Councilmember Allen celebrates Board of Elections implementing his law modernizing ballot and petition signature gathering

Program one of several laws Allen has written to modernize and open DC’s elections process

Councilmember Charles Allen (Ward 6) celebrated today’s announcement from the DC Board of Elections launching its eSign mobile petition application. The program was created thanks Councilmember Allen’s Ballot Modernization Amendment Act of 2015. It was passed into law and funded during the FY2018 budget process.

“It’s time to bring our ballot and petition process into the 21st century and make it easier to collect and verify the signatures of District residents who want to see a candidate or initiative on the ballot,” said Councilmember Allen. The law allows petition signature gatherers to use electronic tablets to instantly verify a District of Columbia residents’ signatures and voter information with Board of Elections – traditional paper ballots will still be available.  The law is one of several ways Councilmember Allen is pushing the District to have a modern, transparent, and fair elections and campaign process.

On January 9, the DC Council will hold a first vote on the Fair Elections Act of 2017, a bill Councilmember Allen co-introduced for the past two council sessions and has shepherded through the council. The bill will create a public-financing option for candidates running for elected office in the District of Columbia.

And in October, Councilmember Allen’s Automatic Voter Registration Act went into effect across DC, removing one extra barrier to voter participation by automatically registering residents with the Board of Elections when they go to the DMV. The law also means that when residents update their address and signature information with the DMV, their voter information is automatically updated – a key part of collecting valid signatures for ballot petitions.

“At a time when many states and local jurisdictions are making it harder for some of their residents to vote, I want District residents to trust in that their voices matter. That means making it easier to participate, getting big money out of politics, and ultimately ensuring voters can hold their elected officials accountable,” said Allen. “Today’s announcement is one more step toward that goal.”

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