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Colleges and local organizations to encourage Alabamians to register to vote tomorrow

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For many Alabamians, the time to get registered to vote could be as early as Tuesday.

National Voter Registration Day is a bipartisan civic holiday celebrated nationally each year to encourage prospective voters to get registered. This year’s registration day will be held on September 28.

As of August 31, only 145,945 Tuscaloosa residents were eligible to vote. This is compared to Alabama’s total of active and inactive voters this year, which is more than 3.6 million.

Tuscaloosa County Board of Registrars member Pam Rogers said that in today’s political climate it is especially important for residents to have their voices heard.

“I believe that it’s just important for people that either have a negative view of what’s going on or people that complain," she said. "They can’t do anything about something they don’t agree with if they’re not registered to vote.”

Colleges and universities will celebrate next week through voter drives. The University of Alabama’s student organization UA Vote Everywhere will set up tables outside the Ferguson Center Plaza and the University Quad and provide students with online and in-person resources for where to vote in Tuscaloosa. Similarly, Auburn University will host a voter’s registration and information event on Tuesday in the Ralph Brown Draughon Library.

Voter registration applications can also be found across Tuscaloosa County on Tuesday. Applications can be found at the Tuscaloosa County Annex, where the Board of Registrars is located. They may also be seen at the Tuscaloosa Public Library, the Alabama Medicaid Office and the Department of Human Resources in Tuscaloosa County.

Those who wish to vote absentee in an upcoming election must first receive an absentee ballot application. Residents can receive an application at their local Circuit Clerk’s office. Applications must be submitted seven days prior to an election by mail and five days prior to an election if delivered by hand. Applicants must provide proof of photo identification through a driver’s license or student ID. Ballots must be submitted the day before an election if hand-delivered and at noon on the day of an election if delivered by mail.

The deadline to register in any election is two weeks prior to Election Day. The closest election for Alabamians to participate in is the Primary Midterm Election, which will be on May 24. Alabamians must register by May 9. The Alabama General Election will be Nov. 8.

Rogers said regardless of when an election day is, the time to vote is always fleeting.

“The time to register to vote is now, not waiting and then you don’t get it in in time to vote in an important election. And every election is important,” she said.

For more information on registering to vote online, receiving an absentee ballot application and information on upcoming state elections, visit the Secretary of State’s website at www.alabamavotes.gov.