Registrar of Voters
Voter Education and Outreach Subcommittee Meeting
January 10, 2007
The Voter Outreach and Education Subcommittee met on Wednesday, January 10, 2007. Present were: Anne Layzer, Greg Brockbank, Shirley Graves, Steve Burdo, and Elaine Ginnold from the Registrar of Voters’ Office.
Review of Voter Education and Outreach activities for November 2006 Election
Elaine distributed a report of voter outreach and education activities that the ROV performed for the November 7, 2006 General Election. Much of the voter education activities involved information required by the Help America Vote Act. Information was delivered in three principal ways:
- Sample Ballot
- Poll workers at the polls
- Registrar of Voters’ partnership with Grassroots Leadership Network of Marin.
Partnership with Grassroots
Steve Burdo described the voter education activities and materials provided by Grassroots, which has partnerships with over 30 Marin County organizations serving low income and minority language populations.
Staff at Grassroots used materials provided by the Registrar of Voters and also created additional information materials, which were translated into Spanish and Vietnamese. Areas targeted by the program were:
- Marin City
- Canal Neighborhood in San Rafael
- South Novato
Before the election, Grassroots staff held workshops, forums, attended community events, made phone calls to over 1800 voters, and sent mailings to 1500 voters, to disseminate the information that included:
- Registering to vote
- Voters’ rights
- How to mark the ballot
- Absentee voting
- Provisional voting
- What to expect at the polls
- Most common mistakes and what to do about them
- How to become an election clerk
On Election Day, Grassroots conducted an exit poll of a total of 187 voters at polling places at the Manzanita Recreation Center in Marin City, Pickleweed Park in the Canal area, and the United Methodist Church in South Novato. A full report of all of the Grassroots activities and the survey results are available separately.
Voter education activities
Committee members suggested that the Registrar of Voters could illustrate voter turnout on maps, improve polling place signage outside of the Manzanita polling place in Marin City, and help in getting out the message to vote in local elections, perhaps through billboards in low turnout areas. In addition, in elections for judges, inform voters where to find information on the judicial candidates and explain retention elections in sample ballot.
The Committee decided to develop information and messaging about the importance of voting in local elections. Committee members will take responsibility for developing information about the kinds of decisions the governing bodies at various levels of local government make; how voters can get information and make decisions about who to vote for; where people can go to watch elected officials make decisions; and other information to encourage people to think of voting as a personal thing. The themes of the information campaign will be: why vote in local elections; why your vote matters and how it affects you personally. Following are the assignments:
County – Elaine Ginnold
Municipal – Steve Burdo
District – Shirley Graves
Schools – Anne Layzer
Community Colleges – Greg Brockbank
Populations to target with this information include: youth, new voters, language minority voters and low-income voters.
Members will bring their draft blurbs and messaging to review at the next meeting.
Ms. Ginnold distributed a chart with statistics about voter turnout in November elections for the past 10 years.
Committee will continue developing the voter education and outreach plan at the next meeting.
There being no further business, the committee adjourned at 5:30 p.m. The next meeting will be on Wednesday, February 14th at 4:30 p.m. at the Registrar of Voters’ Office.