On Thursday, October 13, Governor Mark Warner (D-Virginia) will announce that he is directing the State Board of Elections to expand the state's Emergency Absentee Voting Program to include, in addition to military personnel stationed abroad, any registered voter from Virginia who is stationed, living, visiting or engaged in disaster relief in parts of the Gulf region affected by Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Rita. This will permit election officials to send absentee ballots by fax or email to those voters qualified to receive them in those fashions.
According to unofficial instructions sent by the State Board of Elections to General Registrars:
These qualified Virginia voters may e-mail or fax their request for an absentee ballot, receive the ballot and return envelope via e-mail, print and vote the ballot and return by mail. This method will dramatically reduced the time it takes for our qualified Virginia voters to cast an absentee ballot. All Virginia localities are required to participate.Those who are eligible to participate in the program must meet these criteria and follow these instructions:
The voter must be currently registered to vote in Virginia.Further information will be available from local registrars' offices after Governor Warner formally announces this initiative.
The voter must be stationed, living, visiting or engaged in disaster relief in parts of the Gulf region affected by Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Rita.
The voter must record the name of the city, state and if known, the zip code where they are currently stationed, living, visiting or engaged in disaster relief in parts of the Gulf region affected by Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Rita on their completed absentee ballot application.
The voter must request their absentee ballot using one of the following applications: Federal Post Card Application or Virginia Absentee Ballot Application.
The voter must provide the registrar with a current, working email address or fax number.
This information is recorded on the absentee ballot application.
The voter must send the completed application to the Registrar’s office in the city or county where their Virginia residence is located.
If the above requirements are not met, do not send their ballot by email.
Application must be received no later than 5:00 PM Eastern Standard Time on Thursday, November 3rd, .