The deadline to register to vote for the upcoming Aug. 8 special election is Monday. Ohio voters will have the opportunity to cast their ballots on a single issue — State Issue 1. This proposed amendment aims to elevate the standards required to qualify for and pass amendments to Ohio’s constitution.
State Issue 1 was proposed by a two-thirds majority of the Ohio General Assembly. If approved, any newly-proposed constitutional amendment placed on a statewide ballot must receive at least 60 percent of the vote to be approved.
Additionally, any initiated petition proposing to amend the state constitution, filed with the Secretary of State on or after Jan. 1, 2024, must contain the signatures of at least 5% of the eligible voters residing in each county of the state. Furthermore, the amendment specifies that new signatures may not be added to an initiative petition proposing to amend the Ohio Constitution once it has been filed with the Secretary of State on or after Jan. 1, 2024.
Republicans’ immediate goal is to make it harder for voters to pass an abortion rights amendment that is in the works for November.
With the registration deadline approaching, the Fayette County Board of Elections is prepared to assist voters. The voter registration deadline is Monday, July 10. The Board of Elections office, located at 135 S. Main St. in Washington C.H., will be open until 9 p.m. on the registration deadline day to accommodate voters who need to register or update their voter records in person.
Early in-person voting for the Aug. 8 special election will begin on Tuesday. The early in-person voting schedule is as follows:
– July 11-14: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
– July 17-21: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
– July 24-28: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
– July 31: 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.
– Aug. 1: 7:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.
– Aug. 2-4: 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.
– Aug. 5: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
– Aug. 6: 1-5 p.m.
The early in-person voting will end on Sunday, Aug. 6. The recently passed House Bill 458, in December 2022, eliminated voting on the Monday before Election Day.
For those unable to vote in person, absentee ballots will be mailed to domestic voters starting on Tuesday. The deadline to request an absentee ballot by mail is Tuesday, Aug. 1. This represents a new deadline established by House Bill 458, replacing the previous deadline of noon on the Saturday before Election Day. On the new deadline day, Boards of Election will have extended hours from 7:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. to allow voters extra time to submit their requests for an absentee ballot. To be counted, absentee ballots must be postmarked the day before Election Day (Aug. 8), if returned by mail. If returned in person to the Board of Elections office, absentee ballots must be received by 7:30 p.m. on election night.
To obtain more information or seek clarification, individuals are encouraged to contact the Fayette County Board of Elections office by phone at 740-335-1190. Additional election-related information, including sample ballots, can be found on the Board of Elections website at https://www.boe.ohio.gov/fayette/.