Westfield News offers voter registration


WESTFIELD – The Westfield News is sponsoring a voter education/voter registration event as part of Secretary of State William Galvin’s program to foster greater citizen participation in the up-coming presidential election to be held on Tuesday, Nov. 6.
City Clerk Karen Fanion said that her office recently received a $10,000 grant to conduct voter outreach and registration.
Fanion said that voter registration “has been very brisk and I expect it will be busy right up to 8 p.m. on Oct. 17.”
Wednesday, Oct, 17 is the deadline for citizens to register for the Nov. 6 election, which not only features a heated presidential contest, but also a hotly contested race for a U.S. Senate seat in Massachusetts.
“Since the voter registration period for the September primary we’ve had 477 citizens register to vote in November and expect that by the end of this week that number will be over 700,” Fanion said. “Requests for absentee ballots are also very high.”
Citizens can register to vote at the City Clerk’s office on the second floor of City Hall at 59 Court St. during normal business hours (9 a.m. to 5 p.m.).
Those hours will be extended to 8 p.m. on the final registration day, Wednesday, Oct. 17, which is 20 days prior to Election Day as required under state law.
Fanion said the grant is also being used to fund voter outreach efforts.
“We had a registration booth at the Colonial Harvest Days and plan to conduct voter registration in the parking lot of the Westfield News this Saturday, Oct. 13, between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m., Fanion said. “Hopefully we’ll pick up a lot of people on Saturday who can’t get to City Hall during the week.”
Voter registration at The Westfield News on Saturday will occur rain or shine.
Registration requires citizens to complete a form issued by Galvin’s office.
“There are actually two forms,” Fanion said. “There is an office form and there is a mail-in form they can take home to complete or for someone who can’t get to the office. The form takes about five minutes to fill out.”
Citizens are required to provide their driver’s license number or the last four digits of the Social Security number as part of the registration form.
Citizens obtaining a new driver’s license or renewing their current driver’s license can register to vote at the Registry of Motor Vehicles.
Fanion also encourages residents to have identification with them for registration and at the election polls in November.
“The will be some circumstances when a voter may have to show identification for clarification, such as a first time voter,” Fanion said.

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