Voting basics: Photo ID, registration required to vote

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Frank Schultz
Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Not sure of your voting status or whether you have the correct ID card? Read on.

Presidential elections are the busiest, so voters might experience lines at polling places next Tuesday.

Polls are open statewide from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Those in line at 8 p.m. will be allowed to vote.

A voter must present a photo identification document at the polls and be registered to vote.

New voters, those who have changed their addresses or names, and those who have not voted in the past four years must register. See below for more details.

Most voters will be able to use their driver's licenses or state ID cards as their photo IDs.

Even an expired state driver's license or ID card is acceptable if it expired after Nov. 14, 2014.

Other acceptable IDs include a veteran's photo identification card issued by the Veterans Health Administration or a certificate of naturalization that is two years old or newer, as of Nov. 8.

Anyone who needs a photo ID can get one—with or without a birth certificate—at a Division of Motor Vehicles office.

In response to a recent court ruling, the DMV is issuing temporary receipts for those who need photo IDs but do not have birth certificates.

Each DMV receipt will include the person's photograph.

Officials will check to make sure the applicant is a valid voter and then send the receipt via overnight mail, according to the statement.

The receipt can be used immediately as a photo ID for voting while the DMV reviews the application for a free state ID card.

A list of approved photo ID documents will be published in Rock County newspapers Monday, said county Clerk Lisa Tollefson.

For more information on voter ID, go online to bringitwisconsin.com.

Voters must be registered. To check if you are registered, call your municipal clerk or go online to myvote.wi.gov/en-us.

Those who are not registered can do so until 5 p.m. Friday at the clerk's office of their city, village or town if the clerk's office is open that late.

State law does not allow registration over the weekend or Monday, but voters may register at the polls Tuesday.

To register, be sure to bring proof of residency, usually a driver's license with current address, rent receipt or utility bill.

For more information about voting, including polling locations, registration information and your sample ballot, call your local municipal clerk or go online to the address listed above.

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