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How you can vote in the May elections

1:30 pm, Tuesday, 26th March 2024 - 3 weeks ago

General

On Thursday, 2 May, there are local elections in most council wards and Police and Crime Commissioner elections across all wards in North East Lincolnshire.

Voters will need to make sure that their electoral roll details are up-to-date and can choose from three ways to vote.

Anyone who is registered to vote can cast a vote in person by visiting their designated polling station. Voters will need to take photographic ID with them to vote. If you don’t have photographic ID, you can apply for a “Voter Authority Certificate” (VAC). The deadline for application for a VAC is 5pm on the 24 April 2024.

Voters can also arrange in advance to cast their vote by post or have someone else cast their vote for them, something known as voting by proxy.

Voting in person

If you have registered and are eligible to vote, the local elections office will send you a poll letter telling you where and when to vote. You can still vote if you have misplaced your poll letter; you do not have to take it with you to the polling station.

Polling stations will be open from 7am to 10pm on the day of the election. You will need to provide your name and address to polling station staff when you arrive as well as providing photo ID.

If you are disabled, the polling staff will be able to help you. The polling stations will have wheelchair access, equipment for visual impairment and low-level polling booths.

Voting by post

You can use postal voting as a one off at one election or for all elections. You do not need to meet any specific criteria to vote by post.

When you apply to vote by post, your signature and date of birth will be checked against your application. This is to make sure the ballot paper you return is your vote. If the signature and/or date of birth do not match, your vote will be rejected.

If you wish to vote by post, you need to apply to do this by 5pm on the 17 April 2024.

There are national changes for 2024 regarding postal voting

National changes to regulations this year mean that postal votes must either be returned through the Royal Mail, or alternatively, can be handed in, in person, at the reception to the Municipal Offices, Grimsby to an authorised officer during opening hours, or at the polling stations on the day of the election.

If you have a postal vote ballot pack please ensure you follow the new rules:

  • There is a limit to the number of postal votes a person can hand in at a polling station – a person will not be allowed to hand in more than five postal ballot packs for other electors plus their own.
  • If a person hands in more than five postal ballot packs for other electors, all the postal votes (other than their own) will be rejected.
  • If there is reason to suspect that a person has already handed in the maximum number of postal votes elsewhere (e.g. another polling station) at the election, any subsequent postal votes handed in will be rejected.
  • Anyone handing in postal votes must complete a ‘return of postal voting documents’ form for it to be counted.

The person handing in the postal vote(s) will need to complete the form with their name, address and the reason for handing in other people’s postal votes (where appropriate). If the form is not completed with all the required information, or to the authorised officer’s satisfaction, the postal vote(s) will be rejected. Postal votes will not be accepted if they are simply left at a polling station, they will be rejected. After the election, the Electoral Registration Officer will write to all electors who have had their postal votes rejected, telling them why.

Voting by proxy

If you need someone to vote on your behalf, you can apply for a proxy vote. You can apply for a proxy vote for one election only or, if you meet the following criteria and your application is attested, you can have a permanent proxy vote:

  • a physical condition that means you cannot vote in person or by post.
  • attending a course for educational purposes and will not make it to your polling station.
  • unable to vote due to being away for work.

If you want someone else to vote for you, you need to apply for a proxy vote. If you have a proxy vote already, but wish to change this, you need to contact the Elections Team by 5pm on the 17 April 2024. If you wish to apply for a new proxy vote, you have until 5pm on the 24 April 2024.

A spokesperson for North East Lincolnshire Council said: “It’s important that everyone who is eligible to vote is able to do so.

“As we approach the May elections, people need to think about how they intend to vote. If you are likely to be unable to vote on the day, it is worth considering a vote by post or by proxy.

“To do so, you’ll need to register in plenty of time. To register to vote, or to change how you vote in elections, visit www.nelincs.gov.uk/electoral-register-and-voting or call 01472 324160.”

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