Primary voters lose registration status in Chatham County

Primary voters lose registration status in Chatham County

CHATHAM COUNTY, GA (WTOC) - Some voters who went to the polls for the primaries recently checked their voting status, and it says they aren’t registered.

If you want to vote in November, voter registration ends in just over two weeks. There are several different places you can vote on Nov. 6, but that’s if you’re registered.

Voters from Chatham County took to Facebook claiming they voted in the primary and now they aren’t registered for the general election. Even a mom from Bryan County says it happened to her daughter who she helped register.

“Yeah, never heard of it, never seen it, so i made a post, “check on your loved ones and make sure they are registered, it just happened to my own daughter,” said Bryan County resident, Bertice Berry.

Berry says she has no idea why this would happen to her daughter’s voting registration, but they plan to get her registered again by the end of the week.

“Some people think they are registered and they’re not. They haven’t voted in a while. We vote, we’ve been registered. We’ve been hyper vigilant about checking our registration and yet this still happened, so people need to check, check, and recheck.”

Even city officials are getting feedback about this unusual mishap.

“I don’t know how I got involved in it. People were contacting me on my Facebook page asking me about it. Of course, I’m not on the board of elections, but I am a representative. I tried to check it out and just encourage people.”

We’ve reached out to the Chatham and Bryan county board of elections. Bryan County responded with the following statement:

"A Bryan County resident complained today that her daughter, who she claims had been a registered voter in Bryan County, had been purged from the rolls without her permission. The Bryan County Board of Elections office cannot remove voters from rolls, nor can it change a voter’s status from active to inactive. Only the Secretary of State’s office retains the power to purge voter rolls.

In Georgia, people who haven’t voted or had contact with the elections system for three years are placed on an inactive list and then removed from the rolls altogether if they don’t respond to confirmation-of-address notices within 30 days – and then vote in the next two general elections. "

Georgia' voter registration period does not close until October 9, however, so there is still time for voters to register or re-register, and they will be eligible to cast their ballots in the Nov. 6, 2018 election.

Councilman Van Johnson says people should use this as a reminder for everyone to be registered.

“The state has an online tool where you can check your status immediately. It only took seconds. Just don’t take it for granted. Make sure that you are in," Alderman Johnson said.

The Secretary of State’s Office released the following statement on Thursday:

“The Secretary of State’s office hasn’t received any reports where voters say that they’ve been removed from the voting rolls after voting earlier this year. We’ve also reached out to officials in Bacon, Bryan, and Chatham counties and confirmed that they haven’t either. We actually checked the registration status of people claiming on social media that their records were recently deleted, and we discovered that they’ve never been registered to vote in Georgia. We suspect that these claims are politically motivated, which is unfortunate. The good news is that Brian Kemp has made it easier than ever before to register to vote, update your voter record, and access personalized voting information in the Peach State. As a reminder, the voter registration deadline is October 9, 2018.”

Georgia voting registration closes Oct. 9.

If you want to check your voter status, please click here.

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