Duval County Supervisor of Elections weighs in on legislation that would limit access to voting by mail

Duval County’s Supervisor of Elections is talking to News4JAX about proposed legislation that would limit access to Floridian’s voting by mailSenate Bill 1752 would create new eligibility requirements for voters by imposing a strict set of conditions for every Florida resident.

Right now in the state of Florida, if you want to cast your ballot by mail, you only need to register and request a mail in ballot be sent to your address. New legislation filed by Senator Blaise Ingoglia would put new requirements in place which could limit access to mail in voting.

Senate Bill 1752 says a qualified absent voter may vote by mail ONLY if they expect to be:

Absent from the county of his or her residence.Unable to appear personally at the early voting site because of illness or disability.A resident or patient of the US Dept. of Veteran Affairs medical facility Absent from his or her legal residence because he or she is in jail

News4JAX asked Duval County Elections Supervisor, Jerry Holland, if he thinks new legislation is necessary to ensure a valid count of Florida votes.

“I don’t and I think my other colleagues in 66 counties believe the same thing. Our philosophy is always we want to try and get as many people to vote prior to election day, and vote by mail is one of those two ways,” Holland said.

Holland tells us he feels very good about the accuracy of the vote in the State of Florida and says the process overall doesn’t need any changes or reform. He say statewide right now, election officials have the ability to track the mail in ballots from the time they leave the elections supervisors office, to the voter’s home and back.

“When you look at, there are some counties in the state of Florida like Pinellas County, that almost half of their voters vote by mail. Years ago in Duval County, we used to have about a third of our voters vote by mail. Now it’s about 25% of our voters in Duval County,” Holland said.

He says voters have no reason to worry about voting machines being connected to the internet because they are not connected to public Wi-Fi. He says statewide audits prove that there was no widespread election fraud, adding that he hears from many voters expressing their appreciation for the state counting the final tallies expeditiously.

“Voters are very appreciative of the fact that we can get results done in the state of Florida, typically done by nine o’clock,” Holland said. “And I think that’s one of the security aspects is that the sooner that you get the results in, the less suspicion that someone is changing the outcome of the election.”

Holland says the new senate bill would make it harder to get an absentee ballot. State Senator Blaise Ingoglia was unavailable for comment Tuesday, which is the first day of the legislative session.

Comments are closed, but trackbacks and pingbacks are open.