October 2016  Ohio League Leader Upd ates
 

Contents

1. Latest Election Updates
a. Update on Voter Purge Lawsuit
b. Purged Voter Outreach
c. Voter Coalition Efforts to Reassure Voters that Ohio Elections are Fair
d. Voter Q&A graphic series

2. Election Protection & Observers, Voter Hotlines

3. MLD Tip: It's Time to Follow Up and Make the ASK!

4. Reminder - LWV Ohio Primary Election Systems (PES) Study - Study Guide 
& Consensus Questions Now Available!

5. LWVO is Hiring - Please Circulate with your 
networks

6. November All-Member Conference Call

7. From LWVUS: IRS Filing Deadline Fast-approaching for Many Leagues 

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1. Latest Election Updates
a. Update on Voter Purge Lawsuit
On September 23, 2016, the federal appeals court for the Sixth Circuit ruled that it was unlawful for Ohio to purge voters for being infrequent voters. The appeals court then sent the case back to the lower court to craft a remedy to allow those wrongly purged voters to vote.

On October 19, 2016, the lower court issued an order. Voters who were wrongly purged due to inactivity in 2011, 2013, or 2015, could show up to vote in person during early voting or on Election day. Purged voters may cast a provisional ballot if they still reside in the same county in which they were previously registered. The Secretary of State issued a directive instructing Boards of Elections on how to process these provisional ballots - check if anyone who is not currently registered was part of that purge process, and, if they were, those provisionals are to be counted.

However, the Oct. 19 order requires in-person voting and did not address purged voters who are physically unable to show up in person to vote. On October 25, the court issued a second order that created a special procedure for a provisional ballot to be delivered to wrongly purged voters who have a personal illness, physical disability, or infirmity and for that reason are unable to cast a ballot in-person (early or on election day).

Voters who meet those criteria must file Form 11-I-2 with their BOE no later than 12 noon on the Saturday prior to Election Day. Then the BOE will send a pair of staff members (one Republican & one Democrat) to deliver a provisional ballot.

LWV Ohio has created a new voter Q&A infographic with instructions for what purged voters can do to participate in this election.

b. Purged Voter Outreach
Thank you to all of the League members and friends around the state who volunteered to make phone calls to purged and infrequent voters and helped them to re-register/update their registration by the October 11 deadline. In addition to live calls made by League volunteers, our partners at the Voting Rights Coalition recorded a robocall message that went out to the rest of the list.

Altogether, our combined efforts made calls to over 700,000 purged and infrequent voters! They worked too. We heard from our partners at the Election Protection hotline that they had a surge of calls from Ohio due to our phonebanking.

Hopefully our purged and infrequent voter outreach calls encouraged many of the purged voters to verify their voter registration and re-register to vote, so that they are able to vote a regular ballot.

c. Voter Coalition Efforts to Reassure Voters that Ohio Elections are Fair
On October 18, 2016, the Ohio Voter Rights Coalition (of which LWV Ohio is a member) held a telephone press briefing with Ohio reporters to address recent concerns about the potential for elections to be "rigged" or bad actors interfering with the process.

Here is a link to the joint press release: "Voter Advocates Reassure Voters that Ohio Elections are Fair, Urge People with Concerns to use Ohio Election Protection Hotline"

In addition, LWVO created a Voter Q&A infographic: "How do I know Ohio's election is secure?" that lists all the layers of protections built into Ohio elections to protect it from tampering.

d. Voter Q&A graphic series
To help voters stay informed about Ohio's constantly changing election rules and procedures, LWV Ohio created a Voter Q&A infographic series.
  
The whole series has been uploaded to LWV Ohio's Facebook album here. (Note: it is accessible to the public, even if you do not have a Facebook account.) Please feel free to share the Q&As on your League's website and social media accounts, as well as your own. We'll be featuring a different graphic each day that you can like, share, and retweet.

We add new Q&As as additional questions are suggested, so check back often.

2. Election Protection & Observers, Voter Hotlines
Thank you to those who signed up to be election protection observers around Ohio on Election Day and at early voting the Saturday and Sunday before. You will be receiving information about the training and location assignments soon.

LWV Ohio strongly urges any voters encountering problems whether during early voting or on Election Day, to call the toll-free Election Protection hotline at 866-OUR-VOTE (866-687-8683). Volunteers will be available to assist with any voting-related questions or problems that arise during Ohio's early voting period, which started Oct. 12 and runs through Nov. 7. Spanish-speaking voters may seek bilingual assistance through 888-VE-Y-VOTA (888-839-8682) and for assistance in a variety of Asian languages, please call 1-888-API-VOTE (888-274-8683).

We are also recruiting volunteers to help with answering voter calls at the LWV Ohio office and at the Election Protection hotline from Monday October 31, 2016 through Tuesday November 8, 2016. To volunteer for the Election Protection hotline's Columbus call center, click here
to sign up for a shift. To volunteer at the LWVO office, call or email Carrie ( cdavis@lwvohio.org). Training will be provided. Thank you!

3. MLD Tip: It's Time to Follow Up and Make the ASK!
If your League has collected the names and contact information of people who attended its election-related activities, it's now time to follow up!
ASKing is the best way to get people interested and involved in the League.

When making the ASK, one tip is to convey the value of membership in the League by sharing a brief personal story about what the League means to YOU and the impact the League has had in your life and on your community. You do not have to demonstrate some big achievement or "give your resume." Instead, let your passion for League showcase itself!

Then it's helpful to give your prospect some options - some ways to get involved or engaged. This might be asking them to participate in some interim step leading to further engagement, such as coming with you to a meeting or helping out at a voter registration booth - or directly asking them to join the League. The key is to provide the opportunities and make the ASK!

For more information, please see:
4. Reminder - LWV Ohio Primary Election Systems (PES) Study - Study Guide & Consensus Questions Now Available!
At the 2015 LWV Ohio convention, delegates approved a study of primary election systems. The PES Study Committee has been hard at work for the last year, and the LWVO Board wishes to thank them for all their hard work and dedication to examining this timely issue.

The PES Study Committee and LWVO Board are pleased to present you with this Study Guide & Consensus Questions for local Leagues to consider primary election systems and submit their responses.

Leagues' responses to the consensus questions are due no later than January 31, 2017. Leagues are asked to submit their responses using this online consensus question response form here. Here is a printable pdf version of the questions for use during your meetings or to send in if you are unable to use the electronic form.

Links to the Study Guide, Consensus Questions, and the PES Study Committee's four fact sheets printed in the Voter newsletter over the last year are available on the LWVO website, in the "Studies" section under the Member Area here.

Questions about the study guide and consensus questions can be directed to PES Study Co-Chair Lynda Mayer ( lbmayer57@gmail.com).

5. LWVO is Hiring - Please Circulate with your networks
LWVO is growing our office staff, to provide you and your League with even better customer service. We are currently accepting applications for:

- Legislative Public Policy Intern
- Voter Service Intern
- Communications & Marketing Intern
- Part-time Office & Program Associate
- Part-time Development Campaign Director

Do you know someone with a passion for civic engagement who is looking to put their talents to work at an Ohio non-profit? Please share these job descriptions with your networks and encourage good candidates to apply. Full job descriptions are posted on the LWVO website here.

6. November All-Member Conference Call
Our next all-member conference call will be on Tuesday, November 1, 12-1 pm.

Topic: Latest Election Updates
CALL-IN NUMBER: 866-740-1260
PIN NUMBER: 4691505#

Join us to hear about the latest election updates. Our discussion will include:
  • Talk about alternative candidate forum structures that can be used to avoid the "empty chair" problem
  • Updates on the voter purge case and absentee/provisional case
  • League messaging to refute "rigged" claims
  • Update on Election Protection, training and location assignments
  • What observers are and are not allowed to do
  • What to do if you see voter intimidation
The recording of the all-member call will be available following the call until the end of the month. Please note that the podcast is intended for LWV members and guests (just like the calls) and, therefore, should not be shared with anyone outside the League family. Thank you.

7. From LWVUS: IRS Filing Deadline Fast-approaching for Many Leagues
Leagues - both operating funds (501c4) and education funds (501c3) - that receive less than $50,000 in income must file an e-postcard return (also known as Form 990N) every year with the IRS. The e-Postcard is due every year by the 15th day of the 5th month after the close of your tax year. For example, if your tax year ended on June 30, the e-Postcard is due November 15. For more information, please visit the League Management Website here.
The League of Women Voters of Ohio | 17 South High Street | Columbus, Ohio 43215 | 614-469-1505