January 12, 2015 – Voting Rights

The 2015 legislative session in Virginia begins this Wednesday at noon.  All bills being considered will first be heard in committee or subcommittee.  If you are interested in a particular bill, click on the link below or visit http://virginiageneralassembly.gov/virginiaLegislature for more information about that bill.

The disAbility law Center of Virginia will be monitoring developments in the legislature that may be of interest to people with disabilities.  We are available to educate policy makers about the potential impact of legislative proposals.  Please let us know of any legislative proposals or budget issues that you think we should be following.  Contact us at info@dlcv.org or by calling 1-800-552-3962 or 804-225-2042.

The mission of the disAbility Law Center of Virginia is, through zealous and effective advocacy and legal representation, to protect and advance the legal, human and civil rights of people with disabilities, to combat and prevent abuse, neglect and discrimination, and to promote independence, choice and self-determination by persons with disabilities.

There are several bills concerning voting rights that may be of interest to the disability community.  Here are just a few:

Voting Rights

HB 1327 (Filler-Corn) allows a person with a disability or someone over the age of 75 to go to the front of the line at a polling place between the hours of 9:30 and 4:30.

HB 1312 (Anderson) and SB 691 (Deeds)  authorizes the State Board of Elections to conduct a pilot program for a locality to establish a “vote center” for use in primary elections instead of operating a polling place for every precinct.

SB 708 (Edwards), SB 719 (McWaters), SB 758 (Barker), SB 822 (Miller), and SB 910 (Wexton) would allow a person over age 65 to vote absentee

HJ 522 (Herring) proposes a ballot question to amend the constitution to allow persons convicted of nonviolent felonies to have their voting rights restored after they have served their sentence.

HB 1318 (Campbell) requires an individual to produce a photo ID in order to obtain an absentee ballot when applying by mail.

HB 1375 (Lindsay) and HB 1429 (Herring) deal with acceptable forms of identification in order to be able to vote.