Important Information for Nov. 2 – Election Day
October 30, 2010

Once again…credit goes to Hector DeLeon in the Harris County Clerk’s Office.  Here is information he provided to help you on  Nov. 2, election day.

ELECTRONIC VOTING TO BE THE PRINCIPAL METHOD OF VOTING ON ELECTION DAY IN HARRIS COUNTY

 Houston, TX– As usual, on General Election Day, Tuesday, Nov. 2, 2010, the eSlate electronic voting system will be the principal method of voting in Harris County. According to the County Clerk’s office, the deployment of electronic voting equipment will be virtually the same for this election compared to the last gubernatorial election. 

”There will be enough electronic voting equipment at the polls to handle the expected Election Day turnout”, said Beverly Kaufman, the chief election official of the county. “Paper ballots will be available at every poll. But I strongly urge voters to cast their ballots using the eSlate electronic voting machines as it is the system which is most familiar to them.” The eSlate has been in use in Harris County since 2002. 

The Election Day infrastructure and procedures will also be the same as the previous similar election: There will be 736 polling locations, five more than four years ago; The polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.; And, a voter may bring someone of their choosing to the polling place to provide assistance, provided it is not their labor union representative, employer, an agent of their employer, or an officer or agent of a labor union to which the voter belongs. The person providing assistance must sign the Affidavit of Voter Assistance and print his/her name on the poll list, to attest to the fact that they will not unduly influence the voter. 

However, voters and the media will notice slight differences on Tuesday: Aside from the voters and the election clerks, there may be state and federal inspectors and poll watchers at some polls. [A Poll Watchers is a person appointed to observe the conduct of an election on behalf of a candidate, a political party, or the proponents or opponents of a measure (specific-purpose political action committees). The role of a poll watcher is to ensure the conduct of fair and honest elections]; and, the election night Central Counting Station will be at Reliant Arena.  

Aside from the federal, state and county races on the ballot, some voters may see other items at the end their ballot such as a proposition or non-partisan election. To vote, a person may present one of the following documents: a voter registration card, a driver’s license, a picture identification of any kind, a birth certificate, a U.S. Citizenship or Naturalization certificate, a U.S passport, a copy of a current utility bill, bank statement, government check, paycheck, or other government document that shows the name and address of the voter. Voters who registered by mail and did not provide their driver’s license number or identification number will also need to provide another form of identification other than the voter registration certificate. 

On Election Day, Texas law requires voters to vote at the precinct where they are registered to vote. Voters may find their election day polling location by visiting www.harrisvotes.com or calling 713 755 6965.

Mayor Parker Votes Early – Encourages Support for Prop. 1-3
October 27, 2010

Mayor Annise Parker cast her ballot at the early voting location on West Gray Street Wednesday morning.

The Mayor says she took her time going through the ballot and didn’t reveal how she voted on the contested races. (Although she is a democrat and said several weeks ago that she planned to vote for former Houston Mayor Bill White in the race for governor)

Parker did tell the media that she voted for all of the propositions (no surprise) and that passing each measure is important to the city’s future.

Proposition One is RENEW Houston. If  passed, the city would create a dedicated pay as you go fund to repair streets and drainage. it would impose a monthly fee on private property owners and that money could only be used for repairs to prevent flooding.

Proposition Two would change  the residency requirement for candidates in the 2011 municipal elections.  This is critical because the city will be redistricting for the first time in 30 years.  The process won’t be completed until June, but potential candidates will have started campaigning in February.  If  some candidates are drawn out of the district lines, they will have a chance to establish residency for six months instead of the usual one year.

Proposition Three ask voters if the city of  Houston should continue to use red light cameras to enforce state and or local laws relating to traffic safety.

Mayor Parker is actively campaigning for Proposition 1.  Some voters have told me about receiving robo calls from the Mayor urging them to vote for the drainage fee.