactive” status, fewer voters removed from the rolls, and more regular ballots counted on Election Day. County boards of election can begin identifying voters who haven’t voted since the May 2016 primary election and sending initial confirmation notices. 

No registrations will be canceled as a result of the supplemental process before the November election. Voters flagged during the 2018 supplemental process won’t be removed until after the November 2022 election.

Always remember, no one has a monopoly on great ideas. Case in point - #Ohio’s new voter lookup feature announced today (https://t.co/7hmC1boLwm) is courtesy @Clevelanddotcom’s own @RichExner— Jon Husted (@JonHusted) July 9, 2018

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