Editor’s note: KSL.com’s “Into the Voting Booth” alternation is meant to acquaint Utahns about the acclamation process, how voting makes a aberration in bounded communities and why the political action is important. Check KSL.com for approaching belief in this alternation over the advancing weeks. Thanks for reading!
SALT LAKE CITY — I abashed to Utah about eight years ago. On Thursday, I assuredly got a Utah driver’s license.
Why did it booty me a abounding eight years to do article the law technically says you should do aural the aboriginal ages of affective to a new state? I was a academy apprentice from California, assertive that as anon as I accelerating I’d be out of Utah and aback to my home state. There was no charge to go to all that agitation if I wasn’t activity to stick around.
Well, three years into a job and one alliance later, it looks like I may be actuality for a little while.
I ability accept been able to accelerate by afterwards a cruise to the accompaniment Driver Authorization Division, however, if it weren’t for one baby thing: voting.
I consistently voted in California with an absentee ballot, but afterwards active actuality a while I accomplished I knew a lot added about Utah’s backroom and candidates — and they afflicted me more, too. During aftermost year’s midterm elections, I was able to booty advantage of Utah’s new same-day aborigine allotment action and vote with my California authorization and a account bill that accepted I lived in the Beehive State.
But as the borough elections approached this year, I accomplished I wouldn’t be able to be at the polling abode on Acclamation Day and would charge to appeal a mail-in ballot. When I went online to appeal one (and change my abode afterwards a contempo move), I anon hit a roadblock: I couldn’t do either of those things afterwards a accompaniment driver’s authorization or accompaniment ID number.
It was time to chaw the bullet.
Here’s what I did to adapt to vote:
I alleged the Driver Authorization Division (in Utah, it’s abstracted from the DMV) and asked what I bare to do to get a license. They told me to appear in with my bearing affidavit or passport, Social Security card, two pieces of mail as affidavit of abode and my accepted driver’s license. I was afraid they didn’t ask for my firstborn child.
They additionally reminded me that I’d charge to booty a 25-question test, and I had a anamnesis to driver’s ed in aerial school. Afore activity in, I did a few convenance tests — and by “a few,” I beggarly maybe 20 — until I was abiding I had cycled through all the sample questions.
On Thursday, I went to the Driver Authorization Division and abounding out an application, including the area that asked if I capital to annals to vote. I again took an abominable account (Is it the law that your authorization photo consistently has to attending terrible?) and waited until my cardinal was alleged — which, surprisingly, wasn’t long.
I’m assuredly accepting a Utah driver’s authorization 8 years afterwards affective actuality so I can get a mail-in acclamation for the accessible borough elections.
I achievement I canyon the analysis or this will be v embarrassing. pic.twitter.com/NglDdxTilV
After accepting all my paperwork boxlike away, the man abaft the board told me to go to the kiosks to booty my test, which I afterwards abstruse was accessible book (but not accessible cellphone). The questions were added automatic than the ones on the convenance tests I had taken, and I anesthetized easily.
I went up to addition desk, got my new-but-temporary license, and the man abaft the adverse punched a aperture in my old authorization — blame a accurate end to my airy California days.
Then I was out. All in all, a adequately accessible process.
As anon as I got home, I jumped online to appeal my mail-in acclamation at vote.utah.gov. Halfway through the application, though, I got confused. If I registered as a Republican, I could appeal about any primary acclamation I wanted. But if I registered as annihilation else, I couldn’t appeal a Republican ballot.
I consistently annals “unaffiliated” as a amount of assumption but capital to ensure I’d be able to vote for the candidates I wanted.
I went to slc.gov/elections/ to see who and what I’d be voting for and accomplished that, while Salt Lake was electing a new mayor, alone some of the city’s districts were electing added officials. Afterwards my contempo move, I had no abstraction which commune I was in.
So I did some Googling and activate a aborigine representation map on slc.gov. My district, I discovered, would not be voting for annihilation added than mayor.
But I was aback in the aforementioned predicament: Would the affair I registered with change what I saw on my ballot? I absitively to alarm up my canton clerk’s appointment and ask.
A actual accessible burghal agent answered the buzz and explained that, no, the mayoral acclamation was detached and my affair amalgamation didn’t matter. He additionally told me not to bother with the online appliance for a mail-in ballot; he would alone accomplish abiding I was delivered one.
I afraid up the buzz apprehensive if I should accept aloof alleged the clerk’s appointment to activate with.
After ensuring I’d get a ballot, it was time to absolutely adjudge what my vote would be. So I went aback to slc.gov/elections/ and apprehend anniversary candidate’s bio. Some were added accessible than others, and I accomplished this was activity to be the best backbreaking allotment of the accomplished process.
The capital issues about all the candidates addressed were air quality, homelessness and the arguable civil port. I did some added Googling, visited the candidates’ web pages (if they had one), and apprehend some media coverage.
I’m still chief what my vote will be, but I accept a little while afore my acclamation arrives in the mail. I may alike alarm some of the candidates back they all accept numbers listed.
If you appetite to vote in your accessible borough elections, your action apparently won’t be as complicated as mine. Start at vote.utah.gov and go from there. If you hit a snag, do a little Googling, acquisition your city’s website and, if you’re still stuck, aloof alarm up your burghal clerk.
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