How to register to vote

One can register many different ways, but basically it comes down to getting your hands on a registration form, filling it out and submitting it to your county board of elections.

First, though, you may want to check whether you are registered and, if so, what address and political party you’re registered under. Go to the state Board of Elections website, www.elections.ny.gov, and click the button in the middle that says “Want to find out if you are registered and where you vote?” Then fill in your name, date of birth, ZIP code and county.

You can also download a registration form from www.elections.ny.gov or pick one up at any county board of elections office (in Malone for Franklin County or Elizabethtown for Essex County) or a wide range of state agency offices. Your town office might be able to help, too.

Then, when you have filled out the form, mail it to one of the following, depending on which county you live in:

¯ Franklin County Board of Elections, 355 West Main St., Malone, NY 12953

¯ Essex County Board of Elections, 7551 Court St., P.O. Box 217, Elizabethtown, NY 12932.

You can also register to vote through the Department of Motor Vehicles, which will forward your application to your county board of elections. You can do this in person at the DMV office in Saranac Lake’s Harrietstown Town Hall, 39 Main St., or on the state DMV website, https://dmv.ny.gov.

To qualify to register to vote, you must:

¯ be a United States citizen

¯ be 18 years old by Dec. 31 of the year in which you file this form (Note: You must also be 18 years old by the date of the election in which you want to vote)

¯ live at your present address at least 30 days before an election

¯ not be in prison or on parole for a felony conviction

¯ not be adjudged mentally incompetent by a court

¯ not claim the right to vote elsewhere.

For more information, call the state Board of Elections at 1-800-FOR-VOTE or your county board of elections: In Franklin County, 518-481-1663 (Republican) or 481-1664 (Democrat); in Essex County, 518-873-3475 (Democrat) or 518-873-3478 or (Republican).

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Friday’s editorial focused on WHEN one must register to vote. Today’s covers HOW to do so. Monday’s will explain WHY it’s important.

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